January 18, 2012 by  
Filed under Natural Animal Health, Uncategorized

Over the years that I’ve been helping pet owners improve their dogs health, I have found there can be many factors that determine how long a dog lives and what quality of life they have.

In my experience, dogs that have been fed a healthy natural diet; have been kept within a normal weight; get taken for regular walks; are not exposed to excessive toxins and are given good-quality nutrient supplements are usually the dogs that experience long, healthy and happy lives.

It’s pretty much the same when it comes to human health – good ‘real’ food; regular exercise; quality nutrient supplements to boost the immune system and avoiding, or at least reducing, toxin exposure. Of course, genetics can play a large role in determining dog longevity too, but even when dogs don’t possess ideal genes, there are still ways to help improve their body’s healing mechanisms to give them the best chance at a long and high-quality life.

Read on to find out which dog breeds hold the record so far for longevity……

The following article was written by Ann Hohenhaus, DVM, DACVIM (Web MD, 4.1.12):


“A couple of weeks before Christmas, the world’s oldest dog – as certified by the Guinness Book of Records – died in Japan. Pusuke was reported to be 26 years and nine months old. Based on the photograph below, he looked like a typical Japanese dog and also looked pretty darn good for a serious senior citizen dog. Twenty-six years is really an achievement, because only about 8% of dogs live past the age of 15. If you do the math and one calendar year equals seven dog years, that made Pusuke 182 years old by human standards.

Can a dog really be 182 years old?

Common sense tells us this is not possible and yet everyone has heard that one human year equals seven years for a dog. So how old was Pusuke really? Based on gerontology research, my best guess is between 100 and 110 years old.

The relationship between chronological and physiological age in dogs is not linear. Young dogs age rapidly at first and then the rate of aging slows down in middle age before increasing again in geriatric dogs. For example, a Miniature Poodle at one year of age is about 11 human years old; at seven years, it is middle aged at 42 human years, and 14 years old is 67 human years. Great Danes, who have a shorter lifespan than Miniature Poodles, at one year of age are 27 human years, at seven years are 59 human years and by 14 years are 98 human years.

Which dogs live the longest?

Longevity in dogs depends on multiple factors. Two important ones are breed and body weight. Owners of small dogs will be happy to learn that the smaller the dog, the longer they live. This inverse relationship of body weight and longevity is one of the unique features of dogs since the converse is true for other mammals. Take for instance the largest mammal in the world, the blue whale,  which has a lifespan of 85 years, but the 1.8 gram Etruscan shrew has a lifespan of only three years.

Your dog’s breed will also affect her longevity. Overall, a mutt lives longer than a purebred dog with three notable exceptions. Miniature Poodles, Jack Russell Terriers and Whippets have been identified as purebred dogs with average lifespans longer than the average mutt. Breed also affects the diseases your purebred dog is prone to developing and will dictate some of the healthcare decisions you will make on behalf of your pet.

What about cats?

There is less information about how cat age relates to human age. Personally, the oldest cat I have ever seen was 23 years old. Siamese cats, in my opinion, live the longest. My sister’s Siamese cat, abandoned at The AMC as a kitten because of head trauma, lived to a ripe old age of 21, despite his handicaps. A study of longevity in Swedish cats enrolled in an insurance program found 68% of Birman cats were still alive at 12.5 years of age. Swedish Siamese cats did not fare as well with only 42% alive at 12.5 years of age.

Your veterinarian can help you keep your aging pet healthy though twice yearly checkups once your pet becomes a senior citizen. With a proper diet, weight management, environmental enrichment and treatment of geriatric conditions such as arthritis and periodontal disease, your pet can live healthy and well into its teens”.

Interesting Note:  The previous Guiness record holder for oldest dog was held by a 28-year-old Beagle from the U.S. who died in 2003 (animaltracks. Today.

Do you know of any dogs that lived longer than this?

Please consult a qualified animal naturopath for advice about nutritionally-balanced diets and naturopathic medicines for the treatment of animals. 

Yours In Great Health,

Sar Rooney BHSc., DC., ND., DASc., GDSc. (Hons) Zoology, MHATO, MATMS

Naturopathic Practitioner, Researcher, Lecturer, Canine Naturopath

Science-Based Naturopathy for Canine Wellbeing 


Canine naturopathic health care with a clinical focus on skin conditions, inflammatory bowel disorders, chronic infections, arthritis and disease prevention.

Helping dogs achieve optimal wellness with personalised, professional naturopathic health care and individually-prescribed high-quality herbal medicines and supplements 

Naturopathic Animal Services
E:   [email protected]


Appointments are available by email, phone & skype


Want to keep up to date on the latest in dog health? Join me on Facebook:


Disclaimer: The information provided is not intended to replace any veterinary or medical advice or treatment. 




Natural Animal Health for pets, specialising in natural health for dogs. Naturopathic dog therapy with a holistic approach to animal health may complement conventional vet treatments. We offer expert naturopathic advice for dogs from a qualified animal naturopath that specializes in natural dog health. We are based in South Australia's Adelaide Hills region but consult throughout Australia and internationally, with clients in South Australia, Queensland, Victoria, the ACT, NSW, the NT, Tasmania, Western Australia, New Zealand, the UK, the US and other countries throughout the world. While we specialise in dogs health problems and natural animal therapy we also treat people with naturopathic medicine and offer clinic services in natural health. Many clients have found natural animal therapy to be more effective or less invasive than conventional vet services. Our clients have a common interest in the health and wellbeing of their dog and are looking for natural preventative health programs and natural remedies for dogs such as herbal medicines and homeopathy that are often not offered by veterinary practices or veterinarian clinics in Australia and New Zealand. Canine natural pain relief and natural animal therapy for inflammation are common conditions that may benefit from naturopathic animal health treatments and holistic pet care.

The information on this website is copyright. All rights reserved world wide. None of the information on this website may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form, in whole or in part, or by any means, mechanical or electronic, including photocopying and recording, or by any information storage and retrieval system, or transmitted by email, without written permission from Sara Rooney.