Which dogs live the longest ? ( Full guide )

Which dogs live the longest

One of the hardest times for dog owners is saying their final goodbye. The average life expectancy of a dog is 10 to 13 years. Although there are several factors that can vary longevity, such as a good quality nutritious diet, lots of physical activity and careful monitoring of health. Genetics is a very important factor that can influence. Small breeds generally live longer than large breeds. Therefore, if you want your pet to accompany you for a long time, choose the breed of dog that lives the most within the smallest , since giants rarely live more than 8 years.

Know the breed of dog that lives the longest

According to Guinness World Records, the oldest dog in the world was 29 1/2 years old. Bluey was a cattle dog who lived on a farm. Also the dog Maggie, who died in 2016, had lived to her 30s, lived on a dairy farm. One of the common factors of these two dogs, as we can see, is that they were both cattle dogs and lived on farms.

Cattle dogs usually live for about 13 years , which is a little longer for dogs of their size, but it is not the dog that lives the longest.

You may be wondering what life on the farm possesses, so that these dogs have lived longer than normal, within their breeds. Life on the farm allows them to spend more time outdoors, which gives them the ability to get much more exercise than an urban, apartment.

When we take our pet for a walk, most of us usually do it in a time that varies between 20 and 30 minutes , around the neighborhood, many on a leash and between once or twice a day. This would be between 2 and 5 km, if we are somewhat generous.

When Maggie’s owner was interviewed and told about these 20-minute walks, he smiled and recounted that his dog probably did about 9 km of exercise a day, following him on his tractor. Which indicates that the amount of exercise is very beneficial for the health of our pet . Especially for working breeds, an hour in the park means very little exercise.

Another benefit from the farm was that they had access to fresh whole foods . We know that this type of food is very healthy for humans and surely also for our puppies.

Therefore, food is important so that your dog is one of the longest living. It is important that your pet eat fresh cooked meat, vegetables, and fruits, as well as good quality croquettes. The veterinarian should be consulted to ensure that the dog has a nutritious and well-balanced diet.

These dog breeds are the ones that usually live the longest

Now that we know that the longevity of dogs depends on many factors internal and external to their body, we selected the best breeds of dogs that stand out for having a privileged life expectancy in relation to the average of dogs. With proper care and in a positive environment, all the furry dog mentioned in our ranking can live for at least 12 or 13 years , and some even have the possibility of exceeding 18 years of age. Let’s see:


longest living dog breed

The famous “hot dog” is one of the longest living dog breeds. This adorable puppy usually lives between 15 and 20 years. The dachshund, due to its characteristic shape, usually suffers back injuries. For this reason it is important that its owners are careful not to jump from very high surfaces, such as armchairs, tables and even beds. With these cares we will help him to have a longer and healthier life.


longest living dog breeds

These sweet, restless little dogs can often reach a very long life span of 15-18 years . One of the smallest breeds, weighing in at just 3 to 5 pounds, they tend to suffer from some common health problems in this breed. They include heart problems and patellar luxation.

Toy poodle

longest living large dog breeds

Mini Poodles are not only sharp as whips, they also have an excellent relationship with children and are also considered one of the breeds that live the longest. This variety of poodle, called toy poodles, because of their miniature size, they tend to live longer than other varieties of poodles , between 15 and 20 years.

Before deciding to adopt a toy poodle, you must make sure that you can accompany it to perform a lot of physical and mental exercise , necessary for its physical health. This will allow him to develop his incredible intelligence and accompany you for at least two decades.

shortest and longest living dog breeds


types of dogs
Beagle puppy standing in the grass.

This beautiful dog , so characteristic for its long drooping ears and puppy dog ​​eyes, is considered by many to be the ideal pet. It is a family dog, very affectionate and companions, who usually live from 1 to 17 years. In fact, the oldest Beagle, Butch lived to be 27 years old! This breed when it reaches the elderly stage usually has back problems, so it must be active and not eat excessively.

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Jack russell terrier

which breed of dog lives the longest

This breed of dog originally from the United Kingdom and very easy to identify especially by its coat with black, yellow and brown spots drawn on white. It is one of those perfect breeds to live in flats because of its small size and also known for its intelligence, its desire to play, as well as its pride and temperament. Like the vast majority of small dogs, the Jack Russell Terrier usually has a longer life expectancy than in the case of large breeds and with proper care it can live between 13 and 16 years . Although usually in good health, this breed tends to be predisposed to obesity if we don’t give it the food and exercise it needs.

Border collie

world's oldest dog

This breed of dog that first appeared in the British Isles between the 4th and 1st centuries BC when the Celts arrived on the island is, in addition to being one of the oldest dog breeds, one of those with the longest life expectancy. With a calm, obedient character and temperament, with a great instinct to protect the family and with a great capacity for learning, this is how the character of this dog could be defined, which has an average life expectancy of between 12 and 15 years . A guideline age that will always depend on a good quality of life, a quality diet, periodic visits to the vet and that you ensure daily practice of exercise


dog lifespan

Schnauzers are one of those dogs that can become magnificent companions, playful, cuddly and with a character attached to the family that they will not hesitate to take care of and protect from any threat. There are three different sizes within this breed: giant, medium, and miniature. Its size being precisely what will change the life expectancy of each one of them. The average lifespan of the medium and giant Schnauzer is usually between 13 and 16 years old , while the miniature can reach 12 or 15 years.

Shiba Inu

20 dogs that live the longest

The Shiba inu is one of the oldest Spitz-type breeds in the world, since representations of these dogs have been found in ruins from 500 AD. A breed of dog that is generally very affectionate with owners and that many associate with an origin from Korea or South China, although it is currently known as one of the most popular dogs in Japan. With proper care and attention, the life expectancy of the Shiba Inu is between 12 and 15 years.


how long do dogs live

The unmistakable and small Pomeranian is another of the dogs that stands out for its life expectancy, since it can perfectly reach 16 years . Even so, it is important to note that the health of this little dog can be affected by certain pathologies that may appear during its growth. So the life expectancy of a Pomeranian will always depend to a greater extent on the health and care it has.

Yorkshire terrier

how long does a dog live

Of English origin and small in size, the Yorkshire Terrier is characterized by being a breed with a strong personality, restless and intelligent. The life expectancy of the Yorkshire Terrier is higher than that of other breeds since they can live in top shape and without any problem until they are 17 or 18 years old . Although, as is also the case with other breeds, the attention and care we give him throughout his life will greatly influence that longevity.

Lagotto romagnolo

how long the dog live

Lagotto Romagnolo which, as its name suggests, is an Italian breed of dog . This medium-sized, woolly-coated Italian water dog is originally from the Romagna region, where they were historically trained as retrievers for waterfowl. However, they have subsequently begun to perform with excellence in the detection of truffles, a role that they fulfill today.

In addition to its beauty and versatility when learning, the Lagotto Romagnolo also has a privileged life expectancy, since it usually lives between 14 and 17 years . They are strong and resistant dogs that, when they receive adequate preventive medicine and live in a positive environment, hardly get sick and show great enthusiasm in their day-to-day lives. However, they can develop some common diseases in dogs, such as hip dysplasia .

Boykin spaniel

life span of dog

The boykin spaniel is a beautiful and little-known representative of the extended family of spaniel dogs. This canine breed of American origin was developed at the beginning of the 20th century in South Carolina, being today considered the most representative dog of this state. Initially, he was trained to help hunt ducks, turkeys, and other waterfowl that were mainly abundant in the Wateree River basin, making him an excellent swimmer .

Due to its remarkable adaptive capacity, its energetic character and its good health, the boykin spaniel has also gained space as a companion animal in its place of origin and can be an excellent companion for people of all ages and cultures. Another “advantage” of these hairy beauties is that they can live for many years with their guardians, since their estimated life expectancy is 14 to 16 years .

Rat terrier

lifespan dog

The rat terrier is an American dog little known outside its native land, which is also among the longevity of the breeds. In fact, it is not a breed recognized by the FCI, although it is recognized by organizations such as the American Kennel Club. Initially, it was trained as a hunting dog on US farms, mainly to chase and detect rodents, preventing damage to agricultural production and the proliferation of some diseases that rats transmit to humans and other animals.

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Despite its small size, the rat terrier is a very muscular and energetic dog that requires a high dose of physical activity to preserve a balanced behavior. Excellent health also stands out, with a very low predisposition to develop hereditary diseases, and their life expectancy is usually calculated between 15 and 16 years , being able to live up to 18 years with the appropriate care.


lifespan of a dog

Today this breed is in fashion, but leaving that aside, I will tell you that it is a breed with a good life expectancy . On average, a pug dog can live up to 12 years and always maintain its personality. They’re so cute! 

Lhasa apso

lifespan of dog

Also with an average life expectancy of 13 years, Lhasa Apso are super cute and easy going miniature dogs . You like them?

Maltese Bichon

longest living dog

Another of the most popular small dog breeds , the Maltese is also famous for living longer than many other breeds, having an average life expectancy of 15 years. I think it would be a good option, right?

Do mongrel dogs live longer than purebreds?

Even today, it is common to hear a popular belief that mongrel dogs are longer-lived and healthier than purebred dogs. By not having been subjected to the intense selective crosses that allowed the standardization of dog breeds, mongrel dogs have high genetic diversity and low consanguinity. For this reason, they are less prone to develop hereditary and degenerative diseases that severely affect most of the canine breeds.

Consequently, they can get sick less often and live longer than purebred dogs, provided they receive proper care.

Why do small dogs live longer than large dogs?

The life span of a pet depends on several factors: good nutrition, veterinary care and, curiously, the size of the animal. Science has determined that small breed dogs generally live longer than large breeds.

This statement raised the doubts of the researchers who seemed not to understand the logic of this particularity. After all, in the animal kingdom there are other examples that contradict what happens with the ‘best friends of the human being’. The elephants and whales live many more years than other small species like mice . 

study published in the journal American Naturalist discovered the cause of this uneven aging . The dogs of large breeds age at an accelerated pace compared to their smaller peers. 

The scientists concluded that for every two kilos of weight, the life expectancy of a dog decreases by about a month. The researcher principal, Cornelia Kraus, think that because “the life of the big dogs develops faster, can suffer the diseases typical of the age advanced sooner.”

To arrive at these conclusions, Kraus and his team analyzed demographic data from more than 50,000 dogs of 74 breeds . The information they used was the age of the animals at the time of death and the cause of death . 

When is a dog old?

It is a frequently asked question and here are some signs that indicate that your dog is already old:

  1. Abundant gray hair around the muzzle and eyes.
  2. Calluses on the elbows and knees.
  3. Arthritis, more visible in large breed dogs, suffer from joint pain and stiffness.
  4. Brittle nails and dry pads.
  5. Cavities and tartar
  6. In some cases constipation occurs.
  7. Respiratory problems.
  8. Urinary incontinence, you urinate anywhere.
  9. Hearing loss
  10. Sight loss

How to take care of your dog if he is already an old dog?

Having an elderly dog ​​does not have to be linked to suffering, pain or a poor quality of life. It is essential to provide our dog with all the care in its last stage, so that it lives in the best conditions for as long as possible.

Basic care for the old dog:

  • Power . The old dog’s metabolism is slower and senior food and plenty of fluids are recommended to keep it hydrated.
  • Moderate exercise . To keep him active, some light exercise or short walks of less than 30 minutes are recommended.
  • Affection and affection . His doses of affection should be increased, so that he does not feel relegated from his family.
  • Pending his hygiene . It is very important to keep them as clean as possible since they are more prone to skin problems, you also have to be aware of dental cleaning to avoid dental tartar.
  • Visits to the vet . An elderly dog ​​should be checked more frequently with his vet, it is recommended every six months, as he is prone to age-specific problems.

Regardless of how long a dog can live, the truth is that it will fill your life with unconditional love, dogs are the best possible companion we can have. And if we take care of them with love and responsibility they will give us many years of company.

Dogs and death

In the first place, why do dogs die in general? A  study  that collected data from more than 5500 dogs in the UK shows us the following results:

  • The most common cause of  death  in dogs was old age,  with a percentage corresponding to 14% of total deaths.
  • Almost 9% of the dogs died from some type of unspecified cancer.
  • 5% of the dogs died of heart failure.
  • The mean age of death was 10.33 years.

This study already begins to indicate to us that there are differences in the life expectancy of the dog according to its breed, since the West Highland Terriers of the sample lived an average of 12.71 years while the Dobermann Pinschers did not exceed eight years of age in the majority of the cases.      

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Although death is a date that comes to all of us, clearly in the case of dogs, the  breed  is an essential conditioner. There is more data to support this claim:

  • Other veterinary studies estimate a longevity of 14.2 years for the miniature poodle, while the Dogue de Bordeaux has an average life of 5.5 years, a very low figure if we take into account the average of the species.
  • The Shetland Sheepdog has a longevity of 12 years in Danish households. On the other hand, the Bernese mountain dog does not usually exceed seven years of age in this geographical area.  

We can start to see a general trend, right?  Indeed, large dogs tend to live less. This is partly explained by the fact that they have a very fast  metabolism  —they grow more in less time—, which means more accelerated cellular aging.

Five things you can do to extend the life of your dog

Dogs are living longer and longer and the key is to know the means that are within our reach to extend their existence with good health and quality of life

Llarina, a Golden Retriever overcame cancer when she was 10 years old. She died last year at 16, which is an advanced age for a dog of her breed. Was happy? Eva, its owner, has no doubts when she says that “a lot”. He argues that he “received and returned tons of affection.” But … What was the secret of his long life? How could Llarina’s story be repeated? María Pifarré, veterinarian and director of the Barri Llatí clinic in Santa Coloma de Gramenet, details 5 recommendations, 5 keys , fundamental to achieve a long life, on a physical and psychological level, for our dog .

Review when you get home

When you have an animal that comes from a breeder, you have to have a history of the parents, pregnancy, birth and the first months of life, and if there are congenital or hereditary diseases .

“If the dog comes from an adoption center, you have to know how it was welcomed, what preventive medicine has been applied to it and what has been done to improve its physical and mental state. That history has to come with you when you acquire a dog or adopt it ”, explains the veterinarian.

The next thing is to find a veterinarian who will be our trusted veterinarian and, therefore, the dog’s family veterinarian. You will do a complete check-up, even if you have the vaccines up to date, sterilized or with a commitment to perform the intervention. In this first review, the veterinary medical report that the breeder or the protector would have to give us will be very valuable. If we do not have the report, this first review will allow the veterinarian to inform us of the dog’s health situation.

A correct selection of diet and nutrients

It is necessary to select a correct and adequate diet for both the age and the activity of the dog so that it has a good quality of life and encourages it to enjoy that life. It is not the same to look for a diet for a Yorkshire puppy than for a German Mastiff. They do not need the same nutrients due to their size and while the Yorkshire will finish growing at 7 or 8 months the German Bulldog will do so after years. Nor is it the same to have a sports dog that does agility or mushing that the case of working dogs with such different realities that they range from herding to health therapies for various groups – such as terminally ill hospitalized people or people with some kind of physical or intellectual disability.

Very important: when administering the diet to the dog, always follow the instructions of your family veterinarian .

Proper hygiene of his physique and his environment

Hygiene makes life with our dog more pleasant . If we live with a dog that does not have knots, that is well sanitized, with clean teeth every day, with healthy foot pads, healthy ears … we are extending its life and its quality of life. “Oral infections, or recurrent otitis, for example, greatly shorten the life of the pet because they are sources of infection that at a certain time can go to another point of the body”, clarifies Pifarré.

It is also essential to ensure domestic cleanliness . The daily hygiene of the spaces of the house and their comfort has a direct impact on the health of the animal and, therefore, on its longevity.

Veterinary check-up with every seasonal change

The minimum recommendation is an annual veterinary check-up, but to extend the life of the dog, it is best to carry out a check-up with each change of season. If it is not possible, the tightest thing is to go to the vet twice a year : before the arrival of the cold months and also the hot season.

Facing winter, it is necessary to detect possible diseases transmitted by vectors during the summer months – usually mosquitoes – such as leishmaniasis and to carry out treatments for dogs that have joint and bone problems. “It is very important to prepare the dog to spend the winter months to avoid respiratory infections, burns of pads from visits to the snow, etc. “, says the veterinarian.

The months of higher temperatures pose a greater risk of parasites, avoid heat stroke, prepare the skin for the sun and also nutrition. The diet has to be different in summer than in winter .

An annual blood test can help the veterinarian to detect an incipient pathology and apply an early treatment to help the dog have a longer life and well-being.

Regular moderate exercise

Going for a walk with our dog helps us because it makes us move a minimum of 2 to 3 times a day , but, above all, it is essential to help the animal stay toned, have proper joint health and avoid physical problems. It is also very necessary for your psychological well-being. ” Moderate daily exercise is as important for our dog as it is for us, ” concludes María Pifarré.

The larger or more active the breed, the more exercise it needs and it is when veterinary specialists may recommend specific sports such as agility that can be beneficial in developing the pet’s innate abilities.

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