The hardest thing about being a dog owner is saying goodbye to your furry friend. Unfortunately, our pups have shorter lives than us, but we treasure every moment we spend with them.
Whether you’ve just got a new Pitbull puppy or you’re living with a senior dog, you must be wondering how long your Pitbull will live.
The average lifespan of a Pitbull is 12 to 14 years. Of course, there are always exceptions. Some Pitties sadly die too young, while others live to be 17 or 18 years old.
If you’d like to be one of the lucky owners whose dog exceeds the average lifespan, read on and see what you can do to improve your pup’s life.
Different types of Pitbulls
We all know what Pitbulls are, right? These square-headed dogs with goofy personalities make up about 20% of the US dog population. But many people are surprised when they find out that Pitbulls are not a breed but a type of dog.
Pitbull’ is an umbrella term used to describe dogs descended from Bulldogs and Terriers. They originated in Great Britain from English Bulldogs that were used for bull-baiting. When this cruel sport was outlawed in 1835, people started crossing Bulldogs with Terrier breeds to create a smaller breed suitable for dogfighting and rat-baiting.
These new popular blood sports were easier to hide from law enforcement in underground rings. This was the start of Pitbulls’ bad reputation that follows them to this day.
Many US states have breed-specific regulations, restricting or even completely banning Pitbulls. Despite their bad rep, Pitbulls are not vicious by nature. They can be the best dogs when raised well, and countless dog owners can attest to that.
The four official Pitbull type breeds are:
1. The American Pit Bull Terrier
2. The American Staffordshire Terrier
3. The Staffordshire Bull Terrier
4. The American Bully
The American Bulldog and Bull Terrier are sometimes included on the list as well. Some people think that American Pit Bull Terriers and American Staffordshire Terriers are the only two truly Pitbull types. Others say they are actually the same breed.
Since the American Pit Bull Terrier is the only breed with Pitbull in its name, most people are referring to them when they talk about Pitbulls.
How long do Pitbulls live?
Sadly, our furry friends don’t live as long as we do. It’s hard to think that one day you’ll have to say goodbye, but knowing what their average lifespan is will help you treasure every moment you spend together.
The life expectancy of American Pit Bull Terriers is between 12 and 14 years. For some reason, there’s a misconception that Pitties tend to have shorter lives. However, the truth is actually the opposite. Pitbulls have a slightly longer lifespan than other medium-sized dog breeds that typically live 10 to 13 years.
Staffordshire Bull Terriers have the same lifespan of 12 to 14 years, while the life expectancy of American Staffordshire Terriers is between 12 and 16 years.
The American Bully is a relatively new breed, which didn’t exist before the 1990s. It’s harder to determine their lifespan because of this, but it’s estimated to be 9 to 13 years.
American Bulldogs and Bull Terriers are also sometimes included in the Pitbull type, so let’s see what their life expectancies are as well: American Bulldogs usually live between 10 and 15 years, while Bull Terriers live 10 to 14 years on average.
It’s important to remember that these are just average numbers. Some pups, unfortunately, die before they turn 12 years old due to accidents or health issues. On the other hand, some Pitties live to be 17 or 18 years of age.
Many factors affect the longevity of a dog’s life. You may not have control over the dog’s size, genetics, or unforeseen circumstances, but there are things you can do to help your pup live a longer life. We’ll explain what those things are in detail later in the article.
How long do Pitbulls live in human years?
To help you understand the Pitbull’s lifespan better, let’s convert it into a human age. The Pitbull’s life expectancy of 12 to 14 years equals a human lifespan of 75 to 85 years. As you can see, Pitties tend to have pretty long lives.
Converting a dog’s age into a human one is not only fun, but it can also help you take better care of your pup.
Once your Pitbull turns eight years old, he’s already considered a senior dog. The chances of developing certain health problems increase with age, so senior dogs need more regular health check-ups.
People believed that one dog year equals seven human years for a long time. We now know that it’s a bit more complicated than that. Dogs of different breeds and sizes age differently, and the rate of aging is not the same for every period of their lives.
A medium-sized dog like a Pitbull ages 15 human years in the first year of its life. Year two of its life equals nine years of a human’s life, and each year after that is approximately five dog years.
So, how old are your Pits? They may even be older than you, so calculate their age and see whether you need to respect your elders.
How long do Blue Nose Pitbulls live?
Despite the popular misconception, Blue Nose Pitbulls are not a separate dog breed. They are a unique variety of Pit Bull Terriers. That means they can live as long as other Pitbulls, typically between 12 and 14 years.
Blue Nose Pits are a rare variation of the breed as their color is the result of recessive genetic traits. The chances of a Blue Nose puppy being born to two dogs carrying the recessive gene are 25%, so we don’t see many of these pups around. This may be why so many people are confused about their origins.
As we can guess from its name, the thing that makes the Blue Nose Pitbull different is the color of its nose. The gray coat, noses, rims of the eyes, and paw pads of these beautiful pups make them unique, but the color doesn’t affect their health.
They’re prone to the same health issues as other dogs of the same breed. They also have the same temperament, so they require the same type of training. All of these things affect their longevity.
With proper care and lots of love, your Blue Nose Pitbull can happily reach old age, just like their differently colored cousins.
How long do Red Nose Pitbulls live?
A Red Nose Pitbull typically lives between 12 and 14 years, just like any other Pitbull. Like their blue-nosed counterparts, they are a rare variation of the Pitbull breed, whose unique color helps them stand out.
The coat color of these pups is usually copper, but it can also be fawn and white, tan and white, or solid brown. Apart from the red nose, they also have red toenails, mouth, and rims of the eyes.
Although they are as rare as blue-nosed Pitbulls, they have a longer history. You may have heard people referring to their Pitties as ”old family red nose.” This is because some of today’s Red Nose Pitbulls come from the old Irish strain.
They’re the same as other Pitbulls in every aspect except for color. They require the same amount of care, and they have the same health concerns.
To help your Red Nose Pitbull live longer, you’ll need to pay attention to its health, diet, exercise needs, and training.
How long do Pitbull mixes live?
Photo from: @loungin_with_loonz
How long a Pitbull mix will live depends on what dog is crossed with a Pitbull. It’s usually a combination of both dog breeds’ lifespans. It varies depending on the crossbreed’s size and the genetic traits it inherits from its parents.
Some of the most popular Pitbull mixes are:
2. Golden Pit
4. Bully Pit
5. Beagle Bull
A Pitador is a cross between a Pitbull and a Labrador Retriever. These friendly pups are also called Labrabulls, and they usually live between 10 and 14 years.
Golden Pits or Pitbull Golden Retrievers are generally healthy dogs with an average lifespan of 10 to 15 years. They are loyal companions that love spending time around humans. Golden Pits are prone to separation anxiety because of that, and stress can have a big impact on the dog’s longevity.
Pitskies or the Pitbull and Siberian Husky mix usually live between 12 and 15 years. Since both its parents are very energetic, a Pitsky requires a lot of exercise to stay happy and healthy.
The Bullypit is a mixed breed that resulted from breeding an American Bulldog with a Pitbull Terrier. These medium-sized dogs have somewhat shorter lifespans compared to the other mixes we’ve mentioned. It’s between 10 and 13 years. If you own a Bullypit, you should pay special attention to its diet, as they tend to gain weight easily.
Beagle Bulls have a life expectancy of 10 to 15 years. The Beagle and Pitbull mix never gets tired of playing, so it needs a lot of exercise to be content.
Common health problems
The most important factor that affects a dog’s longevity and the quality of its life is its health. Knowing what health conditions Pitbulls are genetically predisposed to and what symptoms you need to watch out for can help you elongate their lifespan.
Hip dysplasia is a condition that affects many medium-sized and large dogs, including Pitbulls. As the dog grows, its hip begins to deform, leading to looseness of the hip joint, degenerative joint disease, and osteoarthritis.
If the disease progresses too much, a dog suffering from it may need hip surgery. The symptoms of this condition are bunny hopping gait, leg lameness, limping, and difficulty moving.
Patellar luxation is a condition that occurs when the kneecaps keep dislocating. The disease is classified into four grades by level of severity. In the mildest grade, the kneecap easily returns to its normal position. If the condition progresses, it can lead to severe lameness and limb deformities.
Pitbulls are also prone to other knee complications due to their muscular build and high activity levels.
Heart disease is one of the main causes of death for Pitbulls, especially in their senior years. The most common heart conditions that affect this breed are aortic stenosis, valve disease, and dilated cardiomyopathy.
Heart disease is hard to detect, even with regular health check-ups. Some of the symptoms are coughing and difficulty breathing, bloat, weakness, and reduced activity.
Thyroid problems are also common in Pitbull-type dogs. Hypothyroidism, where the thyroid glands aren’t producing enough thyroid hormones, can cause excessive weight gain and skin problems. It can cause behavioral changes as well.
Gastric dilatation-volvulus is a potentially fatal condition in which a dog’s stomach fills up with gas and bloats. Sometimes the bloating stops on its own, but it can also be extremely dangerous. It’s best to visit a vet if you notice your Pitbull’s tummy bloating.
Pitbulls are more prone to allergies than many other dog breeds. Like humans, dogs can be allergic to numerous things, such as pollen, grass, ticks, or certain foods.
Different skin disorders like tumors, skin cancer, infections, or allergic reactions, are frequent problems for Pitbulls. One of the most common skin problems for terrier breeds is ichthyosis.
It’s caused by a rare genetic mutation, which prevents the outer layer of the skin from developing properly. Dogs born with this condition have areas of thickened skin and greasy flakes sticking to their fur.
Ways to help your Pitbull live longer
Various factors affect a dog’s lifespan. Some factors like genetics, inherited conditions, and size are out of your control. However, you can take care of their diet, training, exercise, and health to ensure your pup lives a longer life.
Take your Pittie for regular vet visits
By taking your dog to a vet regularly and paying attention to its overall health, you can ensure that any diseases are found and treated in their early stages. Regular health check-ups and vaccinations are preventative measures that will help your pup live a longer life.
Pay special attention to any symptoms of the conditions we described in this article. Don’t hesitate to contact a veterinarian, even if the problem doesn’t seem so serious.
Make sure your Pitbull has a good diet
A healthy diet is the first step to a healthy life. Ensure that your dog’s nutritional requirements are met to improve its overall health and extend its lifespan. A good diet should consist of animal proteins, fats, carbohydrates, and grains.
You can feed your pup high-quality dog food, whether it’s dry kibble or wet food. If you enjoy cooking, you can also make the meals yourself. There are many recipes online that you can follow to make your pup interesting, delicious dishes.
For instance, homemade pesto, salsa, and tortillas can be perfectly safe for your pitbull to munch upon as long as you avoid the harmful ingredients. Find more interesting receipts in our article on the homemade dog food for Pitbulls.
However, you should be careful about the portions. Pitbulls can be prone to obesity, which causes several health issues like joint problems, back pain, and heart disease.
Pitties enjoy having smaller meals throughout the day rather than one big meal. Don’t be tempted by those sad eyes to give them your leftovers or too many treats. We know it’s hard, but you’ll need to resist to help your pup maintain a healthy weight.
Spay or neuter your dog
If you don’t intend on breeding your Pitbull, it’s best to have them spayed or neutered. Spaying and neutering decrease the risk of certain types of cancers that affect the reproductive organs.
Most dogs recover from the surgery quickly, so don’t worry too much about your pup being in pain. The benefits of spaying and neutering outweigh the risks by far.
It eliminates the risk of birthing complications and post-pregnancy infections for your female dog. It also reduces the chances of your male dog escaping and getting into trouble when it smells a female in heat.
Spaying or neutering is a preventative measure that helps keep the unwanted dog population down. There are many dogs in shelters waiting for their forever homes, so it might be hard to find your new puppies a home.
Read More: Male Vs Female Pitbull
Train your pup
Proper training and socialization can help reduce your dog’s stress and avoid tragic accidents. It’s best to start with socialization and training early, as dogs learn best while they’re young.
However, an adopted adult Pitbull can still be socialized and trained, but it will take more effort and patience on your part.
When you teach your pup basic obedience commands, you have more control over its behavior. If you ever find yourself in a situation where your dog is playing off-leash near a busy street, you can use the recall command to prevent a car accident.
Car accidents are one of the leading causes of death and injuries for dogs around the world. Another benefit of obedience training is that it can prevent dog fights or dog attacks.
Lack of socialization can lead to behavioral issues like fear-based aggression towards people or other dogs, destructive behavior, or excessive barking. It’s not hard to socialize your Pitbull puppy.
All you have to do is make sure the puppy is comfortable in different everyday situations.
Give your Pitbull enough exercise
Regular exercise can help your dog live a longer, healthy life. An average Pitbull needs at least an hour of exercise a day to release pent-up energy and maintain a healthy weight.
Pitbulls are active, energetic dogs, so they need both physical and mental activity to stay in shape. A dog that doesn’t get enough exercise might turn to destructive behavior to ease its frustration.
Keep in mind that dogs are creatures of routine, so they like to have their walks at the same time of day. A simple walk, however, may not be enough for your Pitbull. They also need high-intensity games and strength training to keep their muscles in good condition.
If your Pittie is well-trained, you can take him to a dog park to play with other dogs. You can also let him run freely in a park if he has a good recall or take him for a hike once in a while.
Frisbee toss, fetch, or weight pulling are fun games you can play with your dog. If you enjoy running, bring your pup with you. It’s an excellent way to burn off extra energy.
To sum it up
Photo from: @gunandpark
There are different types of Pitbulls, but most people think of the American Pitbull Terrier when they talk about them. Despite its bad reputation, this lovable pup is a great furry family member and a loyal companion to numerous owners.
As a dog lover, you’ve probably wondered, “how long do Pitbulls live?” It’s a question all dog owners dread. We would do anything to have our furry friends by our side for as long as possible, but unfortunately, they don’t live as long as we do.
The American Pitbull Terrier’s lifespan is between 12 and 14 years. If you convert this into human years, it would be between 75 and 85 years. Red Nose and Blue Nose Pitbulls have the same life expectancy since they are a variety of the Pitbull Terrier breed.
The lifespan of Pitbull mixes depends on what the cross is. Crossbreeds inherit different genetic traits from both parents that affect their longevity.
Factors that affect a dog’s lifespan are genetics, size, health, nutrition, exercise, and training.
You don’t have control over some of these, but there are ways to extend your Pitbull’s life. What you can do is:
1. Take your dog for a regular health check-up
2. Take proper care of its basic needs, including diet, exercise, and grooming
3. Spay or neuter your pup
4. Train and socialize them to prevent future accidents or behavior issues.