Advertising
Advertising

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:

Advertising

    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.

    Advertising

    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.

    Advertising

    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.

    Advertising

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

    More by this author

    Rizvan Ullah

    Online Blogger

    A General Guide to Disputing Your Public Record In New York 4 Major Changes in Men After Turning 50 Years Old Success Habits of The Worlds Wealthiest People Strategies to Find the Best Attorney When You Need One How to Create an Effective Sales Funnel

    Trending in Lifestyle

    1 The Ultimate Guide to Help You Sleep Through the Night Tonight 2 Why Am I Exhausted? The Real Causes and How to Fix It Forever 3 60 Small Ways to Improve Your Life in the Next 100 Days 4 42 Practical Ways To Improve Yourself 5 How To Be Successful In Life? 13 Tips From The Most Successful People

    Read Next

    Advertising
    Advertising

    Last Updated on October 16, 2018

    The Ultimate Guide to Help You Sleep Through the Night Tonight

    The Ultimate Guide to Help You Sleep Through the Night Tonight

    It’s well past midnight and you’ve got to get up in less than six hours. You toss and turn all night. Before you know it, another hour passes by and you start panicking.

    If I don’t get to sleep in the next 30 minutes, I’m going to be exhausted tomorrow!”

    One thing is for sure, you’re not alone. Over 70M+ Americans have stated that they don’t get the proper sleep they need at night.[1] So what could possibly be causing this insomnia epidemic?

    Throughout my entrepreneurial journey of building my language learning company, I have experimented and researched dozens of best sleep practices. Some have flopped but a few have dramatically improved the quality of my life and work.

    In this article, I’ll look into the reason why you’re sleep deprived and how to sleep through the night tonight.

    Why you can’t sleep through the night

    The first step to improving anything is getting to the bottom of the root problem. Different studies have shown the reasons why most people cannot sleep well at night.[2] Here are the main ones that the average person faces:

    Advertising

    Stress

    If you’ve ever stayed up at night worrying about something, know that it’s a major sleep inhibitor. When you’re feeling stress, your mind and body becomes more activated, making it incredibly difficult to fall asleep. Even when you do manage to sleep, it won’t be deep enough to help you feel rested the next day.

    Exposure to blue light before sleep time

    We’re exposed to harmful blue light on a daily basis through the use of our digital screens. If you’ve never heard of blue light, it’s part of the visible light spectrum that suppresses melatonin, our sleep hormones. Other harmful effects include digital eye strains and macular cellular damage.

    While daytime exposure to blue light is not very harmful, night time exposure tricks our brain into thinking it’s daytime. By keeping your brain alert and suppressing melatonin, your mind is unable to shut down and relax before bedtime.

    Eating close to bedtime

    Eating too late can actually be an issue for many people, especially those who are older than 40. The reason is, eating before laying down increases the chances of Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD), in which stomach acid backflows into the esophagus.

    Another reason not to eat too late is sleep quality. Even if you manage to sleep right after eating, it’s likely that you’ll wake up tired. Instead of letting your body rest during sleep, it has to digest the food that was entered before bedtime.

    Rule of thumb: eat 3-4 hours before bedtime.

    Advertising

    Medical conditions

    In some cases, it could be medical conditions that cause your sleep problems. If you can’t relate yourself to the above reasons or any of these common sleep problem causes, you should visit the doctor.

    The vicious sleep cycle

    The biggest danger to repeating the bad habits mentioned above is the negative cycle that it can take you through. A bad night’s sleep can affect not only your energy but your willpower and decision making skills.

    Here’s an example of a bad sleep pattern:

    You get a bad night’s sleep
    –> You feel tired and stressful throughout the day.
    –> You compensate it with unhealthy habits (for example junk food, skipping exercises, watching Netflix etc.)
    –> You can’t sleep well (again) the next night.

      You can imagine what could happen if this cycle repeats over a longer period of time.

      Advertising

      How to sleep better (throughout the night)

      To help you break the vicious cycle and stop waking up in the middle of the night, I’ll explain to you a list of actionable steps to solve your trouble staying asleep.

      1. Take control over the last 90 minutes of your night

      What you do (or don’t do) before bedtime have significant impact on the quality of your sleep. Many times, it can be the difference between staying up until 4am and sleeping like a baby.

      Here are a few suggestions:

      • Go from light to dark – Darkness stimulates production of the sleep hormone melatonin. Turn off unused light around the house, and think about investing into warm light that you can use in the bedroom before bedtime.
      • Avoid screens (or wear blue light blocking glasses) – Keep the bedroom a technology-free zone as the light from electronic devices can disturb your sleep. If you need to work, wear blue light blocking glasses (also known as computer glasses) throughout or before you sleep to prevent sleep disruption.
      • Find an activity that helps you to wind down  This could be anything that calms you down, and reduces thinking (especially unnecessary stress). Fir example, listening to soothing/good feel music, taking a hot bath, reading or meditating.
      • Keep any electronics you have on the other side of the room or outside the room – One of the most harmful things that can disrupt your sleep is the notifications you get from your smartphones. The simplest way to avoid this is to keep it away from you.
      • Create a bedtime routine – A night routine is a couple of things you do prior to going to bed. By doing these things every night, you’ll have a more restful and high-quality sleep. Learn how to pick up a night routine here: The Ultimate Night Routine Guide to Sleep Better and Wake Up Productive

      2. Eat the right nutrients (and avoid the wrong ones)

      What you eat (not just when we eat) plays a critical role in your sleep quality. If you’re ever in doubt of what to eat to improve your sleep, take the following into consideration:

      • Kiwi – This green fruit may be the ultimate pre-bed snack. When volunteers ate two kiwis an hour before hitting the hay, they slept almost a full extra hour. Kiwis are full of vitamins C and E, serotonin and folate—all of which may help you snooze.
      • Soy foods – Foods made with soy such as tofu, miso and edamame, are rich in isoflavones. These compounds increase the production of serotonin, a brain chemical that influences the body’s sleep-wake cycle.
      • Fiber-rich foods – Eating more fiber could be key for better sleep. Eating fiber was associated with more restorative slow-wave sleep—the more you eat, the better you sleep—per a study published in the Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine. Fiber prevents blood sugar surges that may lower melatonin. Get a fiber boost from beans, artichokes, bran cereal and quinoa.
      • Salmon – Most fish, especially salmon, halibut and tuna boost vitamin B6, which is needed to make melatonin— a sleep-inducing hormone triggered by darkness.

      3. Adjust your sleep temperature

      Once you’ve gone through the first 2 recommendations, the last step to experiment with is temperature. According to Sleep.org, the ideal temperature for sleep is 60-67 Farenheit. This may be cooler than what most people are used to, but keep in mind that our body temperature changes once we fall asleep.

      Rule of thumb: sleeping in cooler temperature is better for sleep quality than warmer temperature.

      Advertising

      Find out how to maintain the optimal temperature to sleep better here: How to Sleep Faster with the Best Temperature

      Sleep better form now on

      Congrats on making it to the end of this guide on sleep. If you’re serious about taking the necessary steps in improving your sleep, remember to take it one step at a time.

      I recommend trying just one of the steps mentioned such as taking a hot bath, blocking out blue light at night, or sleeping in cooler temperature. From there, see how it impacts your sleep quality and you can keep doing what works, and throw away what doesn’t.

      As long as you follow these steps cautiously and diligently, I know you’ll see improved results in your sleep!

      Featured photo credit: pixabay via pixabay.com

      Reference

      Read Next