According to Guinness World Records, the oldest living dog was 29 and a half years old. Bluey was a cattle dog who lived on a farm. The world’s unofficial oldest dog (due to lost paperwork) Maggie, unfortunately passed away in 2016 at the age of 30. Maggie was a Kelpie who lived on a dairy farm.

Now you must be thinking that what the two oldest dogs have in common is that they’re both cattle dogs that live on farms.

Cattle dogs, on average live 13 years, which is a bit older than other dogs of the same size but they aren’t the breed with the most longevity. So what is it about the farm life that helped these two dogs live so long?

The exercise.

Most of us like taking our dogs for a 20-30 minute stroll around the neighbourhood once or twice a day. That’s anywhere from 2km to 5km a day (if we’re being really generous). When Maggie’s owner was interviewed and told about these 20 minute strolls, he laughed and said his dog probably got 9km of exercise a day on average from just following him on his tractor all day. Many dogs, especially working breeds need tons of exercise. Even that 1 hour at the dog park might not be enough exercise for your dog.

The food.

Life on the farm meant access to a lot of fresh whole foods. We know it’s good for us, so why wouldn’t it be for our pups as well? Raw diets are getting increasingly popular as opposed to processed kibble. You can also just supplement your dog’s diet with fresh cooked meat, veggies, and occasional fruit along side a high quality kibble. Consult your vet to make sure your dog has a balanced diet.

So the answers aren’t really the most shocking things. We’ve always known that diet and exercise are important to health, but have you been thinking about how that applies to your dog as well?

By: Elizabeth Chim