One of the worst things in life is the death of a beloved dog. Dogs are like family members to most people and the thought of losing them is hard to come to terms with. There are some things that you can do as a dog owner to help ensure your dog has a long, healthy life.
A common question people ask is, “How long do dogs live?” Well that depends on what breed/size dog you have. Smaller breeds tend to live longer than larger breeds. The smaller breeds typically live to around 15 years old, medium and large breeds tend to live to 10 to 13 years old, and giant breeds typically live to only about 7 or 8 years old. A common belief is that one human year equals seven dog years and that is how to convert dog years to human years. That is a common misconception and simply not accurate.
There are some things that you can do to help your dog stay healthy and possibly live longer. One of the things to monitor is their weight. Like humans, weight plays an important factor in the health of the dog. Fat around the organs can make them work harder. Also, excess weight can put more strain on joints which can result in problems like arthritis and tears in the joint tissues. It is important to make sure that your dog stays in a healthy weight range. To help your dog lose excess weight, look for a good dog food that is formulated to help dogs lose weight. There will be a feeding guide on the bag that will tell you how much to feed your dog for weight loss or weight maintenance. Measure your dog’s food out each day so that you know how much they are eating. Also, do not feed table scraps. Instead, buy some low fat dog treats and only give them to your dog for special circumstances. You can also give them certain vegetables for treats such as baby carrots. Daily exercise is also recommended to help with weight loss and heart health.
Another thing that can be done is to spay or neuter your dog. Spaying and neutering can help reduce the risk for some diseases that dogs that are intact are more prone to. Spaying a female dog helps to prevent health problems such as pyometra and mammary tumors. Neutering a male dog helps to prevent testicular cancer among other things. Also, unneutered male dogs tend to roam and this may cause them to get hit by a car, get lost or stolen, or get in a fight with another dog over a female that is in heat.
Finally, give your dogs their best chance at out-living the average for their breed by following these few tips. Help keep them strong and healthy so you can both enjoy a long life together.
2 thoughts on “How Long Do Dogs Live? What Can I Do To Help My Dog Live Longer?”
Better yet, ditch the kibble altogether and feed an appropriate, fresh food diet, either purchased or homemade. Do your research! Kibble is horrible “food” for our dogs. Also educate yourself about vaccinations and stop mindlessly re-vaccinating over and over. These two things are probably the most important choices you can make to extend your dogs life.
Yes. The part about not feeding table scraps is so true. Although your dog may get into food that you think he can’t have (like chocolate) and not get sick that day, every food that a dog eats that it shouldn’t have can shorten thier lifespan. I have a small dog die at nine years old and suffer greatly, due to table scraps and getting into chocolate.