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DOGS

15 Dog Breeds With Long Lifespans

Michele Debczak
Purple Collar Pet Photography/Royalty-Free/iStock via Getty Images
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Dog owners are drawn to certain breeds for different reasons, like popularity or scientifically determined cuteness. For pet parents who want to keep their companion in their life as long as possible, longevity may be high on their priority list. Though it’s impossible to predict the age your dog will reach, some breeds do typically live to be older than others. These breeds are genetically predisposed to have the longest lifespans.

The idea that small dogs live longer is backed up by science. The larger the dog, the more physical strain they require just to function. This causes their bodies to wear out—and therefore age—more quickly than pint-sized members of their species.

Many sources list chihuahuas as the longest-living dog breed. In addition to being tiny at 6 pounds or less, they’re also relatively healthy. Unlike some purebreds, chihuahuas aren’t afflicted by numerous life-threatening health problems that are specific to their breed. A chihuahua that eats well and receives regular exercise can live to be 16 or older.

Most dogs on the list are of similar size. Toy poodles, dachshunds, and shih tzus can all live past 15. The biggest breed in the ranking is the Australian shepherd, which has a life expectancy of 12 to 15 years according to the American Kennel Club. Despite weighing up to 65 pounds, the breed is generally healthy.

Good genes go a long way toward life expectancy, but they’re just part of the equation. If you want to keep your dog healthy, check out these pet food brands recommended by experts.

15 Longest-Living Dog Breeds

  1. Chihuahua // 14–16 years
  2. Bichon frisé // 14–15 years
  3. Shiba inu // 13–16 years
  4. Australian cattle dog // 12–16 years (tie)
  5. Miniature pinscher // 12–16 years (tie)
  6. Dachshund // 12–16 years (tie)
  7. Maltese // 12–15 years (tie)
  8. Miniature schnauzer // 12–15 years (tie)
  9. Affenpinscher // 12–15 years (tie)
  10. Australian shepherd // 12–15 years (tie)
  11. Russell terrier // 12–14 years
  12. Yorkshire terrier // 11–15 years
  13. Shih tzu // 10–18 years (tie)
  14. Toy poodle // 10–18 years (tie)
  15. Beagle // 10–15 years
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