17 Dog Breeds That Live For A Very Long Time

Did you know that some dog breeds live for a very long time? While there are a variety of factors that can affect how long a dog lives, certain breeds seem to have an edge when it comes to longevity.

On average, smaller breeds of dogs tend to live longer than their larger counterparts. This is likely due to the fact that small breeds experience fewer health problems and injuries throughout their lives.

The longest living dog breed is the Pyrenean Shepherd. They can live for almost 20 years and are known for their longevity because they are relatively free of health problems. In fact, the oldest Pyrenean Shepherd on record was 29 years old.

Keep reading to learn more about the top 17 dog breeds that have a longer lifespan than most.

26. Pyrenean Shepherd

Image from Instagram:@monsieur_milou

Average age: 17.5 years

The longest living dog on this list is the Pyrenean Shepherd. It’s such a shame that there’s not one dog of this breed that was included in the Guinness World Record. But that will not stop us from awarding them the top spot here.

These enthusiastic dogs are herder dogs that descended from their Pyrenees sheepdog ancestors. They are tough on the outside but a sweetheart on the inside.

25. Manchester Terrier 

Image from Instagram:@malmothemanchesterterrier

Average age: 16 years

The Manchester Terrier was the result of crossbreeding a Whippet and a Black Terrier. They were developed by local mill workers in Manchester to have one dog breed that excels in both coursing hounds and hunting rats.

Thankfully the result was a spirited, and athletic dog. They are described as loving and loyal, but also protective which makes them the dogs of choice for companionship for a long time.

24. Shetland Sheepdog 

Image from Instagram:@butter_the_sheltie

Average age: 13 years

The Shetland Sheepdog, also known as Sheltie, is a herding dog from Scotland. They are known to be intelligent and obedient to their human families which are characteristics pet owners would love to live and grow old with.

The best thing about these dogs is that, aside from their affectionate demeanor, they can be reserved toward strangers too. Nothing is better than a sweetheart and protector in one pet.

23. Russell Terrier

Image from Instagram:@garp_the_airedale

Oldest recorded: 20 years and 106 days

Average age: 13 years

Russell Terriers were developed to be used in hunting foxes back in the day. These lively and inquisitive pups look so adorable it’s hard to believe they were employed to do just that.

Their confident attitude together with their plush toy look would make it lovely to spend 20 years with them just like Willie, the oldest Russell Terrier recorded from the UK.

22. Schipperke

Image from Instagram:@kobold_the_schipperke

Average age: 13 years

Schipperke is the traditional rat hunter and watchdog of ships in Belgium. These curious and intense little black dogs are ideal life-long companions because there is surely never a dull moment with them.

They have a foxy face that complements their mischievous and lively nature that can brighten your day just by looking at them. They truly are a unique breed to get for your family and grow old with.

21. Vizsla

Average age: 13 years

The Vizsla is a versatile Hungarian dog breed known for its sleek golden-rust coat. They are described as versatile because they excel both in the field as a hunter and at various sports and intense activities. 

Their impressive stamina makes them the perfect pet for active owners. Because of their hunter genes, they easily form bonds with humans and become clingy which proves they can be the best life companions.

20. Yorkshire Terrier

Image from Diggs Inc.

Average age: 13 years

As part of the Terrier group, the Yorkshire Terrier also had a humble beginning as rat hunters in textile mills in the northern English counties. But it was not long enough until they became the lapdog of choice for Victorian ladies.

With their dainty look but feisty attitude, every moment with them is filled with love, laughter, and genuine companionship. Their floor-length silky hair also adds a nice touch.

19. Tibetan Spaniel

Image from K9Cuisine

Average age: 13.5 years

Tibetan Spaniels were bred many years ago to work as watchdogs together with their cousins, the Tibetan Mastiff, on the walls of Tibetan monasteries. These dogs are known to be curious but playful, giving entertainment to the Buddhist monks.

This pooch with a distinct “lion’s mane” around the neck is without a doubt the best companion dog because of its history as a long-time companion of Himalayan residents.

18. Border Collie

Image from Darwin’s Pet

Oldest recorded: 27 years and 211 days

Average age: 13.5 years

The very energetic Border Collie is the dog of choice for owners who love to train their dogs for activities. They are bright dogs who know when it is time for play and cuddle. 

All in all, they are athletic, agile, and fast learners. No wonder one Collie in the United Kingdom named Taffy grew old to reach 27 years old!

17. Lhasa Apso

Image from Petmate

Average age: 13.5 years

The Lhasa Apso is an expected entry in this list because it’s been around for thousands of years. That says a lot about how this breed, which served as sentinels at palaces and monasteries isolated high in the Himalayas, will live and grow old with their owners.

These smart and comical dogs have also been giving joy to the Buddhist monks just like other monastery-resident dogs mentioned earlier.

16. Maltese

Average age: 13.5 years

The cute toy dog Maltese is another dog breed that has been around for too long; it has probably witnessed countless dog evolutions. Aside from their ancient origins, this dog breed is known for its floor-length, luscious coat that makes them look fluffy and cuddly.

They are also playful and adaptable dog companions which could possibly explain how they have managed to live a long life with their owners.

15. Pug

Image from WOpet

Oldest recorded: 27 years and 284 days

Average age: 14 years

The oldest Pug to have lived was Snookie from South Africa. She had reached 27 years which is an impressive feat for little dogs. This dog breed has lived long enough to have assumed different roles in history. 

These dogs went from being a Chinese emperor’s companion to becoming the mascot of Holland’s royal house of Orange all thanks to their impressive adaptation skills.

14. Australian Cattle Dog

Oldest recorded: 29 years and 160 days

Average age: 14 years

The Australian Cattle dog currently holds the top spot on the Guinness World Record for the longest living dog. The dog was expectedly from Australia and was named Bluey.

They were named as such because of their great skills in hunting, chasing, and moving livestock. But aside from their admirable workaholic nature, these dogs are smart and loyal to their owners.

13. Dachshund

Image from K9Cuisine

Oldest recorded: 21 years and 114 days

Average age: 14 years

In the United States, a female Dachshund named Chanel from New York has made it to the Guinness World Record for living up beyond 21 years. This famous dog breed with an iconic long and low silhouette is a friendly dog with a vivacious personality.

Because of their small build, these dogs are not suitable for intense activities which may explain how they managed to live long.

12. Pomeranian

Image from DoggieLawn

Average age: 14 years

Another toy dog on this list is the Pomeranian. This dog has been labeled as the ideal companion by both royalties and commoners since its discovery many years ago. 

They are alert and easily trained which the commoners love because they make good watchdogs. At the same, they are perky and always smiling which royalties adore. These dogs are active and like to be exercised through indoor play and short walks.

11. Toy Poodle

Image from DoggieLawn

Oldest recorded: 20 years and 298 days

Average age: 14 years

Seamus, the Toy Poodle from the United States, was the longest living dog of this breed reported by the Guinness World Record. For its size, it was astounding that Seamus lived up to 20 years.

These dogs are known to be athletic and wickedly smart. They have used their intelligence and versatility to get through and around life, helping them to live long.

10. Shih Tzu

Image from CBD Dog Health

Average age: 14 years

With a face like that of Shih Tzu dogs, humans are just bound to give in to those big dark eyes and sweet facial expressions. They have used it to their advantage and have survived thousands of years despite being mischievous by nature.

These lively charmers are known to be especially affectionate with children. They love cuddling with their humans which are lovely traits to have in companion dogs.

9. Bichon Frise

Image from K9Cuisine

Average age: 14.5 years

The very charming Bichon Frise is one of the most resilient dog breeds. They are very intelligent dogs that know they can charm their way in life which resulted in their stable aging process. 

Their irresistible beauty and confidence have brought them here today, which is a beloved household pets of most families. They are also adaptable companion dogs that get on well with other dogs and children.

8. Shiba Inu

Image from Darwin’s Pet

Oldest recorded: 26 years and 248 days

Average age: 14.5 years

Japanese people have one of the highest life expectancies in the world and it obviously has rubbed off on their native dogs like the Shiba Inu, with Pusuke as the oldest dog ever recorded in the country. This dog breed is an ancient Japanese breed that was once employed as a hunter. 

But it’s their adaptable skills that helped them survive until today, making it the most popular companion dog in Japan.

7. Standard Schnauzer

Image from Embark Vet

Average age: 14.5 years

Schnauzers are the high-spirited farm dogs from Germany known for the classic bristly whiskers that hang on their faces. These dogs are sometimes stubborn but when needed, they are reliable companions to their human families.

If you have kids at home they are the perfect dogs to get because they can be trained to be great with kids as they are gentle but also turn protective when needed.

6. Papillon

Image from Dog.com

Average age: 15 years

Papillons are a favorite lapdog among European noblemen because of their refined appearance that goes well together with their happy and friendly demeanor. This small dog with a signature pair of large, winged-shaped ears has clearly shown it is more than just a cute toy dog.

Despite their size, they are quick and curious and have an outstanding ability to thrive everywhere they go. Thus, they’re perfect to grow old with.

5. Rat Terrier

Image from Dog.com

Average age: 15 years

The Rat Terrier, whose name was said to be coined by US President Teddy Roosevelt himself, was bred to do what its name literally says. These dogs worked hard as rodent exterminators to earn their keep.

But these diligent dog hunters also have a happy-go-lucky and playful side to them that their owners find adorable. Because they are great house guardians and children’s playmates they are preferred, dog companions.

4. Chihuahua

Image from Dog.com

Oldest recorded: 20 years and 265 days

Average age: 15 years

Chihuahuas are living proof that small dogs possess great surviving abilities. Megabyte from the United States is the oldest Chihuahua that ever lived, reaching up to 20 years old.

This purse dog is apparently a national symbol of Mexico. With its history of being one of the oldest breeds in the Americas, it is certain that this dog will live long as you.

3. Mexican Hairless Dog

Image from Dog.com

Average age: 15.5 years

The Mexican Hairless dog is formally known as Xoloitzcuintli among the dog breed specialists. These dogs are the ancient Aztec dogs of the gods from 3,000 years ago that served as national treasures in Mexico.

These once untouchable sacred dogs are now the loving household pets of their human families. They are alert and loyal vigilant watchdogs that make for perfect long-term life companions.

2. Beagle

Image from CBD Dog Health

Oldest recorded: 28 years

Average age: 13 years

Beagles were originally bred to be hunting dogs in the past before they were discovered as loyal human companions. Because of their happy-go-lucky nature, these dogs are a favorite choice among pet owners. The dramatic pleading expression on their faces makes them irresistible.

In the United States, a beagle named Butch lived long enough to be included in the Guinness World Records at 28 years old.

1. Labrador Retriever

Image from K9Cuisine

Oldest recorded: 27 years, 98 days

Average age: 11 years

Labrador Retriever ranks number 1 in America as the most popular dog breed. And it’s no surprise because these adorable four-legged cuties are friendly and high-spirited. They love to show their affection to their families as much as they can.

The Guinness World Records have recorded a Labrador Retriever named Adjutant from the United Kingdom to have lived for 27 years and 98 days!

Does A Dog Know It’s Dying? 

Yes, dogs somehow know when their time is up in this world. There have been several accounts from pet owners that tell of the different ways that their beloved dogs have said goodbye to them. Their dogs suddenly become needy and affectionate the day before they go to dog heaven.

Do Happy Dogs Live Longer?

Yes, happy dogs live longer. The things that make dogs happy happen to be good for them, both mentally and healthwise. Dogs are happy whenever they are allowed to socialize with other animals and people. This lessens the chances of them getting anxiety and depression which can affect their health long term.

How Do Most Dogs Die? 

Dogs, just like their human counterparts, become susceptible to diseases as they age. It was reported that more than half of dog deaths recorded were due to incurable illnesses such as cancer and heart disease. The next common cause of death in death by euthanasia as a result of their disease.

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Pete Decker