You’ve heard that for every 1 year of your pet’s life, it counts as 7 human years, right? Well, there’s new thinking in this regard that lets you be a bit more accurate.
Our pets mature quicker than we do during their early years, so a dog’s first year is really more equivalent to about 15 human years and by the time they are two, it is like them being 24 years old. It really makes sense doesn’t it? Your pets can reproduce before they are a year old. If they were only 7 in our terms – now, that doesn’t seem right.
This is a good graphic to measure your dog’s age in human years:
Size and breed also play a role. Smaller dogs tend to live longer than larger ones, but they may mature more quickly in the first few years of life. A huge pup might age more slowly at first, but be nearing middle age at 5. Tiny and toy breeds don’t become “seniors” until around age 10. Medium-sized pooches are somewhere in the middle on both counts.
Here is another graphic which breaks it down in each year of your dog’s life by breed size:
Clues to Look For
If you’ve adopted a puppy or dog but don’t know her history, you may not know how old she is. Even if you don’t know the birth date, you can still guess her age.
Her teeth should give you a rough idea of her age. These guidelines will vary from dog to dog, and they also depend on the kind of dental care (if any) she had before you got her.
- By 8 weeks: All baby teeth are in.
- By 7 months: All permanent teeth are in and are white and clean.
- By 1-2 years: Teeth are duller and the back teeth may have some yellowing.
- By 3-5 years: All teeth may have tartar buildup and some tooth wear.
- By 5-10 years: Teeth show more wear and signs of disease.
- By 10-15 years: Teeth are worn, and heavy tartar buildup is likely. Some teeth may be missing.