This is not information I was ready for, but apparently, dogs are much older than we thought, much sooner than they should be.
For years, I’ve believed the lie that one dog year is equivalent to seven human years, making the numbers easy to track.
This offered some perspective on how long you’d have with your best friend if everything went well. But I never fact-checked.
Veterinarian Hunter Finn is here to burst everyone’s bubble. He posted a TikTok under his handle @dr.hunterfinn that quickly went viral as everyone had their illusions destroyed.
Are you ready? Prepare yourself mentally. Okay.
A one-year-old dog is equivalent to a 31-year-old human.
Yes, they’ve already gotten through college, had their first big break up, and a quarter-life crisis. Now, if you’re used to thinking of a year for a dog as seven, this is probably terrifying. It also doesn’t make any sense.
A three-year-old dog is 93? Nope. A two-year-old dog is like a 49-year-old human:
Aging slows down for dogs, so a seven-year-old dog is about 62.
By the time they’re eight, a dog is only 64 in human years.
Dr. Finn asks people how old their dog is, but he doesn’t offer an actual equation. Very discriminatory against people who are bad at math!!
The doctor isn’t just trying to bum us out. He told Buzzfeed that part of the reason he made the TikTok is that dog owners take it for granted that their puppy is young and healthy and doesn’t need regular attention until they’re much older.
“It’s so important for pet owners to realize that pets do age at different rates than we do, and it makes keeping up-to-date on their health that much more important,” Dr. Finn explained. “I can’t tell you how many times I need to justify the importance of yearly checkups and lab work to make sure their pet is indeed healthy.”
For example, lots of vets find cancer in dogs as young as three. NOOOOOOOOO!!!
The numbers he got were based on a study that compared human and dog DNA, and these are the approximations from Buzzfeed:
A three-year-old dog is in their late 40s, a four-year-old dog is in their early 50s, a five-year-old dog is around 55, and a six year old dog is just shy of 60. From there, the age stabilizes considerably, with dogs aged eight to 14 having a human age anywhere between 65 and 75.
Okay, no need for anything more complicated. I’ll take my dog to the vet immediately. He’s a grandpa.