The cat ‘rat’ with nine lives
As bizarre as naked mole rats may look on the outside, their genetics are even weirder. While the average pet hamster lives for two to three years, and a good age for a guinea pig is eight, these critters can live for almost three decades, easily making them the longest-lived rodents.
Mole rats, or blesmols, as they’re more commonly known in Africa, where they live, behave more like insects than mammals. They inhabit vast subterranean labyrinths with a single breeding queen. every individual performs a role that serves the wider colony, just like bees and ants. They’re incredibly tough critters, able to survive on very little oxygen, endure high pain levels and even resist many forms of cancer. All of which goes a long way to explaining their longevity.