The Dog AGING Project – a community science project

Graph showing user journey to register for The Dog aging project

The Dog aging project is a community based science project, examining the overall health and wellness of dogs over their lifetime. The goal of the Dog Aging Project is to understand how genes, lifestyle, and environment influence ageing. That information is used to help pets and people increase healthspan, the period of life spent free from disease.

a graph showing the user journey of 'The dog aging project'
The Dog Aging participant journey

What is community science?

Community science springs from the premise that anyone and everyone can think like a scientist. After all, at its most basic, scientific discovery is the result of a fundamental curiosity about the world and how it works. Scientists ask questions, make observations, design experiments, and collect data to answer our questions. You don’t need a PhD or a lab coat to make important contributions to the world’s body of knowledge. At the Dog Aging Project, we view the owners of enrolled dogs as key research partners. Participants are the key to building an incredibly powerful dataset that will allow us to meet our scientific goals.

Who can participate?

The Dog Aging Project is actively enrolling participants who live within the fifty US states (excluding US territories). Our human participants should have access to a computer (desktop or laptop) and reliable internet service so that they can complete online surveys about their dog. 

The Dog Aging Project(DAP) is an inclusive project welcoming particpantsfrom all walks of life, racial and ethnic backgrounds, all abilities, and all gender and sexual orientations. (Some accommodations are available, and we are working to broaden our accessibility.) We are a scientific project, first and foremost, but we are also a community. We believe that both our science and our community are stronger when we include everyone.

What type of dogs are being studied?

ALL dogs are welcome! We want to study puppies and old dogs, mixed breed dogs and purebred dogs, healthy dogs and those with chronic health conditions. At the Dog Aging Project, we know that the key to understanding healthy aging in dogs is to learn from the broadest diversity possible. You can read more in our blog post entitled.

What other information is looked at?

The DAP uses information about your dog’s health and environment, including information about the people in the household. This added information is an important part of the overall data because it’s used to give context to the environments the dogs live in. This is used in conjunction the dog’s

How do you sign up?

Step 1 – Visit

Step 2 – Click on ‘Nominate my dog’ on the top right side of the site.

Step 3 – Complete short survey to gather basic information about you and your dog.

Step 4 – After completing the survey, you’ll receive an email with a link to create a login to their portal

Step 5 – Complete the main survey – You have 6 weeks to complete it so don’t be intimidated by the number of questions.

After you’ve registered and completed the survey, you can join the ‘Dog Park which is a place for participants to share together. It’s a very interesting and compelling way to help our best friends. I encourage everyone to check it out and participate.

Non-US dog owners

The DAP is only available to US dog owners so if you’re not located in the continental US, you can’t participate. There is however their sister project called Darwin’s Ark. They are working on Darwin’s Dogs, which combines genetics and behavior to advance the understanding of complex diseases.

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