longest living large dog breeds

Longest Living Large Dog Breeds

All devoted dog parents want their four-legged companions to live the longest lives possible.

Unfortunately, notoriously large dogs have shorter lifespans than smaller ones.

The good news is that there are some large dog breeds that have a higher life expectancy than others.

Here are the top longest-living large dog breeds. Also included are the key factors which can prolong your pup’s lifespan.

The Longest Living Large Dog Breeds

While the lifespan of every individual pup can be affected by a number of different factors, there are statistics for the average expectancy of the various dog breeds.

Here are the large dog breeds with the longest life expectancies.

Alaskan Malamute

These beautiful large sled dogs have a life expectancy of 15 years and more. Given the fact that these pups can reach a height of 23-25 inches and a weight of 90 lbs. this is a very long lifetime.

The strong Alaskan Malamute is generally a very healthy dog. Still, it does need proper training, socializing, a complete, balanced diet, and enough exercise to stay healthy and well for longer.

It has high energy needs, so the breed is more suitable for active owners.

The Malamute can become destructive when left alone for long or without enough mental and physical exercise.

Keep in mind that the dogs from this breed are not the easiest to train, so they need a firm and confident trainer.

They are excellent family dogs and are good with children. However, the Alaskan Malamute may not do well with smaller animals in the house.

American Alsatian

The American Alsatian is an impressive large dog that was bred to resemble a wild wolf. However, it is a companion dog and is extremely loyal and friendly to its family, including the kids.

American Alsatians weigh a minimum of 90 lbs. and have an average lifespan of 14 years.

They are laid back and easy to train with positive reinforcement like treats and praises.

Despite their large size and powerful bodies, the dogs from this breed do not have such high energy levels as other big pups.

In fact, your American Alsatian can live happily with two 30-minute walks a day and spend the rest of the day hanging around at home or leisurely strolling in the backyard with you.

Remember that these dogs are large and like to wander around, so they are more suitable for people with larger houses or backyards than owners of small apartments.

Australian Cattle Dog

The oldest dog in history, according to the existing records, was a pup named Bluey, who was an Australian Cattle Dog. Bluey actively worked until the age of 20 and passed away at the age of 29 years and five months!

While not all dogs of this breed will be as lucky as Bluey, the Australian Cattle Dogs do have a longer life expectancy of 12-15 years and more.

These Australian pups are powerful and energetic, so they require vigorous exercise on a daily basis. Otherwise, these big and robust dogs can become bored and destroy your furniture and home.

The dogs from this breed like the outdoors and prefer living in homes with backyards rather than in tiny apartments.

They are herding pups and may try to herd small children, so Australian Cattle Dogs are not suitable for families with toddlers and young kids. They herd through biting, so this behavior needs to be nipped to the bud from an early age.

Doberman Pinscher

They may look like fierce guard dogs, but Dobies can be very loyal and well-behaved family dogs if bred to be friendly and then socialized and trained in a timely and proper manner.

They are incredibly smart and hardworking and are among the best individual guards of all dog breeds.

Please choose a reputable breeder if you are looking for a family dog that has the aggressiveness outbred and comes from healthy parents without genetic diseases such as Willebrand’s, Wobblers, Hip dysplasia, and others.

If healthy and cared for properly, a Doberman has an average lifespan of 13-14 years.

Standard Poodle

These lovely and elegant dogs can get pretty big at a height of 22 inches and a weight of 75 lbs.

They are highly intelligent and athletic pups that are excellent family dogs and companions and have an average life expectancy of 14-15 years and more. They learn fast and are very good at agility and other dog sports.

The Standard Poodle does require regular clipping and grooming to keep that beautiful coat healthy and clean. At the same time, the Poodle sheds very little, which is why it is preferred by allergic people and owners who don’t want to deal with hair everywhere.

The dogs from this intelligent breed can be rather shy, which is why early socializing is essential. They do not do well in homes with loud small children and other noises. When they get upset, the Poodles often can develop digestive problems.

Anatolian Shepherd

These giant dogs originating from Turkey are not suitable for every owner. They can weigh up to 150 lbs. and are powerful and dangerous herding and guard dogs. In Africa, dogs of this giant breed are even used to protect sheep from cheetahs.

But unlike other dogs of this size, the Anatolian Shepherds have a life expectancy of 11 and more years, which is quite unusual.

They are strong and healthy canines, with hip dysplasia being among the few potential health issues.

Giant Schnauzer

Giant Schnauzers have an average lifespan of 10-12 years and more, even though they are among the larger dog breeds.

They are smart and loving with their families but can be suspicious and even prone to aggression towards strangers. Males can be aggressive to other male dogs and cats, so the Giant Schnauzer is a good option if it is going to be the only pet in your household.

You will need to socialize and train your pup from a very early age. But due to their intelligence, independence, and boldness, they can be a handful for an inexperienced or timid owner.

Giant Schnauzers require regular grooming and trimming, as well as a lot of vigorous daily exercise to stay happy and well.

Chow Chow

This is one of the most recognizable and among the oldest dog breeds in the world. The Chow Chows are medium-sized furbabies weighing about 70 lbs, and they often look bigger due to their lion’s manes and furry coats.

They have a life expectancy of 12-15 years and are generally very healthy pups with little maintenance needs.

The dogs from this ancient Chinese breed are independent and strong and have protective instincts, so they need firm and consistent training by an experienced owner to prevent them from becoming aggressive toward other animals or people.

The Chow Chow is not the best choice if you have small children or if you do not have experience in training large dogs.

A pup from this breed needs long daily walks and will feel better if you have an outdoor space where it can roam and stroll around.

Belgian Malinois

The Belgian Malinois is a highly intelligent and hardworking dog, which is why it is often used for police, military, and other work.

But it can be an excellent family companion dog if it has been trained and socialized correctly from an early age. The Malinois can live happily alongside children, but preferably if they have been raised together.

It is a very energetic and smart dog, so you will need to be ready to provide it with extensive physical and mental stimulation and exercise or a job to do every day.

The life expectancy of the pups from this Belgian breed is 12 or more years.

Irish Setter

Irish Setters are highly energetic and active dogs who can get destructive if they don’t get enough exercise.

They tend to have a very long puppyhood of up to 2-3 years of age, so be prepared to handle their playfulness and high energy and train and socialize them in a firm but kind and consistent manner.

Although they learn fast, Irish Setters can be stubborn and will remember any incidents which involve you telling them off.

The average lifespan of the pups of this breed is 13 years or more.


The Collie can reach the age of 12 and even 17 and more years. This loyal and intelligent dog breed is an excellent choice for a family companion. Collies love kids and are suitable for owners and families who prefer the outdoors and like sports and other activities.

They learn quickly and are very smart.

Please note that Collies require a lot of exercise and attention and are prone to separation anxiety.

With the proper training, Collies can become excellent service and even search and rescue and guard dogs.

Mixed Dog Breeds

A large mixed dog breed is more likely to live longer than purebred pups of the same size. This is because the limited gene pools can often lead to genetic issues and health problems in purebred dogs.

Mixed breeds have larger genetic pools, so this is not such a common concern.

If you have adopted a sizeable mixed-breed pup and take good care of it, your furbaby may live a long and happy life of 12-17 and even more years.

How Can I Prolong The Lifespan Of My Large Dog?

No matter what the average life expectancy of your pup’s breed is, it is essential to ensure that you take proper care of it if you want to ensure it has a long life.

This means keeping it safe, adequately fed, groomed, exercised, and cared for at all times.

Here are the key factors which can help your large pup live as long and as well as possible.

A Suitable Complete, And Balanced Diet

Feeding your four-legged companion with the best appropriate dog food for its age, size, activity level, and health is the key factor to keeping it alive and well for as long as possible.

Your pup needs enough nutrients in the right amounts in order to stay healthy and for its organs and body to function properly.

There are age-appropriate dog foods for young puppies, adults, and seniors, formulated for their specific needs.

There are also dog foods for pups of different breeds, sizes, and activity levels or for dogs with health issues.

Obesity is the number one enemy for canines and can shorten your pup’s lifespan by two years and more.

Regular Veterinary Checkups And Care

As a dog parent, please don’t wait until your dog gets sick before taking it to the vet. Instead, find a veterinarian you trust and ensure that your furbaby gets regular checkups and the preventative care it needs to stay healthy and well.

Ensure it receives all vaccines, tick and other parasite prevention, and other preventative tests and medications in time, and neuter or spay your pet.

The earlier a potential health issue is diagnosed, the better the chances for early treatment and full recovery.

Ensure A Safe Environment For Your Pup

Your dog needs shelter, safety, and comfortable living conditions to stay healthy and happy. Make sure to puppy-proof your home from any potentially dangerous chemicals, poisonous foods, and other hazardous items.

If you have a backyard, make sure that it is adequately fenced in order to keep your four-legged companion safely confined and away from potential accidents.

Ensure Its Well-Being With Ample Exercise

Even the lowest-energy dogs need daily exercise to stay healthy and well. Dogs need both physical and mental stimulation to live and feel well and long.

They need to be socialized and trained so that they are not anxious or stressed out, which too can shorten their lifespans.

Provide Proper Grooming And Maintenance

Your furbaby will live a healthier and longer life if you take proper care of its hygiene. This means keeping its coat, ears, and teeth clean.

Studies show that good dental hygiene can have the most significant impact on the longevity of canines.

Neuter Or Spay Your Pup

Spaying and neutering are not only performed to prevent unwanted reproduction but it has also been proven to increase the longevity of the animals.

Gonadectomy can increase the lifespan of a dog by up to a year and prevent the development of cancers.

Choose A Reputable Breeder

Genetics plays an essential part in the dog’s health and longevity. So, make sure to get your dog from reliable breeders who keep their dogs healthy and tested to ensure that it has a low risk of inheriting any genetic and other health issues.

Why Do Large Dogs Have Shorter Lives than Smaller Ones?

Studies show that the reason for this phenomenon is the growth rate difference between dogs of different sizes. A faster and more accelerated growth which allows a large breed puppy to grow into a full-sized big or giant dog, can lead to age-related issues earlier on and to speedier aging and cell mutations.

Smaller pups grow and age slower, so these age-related health issues usually appear much later in their lives.


Which are the longest-living large dog breeds?

The longest-living large dog breed is the Alaskan Malamute which has an average lifespan of 16 and more.

What is the average lifespan of a large pup?

This depends on the breed and health, and lifestyle of the dog, but the average expected lifespan of a large-sized dog is about 8 to 12 years.

Is it possible for a dog to live for 20 years?

There are cases when dogs have lived for 20 and more years, but they are pretty rare. The oldest documented dog was an Australian Cattle Dog, Bluey, who lived to the age of 29 years and five months. Butch the Beagle lived to the age of 20.

Final Words

Hopefully, we have helped you select the best large dog for you and your family. But even the top purebred dogs are not guaranteed to live as long as their average lifespan is.

It is more important to provide your four-legged companion with the safety, care, diet, love, and attention it needs if you want it to live for as long as possible!

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