A study involving 25,000 dogs across 238 breeds in the United States, led by Yunbi Nam and colleagues from the University of Washington, has revealed significant connections between a dog’s size and its susceptibility to various health issues. While smaller dogs tend to live longer, the study found that large dogs are more prone to conditions like cancer; bone-related problems; gastrointestinal issues; ear, nose, and throat problems; neurological and endocrine conditions; and infectious diseases.

Smaller dogs, on the other hand, are more susceptible to diseases affecting the eyes, heart, liver, pancreas, and respiratory system. The study, part of the ongoing Dog Aging Project, adjusted for variables like sex, living environment, and breed status. It highlights distinct patterns of disease risk associated with a dog’s size and provides insights into why larger dogs may have reduced lifespans. However, the study is limited by its cross-sectional nature and suggests the need for longitudinal data to establish causal relationships.

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