Perhaps pet owners have a hundred reasons for choosing a large breed dog over smaller breeds and vice versa. We look for that feature and personality trait in our K9 friends that resonate with our personality and lifestyle.
For some, choosing a dog breed involves a lot of research to ensure we find that perfect match. Others late fate intervene and offer any dog companion shelter. And that’s a good thing.
Others prefer smaller or mixed breeds over purebreds because they tend to outlive their cousins. Regardless of our dog’s statistical life expectancy, they always leave us too soon.
Here are the top 11 big dogs that live the longest if you prefer large dog breeds.
1. Alaskan Malamute
Alaskan Malamutes are hard-working dogs that most of us associate with snow, sleds, and long trails through icy terrain.
Malamutes are physically tough dogs that weigh up to 100 pounds. They’re expert hunters with high energy levels, making them ideal for working sled dogs.
Friendly by nature, Alaskan Malamutes bond easily with people and aren’t prone to aggression if they get enough exercise to burn off steam.
Alaskan Malamutes need your companionship and daily exercise, or they might show their destructive side and leave their teeth marks on your belongings. Malamutes have a life expectancy of up to 15 years, which takes commitment.
2. Standard Poodle
Standard Poodles are brilliant and easily trainable dogs. Poodles have a long pedigree of winning people’s admiration with their classic continental haircut that distinguishes them from other breeds.
People may not realize that Standard Poodles can weigh up to 75 lbs and stand tall at 22 inches.
Shy and sensitive by nature, Standard Poodles are the perfect companion dogs for individuals or families. They adapt to training and respond to tasks with the skill of a competitive athlete.
Their low-allergen and low-shedding make them perfect home partners for people with sensitivities. Expect them to adore you for 14 to 15 years.
Many of us think of Lassie when we think of the Collie breed. However, several breeds fall into this class. They range from medium to large-sized dogs weighing up to 75 lbs.
Rough Collies, (Lassie) Border Collies, Welsh Sheepdogs, and Bearded Collies are famous for their herding skills. Highly intelligent and motivated to work and please, Collie breeds need to perform tasks.
Agile, playful, and energetic, Collies make wonderful additions to active families. Their superior intelligence makes them very trainable and responsive.
A Collie’s life expectancy ranges from 10 to 15 years on average.
4. Doberman Pinscher
Regal, loyal, intelligent, and fiercely protective are dominating traits that make the Doberman Pinscher an ideal guard and family dog.
Eager to learn, short-haired Doberman Pinschers are easy to train. They learn new tasks quickly. Their intelligence makes them perfect tactical dogs but also great family pets.
Television hasn’t done the Dobermans any favors. While their loyal spirit makes them aggressive toward invaders, they’re also loving, affectionate, and genuinely interested dogs. They have a keen sense of right and wrong.
Stats suggest they live between 10 to 15 years, and males can weigh up to 100 lbs and stand to 28” tall.
5. American Alsatians
If we’re talking about the big dogs that live the longest, we can’t forget the American Alsatian. At first glance, people might mistake the American Alsatian for a wolf breed. But looks can be deceiving.
The American Alsatians are gentle, diligent watchdogs with a docile streak toward children and other animals.
American Alsatians are perfect for active individuals that can commit the time to exercise these 90 lbs dogs. Grooming their double coat also requires persistence. Luckily, Alsatians are calm and dutiful.
Bred to mimic the now extinct Dire wolf, the American Alsatian is a cocktail containing the best of an Alaskan Malamute, German Shepherd, Mastiff, Pyrenees, Anatolian Sheepdog, and Irish Wolfhound. Their lifecycle is typically between 9 to 13 years.
6. Belgian Malinois
Belgian Malinois are similar in appearance to German Shepherds to the untrained eye with a few distinguishing characteristics. They share a strong intelligence, an instinct to guard, and a penchant to work and burn energy.
Belgian Malinois are perfect for families who can keep them occupied with tasks and mental stimulation. It’s also vital to allow them to burn off energy, or Malinoios will become rather resourceful and entertain themselves with your highly prized possessions.
Although their thick coat makes them look heavier, they average under 80 lbs and have a lifespan of up to 14 years.
7. Giant Schnauzer
It’s rare to see a Giant Schnauzer romping in the dog park. This up to 75 lbs breed is loyal and affectionate with its family. It can behave cautiously toward strangers.
This trait and their size make Giant Schnauzer intimidating dogs.
Easily groomed, Giant Schnauzers are intelligent, active dogs with requirements and tolerances that need to be respected.
A diligent exercise routine interspersed with tasks is crucial to keep Giant Schnauzers content. They can have a stubborn streak that makes training them challenging. Expect a well-cared for Schnauzer to have a happy, healthy life for 10 to 12 years.
8. Anatolian Shepherds
Before anyone ventures into pet parenthood with an Anatolian Shepherd puppy, it’s wise to check its parents’ lineage. Anatolian Shepherds can weigh up to 150 lbs, though the average is roughly 90 lbs.
Their ancestors were brave herd dogs that guarded precious livestock against wolves and bears in extreme conditions. Because of their ability to endure harsh climates, Anatolian Shepherds are revered guard dogs in Africa for defending against predatory feline attacks.
British studies suggest a lifespan of up to 11 years. Anatolian Shepherds can live past those numbers and up to 14 healthy and productive lives.
Working and herding dogs fare best in an environment that utilizes their talents. Always vet your breeder for common health conditions.
9. Mixed Breeds
The beauty of mixed breeds is they typically have a better constitution than their purebred cousins. While not all mixed breeds come from a reliable source, we shouldn’t rule them out as perfect companion and family dogs.
The average lifespan of mixed breeds is 14 years, and size and weight depend on their parent pedigree. In an ideal world, mixed breeds would come with papers, which is often highly unlikely. Mixed breed dogs with proper training and regular exercise make excellent dogs.
Working with a veterinary and trying to uncover the breed lineage beneath might give prospective pet parents an insight into turning these street breeds into loving, responsive dogs.
10. Chow Chow
Chow Chows are formidable all-purpose dogs. A healthy foundation allows them to live productive lives for 12 to 15 years.
These enormous teddy bears make great pets for individuals or families that spend several hours a day exercising these fiercely protective dogs. Despite their masses of fur, they’re super clean and odor-resistant.
Chows can be challenging to train for inexperienced owners. However, that didn’t stop notable owners like Einstein, Elvis Presley, Janet Jackson, Martha Stewart, and Georgia O’Keefe from being Chow owners.
Beneath their thick fur, expect to uncover a K9 that weighs 70 lbs and more.
11. Labrador Retriever
America’s favorite dog since 1991, the Lab is the penultimate of large dog breeds with a healthy lifespan of up to 10 to 12 years. Yellow and Black Labs might surpass a Chocolate Labs lifespan by a few years with a healthy diet.
Labs have become synonymous with the perfect family addition for many reasons. They’re docile, affectionate, and easy to train with little aggression.
Labs are a perfect fit for an active outdoor lifestyle, outstanding athletes, swimmers, and tolerant of others.
Weighing an average of 55 to 80 lbs, Labs are eager companions.
Large dogs have a reduced lifespan, which shouldn’t rule them out as loving and loyal companions. Pet owners of these 11 big dogs that live the longest can improve their dog’s lifespan in many ways.
Diet, environment, training, veterinary care, exercise, and a background check are essential tools to help you and your dog reach their maximum life expectancy.
Providing a safe and loving environment is non-negotiable.