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Guinness World Records Reviews World Oldest Dog Title Holder, Bobi, Amid Vets’ Skepticism

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Source: @bintem29/Twitter

The status of the world’s oldest dog record is under scrutiny, and there is a possibility that the current title holder may lose the Guinness World Record. The authority responsible for overseeing world records is conducting a formal review of the claim of the oldest dog. 

The current record was awarded to Bobi, a 31-year-old Rafeiro do Alentejo from Portugal, in February 2023, as confirmed by Guinness spokesperson Amanda Marcus last week to USA TODAY.

Bobi, the dog who held the title of the world’s oldest dog, passed away approximately eight months after being awarded the Guinness World Record. The decision to formally review Bobi’s age and the validity of the world’s oldest dog record came after several veterinarians expressed doubts.

In response to the skepticism, a statement from GWR mentioned, “reviewing the evidence we have on file, seeking new evidence, reaching out to experts and those linked to the original application.” The aim is to thoroughly assess the available information and gather additional evidence to ensure the accuracy of the record.

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Bobi’s entire life was spent in the rural Portuguese village of Conqueiros, located approximately 93 miles north of Lisbon, the country’s capital. According to a previous report by USA TODAY, Bobi lived with his owner, Leonel Costa, and Costa’s family.

Due to the challenges of caring for four puppies, Bobi’s owner’s father decided to part with the puppies, as the family already had many animals to care for.

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Regrettably, during that period, it was deemed customary by older individuals to bury animals in a hole to ensure they would not survive, Leonel Costa shared with Guinness.

Despite the initial attempt to part with Bobi and bury him, Leonel Costa and his brothers were fortunate enough to discover him alive nearby. Bobi had managed to escape, finding refuge in a wood pile at their home.

The siblings, wanting to keep Bobi’s existence a secret, did so for as long as possible. However, once their parents learned that Bobi was alive, it was too late to take further action. Consequently, Bobi became an integral part of the family, as reported by Guinness.

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Despite its challenging beginning, Bobi’s life was characterized by love and celebration. His family went on to organize a grand birthday party for the senior dog, which was attended by over 100 guests, to commemorate his 31st birthday. Sadly, Bobi passed away approximately 165 days after this festive celebration.

Described by his owner as “one of a kind,” Bobi brought immense joy to his family. His owner expressed gratitude to life for allowing them to have Bobi in their daily lives for over 30 years.

The status of Bobi as the world’s oldest dog hinges on the results of the ongoing review. Although his age had been independently verified and confirmed by several entities, including Guinness and the Sistema de Informação de Animais de Companhia (a government-authorized pet database managed by the Sindicato Nacional dos Médicos Veterinários, the national union of veterinarians in Portugal), the review will ultimately determine the accuracy and legitimacy of the record.

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