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Thread: New Drug Could Extend the Life of Your Dog

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  1. #1
    Sonya Guest

    New Drug Could Extend the Life of Your Dog

    Dogs are great. They give us unconditional love, true companionship and endless puppy kisses, but sadly, they leave us too soon.

    What if you could give your dog a drug that would extend his life and give you a little more time to enjoy him? Would you do it?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Delaware, USA - The First State/Diamond State - home of The Blue Hens
    But of course - as long as the dog still had a good quality of life. When that's gone, then there would be no point in prolonging life, except for one's own selfish reasons. I don't think many dog parents would do any different.

    ETA - I posted this without reading the info in the link. If they start young enough with the drug, then there should be no question as to the quality of life, as the purpose of this drug is to slow the aging process. Obviously it would be futile to give to an older animal, as I thought was the idea in the original post.
    Wolfy ~ Fuzzbutt #3
    My little dog ~ a heartbeat at my feet

    Sparky the Fuzzbutt - PT's DOTD 8/3/2010
    RIP 2/28/1999~10/9/2012
    Myndi the Fuzzbutt - Mom's DOTD - Everyday
    RIP 1/24/1996~8/9/2013
    Ellie - Mom to the Fuzzbuttz

    To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven.
    Ecclesiastes 3:1
    The clock of life is wound but once and no man has the power
    To know just when the hands will stop - on what day, or what hour.
    Now is the only time you have, so live it with a will -
    Don't wait until tomorrow - the hands may then be still.
    ~~~~true author unknown~~~~

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    At university in Hertfordshire, UK
    As a future vet, I say that idea sounds horrendous. Not to mention, that with any such drug on the market, such a claim is absolutely bogus.

    The best way to prolong a dog's life? Correct diet, plenty of exercise, lots of socialisation... need I go on??

    Yes, sometimes our pets are subject to disease and disability, and their lives are cut short. Yes, that's horribly unfair. But it is our job, as responsible owners, to care for them as best we can until their suffering becomes too great, and then it is our duty to put their needs before our own.

    ETA: pomtzu, I did the same!

    Zimbabwe 07/13

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    At university in Hertfordshire, UK
    Now that I have read the article properly...

    Firstly, as soon as I see the words 'Daily Mail', I instantly take every word following them with a pinch of salt!

    Telomeres do determine how many times a cell can replicate, and each time the cell does so, it loses a telomere. When they are used up, the DNA replication can no longer occur and the cell apoptoses, in essence, it dies. Thus, as animals reach old age, more cells are apoptosing than new ones being created, since most cells are short on telomeres. 'Dying of old age' is thus when so many cells have run out of telomeres that there are no longer enough functioning cells to support the life of the entire body. In this sense, they do contribute to ageing.

    However, as with most things in biology, ageing is a very complex process and is controlled by many factors other than telomeres. Then, there are the complications associated with ageing. Take for instance, joint and bone conditions which are mostly the ailments of older dogs. These can be brought on simply by continued strain on the joint over the years, and are not always down to a problem with cell renewal. I think that simply renewing telomeres is not going to guarantee a forever youthful animal.

    One thing that did sadden me in this article were the words 'For pets, the rules [on medical approval] are much less stringent - and the market is potentially huge'. True, medications designed for animals are not subject to such rigourous clinical trials as potential human treatments are, but in NO way does that mean the testing is slap-happy. It still has to be proven to live up to its claims, and not to cause anything detrimental to the animal, and statistical testing to do so takes many samples and lots of follow-up. Secondly, again with my vet-head on, the fact the market is being considered apparently before the welfare of animals worries me.

    Finally, and I might be going out on a limb here; cells that naturally produce active telomerases in abundance are cancerous cells. Now I don't want to speculate and make wild assumptions as to what cells induced to produce telomerases would do. All I'm saying is, the research needs to be done, very thoroughly.

    So, in answer to the question, no, I would not administer such a drug to any animal.

    Zimbabwe 07/13

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    If I can avoid it, my dog gets no drugs or artificial crap and neither do I. It'd be recalled in 10 years anyway when they find out it causes cancer.
    "There are two things which cannot be attacked in front: ignorance and narrow-mindedness. They can only be shaken by the simple development of the contrary qualities. They will not bear discussion."

    Lord John Emerich Edward Dalberg Acton

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Northern cyberspace
    I would never give my dogs anything not prescribed by my vet and unless absolutely necessary - not knowing what this could cause later on doesn't justify using my pets as experiments IMO.

    I've been frosted--- thank you Cassie'smom

    I've been Boo'd----

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