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Longest-living dog breeds

  • Longest-living dog breeds

    Dogs are popular companions in most countries and cultures. Providing company, unconditional love, and safety are just a few characteristics that make them our best friends—and, most of all, make us happy. 

    Many factors go into choosing a dog breed: the size of your home and city; your family; your allergies; your wallet; and often even your own memories of a previous companion (if you grew up with a golden retriever, for instance, maybe you want the same experience for your children). 

    But while owning a dog might increase our happiness and, in particular, our lifespans (according to a 2017 Swedish study in the Journal of Scientific Reports), the same doesn’t necessarily hold true the other way around. In addition to regular vet checkups, balanced meals, and daily exercise regimens, there are certain canine characteristics that correlate with longevity in dogs. Larger dogs generally have shorter lifespans than smaller dogs, so those seeking a long-term relationship might opt for small- or medium-sized breeds. But more specifically than that, there are some breeds that tend to outlast others. 

    Take pugs and Boston terriers: they are both small, feisty, fun companions for those in tighter quarters or enjoying city life. But would you guess there is an average of two years separating the lifespans of their breeds? While you’ll see plenty of the size-lifespan correlation in the coming data, it might surprise you to see that the standard breed of one of the most popular show dogs, as well as a breed of greyhound, both enter our top 10. 

    To find out the longest-living dog breeds, Stacker examined data from a 2008 study published in the journal Genetics and 2016 breed popularity rankings from the American Kennel Club.

    Read on to find out which dogs are known for their longevity, and if your favorite breed made the list.

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  • #41. Standard schnauzer (tie)

    Average lifespan: 13 years
    Popularity rank: #85

    A medium-sized dog weighing between 35 and 45 pounds, standard schnauzers are sociable companions, alert watchdogs, good with kids, and protective of loved ones. This breed is known for its arched eyebrows and bristly mustache and whiskers.

  • #41. Sealyham terrier (tie)

    Average lifespan: 13 years
    Popularity rank: #155

    Weighing about 24 pounds, this dog is alert, outgoing, and even has a sense of humor. These companions are recognized by the mass of hair covering their foreheads. The breed is adaptable and can live in the city or country. Sealyham terriers also make good watchdogs due to their alertness.

  • #41. Pug (tie)

    Average lifespan: 13 years
    Popularity rank: #32

    The pug is a small, yet muscular breed. These dogs can be happy in the city or country, with kids or older adults, as an only pet, or as part of a group of pets. Their temperament is charming, mischievous, and loving.

  • #41. Nova Scotia duck tolling retriever (tie)

    Average lifespan: 13 years
    Popularity rank: #87

    This medium-sized breed’s trademark is a coat that ranges from golden red to dark copper with white markings. Tollers are strong and agile athletes requiring owners who like outdoor adventures. These dogs enjoy hunting, hiking, and are great swimmers because of their webbed feet. This dog is also smart, affectionate, and outgoing.

  • #41. Norwich terrier (tie)

    Average lifespan: 13 years
    Popularity rank: #103

    A little over 10 inches tall and about 12 pounds, this breed is among the smallest-working terriers bred to hunt small vermin. Happy-go-lucky, fearless, and bossy, Norwiches are energetic enough to play fetch all day, but affectionate enough to enjoy hours of lap time with their favorite humans.

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  • #41. Kerry blue terrier (tie)

    Average lifespan: 13 years
    Popularity rank: #127

    The Kerry blue terrier is famous for its blue coat. Named after the Irish county of its birth, this onetime farm dog is now an alert, adaptable, and animated watchdog and family companion. Bonus: This breed does not shed, allowing it to be tolerated by many people with pet allergies.

  • #41. Keeshond (tie)

    Average lifespan: 13 years
    Popularity rank: #92

    The keeshond’s temperament is friendly, lively, and outgoing. A medium-sized spitz dog, this breed is famous for its distinctive “spectacles”—shadings and markings around the eyes that look like glasses. This breed started out in Holland and remains a symbol of Dutch patriotism today.

  • #41. Japanese chin (tie)

    Average lifespan: 13 years
    Popularity rank: #108

    The Japanese chin is charming, noble, and loving. The tiny companions are well-suited for living indoors. They have a large head and short muzzle; but what’s more, their round, dark eyes convey what appears to be a look of astonishment.

  • #41. Italian spinone (tie)

    Average lifespan: 13 years
    Popularity rank: #105

    A densely coated hunting dog, this breed is sociable, docile, patient, and sometimes stubborn. The spinone is from ancient Italian lineage and is among the field dogs of continental Europe famed for versatility.

  • #41. German wirehaired pointer (tie)

    Average lifespan: 13 years
    Popularity rank: #64

    The German wirehaired pointer is medium-sized and sturdily built. The breed’s most distinguishing characteristic is its weather-resistant, wire-like coat. This dog is a versatile, sturdy gundog who thrives on outdoor activity, but around the house, it’s an eager, affectionate, and amusing family companion.

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