Top 18 longest living dog breeds

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Written by Dr Andrew Miller MRCVSDr Andrew Miller MRCVS is an expert veterinary working in the field for over 10 years after graduating from Bristol University. Andy fact checks and writes for Pure Pet Food while also working as a full time veterinarian. - Our editorial process

The smaller breeds of dogs tend to live the longest. Yorkshire terriers, Chihuahuas, Dachshunds, Toy Poodles and Lhasa Apsos are the breeds who typically live the longest with these averaging a lifespan of up to 20 years. This is much higher than the average lifespan of a dog which is between 10 and 13 years.

Everyone has a favourite breed of dog, but there’s a lot of thinking that needs to go behind whether or not you get a specific type of dog, unfortunately, it’s not just which is the cutest. Dogs live on average for 10 to 13 years with this depreciating as the dog gets bigger. Smaller dogs generally live longer than larger dogs.

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Some of the longest living dogs have been known to live upwards of 20, even 25 years. To put that in perspective, 20 years old for a dog equates to 140 years old in dog years, which is an incredibly long lifespan (learn more about how to work out how old your dog is in human years here).

Today, let's find out what the top 18 longest living dog breeds are.


Big personality, small dogs, the Yorkshire Terriers are a favourite among dog owners for their cute and friendly demeanour.

These can develop stomach issues so make sure you’re feeding a high-quality healthy diet which will aid in prolonging their life.

Lively, curious and attention-seeking these dogs are great watchdogs and are a fun dog fur any family and can live anywhere between 16 and 20 years.

Breed stats

  • Height: 20-22.8cm

  • Weight: 1.8-3.2kg

  • Exercise needs: Moderate

  • Temperament: Loving, tenacious, plucky


Chihuahuas are known for being one of the longest living dog breeds and one of the smallest. You associate Chihuahuas with being carried around in the handbags of famous movie stars.

But these are cute, sassy and sweet dogs can be a little territorial within the house which could make these a little tricky for households with children in them.

These dogs don’t require much exercise and because of their size, could be prone to a few health problems. With proper care, these dogs can live for between 14 and 20 years.

Breed stats

  • Height: 15-25cm

  • Weight: 1.8kg-2.7kg

  • Exercise needs: Low

  • Temperament: Loving, protective, devoted


Dachshunds or sausage dogs, as they’re more affectionately named, are lively characters and the smallest member of the hound family.

Due to their sausage-like build, they can be prone to back injuries especially if they’re overweight; it’s key to feed a high-quality diet and make sure they don’t jump off high surfaces such as couches and beds.

A very playful, sometimes aggressive with strangers, devoted breed the Dachshunds can live for between 14 and 20 years.

Breed stats

  • Height: 13-23cm

  • Weight: 5-15kg

  • Exercise needs: Moderate

  • Temperament: Stubborn, clever, devoted

Toy Poodle

Just as smart and easy to train as their larger counterparts, the Toy Poodle doesn’t shed much making them perfect for families with allergy issues.

Great with kids, these dogs need plenty of physical and mental exercise. Their small size helps them live a little longer than you’d expect, managing to live for between 14 and 20 years.

Breed stats

  • Height: 24-28cm

  • Weight: 6.5-7.5kg

  • Exercise needs: High

  • Temperament: Intelligent, energetic, alert

Lhasa Apso

These slightly goofy looking, longhaired, bold dogs are sometimes stubborn but overall an easy dog to train. In ancient times it is believed these dogs helped keep watch over Buddhist temples.

They’re great for alerting you when intruders are present as they’re very loyal and loving to their owners and companions.

Lhasa Apsos are known to sometimes suffer from skin problems, but a great quality diet should reduce the risk of this and help them achieve their 14 – 20-year-old age range.

Breed stats

  • Height: 25-28cm

  • Weight: 5-8kg

  • Exercise needs: Moderate

  • Temperament: Playful, assertive, devoted


Papillions are dainty, friendly and affectionate who love attention and are filled with energy.

Originating from 17th century France this breed is known for its intelligence but is also prone to a couple of health issues including dental problems, low blood sugar and knee issues.

Again, a great way of making sure low blood sugar and dental problems are kept under control is by feeding a high-quality diet. You should also be looking to have regular vet visits to make sure there aren’t any dental issues developing and their knees are all in order. Papillions can live anywhere between 15 and 17 years.

Breed stats

  • Height: 20-28cm

  • Weight: 3.2-4.5kg

  • Exercise needs: Moderate

  • Temperament: Cheerful, clever, energetic

Toy Manchester Terrier

Lively, agile and loyal, the Toy Manchester Terrier was once bred to hunt rabbits and kill rats. These are the ideal family dog with their loving, loyal nature and small size.

They’re very smart and observant which makes them easy to train, but these are the kind of dog you don’t want to leave alone for extended periods of time.

Toy Manchester Terriers can become obese if they’re not active enough as they’re very energetic, they love exercise and, with a good quality diet, these dogs could live anywhere between 14 and 16 years.

Breed stats

  • Height: 25-30cm

  • Weight: 5-10kg

  • Exercise needs: High

  • Temperament: Devoted, keen, active


Curly-haired Cockapoos are one of the original ‘designer dogs’ as a crossbreed of a Cocker Spaniel and Poodle. They are intelligent, easily trained and have a big personality.

These highly affectionate dogs are great family dogs and are extremely active. Friendly to all and loyal to human companions, Cockapoos are known to follow you around the house no matter where you go.

An overall great breed that can consistently live between 12 and 18 years.

Breed stats

  • Height: 25-38cm

  • Weight: 6-11kg

  • Exercise needs: Moderate

  • Temperament: Friendly, loving, devoted


One of the older dog breeds around their name is believed to come from the French word ‘Bee gueule’ which translated means loudmouth.

These dogs are known for howling but also having a docile nature and an active lifestyle. With beautiful floppy ears, these dogs are ideal family dogs due to their size, temperament and sturdiness. They can be a little hard to train but they’re very friendly and love to sniff about on a walk.

The longest living beagle actually lived to a whopping 27 years old, he was named Butch. Typically, beagles live between 12 and 17 years.

Breed stats

  • Height: 33-41cm

  • Weight: 9-11kg

  • Exercise needs: High

  • Temperament: Amiable, clever, giddy


These little fluff balls are named after Pomerania (a region between Poland and Germany) and are small pups full of personality and very playful.

Part of the Spitz family, Pomeranians need plenty of stimulation such as walks and playing indoors and aren’t typically the best pets for families.

They are a fun breed who are very alert to changes in the surrounding and may bark often. Pomeranians usually live for between 12 and 16 years.

Breed stats

  • Height: 18-30cm

  • Weight: 1.4kg-3.2kg

  • Exercise needs: Low

  • Temperament: Curious, confident, sassy

Scottish collie

These medium to large herding dogs can vary quite a bit in appearance but are always sweet, loving, and great with children and other pets.

They’re a great family pet and they love to be around people and are very loyal and protective too. These herding dogs have been known to herd, or at least show herding behaviours, children and other pets.

Scottish Collies are known to live between 12 and 16 years old.

Breed stats

  • Height: 51-61cm

  • Weight: 18-29kg

  • Exercise needs: Moderate

  • Temperament: Intelligent, friendly, gentle

Shih Tzu

This ancient dog breed was kept as pets by Chinese royalty for centuries and their name literally translated from Chinese means lion.

Shih Tzus are lively, friendly and obedient dogs and aren’t as fierce as their translated name suggests. Easy to live with these dogs need minimal exercise and have luscious locks that need to be maintained with regular grooming.

As they get older these dogs may develop vision issues, but they tend to live between 10 and 16 years.

Breed stats

  • Height: 20-28cm

  • Weight: 4-8kg

  • Exercise needs: Low

  • Temperament: Friendly, affectionate, cheerful

Jack Russell

Originated in England this medium-sized dog is typically full of playful energy and are very clever, independent pooches. Sometimes difficult to train these traditional fox hunters are better suited to a more experienced owner.

It’s widely believed that their high energy levels are what keeps them young and prolongs their life, so if you don’t have huge amounts of room for them to run around this may not be the dog for you.

Jack Russells can be prone to ear and eye issues as they get older, so make sure you’re making regular trips to the vets. These dogs can live for between 10 and 16 years.

Breed stats

  • Height: 25-30cm

  • Weight: 6-8kg

  • Exercise needs: Moderate-High

  • Temperament: Lively, playful, stubborn


The Mediterranean Maltese are agile, playful and affectionate dogs who love to spend their time with humans.

Often used as therapy dogs these small dogs are very gentle but can be lively and fearless when called upon.

Historic breeds like the Maltese who have been mixed with similarly sized dogs like the Maltese are known to live longer too. Great with kids these super-smart dogs can live between 12 and 15 years.

Breed stats

  • Height: 20-25cm

  • Weight: 3-4kg

  • Exercise needs: Moderate

  • Temperament: Affectionate, gentle, confident

Miniature Schnauzer

Great family dogs, these extroverts love being around people and will often follow you around the house non-stop. Beaming with personality these dogs are super energetic and paw-fect around children.

These can be prone to pancreatitis which is usually caused by a diet that has too much fat in it or obesity, so make sure you’re feeding a high-quality diet to your miniature schnauzer.

These fun-loving pups could live between 12 and 15 years.

Breed stats

  • Height: 30-36cm

  • Weight: 5-9kg

  • Exercise needs: Moderate

  • Temperament: Intelligent, alert, friendly


One of the most popular breeds on the internet, pugs are an ancient Chinese breed who are always ready to play. They love to spend time with humans and, despite their smushed noses, live quite long lives.

Very loving and loyal these pups are amazing companions, especially to children.

This breed does have the risk of Pug Dog Encephalitis which is where the dog gets seizures as their brain becomes inflamed. Typically, pugs live between 12 and 15 years.

Breed stats

  • Height: 25-33cm

  • Weight: 6-8kg

  • Exercise needs: Low

  • Temperament: Cheerful, friendly, loving

Australian Shepherd

This large dog is historically a herding dog used for driving livestock and love being active and energetic.

The very intelligent dog can easily become bored but is very good-natured and are great for active families. They have been known to herd children but are very protective and affectionate.

Australian Shepherds live for between 12 and 15 years.

Breed stats

  • Height: 46-58cm

  • Weight: 16-30kg

  • Exercise needs: High

  • Temperament: Active, intelligent, friendly


Known as the Queen’s breed, the corgi is an affectionate, loyal and smart breed.

These dogs are thought to have existed for over 3,000 years and used to be used as cattle dogs. Great with kids these uniquely shaped dogs’ name actually means dwarf dog.

Their shape can mean they’re more prone to hip and back problems, so make sure you keep an eye on their walk or if they stop jumping suddenly.

Breed stats

  • Height: 25-32cm

  • Weight: 14-17kg

  • Exercise needs: Moderate

  • Temperament: Outgoing, loyal, playful