The world’s oldest dog, Bobi, dies at age 31

Leonel Costa kisses Bobi the dog
Facebook/Dr. Karen Becker

Sad news from Portugal: The world’s oldest dog, Bobi, died on Oct. 21 at the record-shattering age of 31.

Bobi wasn’t just the oldest living dog on the planet — he was the oldest dog officially recorded. The Guinness Book of World Records certified his age and named him the oldest dog in the world, ever, earlier this year.

Karen Becker, a veterinarian who’d met Bobi and his family several times, shared the news on Facebook Sunday, writing,” Is there ever enough time? I think not. Last night, this sweet boy earned his wings.”

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Bobi outlived the previous record-holder, an Australian cattle dog named Bluey (of course), by more than two years. That record was set all the way back in 1939.

Bobi resided in Conquieros, a tiny town between Porto and Lisbon in Portugal. He lived with one family, the Costas, throughout his long life. He was the lone puppy to survive the disposal of an unwanted litter; when 8-year-old Leonel Costa and his brothers found out he’d been left behind, they conspired to keep the secret until Bobi grew too much for his parents to do anything about it.

Costa told the Guinness World Records organization he attributes Bobi’s long life to his “calm, peaceful” home.

Costa also shared the secret of Bobi’s diet — human food, rinsed in water to remove excess seasonings.

“Between a can of animal food or a piece of meat, Bobi doesn’t hesitate and chooses our food,” Costa said.

Bobi’s breed, the Rafeiro do Alentejo, typically lives between 12 and 14 years, according to the American Kennel Club. Bred to watch livestock or work as guard dogs, they’re described as “powerful, rustic, sober and calm” dogs.

Costa admitted that Bobi slowed down in his later years — like many older pups, he had trouble walking and his eyesight was failing. But he just kept going, even after a frightening collapse in 2018.

There’s no word yet on who might replace Bobi as the oldest living dog. Just before Bobi was discovered, the Guinness Book had recognized a Chihuahua named Spike as the world’s oldest pupper at age 23 — but then Bobi came on the scene at his amazingly advanced age.

What a life! Good boy, Bobi.

Animals, News, Pets
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About the Author
Kathleen St. John
Kathleen St. John is a freelance journalist. She lives in Denver with her husband, two kids and a fiercely protective Chihuahua.

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