How Old is 12 in Dog Years?

12 in dog years roughly equals 69 in human years.

This calculation was made for a medium-sized dog (21 to 50 pounds) using the recommendations from the AKC (American Kennel Club).

There are 2 ways of calculating the conversion from human years to dog years. The above result was calculated using the more correct way, we’ll explain what makes the other way incorrect later in this article.

The table below shows dog years and their equivalent to human years, with different columns for different sizes.

Dog's Age in YearsHuman Years (Small Dog)Human Years (Medium Dog)Human Years (Large Dog)

12 in dog years

Calculating how many human years is 12 in dog years

As mentioned above, there are 2 main ways of calculating dog years to human years and vice versa. There’s a correct way and an incorrect way.

The old formula

Most people still assume that one dog year is equal to 7 dog years. This belief likely began in the 1950s, however this isn’t the best method of calculating it.

There has been a lot of research since then disproving this ratio of 7 to 1, it seems people are still holding on the idea. The formula could have been based on the idea that dogs live to 10-ish years and humans to 70, but honestly we don’t know when it started.

So while the 7 to 1 rule is easy to remember and calculate but it’s not the best idea.

The correct formula

The proper method to convert human years to dog years is more complex.

The American Veterinary Medical Association has the following to be said about it:

  • The beginning year of a medium-sized dog’s life is about 15 years for humans.
  • The second year in a dog’s lifespan equals about 9 human years.
  • From that point forward each year of a human equals either four or five dogs years.

Keep in mind that smaller dogs tend to live longer than bigger dogs. Scientists concluded that every 4.4 pounds of body mass reduced a dog’s life expectancy by about a month.


Becky Roberts

Becky Roberts

One of Becky's favourite things to do every morning is to browse the top pet-related forums, looking for issues and questions that people have. She then shortlists the most common ones, and turns them into blog posts for Fuzzy Rescue. She's had over 4 cats and 2 dogs over the past decade, so she does know a thing or 2 about raising/training, and more importantly, loving them. She's the only one on our team that doesn't like coffee, but it seems to us she really doesn't need more energy :). We're very fortunate to have her on board as she does most of the heavy listing for the site, outputting an insane amount of content each month. Read More

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