Longevity

Discussion in 'Dogs - General Dog Chat' started by Catsi, Apr 28, 2013.

  1. Catsi

    Catsi New Member

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    Along the same theme as my other thread...

    Is longevity a key concern for you when choosing breeds?

    It is something that is really important to me and many breeds that I would consider owning have what is generally considered to be long life spans or at least not overly short life spans at any rate.

    I love this about Schipperkes, Mini Foxies, poodles etc.

    A lot of the 'bigger' breeds I love have an average of about 12-14 - staffords, labs, brittanys, standard poodles, whippets.

    I love Cavs - but the health problems and short life span are deal breakers unfortunately.

    Of course quality of life and health are big factors in that as well.
     
  2. Laurelin

    Laurelin I'm All Ears

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    Yes, it is one of my key concerns.

    I do realize you never know- trust me, we've lost 3 pups way too young. But I want to do what I can to stack the deck in my favor.

    I love that Summer is 9 and vibrant and active. Even compared to my shelties at 9, it's amazing how big a difference there is. I wonder how much is keeping her on good food and active and how much is just genetics and luck. I hope all my dogs are as healthy and sound as Summer is at her age. Her mom and grandma both made it to 16 and were very active up until 14/15.
     
  3. Catsi

    Catsi New Member

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    Yep, this is my thinking as well.

    I love that Grace (Stafford) is still going strong at 12. I feel that she has a lot of life in her yet. She is slowing down granted, but just in that she is sleeping a bit more. She still enjoys fetching, tugging, going for long walks, playing.

    I just think it would be very hard to have a dog that aged prematurely.

    It sounds like Summer has some really good genes behind her.
     
  4. milos_mommy

    milos_mommy Active Member

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    No, it's not...but I've also never had a dog that passed on young, and have always had breeds with high life expectancies. Maybe after trying it, it would be too hard to keep doing, IDK.

    I'm really interested in owning a few lower-expectancy breeds, particularly Bernese Mountain Dogs and Ridgebacks. I think if a breed is a really great match, getting to live with one for 10 years or even 8 years is going to be worth the sadness of losing them younger.
     
  5. Shai

    Shai & the Muttly Crew

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    Yes. Though I ended up in Flatcoats anyway. Mira and I have frequent chats about how she WILL channel her great-/grandparents and live into her teens like them.
     
  6. AdrianneIsabel

    AdrianneIsabel Glutton for Crazy

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    Probably but it's never been an active issue.
     
  7. SevenSins

    SevenSins APBTs & One Crazy Banana

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    Yes and no. I'm concerned with it, but I don't think it'll stop me from "eventually" getting certain breeds. One of my favorite breeds and one I've wanted for a very long time now is considered old at 6, and it is the health and subsequent longevity or lack thereof that has made me balk so far when I've had the opportunity to get a puppy I've liked.
     
  8. Laurelin

    Laurelin I'm All Ears

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    To me there is an ethical dilemma with the 'heartbreak breeds'. I know the proponents say quality over quantity but I want both. I want my dogs to live long, healthy lives. I could not in good conscience get a dog that is only expected to live 5-6 years. At 5-6 years old a dog should be at it's peak, not 'old for the breed'.

    In some of the breeds maybe with the right lines that are known for longevity with great breeders but even then...

    Nikki was old acting at 8. she ended up living to 12 but she was old acting from 8 onwards. She had health problems- CHF, arthritis, etc. It's just such a contrast compared to Summer at 8.
     
  9. Shai

    Shai & the Muttly Crew

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    For what's it's worth, there are two different kinds of short lifespans. There are breeds who are truly aged seniors with all the effects of old age early (say, Irish Wolfhounds, or even a dog like you Nikki who lived a long time but was "old" early) and there are breeds who tend to die young (like FCRs, with the 8-9 year life expectancy) but who are still acting very young. In the FCRs that live longer than average, they are often still working and loving their work when they are 10, 11, 12... The dog to which Mira is being bred still moved and acted like a 5-6 year old when he was 12. His son, who is currently 11, still bounds and retrieves and is pretty much in love with being alive. He was jumping head-high for his football when I visited last summer. A much-loved 11 year old (unrelated dog) placed top 40 at AKC nationals last year in the regular 20" class. Hunting dogs that age are fairly often still going out and hunting, even if they aren't working quite as long and hard as they did when they were younger (often because their people put a limit on how long they are allowed to work because the dogs don't know when to quit).

    I'm not saying one is more tragic than the other, but in addition to dying earlier/later, there is also aging earlier/later, and the two don't necessarily coincide.
     
  10. milos_mommy

    milos_mommy Active Member

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    I might also have a different opinion if I planned on buying breeder dogs instead of rescuing. The ethical dilemma isn't such a concern when it's unlikely you'll ever purchase a breeder pup.
     
  11. CaliTerp07

    CaliTerp07 New Member

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    Yes, it's a concern for me. I would never want a dog whose life expectancy was under 10 years. Unnecessary heartache for me!

    I'm always planning to have random shelter mutts, so I realize it's a crapshoot what genetics I get--obviously guaranteeing at least 15+ years isn't a high priority for me.
     
  12. Southpaw

    Southpaw orange iguanas.

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    I've never really thought about it to be honest. But the breeds that tend to have shorter lifespans aren't breeds that I'm interested in, anyway. I mean I suppose boxers can be a bit of a crap shoot, but since my experience has been positive (Molly lived to 12, my sister's boxer is almost 9 and healthy), I don't usually think of them as a short-lived breed.

    I don't know that it's something that would turn me away if I REALLY liked the breed in all other aspects. I don't really want my dog to live less than 10 years, but if they can be active and happy and have a good quality of life the whole time... it's not the end of the world. I wouldn't want them to be like, old and crippled by the time they're 5 though.
     
  13. Flyinsbt

    Flyinsbt New Member

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    Yes. I'd like to own one of the giant breeds some day, but I need to be sure of which I want before I do that, because I figure I'll only be able to put up with the heartbreak once.
     
  14. Moth

    Moth Mild and Slightly Nutty

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    It is something I take into consideration.

    I like the fact that it is not unusual for basenjis to live 16-17 years.

    That being said we got Menchi knowing that the average life expectancy in Shar Pei can be less than 10 years.

    I have had a dog die at age 5 from liver disease due to an inherited issue...this was in a breed that normally averages 13-14 years. You just never know...
     
  15. Greenmagick

    Greenmagick New Member

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    Not really an issue for me. Then again, my mom's dane was 15 when she passed.
     
  16. Sit Stay

    Sit Stay Not a Border Collie

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    I take it into consideration but it's not a big contributing factor, for the most part. As long as the breed doesn't have a super short life span and the average let's say ~12+, I'm happy. I would consider a shorter lived breed though.
     
  17. Lyzelle

    Lyzelle New Member

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    This. I know my heartbreak breeds, and I think "eventually" I'll probably still own them.

    On the other hand, it's hard to know for sure. I've seen a few Mastiffs live to 13, and Macie is BYB and had a ton of health issues before she even hit 2, including a slipped disc in her back, teeth issues, chronic tumors. We never expected her to live comfortably past 4. She aged fast...but she turned 9 this year and still romps in the backyard with the younger dogs. It's really hard to know for sure, but I like a general idea of what to expect. I just don't always make a for/against decision based off of it alone.
     
  18. JacksonsMom

    JacksonsMom Active Member

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    I mean, yes and no. I have a desire to own a mastiff one day. But it's pretty far far into the future. I know they're not always the healthiest, or longest lived, but I think I'd be willing to deal with that when the time comes to experience living with one of them.

    Then again, I could definitely change my mind in the future. My idea NOW is that once I'm settled, maybe have a family, etc, I'd love a giant breed, so that's with hopes that I'm one day married, maybe a child, own my own home, have a stable job, etc. In my late 30's, maybe early 40's, lol.

    At the point in my life now, I really like that terriers are often long-lived and remain healthy. I know there's always a chance that he won't be, but well, I don't want to think about that. I envision him being 14 (and me almost 33 :yikes:) and still wanting to be active with me. But, he's going to live forever, I just know it. ;)

    Jackson will be 5 this year and I can't imagine thinking he may only have 2-4 more years left. I feel like we've still... just begun, if that makes sense.
     
  19. Pops2

    Pops2 New Member

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    I'm more concerned with the quality of life I have with them than the quantity.
     
  20. Oko

    Oko Silence, peasants.

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    Yes, it's a big factor for me. I couldn't imagine having a dog that actually got old by the time it was 6-8. That's prime time to me. It's one of the many reasons I like border collies so much.
     

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