We love our pets, and it’s always sad to lose our beloved animal companion. However, the lifespan of pets can vary wildly, with some (fish and hamsters, for example) in our lives for relatively short periods of time, while some pets are likely to outlive their owners. Here’s how long we can expect these popular types of pets to co-exist with us.
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Cats have been popular pets since the time of the ancient Egyptians, with the average lifespan ranging from 10 to 15 years — although it’s not uncommon for cats to live to be 18 or even 20 years old if they’re healthy and active.
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A turtle will thrive when its environment is tightly controlled, and the lifespan of a typical turtle is about 30 years. A box turtle, however, can live far longer than that, boasting an average lifespan of 123 years.
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Owning a parrot is a lifelong commitment — and then some! That’s because a healthy parrot can live until the ripe old age of 80, some even lasting until 100. In fact, parrot owners are advised to make provisions for the care of their parrots in their wills, as it’s not at all uncommon for a parrot to outlive its owner.
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We’ve all heard that one human year is the equivalent of seven “dog years,” but the truth is that different canine breeds will live longer than others. A smaller dog will typically live anywhere from 15 to 20 years, but larger dogs have significantly shorter lifespans, from eight to 10 years.
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The lifespan of mice bred to be pets ranges from one to two years, although if a mouse is well taken care of it can live for up to five years.
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A docile, low-maintenance pet (which often enters our lives around Easter time), rabbits have a typical lifespan of eight to 12 years.
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The lifespans of lizards are all over the map. Some lizards, such as chameleons, only live about three years, while a gecko can live well into its thirties.
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Gerbils are active, social little creatures, and these cute fluffy-tailed rodents typically live from two to four years.
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Owning fish can be a lengthy commitment, depending on the type of fish you decide on. While some tropical fish only have lifespans of one or two years, other fish can live to be 10. Meanwhile, goldfish — arguably the most popular type of fish — enjoy long lifespans of up to 25 years.
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Rats are typically considered vermin by most homeowners, who’ve been known to pay big bucks to rid their houses of them. Yet for those who choose to own rats, they can be inquisitive, friendly pets with a lifespan of two to four years, although pet rats have been known to live for up to seven years.
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Snakes require a lot of care and maintenance to stay healthy, which can be a lot of work for their owners. Snakes’ lifespan, on average, is from 10 to 15 years, while a snake that’s been well cared for can live to be 30.
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Like mice, hamsters are easy to take care of, with a regular hamster enjoying a lifespan of up to four years. Smaller dwarf hamsters, however, are only expected to live about two years.
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The lifespan of birds can vary wildly, with breeds such as budgies living for an average of five to eight years, while a parakeet can live from 10 to 15 years. A cockatoo, on the other hand, has a lifespan of 30 to 40 years, with a macaw living from 40 to even 50 years of age.
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Guinea Pig Lifespan
These adorable balls of fur don’t do a whole lot, but enjoy socializing and snuggling with their owners. Requiring a bit more care than fellow rodents such as mice, gerbils and hamsters, guinea pigs also have longer lives, with an average lifespan of five years. The oldest guinea pig on record lived to be 14!
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A ferret doesn’t require a lot of time, considering they sleep an average of 20 hours a day, but when they are awake they tend to be playful and active, and do require regular exercise. When properly cared for, a ferret will live, on average, to be five to seven years old.