Your dog may be older than you think Young? Old? How Mobile is your Pooch?

Written by Chronicle Staff. Posted in Featured, Pets

Published on July 13, 2020 with No Comments

by Dr. Chad Dodd, Veterinarian

We’ve always thought our dogs age seven years for every one of ours, but new research shows that puppies age much faster than humans, so that ratio is wrong.

According to a study from the University of California San Diego, a one year-old dog is more like a 30 year-old human.  That’s because new genetic evidence shows puppies and younger dogs age at a faster pace.  Then, as dogs age, the process slows down, so researchers found that a 12 year-old Labrador is similar to a 70-year old human.

Dogs live an average of 12 years. Life expectancy in humans is about 5 times that.  That means you’ve probably been estimating your dog’s human age equivalent incorrectly.  The researchers found that a 6-year-old dog would be the human equivalent of about 60 years old.

Veterinarian Chad Dodd, consulting veterinarian for YuMOVE, an all-natural joint supplement, says, “this means we should be checking a dog’s mobility sooner, even if there are no outward signs.”

Whether 2 years old or 12, Dr. Dodd has some tips to make sure your dog is ready for a brisk walk or dog park or has joint issues:

Check their joints – is Fido a bit creaky from sitting on your lap or under your office desk?  If your dog is limping, licking at joints, hesitant to walk on hard surfaces, and not jumping onto your bed as usual, they might have more challenging joint issues.  It’s key to keep joints healthy for your dog’s mobility throughout their life, and now biology is showing that there might be join issues at a younger age.

Build up their stamina – your dog just might be a little out of practice.  Start with two, 15-minute walks a day and see how they do.

Start with a game of tag – grab your dog’s favorite toy, toss it, and then race your dog to retrieve it.

Play hide and seek – with some kibble or favorite toys to get your dog moving outdoors or around the house to keep up their activity levels.

Ask your vet for advice, and consider adding a joint supplement to their diet to support their joint health. Look out for proven, high-strength ingredients such as ActiveEase® Green Lipped   Mussels. Even if there are no outward signs, given this new study, you might consider a joint supplement at 3 or 4 years-old vs. 7 or 8.

There are more helpful tips at

We all know for every one human year a dog ages 7 years, right? WRONG. By the time the average Labrador Retriever is 1 they are the equivalent of 31 in human years!

Fun facts about dogs

1. Dogs noses are wet to help absorb scent chemicals

This amazing dog fact might answer a long-standing question that dog owners have. Why are dogs noses wet? Vetstreet says that the answer is that dog’s noses are wet to help them absorb scent chemicals! Their nose secretes a special mucus that helps to absorb these chemicals, and then they lick their noses to sample them, helping them understand what the smell is.

2. Newfoundlands are amazing lifeguards

Newfoundland dogs are the ultimate doggy lifeguards, because they have water resistant coats and webbed feet. They were originally bred as fisherman’s helpers and to rescue people from drowning. Some owners have even reported that their Newfoundland tries to “rescue” them when they’re swimming!

3. The Beatles song ‘A Day in the Life’ has a frequency only dogs can hear

In an interview in 2013, Paul McCartney said that he added a frequency only dogs can hear to the end of the Beatles song ‘A Day in the Life’. So watch your dog when you play the song! How’s that for an amazing dog fact?

4. Three dogs survived the Titanic sinking

Did you know that three dogs survived the sinking of the Titanic? Vetstreet states that the dogs were in first class and included a Pomeranianpuppy – which her owner wrapped in a blanket to escape with, and everyone thought she was carrying a baby. Another Pomeranian and a Pekingese were also rescued. Move over Rose and Jack!

5. A Bloodhound’s sense of smell can be used as evidence in court

According to PBS, a Bloodhound’s sense of smell is so spot on that it can be admitted as evidence in a court of law. Now if you thought that was an incredible dog fact, prepare to have your mind blown. Bloodhounds can also follow tracks that are over 300 hours old and can stay on a trail for over 130 miles!

6. The tallest dog in the world is 44 inches tall

The tallest dog in the world ever was a Great Dane named Zeus! Measured at 44 inches tall on October 4th 2011, he’s the current Guinness World Record holder.

7. Basenji dogs don’t bark, they yodel

If you thought all dogs barked, then prepare yourself for this dog fact. The Basenji dog doesn’t tend to bark, instead they are known to yodel, whine or scream.

8. A Greyhound could beat a Cheetah in a long distance race

Greyhound would actually beat a Cheetah in a long distance race! According to Psychology Today, Greyhounds are excellent long distance runners and can keep a speed of 35mph for up to 7 miles. Where the Cheetah is incredibly fast it can only keep its speed for around 200 -300 yards, so they may have the running start but it would soon be surpassed by a Greyhound!

9. A blind man and his guide dog hiked the Appalachian Trail

According to the Washington Post, for eight months during 1990 a blind man named Bill Irwin hiked the Appalachian Trail with his guide dog, Orient helping him along the way. Dogs truly are man’s best friend.

10. The Ewoks in Star Wars were based on a dog

If you’re a Star Wars fan you’ll love this amazing dog fact. The Los Angeles Times claims that George Lucas modelled the Ewoks after his family dog.

11. 30% of Dalmatians are deaf in one ear

UFAW states that on average around 30% of Dalmatians are deaf in one ear and 5% are deaf in both. This is due to something called the extreme piebald gene which is responsible for their white coat and blue eyes (in some of them). Dalmatians with larger dark patches are less likely to be deaf.

12. The Saluki is the oldest dog breed  The Guinness World Record for the oldest dog breed is held by the Saluki. The breed dates back to 329BC and were kept as royal pets in Ancient Egypt. Reportedly, there are also carvings found in Southern Iraq of a dog that looks similar to a Saluki which dates back to 7000BC.

13. Chow Chows and Shar-Peis have black tongues

The Chow Chow and the Shar-Pei are the only two dog breeds that have fully black tongues. Even more interesting, the cause of these black tongues is currently unknown.

14. Dogs have three eyelids

Many owners haven’t heard of this interesting dog fact, but did you know that your four-legged friend has three eyelids? According to iHeartDogs, the third lid is called the ‘haw’ or nictitating membrane, and it’s responsible for keeping the eye protected and lubricated.

15. The African Hunting dog is the most successful hunter in the world

The African Hunting Dog is the most successful land hunter in the world. They’re successful in 50-70% of their hunts, which makes them consistently the best mammalian hunter, they even hold the current Guinness World Record for it.












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