Guinness World Records annuls ‘oldest dog ever’ title for dead Bobi

22 February 2024, 15:24

Bobi poses for a photo with his Guinness World Record certificates
Portugal Oldest Dog Record. Picture: PA

Bobi, a reportedly 31-year-old guard dog, had lived on a farm in the village of Conqueiros in Portugal with his owner, Leonel Costa.

Guinness World Records has ruled against a Portuguese dog which died last year keeping the title of oldest canine ever.

Following a review, GWR said on Thursday it “no longer has the evidence it needs to support Bobi’s claim as the record holder”.

Bobi, a reportedly 31-year-old guard dog, had lived on a farm in the village of Conqueiros in Portugal with his owner, Leonel Costa.

He was proclaimed the world’s oldest living dog, and oldest dog ever, in February 2023. Said to have been born on May 11, 1992, he died last October.

GWR said it opened an investigation after concerns raised by vets and other experts, both privately and publicly, and media questions.

“We take tremendous pride in ensuring as best we can the accuracy and integrity of all our record titles,” Mark McKinley, GWR’s director of records, who conducted the review, said in a statement.

The group had suspended the title pending the review, announced last month.

“We of course require evidence for all Guinness World Records titles we monitor, often a minimum of two statements from witnesses and subject experts,” Mr McKinley said.

He said they also considered pictures, video and, where appropriate, data provided by technology relevant to the achievement.

GWR said they found that a lack of evidence from Bobi’s microchip data left them with no conclusive evidence of his date of birth.

Mr McKinley said that it was too early to speak about a new record holder.

“It’s going to take a long time for microchip uptake around the world to catch up with pet ownership, especially of older pets,” he said.

“Until that time, we’ll require documentary evidence for all years of a pet’s life.”

Bobi was a Rafeiro do Alentejo, a breed that has an average life expectancy of about 10 to 14 years.

In an emailed statement in January, his owner defended the title, saying Guinness World Records had spent a year checking the record claim.

By Press Association

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