Bobi, the world’s oldest dog, dies: Owner reveals secrets to Rafeiro do Alentejo breed’s long life as tributes pour in

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Bobi, the world’s oldest dog, dies: Owner reveals secrets to Rafeiro do Alentejo breed’s long life as tributes pour in

The world's oldest dog has died just five months after celebrating his 31st birthday at the Portuguese family-run farm where he spent his entire life.

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The world’s oldest dog has died just five months after celebrating his 31st birthday at the Portuguese family-run farm where he spent his entire life.

The owner of a Lisbon-based pet photography studio revealed the sad news overnight. A picture of Bobi was posted on social media alongside the message:  ‘Rest in peace friend. Thank you for having had the privilege of meeting you, the oldest dog in the world.’

The post continued: ‘What an amazing life you had.’

Bobi was awarded a Guinness World Record title for the oldest dog in the world in February, replacing a chihuahua living in Ohio in the US.

Bobi, a purebred Rafeiro do Alentejo – a Portuguese breed of livestock guardian dog – was also recorded as the world’s oldest dog ever. The previous record was held by an Australian cattle dog who died in 1939 aged 29 years and five months.

Bobi was the proud holder of two Guinness World Records

Bobi was the proud holder of two Guinness World Records

Bobi was the proud holder of two Guinness World Records

Bobi was born in an outhouse where the family of his owner, Leonel, stored wood

Bobi was born in an outhouse where the family of his owner, Leonel, stored wood

Bobi was born in an outhouse where the family of his owner, Leonel, stored wood

A Portuguese pet photography studio shared the news of Bobi's passing

A Portuguese pet photography studio shared the news of Bobi's passing

A Portuguese pet photography studio shared the news of Bobi’s passing

Dogs typically only live for 10 to 13 human years.

Bobi’s age was understood to have been verified by his vet and a pet database authorised by the Portuguese government.

In 1992, Bobi was registered with the Veterinary Medical Service of the Municipality of Leiria. The organisation confirmed Bobi’s birth date.

His age has been verified by SIAC, a pet database authorised by the Portuguese government and managed by the National Union of Veterinarians.

Bobi’s owner Leonel Costa, held a birthday party for the farm dog on May 11 in the village of Conqueiros in Portugal’s Leiria district, but has not yet commented on his dog’s death. 

Local meat and fish were served up to more than 100 guests attending his birthday celebrations – some of whom flew in from abroad – with extra for Bobi who only eats human food. 

Leonel Costa, now 38, was only eight when his beloved pet was born in an outhouse where his family stored wood.

When Bobi turned 31, he said: ‘[He] has been a warrior for all these years, only he knows how he’s been holding on, it must not be easy because the average dog’s life span is not that high and if he spoke only he could explain this success.

‘We are very happy and grateful to life for allowing us, after 30 years, to have Bobi in our daily lives.’

Bobi is pictured in 1999 on the family-run farm where he enjoys playing with the cats

Bobi is pictured in 1999 on the family-run farm where he enjoys playing with the cats

Bobi is pictured in 1999 on the family-run farm where he enjoys playing with the cats

He was officially named the world's oldest dog in February, as well as the oldest dog to have ever lived

He was officially named the world's oldest dog in February, as well as the oldest dog to have ever lived

He was officially named the world’s oldest dog in February, as well as the oldest dog to have ever lived

Bobi was 31 when he passed away

Bobi was 31 when he passed away

Bobi was 31 when he passed away 

He went on to attribute the animal’s longevity to the ‘calm, peaceful environment he lives in, his diet of human food and his freedom.’

Bobi, who reportedly survived being put down by Leonel’s dad along with his two brothers shortly after birth because he escaped, was never chained up or put on a leash.

His long age was also linked to his genes. Bobi’s mother Gira lived to the age of 18 and another of the family’s dogs, Chicote, made it to the age of 22.

Pet lovers immediately responded to the news of Bobi’s death with messages expressing their sadness, with one saying: ‘What a sad day.

‘What a long and happy life Bobi had. Run free and happy.’

Another Portuguese pet photography studio added: ‘He’s deserved that little rest.’

Dogs generally only live for 10 to 13 years on average

Dogs generally only live for 10 to 13 years on average

Dogs generally only live for 10 to 13 years on average

Bobi's owner Leonel (pictured) says he grew up with the dog from the age of eight

Bobi's owner Leonel (pictured) says he grew up with the dog from the age of eight

Bobi’s owner Leonel (pictured) says he grew up with the dog from the age of eight

Bobi reportedly survived being put down by Leonel's dad along with his two brothers shortly after birth because he escaped

Bobi reportedly survived being put down by Leonel's dad along with his two brothers shortly after birth because he escaped

Bobi reportedly survived being put down by Leonel’s dad along with his two brothers shortly after birth because he escaped

Vet and bestselling author Karen Becker, who was at Bobi’s 31st birthday party in May and did tests on the animal to try to understand the reasons behind his longevity, said in a tribute overnight: ‘Is there ever enough time? I think not.

‘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.

‘When we asked Leonel what his recipe was for Bobi’s exceptionally long life, his response was swift: “Good nutrition, constant contact with nature, freedom to discover his environment, consistent veterinary care, and love. Bobi knows he’s deeply loved.”

‘Godspeed, Bobi… you’ve taught the world all you were meant to teach.’

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