Thoughts on social, political, educational and business issues; Descriptions of my businesses and hobbies; My tentative plans for retirement; Notes on getting together and keeping in touch with my high school and college classmates and our reunions; Also Notes on my Family Research. I think I'll toss in a little humor on occasion, too. I welcome ideas for future discussions.
22 November 2013
How Old is My Pet in Human Terms
Old Is My Dog?
two 10-year-old dogs, a Great
and a Chihuahua. Under the
1-equals-7 formula, they'd both be considered the equivalent of a 70-year-old
person. And while that's probably not too far off the mark for the Great Dane
(10 years for a Dane is indeed near the outer edge of life expectancy), the
Chihuahua is likely still acting middle-aged.
even the Great Dane didn't match the old formula when he was young. In the
first year of his life, he would have attained most of his height, something no
human 7-year-old ever does.
more accurate to think of the first year of a dog's life getting him just over
the first big jump of adolescence, with the second year bringing him close to
full adult maturity physically, although as in humans, mental maturity may
still be on the horizon. From there, it really does depend on the kind of dog
in question. I think it's more important to focus on the individual dog, with
the knowledge that size and breeding matter when it comes to aging. Roughly
put, you can consider your dog to be a senior citizen at 7 if he's that Great
Dane, but not until 11-plus if he's the Chihuahua.
actions can influence your dog's aging process, by the way. In particular, dogs
who spend their lives overweight or obese will experience chronic pain and
illness earlier than active and healthy dogs of normal weight. So while you're
taking precautions to keep yourself young, do the same for your dog, by
watching his diet and encouraging him to get plenty of exercise.
Old Is My Cat?
about cats? We all love easy answers, so after the idea of "dog
years" became popular, we started seeing the same methodology applied to
cats: Take the lifespan of a cat, compare it to a person, then get your
formula, which is why you may frequently hear that 1 cat year equals 4 human
ahead of me already, I bet: A 1-year-old cat is far more mature than a
4-year-old child, and a 2-year-old cat is fully mature, which can never be said
of a human 8-year-old.
cats have less size diversity than dogs do, however, in this case we actually
can make the formula work, if we start calculating at a cat's second birthday.
The first year takes a cat to late adolescence, and the second into young
adulthood. You can then start counting in fours: Figure a 2-year-old cat at 24
"human years." and add four years for every one thereafter, making a
4-year-old cat the equivalent of a 32-year-old person. That makes a 9-year-old
cat about 52 in human terms, and 16-year-old cat about 80.
as we love to say about ourselves, age is only a number. With cats and dogs
(and people!), proactive, preventive wellness care with proper diet and
exercise is the best way not only to achieve a longer life but also to have it
be a happy, healthy one.