Weimaraners have a life expectancy of around 11 to 13 years, which is long for a dog of their size. They’re considered “old” at around 12 years, though some dogs may develop signs of old age earlier than that. Any Weimaraner over 12 is absolutely in their twilight years.
Of course, their lifespan does vary, though. Some of them live for longer than 13 years, while others never make it to 11. Below, we’ll take a look at some of the reasons for this huge difference in lifespan.
Weimaraner Average Lifespan
Weimaraners typically live for 11 to 13 years. Reaching the age of 15 is considered quite a bit older than average, while dying before hitting 11 would be considered young. The oldest Weimaraner on record was 18, though. Therefore, their lifespan varies considerably.
Why Do Some Weimaraners Live Longer Than Others?
1. Feeding & Diet
How you feed your Weimaraner matters. If you feed a high-quality diet that’s suitable for their particular needs, your canine will likely live longer. However, what works for one dog doesn’t necessarily work for another.
Yes, some foods are better than others (try subsisting on ice cream, for instance!). However, if your dog has an underlying health problem, it may need a different food than an average dog. From a less dramatic standpoint, a more active dog may simply need a different food than another.
It’s no secret that organisms in tougher environments tend to live shorter lifespans than those in cushy areas. That’s one reason why zoo animals tend to live longer than their wild counterparts. It’s the same for our dogs.
If your Weimaraner spends much of their life outside, then they may live a shorter lifespan than one that spends a large bulk of their day indoors. Dogs that spend 100% of their time outside must put up with extreme weather and illnesses that partially outdoor dogs wouldn’t need to deal with.
While animal laws have gotten better over the last few years, some dogs are still mistreated. These canines probably won’t last as long as those that are taken care of well (even if they are rescued from their situation).
That doesn’t mean you need to go all out and pamper your dog. Spa days probably don’t translate into many additional days to your pet’s life. However, providing the proper grooming can go a long way. For instance, periodontal disease is a huge problem for dogs—but it can be almost completely prevented by brushing your dog’s teeth.
Thanks to modern medicine, many mothers and puppies survive birth. However, there are still complications that we cannot 100% cure or help. Plus, treatment requires a diagnosis, which is often harder to get than one might think (especially when you’re under a time crunch).
Caring for your dog properly during breeding can help prevent problems. A well-fed mother is much more likely to make it through labor and care better for her puppies.
You should provide your Weimaraner with plenty of health care. A yearly checkup is recommended after your dog becomes an adult. However, puppies and seniors likely need more checkups. Puppies need routine vaccinations until they’re properly immunized, and seniors are more likely to develop health issues (which can be treated better if they’re caught sooner).
Of course, you also need to provide your Weimaraner with care when they’re sick or injured. An infected or untreated broken leg can significantly impact your dog’s lifespan, as you might imagine.
The 4 Life Stages of a Weimaraner
Puppy Stage (0–6 months)
During this stage, Weimaraners are growing rapidly and exploring their world. They’re often very curious and playful. Because dogs are so “open” during this time, it’s important to start training and socializing them. Ideally, you can begin at around 8 weeks.
Adolescent Stage (6 months–2 years)
As the puppy stage ends, the adolescent stage begins. Weimaraners in this stage continue to grow physically and mentally. They may display more independence and stubbornness, testing boundaries and asserting their individuality. Consistent training and socialization are essential during this stage.
Dogs may suddenly become much harder to control and much more stubborn. However, it’s important not to give in to their new behaviors.
Adults Stage (2–6 years)
By the time a Weimaraner reaches 2 years of age, they are considered adults. They have reached their full size and have settled into their temperament. At this stage, they tend to have boundless energy and require regular exercise and mental stimulation.
This is probably one of the easiest stages, as they should already be socialized and trained.
Senior Stage (6+ years)
There isn’t a specific age when a Weimaraner becomes a senior. Instead, it is more about their health and how they are aging. Some may start slowing down as early as 6 years old, especially if they have hip dysplasia or a similar problem.
How to Tell Your Weimaraner’s Age
When dogs are puppies, it is much easier to tell their age. Vets can often determine their age based on the number of teeth they have, as well as their weight. However, after they reach adulthood, it is much more challenging. A 4-year-old dog isn’t all that different from a 6-year-old dog.
Your dog’s teeth are the prime way to determine age. In younger dogs, you’ll generally see shiny white teeth without much wear. As they age, their teeth may start to show signs of wear, discoloration, and tartar buildup. Additionally, puppies will have sharp baby teeth that are eventually replaced by adult teeth.
Younger dogs tend to have well-defined muscles and a more slender, athletic build. As they age, they may start to lose muscle tone and gain weight, leading to a more rounded or sagging appearance. However, dogs do age at differing rates, which can affect their muscle tone.
Weimaraners live for a pretty long time given their size, around 11 to 13 years. Of course, dogs can live much longer or much shorter than this, though. Sometimes, it’s genetics or even completely random when one dog lives longer or shorter than another.
However, there are several things you can do to improve your dog’s lifespan. Caring for them properly is one easy way to do this.
Featured Image Credit: Dmitry Veryovkin, Shutterstock