It pays to be small. Just ask Spike, the world’s oldest living dog.
Spike is a Chihuahua mix who weighs in at 12.9 pounds. He is 19 inches long. And per Guinness World Records, he’s older than any dog alive today, at the ripe old age of 23 years and 43 days, as of Dec. 7.
Interestingly, he was found by his owner, Rita Kimball, in a Camden, Ohio, grocery store parking lot 13 years ago, Fox News reported. So he was 10 years old at the time.
“He had been shaved up his back, had blood stains around his neck from a chain or rope, and looked pretty rough,” Kimball told Guinness World Records. “The clerk in the grocery told us he had been there for three days, and they were feeding him scraps.”
When Kimball was leaving the parking lot, Spike just followed her. So she took him home. Little did she know that more than a dozen years later, he’d be getting an official Guinness World Records certificate.
Meet Spike, The Oldest Living Dog!
Spike remains close to those he knows well, Kimball said. But age has made him too tired to be all fawned over by strangers. That is actually sort of the Chihuahua way, anyway.
“He is friendly but since he’s almost blind and hard of hearing, he gets testy at times and just wants to be left alone,” she said.
Anyone who is about 138 years old in dog years can probably understand.
That said, Kimball does her part to keep him fit, with daily exercise and diet. She said he still enjoys playing with the family cat and taking his Saturday evening bath.
“There’s always something to do on a farm; we cut wood, clean out fence rows, bale hay and harvest crops,” Kimball added.
Her family reached out to Guinness World Records after seeing Pebbles, supposedly the world’s oldest dog at 22, on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. Pebbles died back in October.
“Most of our family knew that Spike was old but didn’t know he had a shot at being the oldest in the world,” Kimball said. “Now that he is a record holder, they see him as a celebrity.”