Playful puppies (c) Abigail Ford

A researcher at LJMU has helped reveal that certain dog breeds are more likely to have a shorter life span than others.

Brachycephalic (flat-faced) dogs such as pugs have a 40% increased risk of living shorter lives than typical-faced dogs – and larger dogs are at a 20% risk of a shorter life.

Animal welfare charity Dogs Trust and experts at Liverpool John Moores University conducted the research on which dogs live the longest.

The longest-living breeds were found to be Lancashire Heelers at 15.4 years, Tibetan Spaniels at 15.2 years and Miniature Dachshunds at 14 years.

Dr Jon Bielby. LJMU School of Biological and Environmental Sciences (c) LJMU
Dr Jon Bielby. LJMU School of Biological and Environmental Sciences (c) LJMU

Dr Jon Bielby, an expert in animal welfare and conservation at LJMU’s School of Biological and Environmental Sciences, told MerseyNewsLive: “Having a dog can be a wonderful thing, but it is a big commitment.

“If you are thinking of buying a dog, think about it really carefully – and then think about it again really carefully after a period of time.

“People have a really strong idea of what they want but sometimes that demand can drive some really unhealthy breeding practices. That might be something we need to think about in terms of legislation.”

Do you have Merseyside’s oldest pet? Let us know!

According to a national Dogs Trust survey, smooth-haired miniature dachshunds are becoming more popular but Labradors remain the nation’s favourite single breed and happily live longer than the average breed’s life.

The dog longevity study used data from half a million dogs across more than 150 breeds and crossbreeds, showing which dogs are more likely to be at risk of a shorter lifespan.

Dr Bielby said: “Within each breed some would’ve had a longer life and some would have had shorter – maybe that is related to diseases or illnesses specific to the breeds.”

People are urged to research deeply into their pets before taking them on to make sure they receive the right conditions to live a happy and healthy long life.

Featured image (c) Abigail Ford


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