The fallacy of “pet years”

I was browsing through the BBC website earlier today, and came across a story entitled “Will I live longer than my cat?”. The article as a whole (which was all about longevity) was OK, but the bit that really annoyed me was when the writer mentioned that his cat was aged 20, or 140 in cat years. The concept of “pet years” has always been one of my pet hates (no pun intended).

When will people realise that a year is the time that it takes for the Earth to revolve once round the sun i.e. 365 ¼ days, give or take, and that it’s the same whether you’re a human, a cat, a dog, a ring-necked parakeet or any other sort of animal. Loving your pets is admirable, but is it really necessary to create a whole new concept just because some people can’t handle the fact that domestic pets don’t live as long as humans? Besides, it’s not too unusual for dogs and cats to reach the age of 20, so whoever decided on the arbitrary figure of 7 “pet years” equalling one real year had obviously given it no thought anyway.

Anyone, I’ve thought about this enough, so I’ll give myself a couple of minutes’ break. Unless I was a cat, of course, in which case it would be a week and a half.

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About Andrew Chell

Administrator for the WEA in Burslem. Fair Trade promoter. Occasional quiz champion.
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