UPDATE: 22 February 2024 - Guinness World Records concludes oldest dog ever review launched after Bobi's death
Guinness World Records are saddened to learn of the death of Bobi, the world’s oldest dog ever.
Bobi lived to be 31 years 165 days old and spent his entire life with his loving owner Leonel Costa and his family in the Portuguese village of Conqueiros.
He passed away on 20 October in an animal hospital.
Bobi's death was announced by Dr Karen Becker, a veterinarian who met Bobi several times. She wrote on Facebook: "Last night, this sweet boy earned his wings.
"Despite outliving every dog in history, his 11,478 days on earth would never be enough, for those who loved him.
"Godspeed, Bobi…you’ve taught the world all you were meant to teach."
Bobi was announced as the world’s oldest dog living and oldest dog ever on 2 February 2023.
He was registered in 1992 with Serviço Medico-Veterinário do Município de Leiria (Veterinary Medical Service of the Municipality of Leiria), who confirmed his birth date.
Bobi’s age was also verified by SIAC, a pet database authorized by the Portuguese government and managed by the SNMV (Sindicato Nacional dos Médicos Veterinários; National Union of Veterinarians).
Although he lived to be the oldest verified dog in history, Bobi was lucky to have even made it to his first birthday.
Bobi was born in a litter of four puppies, however, because Leonel’s family already owned too many animals, his father decided not to keep them.
“Unfortunately, at that time it was considered normal by older people […] to bury the animals in a hole so that they would not survive,” Leonel revealed.
Leonel’s parents decided to take the puppies whilst their mother was away, however, they accidentally left Bobi behind. He was hidden amongst a pile of wood stored in the outbuilding where he was born, so Leonel’s parents didn’t spot him.
Bobi was soon discovered by Leonel and his brothers, who kept the puppy’s existence a secret.
When their parents eventually became aware of Bobi, it was too late to put him down, so Bobi became a part of the family.
“They screamed a lot and punished us, but it was worth it and for a good reason!” Leonel said.
According to Leonel, the “calm, peaceful” environment Bobi lived in contributed to his record-breaking age. Additionally, Bobi was never tied up, chained, nor leashed – he always enjoyed free roam of the nature surrounding his house.
As he advanced in age, Bobi became less mobile, so he spent most of his time in the backyard with his feline friends. Leonel described Bobi as a “very sociable” dog.
Leonel believes that Bobi’s diet also contributed to his longevity, as he exclusively ate human food. “What we ate, they ate too,” Leonel said.
Before serving food to Bobi, Leonel soaked it in water to remove the seasonings.
Leonel has owned several old-aged dogs in the past – Bobi’s mother, Gira, lived to be 18, and another one of his dogs, Chicote, died at 22.
“We see situations like this as a normal result of the life that they have, but Bobi is one of a kind,” Leonel said after Bobi was awarded his record.
Bobi had many fans around the globe – as evidenced by the 100+ people who showed up to his 31st birthday party – and he will be sorely missed.
Leonel said he was the “last of a long generation of animals” in the Costa family. Rest in peace, Bobi.