Dog Longevity 

Created by Dr. Kelly M. Cassidy, 2007

 

 

 

 

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Breed Weight and Lifespan

Last edited 07/08/2007

 

Do small dogs live longer than large dogs?

Yes and no.  The longest-lived breeds are small dogs and most of the short-lived breeds are large. However, not all small breeds are long-lived and some large breeds live longer than expected for their size.

The chart below plots the number of breeds in each lifespan category for each weight class. 

[Longevity for each breed is the weighted average (weighted by sample size) of the longevities from all available questionnaire surveys, and using only breeds for which the total sample size was greater than 20.]

 

 

Chart3

 

 

What does this chart show?

The purple bars represent the number of small breeds (<20 lbs) in each longevity category.  I had data for 32 small breeds.  The distribution of these small breeds among longevity categories was::
bullet9-10 yrs - 3 breeds
bullet10-11 yrs - 3 breeds
bullet11-12 yrs - 8 breeds
bullet12-13 yrs - 5 breeds
bullet13-14 yrs - 8 breeds
bullet14-15 yrs - 5 breeds

So, although the only breeds in the 14-15 yr category  were small, most small breeds are in longevity categories that include many larger breeds. 

Similarly, while breeds in the largest breed group (>120 lbs) fall mostly in the lowest longevity category, the longest-lived large breed (Newfoundland) falls in the same longevity category (9-10 yrs) as the shortest-lived small breeds (Japanese Chin, Pomeranian, and Manchester Terrier). 

The three shortest-lived breeds do not fall in the largest weight group. The shortest-lived breed is the Dogue de Bordeaux (average life span of 5.3 yrs), which typically weighs 80-100 lbs.  In the 6-7 yr longevity category are the expected large dogs (Bloodhound, Irish Wolfhound, Greater Swiss Mountain Dog, Great Dane, and Mastiff), but there are also the Miniature Bull Terrier (in the 20-40 lb group), Bulldog, and Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever (both in the 40-60 lb group).

The 20-40 lb group and the 40-60 lb group have very similar distributions across longevity categories.    

 

Table of weight and longevities

This table contains the data used to create the chart above. The data in the table are split into more weight groups than the chart.

Breed longevities are derived from the averages of the available surveys for each breed, weighted by the sample size of the individual surveys.  Only breeds with a total sample size of greater than 20 are included.  For the survey data and sample sizes for each breed, see the Breed Data page.  Most breed names have been abbreviated in the interest of making a more compact table.  Hopefully, the abbreviations are self-explanatory.

Note that these data are the questionnaire averages, weighted by sample size.  For some breeds, longevity was considerably greater in some countries than in others, so the average longevity may not represent the breed in a particular country.  Manchester Terriers, for example, lived an average of 12.8 yr in the UK (based on a survey with a small sample size of 32) and 8.3 yr in the USA/Canada survey (based on a survey with a larger sample size of 110), giving a mean longevity of 9.3 yr (closer to the USA/Canada longevity because of the weighting by sample size).

 

5-6 yr

6-7 yr

7-8 yr

8-9 yr

9-10 yr

10-11 yr

11-12 yr

12-13 yr

13-14 yr

14-15 yr

Total

< 10 lb

 

 

 

 

Jap Chin

Pom

 

Affenpin

Lanc Heel

Maltese

Yorky

Papillon

Toy Pood

8

10-20 lb

 

 

 

 

Man Ter

Eng T Sp

Ital Grey

Norf Ter

Aus Ter

CKC Sp

Ger Spitz

Min Schn

Pekingese

Pug

Bichon Fr

Brus Grif

WHWTer

Cairn Ter

Fox Ter

Lha Apso

Norw Ter

Russ Ter

Schip

Shih Tzu

Bord Ter

Min Dach

Min Pood

Tib Span

24

20-30 lb

 

Min BTer

 

 

Fr Bull

Wh Dach

A Cocker

Bost Ter

Scot Ter

Fin Spitz

Skye Ter

Sh Dach

DD Ter

PW Corgi

Sheltie

Tib Ter

Whippet

Basenji

 

15

30-40 lb

 

 

 

 

K Blu Ter

 

E Cocker

S Munster

Beagle

Brittany

CW Corgi

Keeshond

Whea Ter

Staf BTer

 

 

9

40-50 lb

 

Bulldog

NSD Toll

 

 

Field Spa

Pol  Shep

Ssx Span

BG Vend

Bord Coll

E Spring

Saluki

Sib Husk

W Spring

 

 

11

50-60 lb

 

 

 

 

Chow

Ir Wat Sp

Bull Ter

Ger WhP

Af Hound

Aire Ter

Dalm

Ger ShP

Gor Setter

Stan Pood

Aust Shep

Samoyed

Bea Coll

 

13

60-70 lb

 

 

 

 

Chessue

Fc Ret

Greyh

Boxer

G Schn

Basset H

Collies

En Setter

Ger Pinsc

IRW Sett

Ir Setter

L Munst

Bel Shep

Eng Point

Gold Ret

Lab Ret

 

 

16

70-80 lb

 

 

 

 

Ital Spin

Cl Span

Doberm

Weim

 

 

 

 

4

80-100 lb

D Bordx

 

Bern Mtn

Sc Deer

Borzoi

Ger Shep

Akita

Bouvier

Cur Ret

Otterh

Briard

OE Shep

 

 

 

11

100-120 lb

 

Bloodh

Ir Wolfh

GSw Mtn

Bullmast

Leonber

 

Rottweil

Ana Shep

 

 

 

 

7

> 120 lb

 

Gr Dane

Mastiff

St. Bern

 

Newfndl

 

 

 

 

 

4

Total

1

8

4

1

17

19

29

28

10

5

122

 

 

 

 

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