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May 27, 2016
Q. Creme Puff, a Texas feline that allegedly subsisted on bacon, broccoli, and heavy cream, is said to have lived 38 years. Bluey, an Australian cattle dog, at age 29 became the oldest canine on record. So, we wonder, why do we tend to outlive our beloved pets?
A. As a general rule “longevity favors the big guys,” says David Grimm in Science magazine. For example, a bowhead whale at about 220 thousand pounds can live for about 200 years; a Galapagos tortoise at about 265 pounds can go 180 years. According to biogerontologist Steven Austad, it may be that large animals like whales and elephants face fewer dangers so they can afford to take their time growing and maturing.
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