Good health in dogs is determined through responsible breeding and good care, but looking at the breed of the dog can also give you a clue as to the dog's general wellness. Some breeds are known for health problems, but there are also breeds out there known to be hardy and healthy well into old age.
The Portugese Podengo is a breed that is almost 2,000 years old and originally was intended for hunting vermin on board Portugese ships. These dogs were selected for hardiness and quickness, and even the larger members of the breed can live well into their teens.
The Shiba Inu is a spitz-type dog from Japan, and these dogs are widely recognised to be sturdy. Responsible breeders will screen for patellar luxation, a condition that allows the kneecap to pop out of place and is one of the few problems common in the breed.
Despite their diminutive size, Chihuahuas can be extremely healthy dogs. They are prone to hyperthyroidism, which can be treated, but providing that they have been bred well they can live twice as long as some of the larger breeds.
Border Collies are a medium-sized herding dog that is known for hardiness and a willing temperament. These dogs are very intelligent, and with an appropriate amount of exercise can remain healthy into old age.
The Puli is a Hungarian herding dog with very long fur. Though the fur does need constant attention to keep it comfortable for the dog and looking presentable, this herding breed is known to be healthy and can reach 14 to 16 years of age.
Basenjis are famous for being the barkless dog, but they are also known for living long lives and staying healthy. Some members of the breed do suffer from hyperthyroidism and hip dysplasia, but both can be treated when they are caught soon enough.
Australian Cattle Dog
The Australian cattle dog breed is prone to progressive retinal atrophy, which can lead to blindness as the dog ages, but for the most part this herding dog is very sturdy. An Australian cattle dog holds the world record for the longest-lived dog.
Greyhounds are medium-sized slender dogs. They are slightly prone to dental problems, but these problems can be treated through good food and regular brushing. A greyhound from a breeder is a good choice for someone looking for a healthy pet; greyhounds that have been rescued from racetracks can be prone to muscular issues and joint problems.
Standard poodles are healthy, active dogs that were originally bred to retrieve water fowl for hunters. They are a long-living, tough breed, and though hip dysplasia can be a concern as it is for larger breeds adequate screening by the breeder can keep the risk of this issue very low.
The standard Maltese is a small white dog that is subject to very few health problems. The breed is prone to some eye disease, but this will be screened by a reputable breeder. The Maltese is a good-tempered dog that does well in apartments, provided they get enough exercise.