It’s a new era for the world’s oldest living dog, as Bobi, a 30-year-old Portuguese Rafeiro do Alentejo, has taken the crown from Spike, a 23-year-old chihuahua mix from Ohio. Guinness World Records (GWR) has officially recognized Bobi as the oldest living dog – and the oldest dog ever to live – with a life expectancy of 12 to 14 years, double his age.
Bobi has lived with the Costa family in the village of Conqueiros, in Leiria, western Portugal, for his entire life. His age has been confirmed by the Veterinary Medical Service of the Municipality of Leiria, and SIAC, a pet database authorized by the Portuguese government. The record was previously held by Australian cattle dog Bluey, who lived for 29 years and 5 months between 1910 and 1939.
Bobi was almost not given the chance to live past infancy, as when he and his three brothers were born in the family’s woodshed, his father decided they already had too many animals at home. Luckily, Costa and his brother found Bobi alive, safely hidden in a pile of logs. Bobi grew up “very sociable”, and his owner Leonel Costa attributes his longevity to the “calm, peaceful environment” in which he grew up, as well as his taste for human food.
In his old age, Bobi has become less adventurous, with difficulty walking and impaired eyesight. He likes a nap after meals, and spends most of his time hanging out in the backyard with four cat friends. He had “one big scare” in 2018, ending up in the hospital after collapsing with breathing difficulties. Regular assessments at the vet’s “have always shown that he is doing well for his advanced age,” Costa said.
The Costa family are proud of Bobi’s remarkable achievement, and grateful to life for allowing them to have Bobi in their daily lives for 30 years. Bobi’s success is a testament to the power of a loving home and a peaceful environment, and his story is a reminder to cherish and appreciate the time we have with our beloved pets.