What is the secret of the longevity of the oldest dog on Earth

In a few months, Bobby will be 31 years old. According to the Guinness Book of World Records, he is the oldest dog on Earth. To be even more precise, no dog in the history of our world has ever lived to be his age.

Despite such a mature age for a dog, Bobby still looks very much alive. And this despite the fact that the dog has already outlived the average age of his breed by half. How he did it, we find out today in this article.


Bobby was born on May 11, 1992. This information was confirmed by the Portuguese government pet database run by the national veterinarians’ union. His breed in the original sounds like Rafeiro do Alentejo. And in our latitudes it is called the Portuguese Watchdog or Portuguese Mastiff.

On average, dogs of this breed live about 12-14 years. Bobby managed to live to almost 31 years. For a dog, that really is an incredible number of years. All this time he lived in a Portuguese village in the family of a man named Leonel. Bobby did what he was born to do. He herded and guarded livestock.

The pet broke an almost century-old record. His predecessor, the dog Bluey (1910-1939), was an Australian shepherd dog who lived 29 years 5 months. In fact, Bobi isn’t just the oldest dog alive-he’s the oldest dog in history.

The story of this sweet dog’s life touches the heart.

«I was 8 years old when he was born,» says Leonel, his owner. Along with Bobby, three other puppies were born. Leonel’s father was a hunter, so there were always lots of dogs in the house.

Leonel’s parents could not afford to keep the puppies. And then it was common in the villages to simply bury unwanted animals. A terrible practice! But that was the Portuguese reality. Bobby managed to survive by chance. When his father was taking the puppies out of the house, he just didn’t notice another one.

The happy life of a dog

Leonel recalls that he and his brothers were very sad. The very next day, however, they noticed that Gira (the mother of the puppies) kept visiting the outhouse where her babies were born.

«We thought it was strange, because there was no reason for her to go there anymore. There are no more puppies,» the man recalled.

The boys decided to follow the dog and found her walking to her puppy. He escaped the bitter fate of his relatives. So Leonel and his brothers decided to keep Bobby’s existence a secret.

«We knew that when he opened his eyes, my parents wouldn’t send him into the ground,» Leonel explained.

Newborn puppies usually take one to two weeks to open their eyes for the first time. This is due to the development of the central nervous system.

Eventually, Leonel’s parents discovered the dog after all. He had already opened his eyes, and there was nowhere to go: they decided to keep the pet. However, they could not get away with it. But they were willing to do anything to save the animal.

According to Leonel, Bobby managed to live to this age because he was away from noisy cities all the time, never chained up and never walked on a leash. He is a very social dog who is used to spending all his time outdoors.

Bobby, a 30-year-old dog now.

Bobby is less active now than he once was. He likes to lie in the backyard of the house in the company of the four cats who also live in Leonel’s household. The dog has begun to see poorly, and his owner has begun to notice more often that the dog collides with various objects in his path.

During the cold season, Bobby likes to relax around the fire. All his life, Leonel has been feeding him the same food he eats himself. No special food has ever been eaten by the dog. The man believes this has contributed to the pet’s longevity.

During those 30 years Bobby had been to the vet more than once. The dog had never had any serious health problems. Well, it was interesting to see how many more years fate had in store for him.

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