Are dogs bred for longer lives?

Dear Heloise: We are in the market for a new, furry family member of the canine variety, and we were wondering, do smaller breeds of dogs typically live longer than larger breeds? — Alexis J., Canton, Ohio

Congrats! There’s a lot that goes into determining the life expectancy of a dog, so it’s difficult to say with certainty which breeds or sizes of dogs will live the longest.

Researchers at the university level are studying human aging by looking at dogs. They agree: Larger breeds can live shorter lives than smaller breeds. They’ve not yet been able to figure out why, because in general large animals tend to live longer than more compact critters.

Lots of factors go into choosing which dog is right for your family. Regardless of the life expectancy of your dog, though, make sure each day is filled with love, laughter and life! — Heloise

Cutter holder

Dear Readers: An extra vertical towel holder makes a good place to stack cookie cutters. If your drawers are cluttered with these seasonal items, give this a whirl! — Heloise

(Heloise is a columnist for King Features Syndicate. Send money-or time-saving hint to P.O. Box 795000, San Antonio, Texas 78279-5000, fax it to 210-HELOISE or E-Mail: