When do the white hairs come? Help me with my dogs age.

Share advice for keeping your aging dog happy and healthy

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Cold Nose, Warm- Heart ♥
Barked: Sat Jan 7, '12 11:24am PST 
Hi pals,

My pup Kiki has some white hairs on her muzzle and we've found her first white whisker. Just wondering what age you think white hairs come?
Seems like a silly question but we've guessed Kiki's age to be around 6, yet our dog Mini who we know 100% is actually six (we got her as a puppy), has no white hairs.
Kiki, (you can read more on her page or diary), was a breeding dog from a puppy mill in Taiwan.
The Vet said that she had the teeth of a 9 year old pup but the coat of a 5 year old.
So with that info, the info from the rescue we have guessed her @ 6.
Could it be the stress of her past that gave her early white hairs?

You can cee a bit of the white in this picture. There's a dusting of white all through the brown on her face.

Let me know what you think! wave Thanks!
Dr. Watson

Not a wiener- dawg!
Barked: Sat Jan 7, '12 11:39am PST 
Cute doggie! smile What's her breed mix?

My second Golden started going white on the face at 3, the third is just starting at 5, so I'm not much help, lol. What age does she act?

The Guardian
Barked: Sat Jan 7, '12 11:39am PST 
White hair can show up at just about any age really. Ny, my black lab mix started getting white hair on her muzzle at around 2 years old and she's gotten more and more every year. She's almost 7 years old now and her muzzle is covered in it, feet, even under her tail. lol She used to be jet black when she was a year old.

So I guess white hair shouldn't really be an age determining factor, imho. But then maybe it can go by breed. For example, maybe one breed will generally get white hair around a certain older age and another breed might get white hair earlier, like in Ny's case? (though she's a mix)

Speaking of age, I don't really think teeth are a good indication of age either. Dom, my pittie (mix?) that was abandoned, I know he can't be more than a few years old yet he had teeth as if he was 13 and they were never taken care of. Horrible, horrible tarter build up. Sheets of it. Got that cleaned off though. Figure he had a pretty crappy diet maybe. Some dogs can have really healthy looking teeth, others could have teeth that get really bad, really fast. Or in the case of a dog who eats raw, sparkly white teeth, even at old age.

So graying or teeth condition aren't something I like to strictly go by when guessing a dog's age, but it can help a bit. =)

Edited by author Sat Jan 7, '12 11:40am PST



Cold Nose, Warm- Heart ♥
Barked: Sat Jan 7, '12 12:18pm PST 
wave thanks!

Kiki is a miniature dachshund.

It makes me feel better that dogs can get white at different ages. Then my little Kiki might still be just 6. ♥ If it's breed related then we're still in a pickle because Mini doesnt have any white yet. laugh out loud
Doesn't matter, I love her little face, but I wanted to see what people think or if there was white fur trends.

All I need is- Love......
Barked: Sat Jan 7, '12 2:22pm PST 
Darcy is 4 and has loads of white hair on her muzzle... She is afraid of most things and I think the stress actually caused her white hair on her muzzle! thinking I don't care - I love her just the same! big hug

I'm king of the- world!
Barked: Sat Jan 7, '12 4:55pm PST 
Duke just turned to 9 but he started turning white years ago...I'd say around 3 years old. He used to be all black but now muzzle is completely white and he has white rings around his eyes. Duke looks ancient! His belly is also completely white and he is mostly white on his feet, the backs of his legs, the underside of his tail, and even around his butt. Random patches of grey are also springing up on odd places, like his side and neck.

Interestingly, he has also developed grey at surgical sites. When the hair came back, it grew in white.

Duke's holistic (Chinese medicine) vet says that greying in dogs is absolutely caused by stress due to kidney imbalance. She explained in greater detail but I don't remember it all. What it boiled down was that his extreme greying is probably due to stress/anxiety (which is much better managed now, but hasn't always been).
Ginger DSA- ThD TT CGC - &hearts

My Angel
Barked: Sat Jan 7, '12 6:18pm PST 
My Golden started getting white on her muzzle when she was 3 1/2 years old. My Rat Terrier mix didn't start getting white until about 9-10.

Cold Nose, Warm- Heart ♥
Barked: Sat Jan 7, '12 6:24pm PST 
Thank you so much everyone for responding! wave

Kiki has had a very stressful life. In a puppy mill, living crammed in a cage with other dogs her while life until now, fighting for food when there was some. Also our vet thinks she was non-dominant even in a puppy mill setting, (She's VERY gentle, even when she's very scared), so life would have been just a little rougher because she wouldnt be a fighter for food, or against humans/other dogs.

I guess the white fur isn't an indicator of age at all then. This makes me feel a lot better. When the Vet originally thought she was a lot older based on her teeth, (before he knew her history), it really broke my heart.

cheer Woohoooo white faces! cheer

Basset Hound- with a Flatty- suit on
Barked: Sat Jan 7, '12 8:34pm PST 
Abner is getting white at a rapid rate. I got him and he was jet-black. Then he got some brownish highlights on his toes, ears and chest. Now he has a rather white muzzle and white on his head too. Best guess? Abner is 3. He might be only 2 though. His teeth were immaculate when I got him. I feed good food and try to give him some raw to clean him up a bit, but his teeth are tartar-y. So babycakes might only be 2. People always go one way or the other with it. "He's going to be big once he grows up and grows into those paws!" or "Aww, sweet old man."

way to go
The Hounds- of- Bassetville- +3

Food? Where?!?
Barked: Sat Jan 7, '12 9:34pm PST 
Scout and Precious started getting white on their muzzles before they were 3! They are certainly not stressed, so I guess it has a lot to do with genetics.
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