This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my disclosure policy.
I have loved all of my dogs and want to do the best for them, which is why I even started this blog. Our dogs won’t be with us our entire lives, but if the oldest dog lived to be 29.5 years old, I think we should all shoot for 20 years with our puppies.
The average lifespan of dogs is between 10 to 14 years, but they do have the potential to live much longer.
Breed type and genetics play a role there are many more factors involved in a dogs lifespan such as dietary, lifestyle and maintenance. We all need some maintenance and care, our pets are no exception.
Our choices for our pets help decide not only how long your dog will live, but the quality of his or her life.
There are easy things we can do to maintain a dogs’ health.
For example, maintaining dogs teeth, brushing and regular teeth cleanings can add four years to the average dog’s life.
Keeping our pets lean, can potentially hold off Degenerative joint disease.
Pets on a good quality restricted calorie diet can live an average of two years longer.
I’m sure that you’re like me and love them wholeheartedly so let’s look at all the ways we can help our pets live longer.
Exercise Helps Your Dog Live Longer
Just like with humans, its common sense and scientifically proven, dogs live longer by keeping them lean.
Exercise can prolong a dog’s life and lower stress. It helps keep the cardiovascular system in shape and keep your pet happy.
Can’t take your canine companion for a walk? Try getting a doggie treadmill.
Diet Helps Your Dog Live Longer
Dogs are our best friends. They won’t be upgraded or become outdated. They are our companions, workers and soul mates.
We know how to walk them, how to bathe them and even know when they are smiling. However, when it comes to feeding our pets we become baffled about how and what to feed them.
So what does a dog need to live a long healthy life?
Animal proteins have all the essential amino acids dogs need for a strong body, healthy coats, and good digestions. Just like us, dogs are what they eat. I’m a big believer in feeding human grade food to our pets.
Sometimes there’s just not enough time in the day to cook food for our pets. So, if you feed dry dog food, choose quality pet food with meat as the first ingredient.
Always research your brands of dog foods and labels. Avoid generic meats, sugar or excess sodium.
Feeding good food, you may spend a little more, but you’ll save it in veterinary bills down the road.
In a study in 2011, dogs who were fed 25% less lived a longer life than their heavier counterparts. Obese dogs can develop heart disease and joint problems, especially in their hindquarters.
- 3 Homemade Dog Food Recipes Vet Approved
- Couch Potato Dogs: 35 Least Active Dog Breeds for the Laid Back Dog Owner
- Train Your Dog to Come, Stay or Go To Bed, Every time.
- 17 Ways You Can Get Paid to Work With Dogs and Cats
Vaccines and Medications Help Your Dog Live Longer
Vaccination and Medications
As your dog gets older you may need to add some medications to keep your dog comfortable.
These are some of those that your pet will need as they get older. These help with joints as they get harder to move around.
Whatever medications your vet prescribes, you’ll want to understand the side effects of medications.
Don’t over vaccinate your pets. The most important vaccine is the rabies vaccine.
Vaccines are meant to protect our pets, but some animal scientist that feel we over vaccinate our pets. That some shots may be doing more harm than good. One vaccine given to cats has been known to cause cancer. There is a lot of concern and confusion over vaccines, so this is something you’ll want to discuss with your veterinarian.
Brushing Their Teeth help Your Dogs Live Longer
Brushing your pet’s teeth
Dental disease in pets is on the rise and easily preventable by brushing his or her teeth daily, just like a child. As with our mouths, gingivitis causes bacteria which can enter the bloodstream. This is a contributing factor to disease in dogs and causes organ failure.
Regular Nail Trimming Helps your Dogs Live Longer
Regularly trimming your dog’s nails. Long toenails can be painful for a dog’s paws. It affects their posture and the way they walk this causes stress and possible injuries.
Mental Stimulation Helps Your Dogs Live Longer
It’s important to continue training your dog even after they’ve learned the basics.
This helps to maintain and provide stimulation to prevent boredom. Dogs need a job. Keep them working.
Regular Doctors visits help your pets live longer
Regular Doctor’s visits
Keeping up with yearly exams with bloodwork can catch any potential problems and help prevent new or continuing illnesses.
Keeping a notebook about your pet can help your dog live a long and happy life.
Get a small dog – Small dogs are known to live longer than big dogs. Mixed breeds also tend to live longer than pure breeds.
Walking Helps a Dog Live Longer
20 minutes of daily walking is better than one long walk on the weekend. Walking a dog has health benefits for you and for your dog. Cardiovascular, healthy bones, low blood pressure, and decreased stress are benefits to walking 20 minutes a day.