Exactly how long do Pitbulls live? Statistics show that 21% of the Pitbulls in the United States are in their first year of life, and 19% have lost their home.
While some dog owners have had a bad experience with this dog breed, they are generally gentle dog breeds if they are well trained. If you’re planning to own a Pitbull, one of the questions you might be curious to know is; How long do Pitbulls live?
Pitbulls can live up to 15 years, but the amount of time you’ll spend with your furry friend depends on how well you take care of them. Here’s an in-depth guide on everything you need to know about the Pitbull dog and its lifespan.
About The Pitbull
This is a common dog breed in the United States that’s sometimes referred to as the American Pitbull Terrier, the Staffordshire Bull Terrier, and the American Bully.
The Pitbull dog can also be a combination of all these three breeds. You can easily distinguish Pitbulls from other dog breeds because of their short and stocky bodies and short snout.
The Life Stages of a Pitbull
Pitbull requires care at the different stages of their development. That’s why it’s crucial to know their various life stages and ways to address the common problems that arise.
This is the stage from the time your puppies are born to when they’re one year old. Puppies can be categorized into different stages; toddler, infant, and newborn.
The newborn puppies are deaf and blind, and they depend on their mother for everything. The puppies cannot see at the infant stage, and they rely on their mothers to move around.
At the end of this stage, they’ll begin to walk and explore. During the toddler stage, your puppy will start to familiarize itself with the new environment. Ensure that you keep anything they can hold and chew out of reach.
To promote good health at this stage, ensure that you only give them puppy food and begin vaccination when they’re six to 12 weeks. Don’t forget to neuter or spray at four to nine months old.
Adolescent or Young Adult Pitbulls
From 10 months to two years, your Pitbull is considered a young adult. During this stage, it’s crucial to continue with socialization and training to ensure a smooth transition to adulthood.
It’s also vital that you increase their activity level to match their energy needs. Ensure that they receive vaccines from 12 to 16 months and begin giving them adult food when they’re one and half years old.
Pitbull will reach full maturity when they’re between two to three years old. At this stage, the youthful excitement would have calmed down, which is why you should exercise them regularly.
For better health, vaccinate them after every one or two years, depending on the last vaccination. Also, don’t forget to give them rabies vaccine every three years.
Your Pitbull is considered senior when it’s eight to 10 years old. In this stage, you’ll notice a decrease in activity level. They’ll laze and sleep more than when they were adults.
To ensure they’re in great health, give them a senior diet and visit the vet at least twice a year. This is necessary because they’re highly prone to dental issues, heart complications, and joint pain at this age.
Related: Signs That Your Pitbull is Pregnant.
What’s the Average Lifespan of a Pitbull?
On average, a Pitbull lifespan is between 12 to 14 years. A Pitbull over seven years old is considered a senior dog based on this life expectancy. Even in their old age, this dog breed will still be healthy.
However, their energy level will be lower than the younger ones. In many dog breeds, the life expectancy is mainly attributed to their size.
This is because the large dogs grow faster than their smaller counterparts. Additionally, Pitbulls are a cross bread of bulldogs and terriers, so their offspring have varying weight and life expectancy.
Here’s a breakdown of the different offsprings and their weight range:
- The American Bulldog: Average weight of 60 to 1110 lbs and can live up to 15 years
- The American Pitbull Terrier: Average weight of 35 to 65 lbs and can live up to 14 years
- The American Staffordshire Bull Terrier: Average weight of 25 to 40 lbs and can live up to 14 years
- The English Bull Terrier: Average weight of 50 to 80 lbs and can live up to 13 years
- The Staffordshire Bull Terrier: Average weight of 25 to 40 lbs and can live up to 14 years
What’s the Average Lifespan of a Pitbull?
When you adhere to proper care practices from a young age, your Pitbull may live and surpass its life expectancy. Remember that plenty of factors determines the average lifespan, most of them being under your control. Here are a few crucial considerations that will ensure that your dog remains healthy for a long time.
The Feed and Treat You Give Your Pitbull
The type of food you give your dog has a significant impact on its longevity. That’s why it’s crucial to provide them with foods packed with quality ingredients to meet their dietary needs.
For instance, you need to provide senior pit bulls with special senior food and give puppy food to the younger dogs. This special feed formulation will offer your dogs the nutrients they need to live a healthier life.
Additionally, you should watch out for any food allergies your dog may have. Understand that it may also take time before you can find the right brand and blend of dog food for your furry friend.
If you’re having challenges choosing the suitable feed, speak to your veterinary to advise you on the healthy food choices to consider. Also, remember that rawhide can cause digestion and choking issues in dogs, but plenty of rawhide alternatives are available to help ease such health concerns.
Related: Best Affordable Dog Food For Pitbulls.
Ensure That You Provide Them With Lots of Training and Exercise
Pitbulls are an active dog breed, and to ensure that they remain healthy, provide them with at least one hour of exercise every day. When you don’t provide your Pitbull with enough exercise, they’ll become bored and begin chewing and swallowing items they shouldn’t.
Eventually, this can result in intestinal problems that can be fatal without quick medical intervention. The lack of adequate training and socialization can also cause your dog to develop aggressive behavior.
When training your dog at a young age, ensure that you’re firm and assertive and ensure you don’t dominate your dog. If possible, consider the positive reinforcement type of training than the punishment or domination styles.
Pay Attention to the Living Condition of Your Pitbull
If your dog lives indoors, it will likely live longer than when it’s outdoors. In most cases, dogs that live outdoors are prone to dog fights, accidents, and even diseases. If your dog lives outdoors, ensure that they’re in an enclosed area where you can monitor them regularly.
It’s crucial not to leave your dog unattended for a long time overnight. If your dog ends up getting hypothermia or heatstroke, it may get worse with time when left untreated.
Related: Signs That Your Pitbull is Pregnant.
Proper Basic Health Care For Your Pitbull
For improved healthcare, it’s crucial to adhere to proper veterinary care. Throughout your dog’s lifespan, ensure that they receive essential shots to protect them from diseases.
Still, it’s crucial to adhere to the basic quality of care like bathing to keep them free from allergens and bugs. In addition, regular ear cleaning can help remove dander and dirt, while tooth brushing lessens the chances of infection and dental disease.
Ensure That You Carefully Select Your Pitbull Breeder
Like many dog breeds, Pitbulls are genetically predisposed to many health concerns like allergies, thyroid problems, and hip dysplasia. So, when you source your Pitbull puppy from a reputable breeder, you’re assured that your dog won’t have any genetic conditions passed through their bloodlines.
This is because such professionals conduct different tests to ensure their dogs are in excellent health before they can breed them. When searching for a reputable breeder, there are a few important things to consider. Here are a few you should know.
- Before getting your puppy, breeders should perform health checks on the parent dog.
- It’s also vital that you meet the mother dog.
- The breeder should offer you a health guarantee on your dog
- The breeders should answer all your questions satisfactorily
Common Health Concerns That Can Shorten the Lifespan of Your Pitbull
Like most dog breeds, the Pitbull is prone to different health concerns. Here’s an outline of the common issues that may shorten the lifespan of your dog.
Heart and Skin Problems
Heart problems are a serious health concern among Pitbulls. Common heart problems include; aortic stenosis, valve malformations, irregularities in heart rhythm.
Note that the symptoms of heart issues are not easily noticeable. If you’re not proactive in taking your furry friend for regular check-ups, the symptoms may go unnoticed until it’s difficult to treat the condition.
Skin conditions are also common in many Pitbulls. They can vary from manageable illnesses such as allergies to chronic diseases like melanoma and cell tumors.
This is a hereditary condition in dogs that mainly affects the ball and socket joint of the hip. This condition mainly affects large dog breeds. The femur ball will hold firmly to the ligaments and slide smoothly within the hip joint socket when your dog is healthy.
If your dog has hip dysplasia, it lacks this smooth motion because the ball and socket don’t fit together properly. This can result in different changes in your dog’s anatomy. For instance:
- The hip socket could be shallow for the femur to fit securely
- The femur’s head could be deformed, causing it not to slide smoothly in the hip socket
- There could also be bony growth interfering with the smooth movement.
Such changes can cause your dog’s hip joint to become loose. When this happens, it will become unstable, which can cause difficulty walking, severe pain, and other degenerative diseases.
Like all dogs, Pitbulls have thyroid glands under their neck that help to regulate their body metabolism. However, if your dog has hypothyroidism, its thyroid gland is underactive, meaning it doesn’t secret enough thyroid hormone.
This ultimately slows down their metabolism. Hypothyroidism in dogs can be manifested as idiopathic atrophy or lymphocytic thyroiditis.
The most prevalent of these two thyroid conditions is lymphocytic thyroiditis. With proper medication, dogs with this condition can live everyday life. However, if left untreated, it can result in death.
Conclusion For “How Long Do Pitbulls Live”
Pitbulls are a loving and loyal companion to have in your home. But, if you want to enjoy staying with them for a long time, you should take good care of them.
Pitbulls can live up to 15 years, but this largely depends on how well you care for them as well as their genetic makeup. If you recently sourced your dog from a breeder, don’t forget to ask about their parents, grandparents, and life expectancy.
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Andy is a full-time animal rescuer and owner of a toy doodle. When he’s not saving dogs, Andy is one of our core writers and editors. He has been writing about dogs for over a decade. Andy joined our team because he believes that words are powerful tools that can change a dog’s life for the better.
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