These Dog Breeds Have The Most Impressive Lifespans

The one downside of being a dog owner is knowing that you may outlive your beloved companion. Fortunately, many breeds can live well over a decade. Though the American Kennel Club and other experts acknowledge the link between body mass and longevity in dogs, there are plenty of exceptions to this rule. For instance, the Shiba Inu and the Belgian Malinois are sizable dogs with life expectancies of 16 years! You’ll be amazed at the variety of breeds that boast impressive lifespans.

Poodles Have A Healthy History

Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images
Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images

Poodles are well-known for their active intelligence and posh looks, but that’s not the only thing that makes this breed so prized. According to the American Kennel Club (AKC), these graceful canines are expected to live up to 18 years!

Regardless of standard, miniature, or toy, Poodles generally live healthy lives, especially since there are many responsible breeders. They are also a popular choice for cross-breeding, so Poodle mixes may have long lifespans, as well.

Australian Cattle Dogs Live Long With Enough Exercise

australian-cattle-dog
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Education Images/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Australian Cattle Dogs are pleasant companions but are also bursting with energy. Related to the Dingo, these muscular canines need a lot of activity to remain happy and healthy. So long as their needs are met, you can expect to have these powerful dogs for upwards of 16 years!

AKC warns that playtime in the yard isn’t enough for these eager companions. They love to have a job and would do well as a running partner or as a participant in dog sports.

Chihuahuas Easily Get All The Exercise They Need

Matthias Rietschel/Getty Images
Matthias Rietschel/Getty Images

Chihuahuas are naturally itty bitty, weighing in at no more than six pounds! One benefit of their tiny physique is that they can get all the exercise they need in small spaces and only need short, slow walks.

According to the AKC, Chihuahuas typically live upwards of 16 years and the majority of them are healthy. Breeders should screen them for genetic issues like heart and eye problems. Owners should watch their Chihuahua’s diet closely since it doesn’t take much for these little companions to become overweight.

Shih Tzus Can Grow Up With Your Kids!

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Hermes Images/AGF/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Like Poodles, Shih Tzus have a life expectancy of up to 18 years! And like Chihuahuas, they only require short walks outside due to their tiny size. The AKC even goes so far as to say that the Shih Tzu was “bred to be a house companion.”

While these pups won’t make for an ideal hiking companion, they do have an outgoing personality that will make them the life of the party. These charmers are also great with kids and can live through an entire human childhood.

Dachshunds Live Long If They Stay In Shape

dachshund
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Matt Cardy/Getty Images

Dachshunds may stand at a mere five to nine inches tall, but their personalities are huge just the same. According to the AKC, these energetic pets are game for any activity that their long, stout bodies will allow.

Due to their physique, it’s important that Dachshunds get enough exercise to keep their back strong enough to support their thick body. For the same reason, their weight needs to be watched closely. With a responsible owner, these dogs can be expected to live up to 16 years.

Schnauzers Are Versatile And Healthy

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todabasura/Pixabay

Schnauzers are a versatile breed in that they come in miniature, standard, and giant. The standard breed has the highest life expectancy at upwards of 16 years, but the other two sizes fall just behind at 15 years.

Regardless of their size, these spirited companions love sports and are agile players. They also love company and are both social and protective of their loved ones. The AKC notes that Schnauzers are regarded as a particularly healthy breed, so a loving and attentive owner shouldn’t have much to worry about.

Shiba Inus Have Little More Than Allergies To Worry About

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Agency-Animal-Picture/Getty Images

Shiba Inus are equal parts precious and regal. The Japanese breed looks like a cross between a fox and a teddy bear, and the same could be said about their personality. The good-natured dogs are also active and love a good adventure.

Shibas aren’t the most hyper dogs, but they do need a fair amount of exercise to stay healthy. The AKC notes that Shibas are known to have allergies, but with the right approach, this shouldn’t be detrimental to their health. You can expect these canines to live upwards of 16 years.

Pomeranians Live Long With Proper Protection

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Wolfgang Kaehler/LightRocket via Getty Images

Pomeranians are essentially the fluffball version of the Chihuahua. They only weigh three to seven pounds and don’t need much to get enough exercise. That being said, Poms love outdoor play, but a watchful eye is vital since they are highly vulnerable to predatory birds.

Though these lapdogs need protection, they are generally healthy little companions and have a life expectancy of up to 16 years. Between their looks, personality, and health, it’s no wonder Poms are among the most popular toy breeds in the world, according to the AKC.

Australian Shepherds Are Naturally Fit

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Marka/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Australian Shepherds are as hardworking as they are gorgeous. Their impulse to work combined with their intelligence can make them a challenge for inexperienced dog owners. Aussies are bursting with energy, so the AKC recommends, at minimum, an hour of running around outside each day.

So long as their exercise needs are met, you can expect an Australian Shepherd to live for 15 years. These robust dogs are generally a healthy breed with a mentality that keeps them effortlessly in shape.

Havanese Do Best With A Sedentary Lifestyle

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Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

Havanese dogs are easily recognizable by their long, wispy locks and outgoing personality. Weighing only seven to 13 pounds, these tiny canines are popular among city dwellers as they need little more activity than playing around the house.

The AKC reports that Havanese are generally healthy, but can be prone to certain conditions and thus require a responsible breeder. Contrary to athletic dogs, Havanese dogs can easily become overworked. With the right care, you can expect this breed to live upwards of 16 years.

Whippets Have Greater Longevity When Lean

whippet
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Arterra/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

Whippets’ long and sleek physique makes them agile and quick when active, but their calm spirit makes them just as gentle as they are playful. They stand at no more than 22 inches and are rather lean, weighing in at 25-40 pounds.

These agile sprinters do require regular exercise, but they don’t mind being a couch potato once they’ve let that energy out. As skinny as the dogs may look, the AKC warns that the breed’s “frame is not well suited to carrying excessive weight.” With the proper care, Whippets have a life expectancy of up to 15 years.

Cairn Terriers Live Long With Daily Outtings

cairn-terrier
hazelw90/Pixabay
hazelw90/Pixabay

Cairn Terriers are fearless, curious little dogs with a cheerful attitude that makes them wonderful companions. Though they only weigh about 14 pounds, their need for adventure requires a couple of daily outings, especially when living in apartments.

Cairns love human interaction and are just as much lap dogs as they are explorers. The alert little dogs can be easily distracted, but are also intelligent and eager to please. This breed is generally a healthy one and their life expectancy is up to 15 years.

Belgian Malinois Have Exceptional Longevity For A Large Dog

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Arterra/Universal Images Group via Getty Images

The AKC states that, though scientists have yet to understand why, dog size does tend to impact longevity. Belgian Malinois are one example of an exception to this rule. Though they weigh upwards of 80 pounds, they have a life expectancy of 14 to 16 years!

The confident and loyal Belgian Malinois loves to put their muscular build to good use, especially alongside their owner. The key to a healthy Mal is lots of exercise and attention.

Bergamascos Have Protective Fur And Good Genes

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Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images

Bergamascos may be mopheads, but they also are one of the most low-maintenance, easy-going breeds around. Their thick cords of hair are actually an asset, acting as a shield from the cold or attackers.

Combine that with their generally healthy genes, and it’s no wonder these dogs can live upwards of 15 years. Comfortable with other animals and children alike, these social dogs live to please. Though they love to work, they have a calm demeanor and only require moderate exercise.

Azawakhs Need Little More Than Daily Playtime

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JIM WATSON/AFP via Getty Images

Azawakhs look like a larger version of a Whippet on account of their long snouts and S-shaped bodies. They, too, have a high life expectancy, living upwards of 15 years. This African breed is a sighthound, meaning it has impeccable vision and sprints like no other.

Given their athletic abilities, it’s no surprise that these dogs make for wonderful running companions. However, they aren’t as energetic as some breeds and will do fine with daily play; the AKC does warn that they won’t self-exercise, so you’ll need to simulate them with a game or fellow canines.

Canaan Dogs Are Alert And Adaptive

Nicolas Brulliard for the Washington Post/Getty Images
Nicolas Brulliard for the Washington Post/Getty Images

Canaan Dogs are medium-sized canines that remain on-guard when it comes to protecting their family. Both territorial and tireless, these dogs make for wonderful adventure companions. They don’t demand the exercise needs of some breeds, and can therefore adapt to various living situations given enough daily outings.

Since Canaan Dogs tend to be wary around other humans and animals, it’s important to socialize them early on and to be mindful of their sensitive nature. With the right support, you can expect this loyal breed to remain by your side for as many as 15 years.

Border Collies Live Long With Vigorous Exercise

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Patrick Pleul/picture alliance via Getty Images

Border Collies are beautiful dogs with the mindset of an athlete. Bursting with energy and bound to their work, these canines need an owner who can act like their coach each and every day. Their hardy minds and bodies explain their impressive 15-year life expectancy.

An alternative to coaching a Border Collie is to work with one. The AKC deems the eager breed a “workaholic” for a reason, as they love being of use to their owner. The affectionate companions will curl up with you at night, but not until they’ve worn themselves out.

Bichon Frise Are Active For Non-Athletes

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Helen H. Richardson/The Denver Post via Getty Images

The Afro-like fur of the Bichon Frise serves to emphasize the enthusiastic, peppy attitude of this little cheerleader. The AKC calls this breed a “canine comedian” on account of their big personality and social demeanor.

Weighing in at less than 20 pounds, these bundles of joy will have arbitrary bursts of energy at which point they’ll sprint all over the house or yard. Though they aren’t athletes, they need daily walks and playtime to stay active and reach their 15-year life expectancy.

Beagles Live Long With Exercise And Restraint

Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images
Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images

Beagles are darling dogs who, if you can handle their howling, make for wonderful companions. The easygoing canines will maintain their amiable attitudes so long as they have their exercise needs met and are surrounded by others as often as possible.

Their strong hunting instinct combined with their habit for tunneling makes it vital that you keep a watchful eye on these escape artists. So long as you keep them happy and close, you can expect to have these adorable companions for upwards of 15 years.

Siberian Huskies Do Best With A Careful Diet

siberian-husky
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Mustafa Hatipoglu/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

Siberian Huskies have a beautiful build and a strong work ethic that makes them naturally active. Additionally, they are pack dogs who adore the company of others, dogs and humans alike. As such, they do best with plenty of exercise alongside other dogs or their owner.

The AKC calls Siberian Huskies a relatively healthy breed and pegs their life expectancy at upwards of 14 years. They also note that Siberians require a specific amount of protein for their skin and coat, and their diet may need to be adjusted depending on the season and their exercise level.