Bow Wow! The Longest Living Dog Breeds
By now, most people are aware that smaller dogs generally live longer than their larger counterparts, but by how much exactly?
A 2013 report by Banfield Pet Hospital revealed that most dogs that weighed less than 19 pounds had an average lifespan of approximately 11.3 years, while medium to large dogs in the 20- to 90-pounds range lived approximately 10.8 years, and even larger dogs more than 90 pounds usually only lived until the eight-year mark.
There are several differentiating factors when you compare a chihuahua lifespan to, say, a pitbull lifespan, but even amongst small dogs, there’s a wide range of life expectancies. So, if you’re looking for a furry companion that will be around for a long time, make sure to narrow your search to one of the following longest living dog breeds.
The famous “hot dog” dog is one adorably furry creature that generally will live a pretty long life in human years — about 15 to 20 years.
As the smallest member of the hound family, the dachshund — thanks to its distinctive shape — is prone to suffer from back injuries, so it’s important for owners to make sure they don’t jump off of high surfaces like couches, and even beds, to help them live a long healthy life.
The sweet, sassy and petite Chihuahua lifespan can sometimes reach a whopping 20 years. As one of the smallest breeds on this list, clocking in at a mere 3 to 5 pounds, most members of the Chihuahua family live around 15 to 18 years, but some common Chihuahua health problems to look out for include heart problems and patellar luxation.
Not only are poodles sharp as a whip and great with kids, they also happen to be one breed that lives the longest. Toy poodles in particular, thanks to their miniature size, tend to live the longest of all the poodle varieties — about 15 to 20 years.
They do require plenty of physical and mental exercise (hence, the intelligence), so make sure to keep that in mind before you commit to a toy poodle for two decades.
Who can resist those big floppy ears and puppy dog eyes? Long considered a wonderful family pet, the average beagle lives approximately 12 to 17 years. In fact, the longest living beagle, Butch, lived to an incredible 27 years!
Aging beagles commonly deal with back issues, so make sure they stay active and don’t overeat.
Long-haired, shaggy and slightly goofy looking, Lhasa apsos are definitely easy to love. Luckily for their owners, their best fur buddy will be around for a long time, with an average lifespan somewhere in the vicinity of 15 to 20 years.
They are known to suffer from skin problems — something that can often be managed simply by making sure they eat the right blend of dog food.
These popular small dogs are playful, full of life and super alert. They live approximately 12 to 16 years, although some have been recorded to have lived up to the two-decade mark — that’s 140 in dog years!
Thanks to all that glorious pomeranian hair, this breed will require a lot of grooming (unless you love tangles everywhere), so it’s just something to keep in mind as you’ll likely be brushing that fur for many, many years to come.
Generally, smaller dogs live longer than big dogs, but that’s not the case for the shaggy, friendly Australian shepherd, which can weigh up to 60 pounds. A healthy Australian shepherd can live up to 15 years.
Just make sure to look out for common health problems such as hip dysplasia (when the hip socket is malformed), eye disease and something called elbow dysplasia.
The curly-haired cockapoos are a cross between a cocker spaniel and a poodle, and like their poodle half, they have consistently long lifespans of up to 18 years.
This mixed breed is super warm and friendly and extremely loyal to human companions, which also makes separation anxiety likely (i.e., no more solo trips to the bathroom)!
Jack Russell Terrier
Everyone knows the perennially friendly looking Jack Russells are chock-full of playful energy, and that’s a good thing. All that boisterousness apparently helps keep them young, so they can live nice long lives of up to 16 years.
These dogs are prone to ear and eye issues as they age though, so just make sure to keep up with those annual vet visits so you can catch problems early on when they’re easier to treat.
The ancient shih tzus are an interesting breed because their life expectancy can vary greatly. Many members of this breed only live about 10 years, while others can live up to double that. Back in the day, shih tzus were the pet du jour of the Chinese royal family and are generally known to be super friendly, lively and easy to live with, as they require minimal exercise.
They are famous for their long beautiful coats, which will require regular grooming to maintain. And as they age, many members of the breed suffer from vision issues.
These irresistible pups are affectionate, loyal and good with both kids and adults making them a house pet favorite. The good news? These active dogs can live for up to 17 years with the average lifespan being 12 to 15 years.
Due to their unique shape, however, Welsh corgis are prone to canine hip dysplasia and intervertebral disc disease. So, take note if your corgi is all of a sudden walking funny, refusing to jump or seems slow to get around.
This adorable Mediterranean breed’s sweet face is made for longevity, with the average Maltese lifespan running 12 to 15 years. Maltese are known for being super smart, playful and good with kids — making them an ideal family pet.
This popular breed often experiences dental problems later in life, so make sure to keep an eye on those chompers if you’re thinking of bringing a Maltese home. And female pups tend to live just slightly longer than their male counterparts.
They’re cute, they’re friendly and they’ll most likely be around as a companion for a long time. Owners can expect a healthy Yorkshire terrier to live anywhere from 17 to 20 years.
They do tend to have stomach issues, however, so finding your Yorkie healthy food that won’t mess with its digestive system will go a long way towards keeping them around for a long time.
Most people may think that the pug, with their adorable smushed up nose, may have lots of health problems and not live as long as other small dog breeds, but they’d be wrong. This ancient Chinese breed lives about 12 to 15 years and makes a wonderful companion to both children and adults. They’re super affectionate and loyal and don’t require a lot of exercise. It’s no surprise that pugs have always been a popular pet choice.
Just beware that this breed can experience something called Pug Dog Encephalitis, where its brain becomes inflamed, causing seizures.
These medium to large herding dogs (Lassie, anyone?) are not only super sweet around children, but they also live long lives spanning 12 to 16 years. They’re known for their loyalty, protectiveness and friendliness.
Common health problems for collies include eye disease, which can often lead to blindness and skin conditions.
It’s hard to resist these personality-filled little dogs. That face! That crooked smile! That fuzzy hair! While most members of this breed don’t grow to be more than 14-inches tall, they pack a lot of personality into a compact body. They’re known to be super energetic and good around kids.
They’ll also stick around a long time — the average lifespan of a miniature schnauzer is 14 years. The breed is prone to pancreatitis, however, so owners should be mindful of its diet.
Australian Cattle Dog
Another larger breed to make the list, Australian cattle dogs can also rightfully claim the crown of being one of the longest living dog breeds ever recorded. One particular member of the breed, Bluey, lived to be a whopping 29.5 years! You do the math on how old that is in dog years, and prepare to be shocked.
But don’t start thinking that’s about how long most Australian cattle dogs, which usually clock in around 31 to 35 pounds, will live. The average lifespan of the breed is 12 to 15 years. It’s still a long time, but not “Guinness Book of World Records” long.
If you’ve never heard of this breed, you wouldn’t be the only one. That’s because the Boykin spaniel was “made,” if you will, in South Carolina to be used for hunting game (i.e., they haven’t been around very long).
As you can imagine, a dog that was bred to help with hunting is quite active and will require a lot of outdoor time. Despite the relatively newness of this breed, it still boasts a very long life expectancy — approximately 14 to 16 years.
These super smart hunting hounds are lively, playful and have a long life span: 12 to 15 years. They descended from some of Europe’s ancient breeds, so they’ve been around a long time, but since they’re so rare outside of Portugal, there still isn’t much recorded health information about them.
Judging from their long lifespans, however, it would be safe to assume it’s a fairly hardy and healthy breed.
Love ’em or hate ’em, there’s no denying these often hairless dogs live a long time. Internet famous for often winning the Ugliest Dog in the World contests, the Chinese cresteds are almost always completely hairless, save for some areas on their ears and legs.
These unique looking dogs are prone to allergies, dental problems and skin problems (mainly due to the fact that they don’t have hair to protect it like other dogs do.) Despite all that, though, healthy Chinese cresteds live 13 to 15 years.
Often referred to as the cats of the dog world due to their independent nature (i.e., they don’t need to be petted all the time), the Shiba Inu is considered a national treasure in Japan where they originated back in 300 B.C.
Originally bred to be hunting dogs, this breed doesn’t appear to have too many health problems outside of cataracts and allergies. This fox-like dog can live to up to approximately 12 to 15 years.
Coton De Tulear
In case you missed it, these adorable little pups are the national dog of the island of Madagascar. While they’ve eventually made their way to North America, they’re still considered a pretty rare breed.
This breed doesn’t have too many associated health problems other than the general hip, eye and back problems most dogs experience with age, and they can live up to 16 years.
Toy Manchester Terrier
These lively little terriers who look similar to mini Doberman Pinschers are extremely loyal and attached, making them an ideal family pet that will be around for a long time — about 14 to 16 years.
As they age, they are genetically predisposed to glaucoma and do require a lot of exercise as they are very energetic and could become obese if they’re not active enough.
These handsome sled dogs live a surprisingly long life for being so active — approximately 12 to 15 years. Since they are dogs that were bred to work, it’s important to not overfeed them and to make sure they get good exercise to avoid battling obesity, which could lead to an early death.
Common genetic disorders include hip dysplasia and eye disease.
These small dogs may look dainty and delicate, but don’t let that fool you — they’re actually quite hardy and have been known to live up to 17 years! Papillons are filled with energy and won’t be content just hanging around on the couch with their owner, so just consider that before making a very long commitment to one.
And as they get older, they’re prone to knee and dental issues as well as hypoglycemia (aka low blood sugar.)
Alert, sleek and super affectionate, Italian greyhounds are also long-lasting. With an average lifespan of 12 to 15 years, this breed doesn’t have too many known genetic health issues, although vets do recommend regular knee and eye tests.
Due to their super-fine short hair, these dogs are not the biggest fan of the cold, so get ready to bust out some doggy sweaters if you choose to bring one into your family.
These unique-looking herding dogs (think a walking giant mop) were originally bred in Italy to herd sheep. It’s a gentle breed that’s known to be great with kids, and thanks to their long lifespan — 13 to 15 years, give or take a few — it’ll be a part of the family for years to come.
Bergamascos are well-known as a healthy breed with no obvious known common health issues among then. Just beware of their crazy matted-looking fur, which will need to be regularly groomed.
English Springer Spaniel
Big floppy ears, sweet eyes and a playful temperament make this breed a popular family pet.
Despite a propensity towards multiple health issues as they get older, including elbow and hip dysplasia, they still live pretty long lives of up to 14 years.
While they may look like mini Doberman pinschers, German pinschers have actually been around for longer and are an older breed. Originally bred as working dogs who would hunt vermin, these agile dogs are highly intelligent and active, and live on average 12 to 14 years.
This makes sense because it is a breed that’s known to be relatively healthy with no known major or minor genetic issues.
New Guinea Singing Dog
You may not have heard of these rare fox-like dogs that are still mostly only found on the island of New Guinea. That’s because they’re not recommended to be domesticated pets as they’re still very closely related to wild dogs.The “singing” part of their name comes from their ability to vary the pitch of their howls.
Thanks to their sturdy nature, they’re not prone to many inherited diseases and can live up to a whopping 15 to 20 years!
This dog was bred to do — what else? — catch rats. As you can imagine, any dog bred to catch something will require daily exercise to maintain its health.
With daily activity and quality dog food, many rat terriers live five to 18 years.
This herding dog you’ve probably never heard of — often called “Mal” for short — will likely be with your family for a long time: approximately 14 to 16 years.
They’re super easy to train and kid-friendly. And luckily, they’re not prone to any major health issues.
This popular family dog is not only super intelligent and easy to train, but it also has an impressive life expectancy for a big dog — around 11 years.
To ensure a long, healthy life, make sure they’re eating quality dog food and getting their regular vet checkups. Hip and elbow dysplasia are super common with German shepherds, but both are genetic, so there’s not much you can do to prevent it.
The playful English foxhound is known to be super kid-friendly but, much like a Beagle, has a tendency to wander.
They are the rarest of the foxhound breeds but are generally considered very healthy and don’t have any major health issues commonly associated with them. They live for up to 13 years.
These unusual dogs are generally known for two things: being super mellow and being almost barkless. While striking to the eye with their extremely slender long legs and lean bodies, the Azawakh aren’t the most affectionate dogs.
Generally considered a healthy breed, they are prone to a condition called bloat in which the stomach expands with air. But with daily exercise and good care, they live to about 12 to 15 years.
The adorably fox-like Basenjis are known for being barkless, doesn’t shed and do well when alone. While they aren’t the easiest dog to train, it can be done with some patience and consistency.
One major problem affecting the breed is progressive retinal atrophy and cataracts, so make sure to have their eyes regularly checked by a vet. Basenjis live about 12 years.
The super-popular and super-friendly labrador retrievers are often considered one of the healthiest dog breeds despite their not-so-diminutive size. They have a life expectancy of approximately 12 to 13 years.
If not exercised regularly, this breed can become overweight, taking on the associated health issues due to the extra heft. A good rule of thumb: Make sure to limit treats, and increase walks as they age.
This ancient dog breed is made for the desert and may not be the best choice for a family pet. They are extremely intelligent, but this also makes them very stubborn (aka strong-willed) making them not so easy to train.
That said, this super healthy breed can live up to 13 years.
Who wouldn’t love a cute shaggy dog that hardly barks, is happy staying home and doesn’t feel the urge to gnaw on everything?
These fur babies will be around for about 13 years as long as you don’t overfeed them.
Famous for being one of the best hunting dogs in history, these energetic pups need to be kept physically active to stay healthy.
Like many other breeds, they’re prone to canine hip dysplasia, but they are otherwise considered fairly healthy, living an average of 12 years.
The adorable Havanese were bred to be lap dogs, i.e., they don’t need a lot of physical activity to be healthy and love to stick close to their owner’s side (hence the nickname, the “velcro” dog.) Luckily, they’ll be able to be a close companion to their owner for a long while, about 13 years.
And while it may seem that the Havenese breed has a long list of common health issues, it’s important to keep in mind that many of these issues, like hip and elbow dysplasia, are extremely common in all small dog breeds.
Often mistaken for miniature greyhounds, whippets are also barkless dogs.
Keep in mind this sleek, agile breed is super active and will require lots of exercise to stay healthy enough to live its full life expectancy of 13 years.
This racing dog is surprisingly great with kids and its short hair makes it easy to maintain.
The only thing to watch out for is its tendency to be able to pull a Houdini and escape over fences and gates. Otherwise, you can expect this friendly dog to be with your family for about 12 years.
Who doesn’t love a soft fluffy white dog that always looks like it’s smiling? This friendly, gentle dog is an active breed, so in order to keep them healthy and living a long life, they will require significant daily exercise.
But if you can commit to that and to regularly grooming their beautiful fur, you can expect a Samoyed to live about 12 to 14 years.
These gorgeous hunting dogs have a surprisingly long lifespan — 12 to 15 years — for a dog of its size.
Lean and muscular, the vizla should get regular vigorous exercise to keep it mentally and physically fit. Some common health issues in the breed include eye problems and allergies.
The ubiquitous firehouse dog is super social, playful and intelligent. One major common health issue among dalmations is a propensity to develop stones in the urinary tract, which can lead to bladder leakage issues and can be potentially life-threatening if not treated.
To help prevent this, make sure they alway have access to lots of clean water. Given a healthy lifestyle, they live about 11 to 13 years.
Known for acting like a puppy longer than the average dog, the energetic Irish setter can live up to 15 years.
Common health issues include hip dysplasia, skin allergies, eye problems and epilepsy. They’re also prone to bloat, so owners need to make sure not to overfeed them.
If you’ve never heard of them, you wouldn’t be the only one: This large breed was just recently bred in the 1980s in California to resemble the prehistoric dire wolf. They weigh about 90 pounds, yet have a surprisingly long lifespan of about 14 years.
Despite their intimidating size, they’re generally non-aggressive and calm. Since they’re such a new breed, common health problems aren’t yet known.
With an average lifespan of 12 to 14 years, the graceful looking saluki is genetically related closely to wolves.
As a dog that was bred to chase gazelles in the desert, you can imagine the saluki will require lots of exercise. Fortunately for owners, this breed isn’t known to have any common genetically inherited health issues.