Bobi, a Rafeiro do Alentejo from Portugal, has died aged 31 years 165 days on Saturday 21 October. Born in May 1992, he was the holder of a double record as both the oldest dog alive, and the oldest dog ever recorded.
Bobi had turned 31 on 11 May, a milestone his family celebrated with a party at the farm where he’d lived all his life, in the Portuguese village of Conqueiros. Over a hundred people took part to the celebration.
According to Guinness World Records, Bobi narrowly escaped being buried alive by the parents of his owner when he was just a puppy, which was a common way to get rid of unwanted pups at the time. However, they didn’t notice Bobi as he hid behind a pile of wood, so he didn’t suffer the same fate as his litter mates.
Bobi was discovered by owner Leonel, at the time only eight years old, and his brothers, who kept his survival a secret until he was too old to be put down. Lionel later recalled that their parents “screamed a lot and punished us, but it was worth it and for a good reason”.
According to Leonel, the “calm, peaceful” environment Bobi lived in contributed to his record-breaking age, as well his ability to roam as he pleased at the farm, as well as eating exclusively the same food as his owners – minus the seasoning, which Lionel removed by soaking the food.
The previous record holder for the oldest dog living was Spike, who achieved the record at 23 years and 7 days, as verified in Camden, Ohio on 7 December 2022 – a few months after the death of another previous record holder, Pebbles. The previous record holder for the oldest dog ever was Bluey, an Australian cattle dog who lived to 29 years 5 months before being put to sleep in November 1939.