German Shepherd Lifespan – Tips To Increase Life Expectancy

German Shepherd is an all-purpose working dog breed. And many dog lovers think this breed is the best of all dog types. This large and active dog possesses a muscular physique and a gentle personality. Their intelligence, courage, loyalty, and confidence make them every dog lover’s best friend. And obviously, your lovable friend’s lifespan will be a concern for you. It is because you want to know how long this lovely togetherness will exist. And this is why German Shepherd lifespan is a big concern for canine lovers worldwide.

Several reasons make German Shepherds excellent dogs, but the most prevalent cause is their lovable personality. They are not only loyal and courageous but also able to learn various commands. This gentle dog is a lovely family pet. And they can go to any extent while protecting their family.

With tons of excellent qualities, the German Shepherd is a beautiful large dog. They live for an average of 9-13 years like other large dog breeds. However, many factors can affect the lifespan of a German Shepherd. And it is essential to recognize these factors to extend the life expectancy of your dog.

German Shepherd is every dog lover’s favorite, and this loyal dog is a fantastic family companion. And you will want your beloved friend to be with you for a long time. So, here we have discussed the factors that affect German Shepherd lifespan. Also, we have suggested some crucial tips that will help increase the life expectancy of your furred companion. So, please read the post describing German Shepherd lifespan and what to do for their long life.

Factors Determining German Shepherd Lifespan

Factors Determining German Shepherd Lifespan

Unfortunately, dogs have a short lifespan, and they often leave us earlier than we expect. And in the case of a German Shepherd, a healthy lifespan is always a concern. This dog breed’s lifespan is shorter than other large dog breeds. And it varies depending on the dog’s origin and breeding.

The American Kennel Club (AKC) records the lifespan of the German Shepherd from only 7 to 10 years. And in other countries, the lifespan of this dog is 9 to 13 years. So a question arises, what makes this difference?

If American German Shepherds have a shorter lifespan, there must be some reasons behind it. And one probable reason is the breeding from dogs working in circus or dog shows. It causes sloped back that increases the risk of arthritis, hip dysplasia, and other back and joint problems in dogs.

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On the other hand, the German breeders conduct several tests to confirm the physical and mental fitness of the breeding dogs. So German Shepherds bred in Germany are healthier and have a longer lifespan than the American breed.

The 7-10 years of life expectancy of German Shepherds is a bit shorter than other large dogs’ lifespan. But actual lifetime depends on many factors like breeding, environment, health, care, and exercise. Also, a significant determining factor is the breeding procedure. Unhealthy breeding causes many life-shortening and threatening diseases that can shorten your dog’s life. Therefore, the below factors are crucial in determining German Shepherd lifespan.


German Shepherd health

German Shepherds are usually healthy dogs. However, responsible breeders should screen breeding stock to confirm their health conditions. It will save the new breed from spinal cord diseases, elbow and hip dysplasia, etc. In addition, German Shepherds may experience sudden bloat, which is a life-threatening swelling of the abdomen. So owners should know about this symptom and its immediate remedy to save the dog.


German Shepherd Grooming

The German Shepherds have a double coat with a thick, harsh outer skin and a softer inner coat. But they are easy to maintain and only require a quick brushing twice a week that helps remove loose hairs. But they shed profusely once or twice a year. And during this time, you need to brush more frequently. It will help control the shedding hair and keep your house clean off the dog furs. The German Shepherds are okay with an occasional bath, but it is important to trim their nails every month. It is because long nails can cause pain and systemic issues.


German shepherd Exercise

The German Shepherds are very active with an athletic physique. So they need an adequate amount of exercise for their physical and mental well-being. Without sufficient movement, your dog may become depressed and develop embarrassing behaviors. Therefore, a short daily walk is ideal when your dog is a small puppy. Also, you can invest in play sessions to delight your dog.

Additionally, you can take your dog to participate in canine activities such as agility, herding, tracking, etc. It will provide an excellent physical and mental workout for your dog. Also, it is fun and rewarding for both the dog and its master.


German Shepherd Nutrition

It is essential to feed your dog high-quality dog food that provides appropriate nutrition. However, giving table scraps to your dog can cause digestive issues. It is because cooked bones and foods with high-fat content are not suitable for dogs. Instead, you can offer small pieces of biscuit or the dog’s kibble as treats during training. If you provide high-quality food to your dog, additional vitamin and mineral supplements are not necessary. But you can add small amounts of cooked vegetables, eggs, or yogurt to the food for a healthy diet. However, it is crucial to learn which human foods are safe for your dog. You can also take advice from a vet expert about your dog’s weight or diet.

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Tips To Increase German shepherd Lifespan

German Shepherds are among the most popular dogs worldwide. These amazing working dogs have been human companions since the late 19th century. However, these intelligent and active dogs require a lot of dedication and care for their health needs.

And as an owner, you are reliable to spend as much time as possible with your dog. It will ensure your dog a healthy and happy life.

We have compiled a list of things to do to cope up with the health issues of your dog. So here are six tips to increase the life expectancy of your German Shepherd.

#1. Provide Limited Calories to Prevent Obesity

Statistics say that 56% of dogs in the United States are overweight. And getting overweight may result in life-altering health complications for your dog. So take advice from your vet about calorie restriction for your dog’s more extended life.

It is a fact that restricted calorie intake increases your dog’s life span and decreases age-related ailments. So it would help if you control your dog’s calories intake so they sustain their ideal weight. And overfeeding an adult dog, especially a large dog breed like the German Shepherd, can cause lifelong problems.

#2. Feed Your Dog A High-Quality Diet

Feeding Dog High-Quality Diet

A high-quality diet helps develop your dog’s immune system. It improves your dog’s intestinal health and keeps its joints and muscles in better shape. According to some vets, a high-protein diet determines how long a dog will live. And dogs on high-protein diets have fewer signs of age-related disease.

Dogs having a high-carb diet may develop cavities that lead to tooth decay. It also creates bacteria that affect the German Shepherd’s lifespan. However, you can include a minimum amount of high-quality grains to strengthen your dog’s heart health. Besides, it is safe to feed your dog branded dog foods that go through required testing. Also, it is crucial to check the AAFCO nutrition statements on the label.

#3. Keep Your Dog’s Food and Bedding Areas Clean

Keep Your Dog's Food and Bedding Areas Clean

It is of utmost importance to keep your dog’s food utensils and bedding area clean. It is because contaminated food or water bowls may develop bacteria and make your pet sick. Also, use a stainless steel bowl instead of a ceramic one as the cracked ceramic bowl invites bacteria. Besides, it is easier to clean the stainless steel bowl with soap.

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The bedding of your dog needs regular cleaning at least once a week. Weekly washing of the bed with a fragrance-free detergent is helpful to remove any dander and dust. Also, it will eliminate any parasites you might not see with naked eyes. In addition, placing your dog’s bed at a quiet corner of the house will allow them to rest and rejuvenate themselves.

#4. Properly Groom Your Dog

Properly Groom Your Dog

Regular grooming of your dog will ensure early detection of any unusual thing in your dog’s body. You can check any abnormalities during brushing and grooming, like lumps, cracks, fleas, and sore spots.

Early detection of any abnormalities will extend your German Shepherd’s lifespan by discovering underlying problems. Also, proper brushing and grooming helps keep your dog’s coat healthy.

#5. Put Your Dog On a Routine Exercise

German shepherd Exercise

Proper exercising is necessary for your dog’s well-being along with a healthy diet. Moreover, the German Shepherd’s lifespan depends on exercise and a nutritious diet that together work like magic. So it is because exercise helps maintain a healthy weight and keeps your dog’s joints and muscles toned. In addition, regular exercise increases the cardiovascular strength of your dog.

However, the right amount of exercise depends on the age of your dog. But usually, a German Shepherd requires two hours of daily workout.

#6. Make Sure Your Dog Has All The Vaccinations

Make Sure Your Dog Has All The Vaccinations

Any sickness or disease can decrease the German Shepherd’s life span. And regular vaccination will save your dog from preventable diseases. Therefore, it is crucial to check the list of required vaccinations and schedule the doses. Also, dogs can catch viruses when around other dogs at dog parks or participating in activities.


The German Shepherd is our favorite dog, but they have a shorter lifespan than other large dogs. So German Shepherd lifespan is a big concern for dog owners. This article includes the factors determining German shepherd lifespan. And we have also discussed various tips to increase the life expectancy of German Shepherds. So hopefully, you can learn whatever you want to know about this beautiful dog from this post.