A new study found out which dog breeds have the greatest risk of dying from cancer. The results shocked experts.

Royal Society Open Science looked into what dog breeds have the greatest risk of developing cancer.

Cancer Is The Leading Dog Killer In New York

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Researchers say cancer is the leading cause of death in pet dogs.

"Cancer is a leading cause of death in domestic dogs. Deaths due to cancer vary widely among breeds, providing an opportunity for testing the multi-stage model of carcinogenesis," the Royal Society Open Science states. "Using three independent datasets, the weight and lifespan of breeds provided a good fit of lifetime cancer mortality to the multi-stage model, the fit suggesting many canine cancers are initiated by four driver mutations."

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Shocking Results: Larger Dogs Not Most At Risk

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Researchers were surprised to learn the largest dog breeds don't have highest cancer risk.

The reason is sad but simple. Bigger dogs tend to die younger than smaller dogs.

"That's simply because they're dying younger," Leonard Nunney, the paper's lead author, told ABC News.

Dog Breeds With Greatest Risk Of Developing Cancer

Below are the dog breeds with the greatest risk of cancer.

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Flat-coated retrievers are the only breed that "showed significantly elevated cancer mortality," according to the report.

The most common cancer for flat-coated retrievers is sarcoma, a rare cancer of the bones and soft tissues, Nunney told ABC.

The study also shows that increased breed inbreeding shortened the expected lifespan of these dogs, but had no overall effect on cancer mortality.

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The Smartest Dog Breeds

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What are the smartest dog breeds? Find out for yourself below

RANKED: Here Are the 63 Smartest Dog Breeds

Does your loyal pup's breed make the list? Read on to see if you'll be bragging to the neighbors about your dog's intellectual prowess the next time you take your fur baby out for a walk. Don't worry: Even if your dog's breed doesn't land on the list, that doesn't mean he's not a good boy--some traits simply can't be measured.

Gallery Credit: Sabienna Bowman

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