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Dog Aging Project co-directed by UW researchers needs participants

A Seattle Seahawks supporting dog licks its lips before a game in Seattle, Washington. (Photo by Jonathan Ferrey/Getty Images)

The national Dog Aging Project is looking for pets to enroll in a study that’s for the dogs.

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Now in its second year, the project is hoping to expand to have a better representation of the entire U.S. dog population. There are an estimated 90 million dogs living in America.

The project is especially interested in big dogs, service animals and working dogs, puppies, and dogs that live in rural areas.

“We want all dogs, but we also want middle-aged dogs, and right now we really want puppies so that we can follow dogs for their entire trajectory,” said Dr. Daniel Promislow with the University of Washington.

Biology of aging researchers in the Department of Pathology at the University of Washington School of Medicine are co-directors of the project with specialists at Texas A&M. Washington State University’s veterinary school is also participating in the project. The five-year project is being funded largely by the National Institute on Aging, part of the National Institutes of Health.

“Our goal is to understand how biology and environment shape healthy aging,” Promislow said.

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If you want to help, you can nominate your dog online here. As part of the project, you’ll have to update your dog’s profile each year. Some people may also be asked to submit a DNA sample from their dog.

The KIRO Radio Newsdesk contributed to this report.

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