Top 11 Dog Breeds with the Longest Lifespans

The adoeable small Yorkshire Terrier

One of the best parts of life is when you and your pet get to age together, over a long period of time. Sadly though, that is not always the case.

One of the biggest reasons for this is that the life expectancy of your pet was never that long, to begin with. It is only natural that you will get attached to any pet you bring into your house. The situation gets even more complicated when you have children or elderly people who factor into the equation.

Children, in particular, get easily attached to their dog pals and find it difficult to face and accept their passing away.

This is why it is imperative to understand that the life span of different breeds of dogs varies greatly.

For instance, a Chihuahua will have a life span of fifteen to twenty years as opposed to a German Shepherd that will only live for an average of nine to thirteen years. Hence, it is important to know the life expectancy of the breed of dog you are planning on allowing into your house.

There are many factors that are responsible for the longevity of a dog’s life, and these factors can include anything from the average life expectancy of a dog to the quality of care it receives.

Generally speaking though, most studies and observations indicate that dog breeds that are physically smaller in size tend to live longer.

That said, if you are actively choosing a dog to share your home and life with, it might just be a good option to look at smaller-sized dogs that will live longer.

Top 11 Dog Breeds That Lives The Longest

The following are some types of dogs that live the longest:

1. Maltese (15 Years)

White Maltese

The Maltese dog breed is widely considered an aristocrat amongst other dog breeds. This particular type of dog breed has not only a long life but also loves to have a pampered life. Its characteristic thick, luxurious, and almost royal coat may just be an indication of the dog’s somewhat spoiled nature.

Though this breed of dog may at times act rather demanding, it almost always gets what it wants on account of how cute this small, delicate creature is. It is a loving and energetic little creature, though at times the Maltese dog does not seem to get along well with other pets. Therefore, it may be wise to only get this dog once you’re really committed to putting in the work.

Surprisingly though, contrary to popular belief, this dog doesn’t require a lot of exercises to keep healthy. On average a single morning walk may just be all that your Maltese requires throughout the day.

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These elegant majestic creatures; while small does tend to have one of the longest lifespan among all dogs. Lasting on average up to 15 years.

While all Maltese dogs have a similarly long life, it is the females of this breed that tend to outlive their male counterparts.

The females average an entire extra year over the males. The Maltese breed generally has very few genetic illnesses which are why they tend to have such long lifespans.

2. Beagle (15 Years)


The beagle dog breed is one of the most popular pet dog breeds there are. These dogs are loyal, friendly companions and generally live a long life.

They are enthusiastic and have a people-pleasing nature which makes them great as pets. The Beagle breed is particularly good with children which is why it remains a very popular breed for a home pet.

Beagles are small adorable dogs with a thin coat of fur which seldom sheds. This makes it quite easy to take care of them since they don’t require a lot of grooming. These little creatures reach up to 15 inches in height and weigh between 18 and 30 pounds.

While commonly beagles tend to live up to 15 years, Butch, a beagle in Virginia made his dog owner proud as he went on to live a staggering 27 years and is often regarded as one of the if not the oldest dog to ever live.

Hence, why beagles are arguably acknowledged as the longest living dog breed, though opinions do differ on the matter.

3. Australian Shepherds (13-14 Years)

Australian Shepherd

The Australian Shepherd is a large dog breed that surprisingly lives up to an astonishing 14 years. The Aussies are well-known for their remarkable herding abilities, wit, and vigor.

An Australian Shepherd, the largest dog on this list, has average longevity ranging between 13 and 14 years (which looks to be fairly decent among the large dog breeds!) 

Some of the finer attributes possessed by this breed include their lovely coats and aesthetically pleasing appearances. This coupled with the fact that they are incredibly clever and readily taught, makes it quite a treat to just train these remarkable dogs. This breed may just be the most home-friendly dog breed there is.

4. The Shih Tzu (15Years)

The ShihTzu

The Shih Tzu breed of dogs is incredibly friendly and a treat to have in the house. These little creatures have a thick feathery coat of fur and are often cute little bundles of joy. Due to their loving and friendly nature, it is a delight to keep one as a pet. This dog will always be around to cheer you up.

This enthusiastic breed of dogs used to be the Chinese Ming Dynasty sweethearts, being treated as royal pets They now live as loyal companions for people all over the globe.

This loyal and friendly companion has an average life of up to 15 years and is not prone to many genetic illnesses. Some even consider the Shih Tzu as the healthiest dog breed.

5. The Lhasa Apso (12-14 Years)

Lhasa Apso

The oldest Lhasa apso on record lived for 29 years and died in 1939. Since they are suspicious of strangers, they make excellent indoor watchdogs. Though it may seem like the Lhasa Apso is an uncommon breed, that really isn’t the case. These fluffy little dogs are very common among small dog owners. 

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A Lhasa Apso has an average lifespan that ranges between 12-14 years. The Lhasa Apso dog’s best qualities are their ability to be very calm but affectionate dogs. The fact that these dogs also do not require a lot of exercises, means this breed of dog would fit in well with the elderly.

6. Cockapoo (13 Years)


This hybrid breed is a cross between a Cocker Spaniel and a Poodle. The cockapoo dog is very clever and friendly, combining the charming personality of the cocker spaniel with the trainability and good humor of the poodle.

It is also probably the poodle side of this mixed breed dog that gives it its long life since the cocker spaniels have an average life of about 13 years.

Compared to at least part of its ancestry the Cockapoo ends up having a life of about 16 years.

7. Jack Russell Terrier (16 Years)

Jack Russell Terrier

These puppies are well-known for their high energy levels. Perhaps that is what keeps them going for so long! The dependable Jack Russell has a life expectancy of 16 years, which is a pretty impressive feat for a dog. Jack Russells make excellent companions and are extremely affectionate.

This dog breed is also often found to be extremely energetic, always playing and running around. A delightful and loyal playmate for any child. It is this immense energy that the Terrier Jack Russel has which may explain why they have the longest life span of any dog breed.

8. Toy Poodle (14 Years)

Toy Poodle

Although all purebred poodles and poodle mixes have a fairly long expected lifespan, toy poodles have the longest amongst all poodle breeds. As the smallest of the group they unsurprisingly outlive all of the other large dog breeds.

Often when you think of a Toy Poodle, you don’t necessarily think of a long lifespan, but this breed of dog has an average lifespan of 14 years.

Toy Poodles are ideal for allergy sufferers due to their hypoallergenic fur. Toy Poodles are also rather bright and lively, making them an ideal dog for families with children.

9. Chihuahua (16-20 Years)


They may be the smallest dog breed, but they are also one of the longest-living dog breed, owing to the fact that they are not prone to any serious genetic illnesses.

It’s the Chihuahua, which has a surprising life span of 16-20 years. This dog breed is in many dog owners’ opinions an incredible average lifespan for a dog. 

Chihuahuas possess many lovable characteristics, including their unparalleled loyalty to their family/owners. They are also considered quirky dogs with big

10. Singing Dog of New Guinea (18 Years)

New Guinea Singing Dog” by Just chaos is licensed under CC BY 2.0.

One of the world’s rarest dogs, belonging to the most primitive dog breed in the world, is the Singing Dog of New Guinea.

Singing Dog of New Guinea has one of the longest lifespans of all dog breeds in the world… an impressive eighteen years.

The most distinctive feature about this particular breed of dogs is their uniquely different way of barking… often described as  a ‘singing howl.’

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The downside to this breed is that there are only around 100 of these dogs left in the world, and most of them are being bred in captivity, so it would be nearly impossible to get a Singing Dog of New Guinea as a pet.

In any case, we shouldn’t look to keep them as pets anyways as they are endangered.

11. The Dachshund (15 Years)

The Dachshund

The Dachshund may look a little comedic, especially when you consider its ‘sausage dog’ appearance, but here is definitely one dog that you could spend a good many years with.

Boasting an average life expectancy of twelve to fifteen years, the Dachshund could be the perfect dog for you, especially if you have a family at home.

Friendly to a fault and very playful as well, are all character traits that serve to make it the perfect pet for many.

One of the biggest drawbacks of the Dachshund though is its tendency to be very vocal, so if you are someone who likes peace and quiet, prepare to spend the lifespan of this particular dog breed, surrounded by the sounds of joyful barking.

How to make sure your dog lives the longest?

Genetics may all be very well in its place, but what if you just naturally like the larger breed of dogs? Or what if you have a dog that belongs to one of the larger dogs?

This is where some factors other than simple genetics come into play. The following are some ways in which you may assist your furry canine to live a longer, more fulfilling, and most importantly, happier life!

The first of these is the quality of care that is being given to the dog in question. Make sure that your dog is eating as much as it needs to.

A balanced diet is essential to a dog’s health and overfeeding out of excessive love is just as harmful and unnecessary as starving the dog to death.

The reason is simple: the higher the weight of a dog, the more it is at risk of suffering from heart problems.

A lot of in-breeding also takes place to maintain certain desirable qualities within a certain breed of dogs.

This also means that while in-breeding, and breeding under controlled conditions may help develop certain traits in dogs, these could also lead to a number of weaknesses.

Breed-specific illnesses would become more common and the dog would be more likely to have inherent health conditions that will affect its quality of life.

Finally, spaying is one popular way of ensuring that your pup in particular does not end up breeding. However, spaying a dog when it is little more than a pup is a huge mistake.

This is because spaying at this young an age drastically affects the health of the canine, and could be the reason why its life is shortened. 

Sterilization, on the other hand, could prevent the stress that the female dog will undergo upon giving birth to a litter of pups. Sterilization could even help to prevent your furry companions from developing potential cancers.

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