Recently, the Huffington Post published an article about this interesting study called the Dog Aging Project, dedicated to help our canine kids live longer.
The goal of the Dog Aging Project at the University of Washington is to increase the healthy life span of dogs by targeting the aging process directly. The good news that the Dog Aging Project is conducting a trial of the anti-organ transplant rejection drug rapamycin, also known as sirolimus, on 32 middle-aged dogs, trying to determine if we can add a few more good healthy years to our pets' lives.
ABOUT THE DOG AGING PROJECT: The University of Washington’s Healthy Aging and Longevity Research Institute (HALo) is dedicated to promoting healthy aging in people and their companion animals. The Dog Aging Project is led by Dr. Daniel Promislow and Dr. Matt Kaeberlein.
(Like them on FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/dogagingproject)
ABOUT THE NEW MEDICATION: In low doses, rapamycin appears to slow the aging process, and studies on mice showed it can increase their lifespan.“If rapamycin has a similar effect in dogs – and it’s important to keep in mind we don’t know this yet – then a typical large dog could live two to three years longer, and a smaller dog might live four years longer," researcher Daniel Promislow told The Telegraph. He owns a nine-year-old Chow mix named Frisbee, according to the Dog Aging Project's website, so he certainly has a vested interest here.
The researchers want to see how rapamycin affects the dogs’ heart function, immune system, activity level, weight and cognition -- meaning, we presume, will Fido still ignore you when you call his name. After the initial three-to-six-month trial period, the dogs will be monitored to measure any significant improvements to their healthy aging and lifespan.
If the results are successful, it’s quite possible that the benefits may extend to cats as well – and possibly even "other" species, notes ScienceAlert.
The animal kingdom's rule of thumb is that larger creatures live longer, which makes sense since they have fewer predators with a size advantage. But our companion pets are an exception to the rule and researchers have never quite understood why. Cats live an average of 15 years, compared with about 12 years for dogs, despite generally being smaller. And small dogs can live twice as long as large ones.
A recent theory from the UK had an interesting take on why cats outlive dogs: Cats are simply more aloof. Could stress be a factor in our pets' longevity as well?
WEBSITE for DOG AGING PROJECT: http://dogagingproject.com/
VIDEO ABOUT THE PROJECT: http://www.komonews.com/news/local/Fountain-of-Youth-For-Fido-326130151.html?tab=video&c=y