How much longer is my dog going to live? What to Know

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Humans have much longer lifespans than dogs. This is a basic fact of dog ownership and one that many owners struggle with when the time comes to say goodbye. While we may wish our dogs could live forever, knowing how long dogs live helps prepare us for their needs as seniors, ensuring that we give them the best possible care throughout their lives so that we get to spend as much time with them as possible.

There are several factors that determine the longevity of dogs, including size, breed, and the general health of the animal. These factors can help answer the questions on most dog owner’s minds: How long do dogs live? And how can I help my dog live longer?

Do Small Dog Breeds Live Longer than Large Dog Breeds?

How much longer is my dog going to live?

Scientists have long been baffled about why small dog breeds tend to live longer than large dog breeds. In the rest of the animal kingdom, size seems to positively correlate with longevity. Elephants and whales are some of the largest and longest-lived mammals, with some whale species living more than 100 years. The same cannot be said of dogs.

Small dogs live significantly longer than their larger counterparts, in many cases up to several years longer. Scientists are not entirely sure why this occurs, although there is speculation that larger dogs develop age-related diseases sooner than smaller dogs. This could be because the larger breeds grow from puppies to adults at an accelerated rate, which may increase the likelihood of abnormal cell growth and death from cancer.

Regardless of the reasons behind why some dogs live longer than others, there are similar characteristics among small, medium, and large dog breeds that help determine the longevity of each group.

How long do German Shepherds live?

German Shepherds are said to live for an average of 10.16 years. Female German Shepherds reportedly live 1.4 years longer, on average, than males! Unfortunately, large dogs like German Shepherds, are prone to developing dog arthritis which results in decreased mobility. With big dogs, a greater mass means more stress on joints, so be sure to keep your pet at a healthy weight. Bear this in mind with German Shepherds and remember to consult a vet with any concerns.

Comparison: Lifespan of Dog Breeds | How Long Will Your Dog Live?