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Some Factors Determining the Lifespan of Your Dog

Some Factors Determining the Lifespan of Your Dog

It’s true when they say “a dog is a man’s best friend,” however, this can also be said when referring to the connection between dogs and women, too. Everyone loves dogs, and we all know someone who either has or had one in the past. Owning a dog comes with major responsibilities that I’ve witnessed firsthand just being around them at my friend’s house. Additionally, losing a dog can be a huge emotional downer and can take a toll on your mental state for several months afterward. I asked my friend how much he spends on his dog a month, and he mentioned it varies depending on its food, medical bills, toys, etc; it’s hard to put a number on the total amount, but the cost can go up quickly.

Recently, another friend of mine lost his dog, and it was hard on him. After that loss, I wanted to find out which factors determined the lifespan of a dog. I did some research, and was able to put some factors together.

First, here’s a quick overview of dog’s age in human years:

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    Image Source: healthypets.mercola.com

    The Breed

    Just like your genetics make you prone to more health problems, the same can be said for pets. For example, some dog breeds are prone to certain health problems like dysplasia, spinal issues, respiratory problems, and cancer. Poor breeding can also lead to genetic defects which, over time, can have a major toll on the overall health of the dog. Many of these health problems are only seen as the dog matures, which increases medical bills substantially. Many owners can’t afford those bills, so are unable to provide the care their aging dogs need; this just makes it harder on the dog, and decreases their life expectancy.

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    If you do a quick search in Google, you can find a list of dogs who have a higher-than-normal life expectancy because of their breed. These dogs are known to have fewer health problems as long as the right nutrition, healthcare, and environment are provided.

    Nutrition

    If you feed your dog food that is high in fat and low in protein, then they can develop a heart problem just like humans can. Remember, “you are what you eat,” and this holds true for humans and pets because just like a poor diet while growing up affects the way we mature, the same can be said for dogs, too. For example, pets with a poor diet or receiving inadequate nutrition while young may develop a condition as they grow older; this will not only reduce their life span but the quality of life, too.

    Exercise

    It’s amazing how so much of this information relates to us humans. Make sure you take your dog out 2-3 times a day for a run or walk. This exercise keeps their cardiovascular activity high, which is great for the heart. Daily exercise is even more important for those dogs who have a pre-existing condition. Do a quick search in Google to find a list of great exercises you can put your dog through, or you can visit local bookstores to find actual guides on this subject.

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    Healthcare

    Frequent healthcare is important to your pet’s well-being. Owners spend thousands of dollars each year getting their dog the best healthcare possible. Think about it this way: imagine if your dog gets a small injury and you decide to neglect the right type of healthcare. This minor injury can become bigger, restricting daily activities the dog can perform; this means the dog can no longer exercise, which will affect their overall cardiovascular health.

    Grooming, cutting nails, and removing extra fur is all considered healthcare. By providing the right healthcare for your dog, you’ll also protect them from flea infestation which, unchecked, could become life-threatening.

    The Emotional Connection

    Having a personal connection with your dog is important for their mental state. Dogs who don’t have an emotional bond with their owners can become depressed, which lowers their overall activity. Dogs with lower activity levels and who are depressed tend to exercise and eat less. So, spend quality time with your dog; this will lower the chance of depression and increase mental stimulation, which is important for them to stay positive in their environment.

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    Featured photo credit: Greater Swiss Mountain Dog via dogtime.com

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    Rizvan Ullah

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    Last Updated on June 13, 2019

    5 Fixes For Common Sleep Issues All Couples Deal With

    5 Fixes For Common Sleep Issues All Couples Deal With

    Sleeping next to your partner can be a satisfying experience and is typically seen as the mark of a stable, healthy home life. However, many more people struggle to share a bed with their partner than typically let on. Sleeping beside someone can decrease your sleep quality which negatively affects your life. Maybe you are light sleepers and you wake each other up throughout the night. Maybe one has a loud snoring habit that’s keeping the other awake. Maybe one is always crawling into bed in the early hours of the morning while the other likes to go to bed at 10 p.m.

    You don’t have to feel ashamed of finding it difficult to sleep with your partner and you also don’t have to give up entirely on it. Common problems can be addressed with simple solutions such as an additional pillow. Here are five fixes for common sleep issues that couples deal with.

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    1. Use a bigger mattress to sleep through movement

    It can be difficult to sleep through your partner’s tossing and turning all night, particularly if they have to get in and out of bed. Waking up multiple times in one night can leave you frustrated and exhausted. The solution may be a switch to a bigger mattress or a mattress that minimizes movement.

    Look for a mattress that allows enough space so that your partner can move around without impacting you or consider a mattress made for two sleepers like the Sleep Number bed.[1] This bed allows each person to choose their own firmness level. It also minimizes any disturbances their partner might feel. A foam mattress like the kind featured in advertisements where someone jumps on a bed with an unspilled glass of wine will help minimize the impact of your partner’s movements.[2]

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    2. Communicate about scheduling conflicts

    If one of you is a night owl and the other an early riser, bedtime can become a source of conflict. It’s hard for a light sleeper to be jostled by their partner coming to bed four hours after them. Talk to your partner about negotiating some compromises. If you’re finding it difficult to agree on a bedtime, negotiate with your partner. Don’t come to bed before or after a certain time, giving the early bird a chance to fully fall asleep before the other comes in. Consider giving the night owl an eye mask to allow them to stay in bed while their partner gets up to start the day.

    3. Don’t bring your technology to bed

    If one partner likes bringing devices to bed and the other partner doesn’t, there’s very little compromise to be found. Science is pretty unanimous on the fact that screens can cause harm to a healthy sleeper. Both partners should agree on a time to keep technology out of the bedroom or turn screens off. This will prevent both partners from having their sleep interrupted and can help you power down after a long day.

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    4. White noise and changing positions can silence snoring

    A snoring partner can be one of the most difficult things to sleep through. Snoring tends to be position-specific so many doctors recommend switching positions to stop the snoring. Rather than sleeping on your back doctors recommend turning onto your side. Changing positions can cut down on noise and breathing difficulties for any snorer. Using a white noise fan, or sound machine can also help soften the impact of loud snoring and keep both partners undisturbed.

    5. Use two blankets if one’s a blanket hog

    If you’ve got a blanket hog in your bed don’t fight it, get another blanket. This solution fixes any issues between two partners and their comforter. There’s no rule that you have to sleep under the same blanket. Separate covers can also cut down on tossing and turning making it a multi-useful adaptation.

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    Rather than giving up entirely on sharing a bed with your partner, try one of these techniques to improve your sleeping habits. Sleeping in separate beds can be a normal part of a healthy home life, but compromise can go a long way toward creating harmony in a shared bed.

    Featured photo credit: Becca Tapert via unsplash.com

    Reference

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