The oldest living dog currently on record (and now sadly deceased) was Bluey, a Cattle Dog from Australia who died at the age of 29 years and 5 months. Living on a farm for most of his life, perhaps the fresh air contributed to his longtime wellbeing.

We can’t promise your dog will live as long as Bluey (though we hope he/she surpasses the age), but you can do a lot to ensure your dog lives as long as possible.

You can do this in the following ways.

#1: Ensure your dog eats a healthy diet.

Obese dogs often develop life-restricting conditions such as heart disease and joint problems, so in the care of your dog, ensure you don’t overfeed them so as to reduce their calorie intake. Your vet will let you know the perfect weight for your dog’s breed, so book an appointment to have a conversation about dietary matters. Of course, feeding them less is only one way to balance your dog’s weight. The right food matters too, so opt for natural dog food brands in place of generic meat products and leftover delicacies from your dinner plate. Cut out the treats too, only handing them out when your dog deserves something special, instead of giving in to your dog’s demands when he begs you for the good stuff.

#2: Go the extra mile with your dog

We are talking about this in a literal sense, as when walking your dog, you need to give them a good walk instead of a two-minute wander around the block. Exercise is key in preserving your dog’s life, as physical activity is good for maintaining your dog’s weight and heart health, and is a guaranteed stress-buster too. And not only will you secure your dog’s life chances, but you will also secure yours, as the exercise gained by walking your dog will also help you to beat stress and stay in shape. Everybody wins! Making sure you look after your feet will help you keep walking for many more miles as well, not only benefitting your dog but benefitting you as well. Having bruised and blistered feet is no fun so finding a decent set of outdoor boots from places such as Equi Supermarket is a good start.

#3: Keep your dog busy and happy

We aren’t saying keep your dog busy all of the time – you would exhaust both yourself and your canine friend – but it’s important to know that bored dogs can become ill through depression and lethargy, and this might ultimately decrease their lifespan. Therefore, spend time keeping your dog stimulated. Play games such as fetch with them at home and in the local park. Socialise your dog with others of their kind, be that with other dogs at the park, or by adding to your four-legged friends in your household. Give them one-to-attention with dog grooming and cuddles. And provide them with stimulating toys, such as dog chews and tug ropes. A happy dog is a well dog, so enrich their lives in as many ways as possible to maintain their physical and mental wellbeing.

#4: Speak to your vet

Vet appointments are expensive, we know, but if you avoid those checkups, your vet bills might only get higher if your dog becomes unwell. Vets usually ask you to come twice a year, so stick to that schedule to get your pet examined. Potential problems will be spotted early on, and your vet will do whatever is necessary to alleviate them. Follow their recommendations too, because as the primary caregiver of your dog, you can take steps at home to preserve your dog’s health. And don’t delay in booking that appointment with your vet when you notice the signs that your dog is unwell. To give your dog a long and healthy life, seek advice on behalf of your beloved animal.