Dog Age Calculator – Convert Dog Years to Human Years

Enter your dog’s age in years to calculate their age equivalent to human years.

How to Calculate a Dog’s Age

At some point, you’ve most likely heard that one dog year is equivalent to 7 years for a human. Despite the widespread use of this formula, it’s been debunked by science time and again.

a young dog ages much more quickly than a human

Methylation is a biological process that occurs to DNA known as epigenetics.[1] By studying the rate of methylation, it’s possible to understand the aging process better.

In a study, geneticists have been able to uncover a more accurate formula for measuring the age of a dog. They discovered that aging milestones in dogs don’t accurately match up with humans, and the dogs aged much more quickly in their first year or two, but then the aging process slowed significantly and even matches the human aging process in their later years.[2]

Dog Age Formula

So, just how do you calculate your pup’s age in dog years? Use this formula to find the equivalent age in human years.

equivalent human age = 16ln(dog age) + 31

Thus the equivalent human age is equal to 16 times the natural log of the dog’s age, plus 31.[3] To find the dog’s age in human years then, simply enter the dog age in the formula and solve.

This formula is based on a recent scientific study of 104 Labrador Retrievers. Admittedly this study only covered a single species, and it’s commonly thought that the aging process in dogs varies among breeds. However, it’s still much more accurate than multiplying the age by 7.

Larger breeds age more quickly than smaller breeds, which tend to live longer than their larger counterparts.[4] It’s not known for sure why this is, but some think the shorter lifespan is likely due to the accelerated growth process in larger breeds.

How to Estimate a Dog’s Age

If you adopted a dog or puppy and aren’t sure how old they are then their teeth might give you some clues to their age. Although every dog and breed is different, here are some rough guidelines for aging a dog using their teeth.

8 weeks: baby teeth are in

7 months: adult teeth are in and should be white and clean

1-2 years: teeth begin to look dull and may begin yellowing

3-5 years: teeth are showing tartar build-up and wear

5-10 years: teeth are showing wear and possibly signs of disease

10-15 years: teeth are heavily worn and some may be missing

A veterinarian can give a more accurate assessment after a physical exam, but it will not be possible to completely accurate birthdate.

Curious about how to calculate the age of a cat? Try our cat age calculator.

References

  1. Theresa Phillips, Ph.D., The Role of Methylation in Gene Expression, https://www.nature.com/scitable/topicpage/the-role-of-methylation-in-gene-expression-1070/
  2. Jason Daley, Calculate Your Dog’s Age With This New, Improved Formula, Smithsonian Magazine, https://www.smithsonianmag.com/smart-news/theres-new-better-formula-calculating-dog-years-180973575/
  3. Tina Wang, Jianzhu Ma, Andrew N. Hogan, Samson Fong, Katherine Licon, Brian Tsui, Jason F. Kreisberg, Peter D. Adams, Anne-Ruxandra Carvunis, Danika L. Bannasch, Elaine A. Ostrander, Trey Ideker, Quantitative translation of dog-to-human aging by conserved remodeling of epigenetic networks, https://www.biorxiv.org/content/10.1101/829192v1.full
  4. American Kennel Club, How to Calculate Dog Years to Human Years, https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/health/how-to-calculate-dog-years-to-human-years/