How Long Do Pit Bulls Live?

Written by: BARK

September 12, 2022

Pit bulls combine athleticism, affection, and lovable personalities into an adorable, fuzzy package. If you’re a pit bull owner (or a wannabe pittie parent!), you know that every moment spent with these four-legged lovebugs is precious. But how much time will you be able to enjoy a pitbull’s drooly kisses and happy tippy-taps? How long do pit bulls live?

The pitbull lifespan varies slightly depending on the type of pit bulls in question, but the pit bull life expectancy generally lies between 8-15 human years. 

If we could give our Pitbulls a hundred human years instead of fifteen, we absolutely would. But there’s good news—instilling a few healthy habits into your everyday routine can make a big impact on the quantity and quality of time you get with your adult dog. . 

Life Span For Pit Bull Types 

Fun fact alert: The term “pit bull” is actually not a dog breed. The term categorizes various dog breeds and mixes. In fact, what qualifies as a “pit bull” differs from country to country. 

The grandeur of the term pit bull may help account for the wide life expectancy age range for pit bulls, as the term contains multitudes. 

Let’s get specific about the life expectancies of a few primary pit bull types.

  • American pit bull terrier: 8-15 years
  • American Staffordshire terrier: 10-15 years
  • Staffordshire bull terrier: 12-14 years
  • American bully: 8-12 years

While there’s plenty of diversity among pit bulls and the life expectancy rates, they can all benefit from a well-balanced lifestyle. Making small tweaks in your day-to-day life can help promote longevity and ensure your pit bull puppy leads a long and healthy life by your side. 

How to Promote a Lengthy Life Span

Helping your dog maintain a healthy lifestyle can significantly improve overall pit bull life expectancy.1  Like all dogs, pit bulls require a healthy dose of exercise, a well-balanced diet, and regular check-ups to feel their absolute best. However, they may also need special attention in specific areas that may not seem as obvious. 

Give your pit bull puppy the love and attention they need, and they’ll likely pay you back with the energetic, loving companionship the dog breed is known for. 

(And slobbery kisses, of course.)

pit bull smiling at the camera

Incorporate Lots of Excercise

The pitbull breed seems world-famous for their energy, playfulness, and athletic abilities. With their uniquely toned musculature, impressive endurance, and inclination for “zoomies,” pit bulls definitely qualify as fuzzy, four-legged jocks.

Though pit bulls don’t aren’t as athletic as herding dogs such as German shepherds, huskies, or border collies, they still definitely require well-rounded exercise. As a dog owner, simply giving your pit bulls the space to burn off excess energy can help promote healthy living.

Give your varsity-level super stud the exercise they love by incorporating exercise into their daily routine. Don’t worry, coach. You don’t need to do drills at 6 AM. 

Just try some of the following excercises:

  • 1-2 walks every day (you can go for a long walk or two short walks throughout the day)
  • Tire them out at the dog park
  • Go for a jog together (see who taps out first)
  • Take them hiking with you
  • Play fetch
  • Go for a swim in a pool, lake, or calm stream

Monitor General Health 

Staying on top of your pit bull’s general health can make a big difference in the long run. Identifying arising health problems and knowing the proper preventative measures to take can help keep your pit bull fit and fuzzy for years to come. 

You can monitor your pit bull’s health by: 

  • Using preventative medication – Take the time to schedule the dosage of standard dog-health medication, such as heartworm medicine. Investing in flea and tick medicine can also definitely come in handy. These preventative measures will help ensure your dog’s healthy, sustainable growth over the years.  
  • Going to the vet for routine checkups – Don’t pass up on your yearly vet wellness check. These doctor visits can prove crucial for identifying any arising health issues before they dramatically impact your pet’s quality of life. Veternarians can also provide antibiotic prescriptions, X-Rays, and professional insight into their overall wellness. 
  • Watching for signs of issues – As a general rule of thumb, you should always keep a sharp eye out for any signs of doggy difficulties. If you as a dog owner notice that your pup has been limping, feeling unstable, restless, or whiny, you may want to get a professional’s opinion. 
pittie walking on leash at the park

Be on the Look Out for Typical Pitbull Conditions

Though pit bulls are usually considered very healthy dogs overall, they do have a small handful of conditions to which they’re genetically predisposed.2 Identifying any of these conditions early on can help you get on track with preventative treatment or surgeries. 

  • Hip dysplasia – Caused by irregular bone growth, hip dysplasia can weaken your pit bull’s hip joints, thus making it harder for them to move. If you notice your adult dog looks hesitant to move or has been experiencing a decreased range of motion, hip dysplasia may be the culprit. 
  • Knee dysplasia – Similar to the abovementioned condition, knee dysplasia limits your dog’s ability to move due to bone atrophy within the knee. The bully breed is also prone to experiencing arthritis. Any instance of decreased strength or mobility can act as a crucial indicator for degenerative conditions like this. 
  • Thyroid issues – The thyroid is a gland that produces hormones in the body. Some pit bulls’s thyroids may not produce enough hormones to maintain equilibrium. Some signs of thyroid deficiencies could include weakness, hair loss, sluggish motion, and weight gain. 
  • Heart disease – Heart disease is harder to discern through pit bull behavior. Check in with your veterinarian during doctor visits to learn about any signs of heart disease or other cardiovascular conditions. They can strategize with you and provide medication or possible treatment options.

While paying attention to health concerns can feel stressful and even frightening at times, it’s an integral part of pet ownership that can’t go overlooked. Remember, pit bulls don’t speak our language, so it’s your job to look out for them and try and meet their needs as best you can. 

Maintain A Balanced Diet

Providing dog food rich in pit bull-approved nutrients can keep your pup’s energy up while promoting healthy growth and a sleek, shiny coat. A pit bull’s diet should consist of high-protein, high-amino acid foods to keep them feeling nourished and energetic. This can include:3  

  • Chicken (skinless works best)
  • Turkey
  • Beef (opt for leaner cuts)
  • Lamb
  • Fish (salmon, trout, and tuna can promote a fabulous, shiny coat)
  • Eggs

Throw some plant-based ingredients into the mix to give your pup a well-rounded diet. A colorful food bowl can deliver vital nutrients and make them the envy of the dog park. 

  • Broccoli
  • Sweet Potato
  • Mushrooms
  • Carrots
  • Spinach

Introducing a well-balanced diet can allow your pit bull to feel full, fresh, and fueled to take on the day. Whether consumed in the form of high-quality dry dog food or begged for beneath the kitchen table, a diverse selection of wholesome food can definitely improve your pit bull’s quality of life. Is it weird we’re getting hungry now? 

Always do your own research when picking the perfect food for your dog, but if you need a place to start, try BARK Food for Pit bulls! Pro Tip: Get 25% off with code 25FOOD and free shipping!

pit bull leaping through the air

Practice Healthy Grooming Habits

Keeping clean and staying healthy go hand in hand. That’s why you should take the time to implement a grooming session into your weekly routine. Not only can you invest in some quality bonding time with your buddy, but you can also use it as a health check-in. 

Pit bulls often experience skin irritation and other conditions due to their short coats. Therefore, finding the time to fit in the occasional grooming session can give you a chance to look out for any flaking or rashes. Clearing away any shedding fur can help pit bulls overcome allergies and sickness. 

Get your groom on with these go-to healthy habits:

  • Brush your pit bull’s coat once a week
  • File or clip long nails 
  • Bathe your ‘bull when visibly dirty
  • Create a toothbrushing regimen

Participating in rejuvenating grooming practices can do wonders for your pit bull’s physical and mental well-being. After all, your dog deserves a self-care day too. It’s ruff keeping up with all the excitement. Sometimes a little nail file and dog treat can take the edge off after a long week. 

pitbull puppy next to a flower

Show Your Dog You Care

Overseeing your pit bull dog’s health may feel like a big undertaking, but it’s also a lot of fun. The best thing you can do for your dog’s health at the end of the day? Cherish them as true and honest friends. 

Pit bulls live their healthiest existence when they’re well-nourished, able to blow off steam, and interact with other loving humans and animals. Satisfy their needs by prioritizing playtime, paying attention to their mood, and giving them as much love as possible. 

When in doubt, a hearty tail wag says it all. And it says: You’re doing amazing! I love you. Can we go for a W-A-L-K now? 

Live It Up With BARK Post

There are so many factors to consider when it comes to promoting your pit bull’s health. Between hygiene, diet, and exercise, you don’t want to leave anything up to chance. That’s where BARK Post comes in. 

At BARK Post, we’re passionate about providing dog-lovers with detailed guidebooks, articles, reviews, and strategies to help boost your pitbull’s lifespan. Learn about the best types of dog-friendly toothpaste or supplements to keep your dog in its prime. You can even subscribe to our BarKBox for monthly gifts to bring optimized health straight to your doorstep. 

Feel the puppy love with BARK Post. We’ll focus on your furry friend’s future so you can get back to playing fetch. 


  1. Clinical Nutrition Services at Cummings School. Research Review: A Simple Step for Extending Your Dog’s Life.
  2. Dog Lovers Digest. Pitbull Life Expectancy – How Long Do Pitbulls Live? 
  3. Dog Express. The Best Pit Bull Diet: How To Properly Feed Them.
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Written by: BARK

September 12, 2022


A themed collection of BARK-designed toys, treats, and chews.


A themed collection of BARK-designed toys, treats, and chews.