Want your dog to live longer? This study hopes to show you how

You and your dog can participate in a federally-funded clinical research project that is hoping to help understand canine aging and ultimately help dogs and humans live longer lives.

Researchers are looking for 10,000 pets as they launch the largest-ever study of aging in canines.

The scientists will use DNA samples, gut microbes and information on food and walks to analyze how dogs age.

"What we learn will potentially be good for dogs and has great potential to translate to human health," said project co-director Daniel Promislow of the University of Washington School of Medicine.

Researchers want the dogs to live at home and follow their normal routine.

All ages and sizes, purebreds and mutts are welcome to participate.

Owners will complete periodic online surveys and take their dogs to the vet once a year.

Five hundred dogs will also test a pill that could slow the aging process.

Rapamycin is taken by humans to prevent rejection of transplanted kidneys and it has shown to extend the lifespan of mice.

The National Institute on Aging is paying for the $23 million project because dogs and humans share the same environment, get the same diseases and dogs' shorter lifespans allow quicker research results, said deputy director, Dr. Marie Bernard.

Click here to learn more and take part in the Dog Aging Project.
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