Wednesday, April 10, 2024
HomeExclusiveHow Old Is A German Shepherd In Human Years

How Old Is A German Shepherd In Human Years

What Are Common Signs Of Aging In Dogs

German Shepherd age in human years with German Shepherd Man

Therefore, it can be helpful to look at physical and behavior clues to determine your dogs age. For example, teeth can be a particularly useful indicator of your dogs age. As PetMD explains, by seven months, all of your dogs permanent teeth are in; by 1-2 years, theyll be duller and might have some yellowing; and by 5-10 years, theyll show wear and possibly signs of disease.

Other indicators of your dogs age, especially as they reach the senior stage, include:

  • Graying hair
  • Stiff muscles and joints, arthritis
  • Lower activity level
  • Behavioral changes such as increased anxiety,confusion, accidents in the house, irritability, etc.

Of course, you can always turn to your veterinarian for an accurate estimate of your dogs age if youre unsure. Your veterinarian will consider factors, including teeth, body shape, hair or fur, and eyes, etc. to give the best estimate of their age.

Dogs Years To Human Years How Do You Calculate A Dogs Age

The American Veterinary Medical Association says: the first year of an average-sized dogs life is equivalent to about 15-years of a humans life.

A typical dogs second year of life equates to about nine years for a human. And after that, for any human dog, a year equals about four or five years.

If you are living with a dog, you must have heard this rule: 1 year for Fido equals 7 years for you. Turns out the math isnt that simple.

Dogs mature faster than we do early. So the first year of your cute dogs friends life equals about 15 human years.

Size and breed also play their part. Generally, smaller dog breeds tend to live for much longer than larger ones, but they may mature faster in the first few years of life.

A sturdy puppy may age more slowly at first but will reach middle age by 5. Tiny and toy breeds do not become seniors until around 10 years of age. In both cases, the medium-sized poops are somewhere in the middle.

Some Health Problems Shorten Your German Shepherds Life Span

A substantial number of diseases that affect canines may force the ill dogs owner to weigh their quality-of-life concerns.

Diseases like hip dysplasia arent imminently fatal, but if your dog can no longer walk or constantly soils himself, you may decide their quality of life is unbearably poor.

Hip and elbow dysplasia;


Inflammation and damaged cartilage can lead to arthritis, which is progressive and may become extremely painful. Arthritis is one of the most common reasons people euthanize their dogs.

Aggression and behavioral problems

Many dogs are destroyed in the prime of their lives for hereditary behavioral and mental issues that lead to biting people, killing other animals, and otherwise proving to be uncontrollable.


The esophagus is abnormally dilated, causing digestive issues. Many dogs accidentally inhale food as a result of this disease and can die from resulting pneumonia.

Myasthenia gravis

Often linked to megaesophagus, Myasthenia gravis is a neurologic immune disorder. Its similar to hip dysplasia in that it has definite genetic markers without which it wouldnt manifest.

However, its difficult to eliminate, like dysplasia, because of environmental influences and asymptomatic carriers.


If seizures become refractive, or uncontrollable with medication, your Shepherd cant live a normal and happy life.

Degenerative myelopathy;

Shepherds generally only live one year with the disease before their owners put them down.

Also Check: Black German Shepherd Long Hair

Is 13 Old For A German Shepherd

Unfortunately, a German Shepherds expected lifespan is between 9 and 13 years old, and their time left here is getting short. It is common for German Shepherds to face arthritis, skin problems, decreased activity, dental issues, weight gain or loss, or even cancer at this age and older.

References And Further Reading

  • Ruefenacht, Silvia. A behaviour test on German Shepherd dogs: heritability of seven different traits. Applied Animal behavior Science. 2002.
  • Siegal, Mordecai. UC Davis Book of Dogs. Harper Collins. 1995.
  • Halliwell. Canine rheumatoid arthritisa review and a case report. Journal of Small Animal Practice. 1972.
  • Lund, Elizabeth. Prevalence and Risk Factors for Obesity in Adult Dogs from Private US Veterinary Practices. University of Minnesota. 2006.
  • Budsberg, Steven. Nutrition and Osteoarthritis in Dogs: Does It Help? Veterinary Clinics: Small Animal Practice. 2006.

Don’t Miss: Why Is My German Shepherd So Aggressive Towards Other Dogs

Old German Shepherd Diets

As dogs age, their dietary needs change.

Often, elderly dogs are less active than their younger counterparts. This means that they dont need the same amount of calories.

Many elderly dogs can become overweight as they begin to slow down if their food is not changed.

Being overweight can put extra tension on their joints and lead to a variety of health problems.

On the other hand, however, some dogs do the exact opposite as they age and get skinnier.

They can begin to eat less than they need due to dental problems or other disorders.

Because this varies widely from dog to dog, we recommend speaking with your vet about your particular dogs situation.

You should also ask your vet to teach you how to evaluate your dogs weight from home.

This skill will allow you to pick up on health problems before they become dangerous.

The Adult German Shepherd Dog

At around 3 years of age, you can begin to relax. As an adult, your German shepherd is finally the calm, dignified, courageous and respectful dog you always knew he would grow up to be. If you were patient and dedicated through those early, sometimes difficult, years, you now have a well-trained and disciplined companion for life. Congratulations.

Don’t Miss: German Shepherd First Litter Size

How To Boost Shepherds Lifespan

When knowing their average lifespan, you need to prolong this period of time by taking care them pretty much. The key method is paying attention to their nutrition and their physical activities on a regular basis. Here are a few things to undertake your want.

Keep a healthy weight for them

Obesity is not a serious problem for human beings but also a big trouble for pooches. It will cause other dangerous health issues that you are not sure in the present.

Thus, you should maintain a healthy weight for Shepherds by creating a healthy lifestyle and a wise schedule. You should design a real diet for your dog and imagine that you are going to do that for you. Estimate and calculate the number of calories and some nutrition diets.

In general, German Shepherds need more than 1,700 calories but it is lower than 2,200.

Arrange the time to do more physical activities

As Shepherds are dynamic breeds, you should not ignore some workout programs for them. This will make their health condition worse.

So, make time for exercise is a great solution, but be sure to consider the suitable dosage of exercise for your dog. You can have more fun workout activities with them at the same time. This is a good idea for owners and dogs to have good health conditions.

Select high-quality foods

Do you know that what you feed your dog will have an influence on their health and their lifespan? Tons of junk food will make dogs have various health issues and serious diseases in the upcoming time.

Factors Affecting Life Expectancy

River, 3 Year Old German Shepherd, Human Aggression, Aggressive Dog Training

Apart from breed, several factors influence life expectancy:

Another study showed that spayed females live longer than intact females but, unlike the previous study, there were no differences between neutered and intact males. But both groups lived 0.4 years more than intact females.

For more information, see Health effects of neutering.

A major study of dog longevity, which considered both natural and other factors affecting life expectancy, concluded that:

“The mean age at death was 11 years and 1 month, but in dogs dying of natural causes it was 12 years and 8 months. Only 8 percent of dogs lived beyond 15, and 64 percent of dogs died of disease or were euthanized as a result of disease. Nearly 16 percent of deaths were attributed to cancer, twice as many as to heart disease. In neutered males the importance of cancer as a cause of death was similar to heart disease. The results also include breed differences in lifespan, susceptibility to cancer, road accidents and behavioral problems as a cause of euthanasia.”

Also Check: Who Would Win In A Fight German Shepherd Or Pitbull

Convert Dog To Human Age Chart And Calculator

Synopsis: Easy to read table and calculator shows the equivalent dogs age compared to a humans age in years, includes average dog life expectancy in years by breed. The previous formula that had been used for many years was based on the calculation that 1 dog year equaled approximately 7 human years. The official holder of the world’s oldest dog is held by an Australian Cattle Dog named Bluey who died in 1939 at age 29.

Dogs Old Easy Calculation

A simple way to calculate a dogs age is to take 1 dogs year and multiply it by 7 years. This is based on the assumption that dogs live on average about 10 years and humans about 70 years.

For example, a 5-year-old dog is 35 years old in human years. From a health perspective, this is not a bad way of looking at it because it helps us, humans, understand that our dogs are not the same as our children.

As pets get older, they need extra care and attention. Small dogs are usually considered to be older by the age of seven. Larger breeds are often older when they are 5-6 years old.

Be aware of arthritis and associated discomfort or irritability, weight control, vision and hearing problems, and changes in behavior or activity that may indicate more serious problems.

Visit your vet regularly for examinations; adjustments can be made to help your pets have a more comfortable, longer, and healthier life.

Don’t Miss: Belgian Malinois German Shepherd Mix Temperament

The Breed Of Dog Will Affect Its Life Expectancy

Thanks to selective breeding, the modern dog has evolved into the worlds most diverse mammal in existence. Dogs can vary in weight from 4 pounds to 200 pounds, and their body style and haircoat show enormous variety.

The length of the dogs life tends to depend on its size, which is the opposite of how it usually works for mammals. Large animals, such as horses, live much longer than tiny ones, such as mice. But a large dog will age much more rapidly than a small one. The tall and stately Great Dane will typically live only 6 or 7 years. The tiny, scrappy Yorkshire terrier can live well into its teens.

Genetics, of course, play a large role in longevity. Hybrid vigor factors in. A pedigreed dog tends to live a shorter life than a mixed breed of the same size, which statistically will have an additional year to stick around. The overall longevity of pedigreed dogs is 12 years. The longest-lived breeds include:

  • Miniature Dachshund
  • Dogue de Bordeaux
  • Great Dane

There are, of course, exceptions. The Mongolian Bankhar, a massive guardian of livestock, is known for living into its teens and even early 20s despite maintaining an outdoor lifestyle in a harsh environment.

What Dog Has The Shortest Lifespan

Dog Years To Human Years German Shepherd

Here are the dog breeds who live the fewest number of years, according to the Life Span data in the DogTime Breed Center: Mastiff: 8 years. Greater Swiss Mountain Dog: 8 years. Great Dane: 8.5 years. Bullmastiff: 9 years. Newfoundland: 9 years. Saint Bernard: 9.5 years. Rottweiler: 9.5 years. Scottish Deerhound: 9.5 years.

Don’t Miss: German Shepherd And Shedding

Importance Of Diet In Aging

Some important nutrients and ingredients in senior dog diets include:

  • Good sources of protein to meet higher protein requirements
  • Glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate to help maintain joint and bone health
  • Omega-3 fatty acids for joint and bone health as well as maintaining immune system health
  • Calcium and phosphorus for maintenance of bone structure
  • Beet pulp and flaxseed for gastrointestinal health
  • Fructooligosaccharides and mannanoligosaccharides work to improve the health of the gastrointestinal tract by increasing the number of “good” bacteria and decreasing the amount of “bad” bacteria
  • Appropriate levels of vitamin E and addition of L-carnitine to support brain and cognitive health
  • Dietary antioxidants such as vitamin E and beta-carotene

Quiet And Quickly Tired

When a German Shepherd reaches its senior years, youll notice how theyll gradually lose their energy and even show disinterest in toys or walks they used to be so excited about. When your dogs life is nearing the end, youll often find it lying around in quiet places that would exclude itself from other pets or people. It wont also move as much as it would try to limit itself from feeling even more uncomfortably frail than it already is.;

Also Check: Is A Belgian Malinois A German Shepherd

German Shepherd Breed Overview

The German shepherd as a breed originated in Germany. No surprises there. But, believe it or not, their name was changed soon after the war. Before the war this breed was commonly called the Alsatian in Great Britain and parts of Europe.

There are still parts of Europe that refer to the German shepherd as the Alsatian; however, most of the world has converted back to calling them German shepherds.

Pretty interesting, right?

As for life expectancy, German shepherds normally live for around 9-13 years.

The color of a German shepherd can range considerably from gray to black to tan, and even a silvery color.

The males grow to be approximately 24 inches at the shoulder and the females tend to be a little shorter, measuring around 22 inches at the shoulder.

As for weight, males average around 80 pounds and the females are a bit lighter at around 60 pounds. There is no denying that these are big dogs!

Now, as I mentioned earlier, German shepherds are known for their physical strength and intelligence. As working dogs, they were bred to be confident and powerfultwo traits which often scare people away from wanting anything to do with the breed.

Its this combination that makes them quite incredible beasts. They have strong muscles. Theyre obviously large, and yet, in their minds, theyre also very confident, watchful, and alert.

If you have a puppy, I encourage you to check out my Puppy Coach training program.

How To Convert Dog Years Into Human Age

Rebeka, 3 year old black german shepherd, training with her human

Dog years are multiplied by seven to get a human age, as a dog lifespan is a seventh of a persons. Converting dog years to human years depends on various factors as toy, small, medium, large and giant dogs mature differently, which is why dogs up to 50 lbs. can live longer than pups up to 100 lbs.

Experts agree, however, that the level of maturity a dog reaches in the first two years is similar to that of a 14-year-old human, but that is where the similarity ends. The age of a pup in dog years to human years depends on the following:

Also Check: How To Calm A German Shepherd

How Do I Calculate My Dogs Age In Human Years

If youre looking to calculate your dogs age in human years more accurately, you can use a new formula at the University of California San Diego School of Medicine.;

These researchers studied the way human and dog DNA changes over time looking at patterns called methyl groups in humans and Labrador Retrievers. From this research, they concluded that you can calculate a dogs age to human years by multiplying the natural logarithm of the dogs age by 16 and adding 31. Their formula looks like this: + 31). As you can see, this formula is pretty complex, so it can be useful to plug in your dogs age to an automatic calculator programmed with this formula, like the one here.

For an easier way to estimate your dogs age, you can follow this methodology for small, medium, and large dogs under 100 lbs.

  • The first year of a dogs life is equal to 15 human years.;
  • The second year of a dogs life is equal to about nine human years.
  • Each additional year is equal to about four or five human years.

So, why is this more accurate than the one dog year equals seven human years method?

Check out the;dog age to human age chart below to calculate your dogs age in human years based on their size group:

How To Know When Your Gsd May Be Near The End Of Life

Once your German Shepherd enters their senior years, you may begin to wonder how you will know that their end time is near. While some dogs will pass on their own, there is a chance that we will have to make that difficult decision for our beloved companions.;

If you are struggling with how to know when your German Shepherd is near the end, here are some things to look out for:

The most important part of having a senior German Shepherd is your attempt to keeping them comfortable in the last stage of their life. Make sure to stick to their normal routine as much as possible, allow them to decide what theyd like to participate in, let them rest, and talk to your vet about medical options to keep them comfortable.;

Read Also: How Many Puppies Can A German Shepherd Have First Litter

Diet Vet Checks And Grooming Are A Must

You must be mindful of your dogs dietary needs, grooming requirements, and regular veterinary check-ups. Its also important that your dog completes its vaccinations from birth until its adolescence; this would include booster shots and annual rabies doses. Furthermore, be wary not to feed your dog with human food that can cause digestion problems such as chocolates and the like. Note that giving your dog treats from the kitchen may not be healthy for it, even though it may seem to like it.;


Most Popular