Why do dogs age so fast? You may believe that this is a simple answer that can be answered with one sentence. In reality, it is far more complex than that.
Below we will take a deep look into the matter and explain all the variables and all the facts you need to know. Keep in mind that this affects your friend as well so you may want to know all specifics.
How long dogs can live?
On average, dogs live between 10 and 18 years. How long a specific dog will live depends on its breed, health, and size. Obviously, some live longer than others, meaning they age slower. Why do dogs age so fast question is the same for all dog breeds.
Other dog breeds age much faster so they can live 10 years only, which is short for most dog owners. You probably know that one year of a dog’s life is equivalent to 4 or 7 years of your life. The accurate and precise ratio will once again depend on the breed, health, and size of a dog.
Humans are considered to be grown when they reach their late teen years. Dogs are fully adult with 1 year of their life. Yes, they grow fast and your puppy will become an adult sooner than you may believe.
Why dogs age much faster than humans?
The simplest answer is also the most complicated one. Their genes are completely different than ours. In other words, we don’t have anything similar. This also means that their heart beats much faster.
Their metabolism is much faster as well. This is one of the reasons why dogs can eat a lot, in short periods of time and why they can move so quickly.
If we combine faster heartbeats and faster metabolism we get a body that will wear out much faster than a body with completely opposite predispositions. As you can see, we live longer because our body works slower. On the other hand, a body of a dog is much faster in every way so it will age much faster.
Take a look at your dog. If you have a backyard, you will see that he is active much more than you are. He also sleeps less than you and can be on his feet the entire day and can play with other dogs. When he is tired, he needs one hour to rest almost completely.
You cannot have that lifestyle. You need plenty of rest and you cannot stay active as long as your dog.
There is a simple chart you can use to calculate how your dog is old in human years. Here we can see an interesting fact. All dog breeds can be divided into small, medium, and large, which is determined by their size and weight. All of them start to age similarly.
For instance, one year of dog’s life is equivalent to 15 human years and this applies to all sizes. But, a small dog 16 years of age will be as old as a human of 80 years. A medium dog will have 87 human years while a large dog will have 120 human years.
In general, smaller dogs live longer than larger breeds. They will also mature in less time. Large dog breeds will age slower at first but can reach middle age with only 5 years.
Very small or better said tiny dog breeds will become seniors only once they reach 10 years of age!
Here we can see another, interesting comparison between dogs and humans. Babies get teeth after 10-15 months of their life. Dogs will get all the teeth when they are 7 months old. But, their teeth will become dull and worn out after 2 years.
This reflects what we have said earlier. Dogs develop much faster and age much faster which means that their bodies will be worn out much faster as well.
How your dog can live longer?
The first answer we must provide is that you cannot help your pet live longer than his pre-determined lifespan. If that dog breed can live 10 years, your dog will live between 8 and 11 years. Some small variations are possible. But, you can make sure he lives as long as his lifespan allows.
For this purpose, you need to be focused on three things. The first one is a proper diet. Proper nutrients will make the body work slower and use less energy. Proper meals include healthy and natural foods. Harmful chemicals and artificial products will have the opposite effect.
Secondly, your dog needs a lot of physical activity. This will help him maintain a healthy weight, keep the body healthy, and will make him a happier dog. Last but not least, your dog must be in proper health.
If your pet has a health issue, try to resolve it as quickly as possible. Yes, they are tough but they are still prone to many diseases, depending on the breed.
All you can do basically is to provide healthy and happy life to your dog. When all three factors are present, your pet will live longer than if you avoid using these. The only variation is if your dog is sick or has severe health issues such as cancer or etc.
Sadly, you cannot do much in that case scenario. This is the worst thing that can happen to your pet and it is the saddest!
The final word
Your dog will live shorter than you. This is the fact and you cannot change that. They age much faster than humans simply because their bodies work much harder and much faster. You can help your pet live longer if you provide him physical activity, plenty of healthy food, and make sure he is healthy.
In some, rare cases he can live longer than the lifespan his breed has. Sadly, this happens rarely, but there are a lot of cases where dogs lived much longer than other members of the same breed.
Read my article How To Groom Your Dog A Home.