There's no U.S. Centers for Disease Control for Pets. Until recently, veterinarians greatly practiced in a medical bubble, only knowing what they were seeing in their own clinics. With a database of more than 800 hospitals in 43 states, Banfield the Pet Hospital, is trying to change that. The company has been keeping tabs for several years on medical conditions and other information about pets.
Here's some of what Banfield discovered in its latest survey of pets, conducted in 2012:
Overall, our dogs are living longer. The average lifespan in 2012 was 11 years, up about four percent since 2002. Cats are also living longer, for an average of 12 years, that's up 10 percent since 2002.
The 5 U.S. states where cats have the longest life expectancy:
3. Rhode Island
The 5 states where dogs enjoy the longest lives:
1. South Dakota
4. New Mexico
Interestingly, only Montana and Colorado appear on both those lists.
According to the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, here are the top five states with the longest life expectancies for people 1999 to 2001):