Bobi, the record breaking Portuguese canine and oldest dog in the world, sadly died on Saturday 21st of October, 2023. Incredibly, Bobi lived to the remarkable age of 31 years and 165 days, according to the Guinness World Records.
Born in 1992, the dog’s age was confirmed by the SIAC, a Portuguese government pet database, managed by the National Union of Veterinarians.
Bobi broke the latest world record on February 1, when he was 30 years and 266 days old, being crowned the prestigious award of the “world’s oldest dog” ever, breaking a record that had lasted for nearly a century. The previous titleholder, an Australian cattle dog named Bluey, was born in 1910 and lived for 29 years and 5 months.
Shockingly, Bobi was quite fortunate to make it past infancy. Leonal Costa (Bobi’s owner) recalls the litter was born in the family’s woodshed in 1992. His father had decided the family had too many animals already and that they wouldn’t be able to keep these puppies.
In his interview with Guinness World Records, Costa said …
“Unfortunately, at that time it was considered normal by older people who could not have more animals at home … to bury the animals in a hole so that they would not survive.”
The tale of how Bobi survived is perhaps miraculous with a dose of tragedy. Not long after the puppies were born Costa’s father stole the puppies while the mother dog Gira was out. This was of course devastating for young Costa. Days later, they noticed that Gira continued to visit the woodshed, so Costa and his brothers decided to follow her, only to discover a small, single brown and white puppy was tucked away under a pile of logs. All hail Bobi. The brothers thankfully kept Bobi a secret from their parents until his eyes started to open and the secret couldn’t go on for any longer.
“We knew that when the dog opened its eyes, my parents would no longer bury it.”GWR Interview
Bobi was a purebred Rafeiro do Alentejo, a form of Mastiff and hardy breed that is considered a worker dog that guards property and livestock. The breed typically has a lifespan of 12-14 years, but somehow Bobi remarkably managed to live for over twice that length of time.
But how? If there was some magic pill that we could all feed to our dogs to double their life expectancy then these would sell like hot cakes.
It turns out that Costa believes diet played a huge role in Bobi’s longevity. Bobi ate a diet of unseasoned human food that likely included a lot of whole foods in the forms of vegetables, meat and fish.
He was also free to wander through farmland, countryside and nearby forests close to their home in Conqueiros, a small Portuguese village. Who knows what he got up to and what he ate as he roamed the lands.
One thing is for sure, Bobi enjoyed a loving, calm and peaceful environment, where he could enjoy the land and feel safe around his loved ones.
Gira, Bobi’s mother also lived to 18 so there may be some element of genetics which can explain at least a part of his exceptionally long life. However, Chicote (another of Costa’s dogs) also lived to the ripe age of 22.
Bobi turned 31 years old in May 2023 and celebrated at a “big birthday party” with more than 100 guests. Many esteemed guests and fans specifically flew to Portugal from several other countries for the event in a huge demonstration of love, devotion and respect for the one of a kind dog.
Sadly, in his later years Bobi spent a lot of time sleeping in his bed by the fire. His death was announced on Facebook by local vet Dr Karen Becker, who met and treated Bobi several times.
“Despite outliving every dog in history, his 11,478 days on Earth would never be enough, for those who loved him. Last night, this sweet boy earned his wings.”
Rest in peace Bobi x.
Interested in more record breaking stories Like The Oldest Dog In The World, then read:
- The Legend of Zorba – The world’s heaviest dog
- Zeus – The world’s tallest dog
- Big Splash – The world’s most expensive dog