The crown for the oldest living dog has just been awarded to the adorable TobyKeith, a Chihuahua from Florida who celebrated his 21st birthday in January. Based in Florida with his owner Gisela Shore, TobyKeith has taken out the Guinness World Records title for oldest living dog, and yet the laidback little canine is taking his newfound fame in his stride.
With the average lifespan of a Chihuahua being 12 to 18 years, TobyKeith continues to surprise everyone with his ongoing zest for life. “When he turned 20 years everyone’s reaction was WOW! My friends and family thought he was the oldest dog they knew about. People can’t believe how good he looks for his age,” she said in a statement released by Guinness World Records (opens in new tab).
So, what exactly is the secret to TobyKeith's long life we hear you ask? Well, according to Shore it all boils down to regular exercise, a diet of vegetables, rice and chicken, good genetics and a loving home.
It's likely that his regular play sessions with his much younger siblings also help to keep this ageing Chihuahua young at heart. TobyKeith is big brother to Luna, a 7-year-old American bulldog and Lalam, a 3-year-old Chinese Crested, plus two birds, Coco, a 28-year-old Umbrella Cockatoo, and Coqui, a 32-year-old African Grey.
Describing her constant Chihuahua companion as "sweet, gentle, loving and my little bodyguard," Shore is over the moon about TobyKeith's achievement. “The thought that my little guy has reached such a milestone is fantastic! I am thrilled.”
In celebration of this special milestone, Gisela posted on the Chihuahua Club Facebook page on his 21st birthday saying: "Happy 21st birthday to the love of my life TobyKeith. Through good times, bad times and heartaches this little boy with the heart of a lion has been by my side."
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When she was informed that TobyKeith had been awarded the record for the longest living dog, Gisela said, "I love the recognition of knowing that he has had a healthy long life with me as his mommy."
"We adore him so much and achieving this record is testimony of the loving home we have provided for him. TobyKeith is such a blessing. I am so lucky to still have him in my life."
After finding out that he was officially the world's oldest living dog, TobyKeith reportedly celebrated with a bath, pawdicure and a ride in the car where he excitedly hung his head out of the window. “It definitely brought a big smile on my face!” says Shore.
If you're looking to find a dog that might beat TobyKeith's impressive record, be sure to check out our guide to which dog breed lives the longest to help you choose the perfect long-term canine companion.
Kathryn is a freelance writer who has spent the past two years dividing her writing time between her two great loves - pets and health and wellness. When she’s not busy crafting the perfect sentence for her features, buying guides and news pieces, she can be found hanging out with one very mischievous Cocker Spaniel, drinking copious amounts of Jasmine tea and attempting to set numerous world records for the longest ever FaceTime calls with her family back home in NZ.
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