Life tables of annual life expectancy and mortality for companion dogs in the United Kingdom

Sci Rep. 2022 Apr 28;12(1):6415. doi: 10.1038/s41598-022-10341-6.


A life table is a tabulated expression of life expectancy and mortality-related information at specified ages in a given population. This study utilised VetCompass data to develop life tables for the UK companion dog population and broken down by sex, Kennel Club breed group, and common breeds. Among 30,563 dogs that died between 1st January 2016 and 31st July 2020, life expectancy at age 0 was 11.23 [95% confidence interval (CI): 11.19-11.27] years. Female dogs (11.41 years; 95% CI: 11.35-11.47) had a greater life expectancy than males (11.07 years; 95% CI: 11.01-11.13) at age 0. Life tables varied widely between breeds. Jack Russell Terrier (12.72 years; 95% CI: 12.53-12.90) and French Bulldog (4.53 years; 95% CI: 4.14-5.01) had the longest and shortest life expectancy at age 0, respectively. Life tables generated by the current study allow a deeper understanding of the varied life trajectory across many types of dogs and offer novel insights and applications to improve canine health and welfare. The current study helps promote further understanding of life expectancy, which will benefit pet owners and the veterinary profession, along with many other sectors.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Animals
  • Breeding
  • Dogs
  • Female
  • Life Expectancy*
  • Life Tables
  • Male
  • Pets*
  • United Kingdom / epidemiology