A 21-year-old chihuahua named after legendary singer-songwriter Toby Keith has regained his title of the “world’s oldest living dog.”
The previous Guinness record holder, Pebbles, a 22-year-old toy-fox terrier from South Carolina, died on October 3, celebrated with a long life full of “country music and being loved,” owner Julie Gregory shared on Instagram.
Kylie Galloway with Guinness World Records from North America told USA TODAY on Wednesday (Oct. 12), “We send our sincerest condolences to Pebbles’ family. I can confirm that TobyKeith currently holds the Guinness World Records title for the oldest dog living.”
TobyKeith reigned as the oldest living dog until earlier this year when Pebbles’ owner found out about the record and contacted Guinness, bumping TobyKeith off his throne in May.
In good spirit, TobyKeith’s owner Gisela Shore of Greenacres, Fla, sent her condolences to Pebbles’ owner after hearing of the tragedy.
“It was sad news,” she told USA TODAY.
However, a silver lining resulted when Guinness contacted Shore with news that TobyKeith had taken his crown back as the oldest living dog.
Healthy chihuahuas live for an average of 15-20 years. TobyKeith, at 21 ¾ years old, has regular 6-month visits with his veterinarian and continues to be in perfect health according to Shore.
With a combination of exercise, vitamin D and a healthy diet, TobyKeith takes it easy these days enjoying his retired lifestyle. Shore takes him on walks in the neighborhood and lets him roam around the backyard, sharing that he “loves to sunbathe 10 to 15 minutes a day.”
TobyKeith is also accustomed to trips to the park multiple times a week and frequent car rides. He loves getting a whiff of the windy air when Shore rolls the windows down, “but only at a stop light,” she said.
Self-care is routine for TobyKeith, “ I do take him to get his pedicures … about every four weeks,” Shore added.
It seems as though TobyKeith gets all his vitamins and nutrients in with a delicious diet of brown rice, vegetables, chicken and dog kibble.
“As a treat, he still enjoys his carrots (minced into tiny little bites), and a little piece of Turkey in the morning. That’s what he eats almost every day,” Shore said.
TobyKeith also gets his daily dose of companionship from Shore, as she does about half of her work from home as a sales representative.
“He’s either right behind me,” beside her desk chair, “or at my feet,” she said. “I think he’s looking for heat.”
The elderly chihuahua was adopted by Shore as a puppy after being surrendered to a local shelter by an older couple who could no longer care for him. His birth name had been “Peanut Butter,” and Shore had renamed him TobyKeith, being a huge country music fan herself with tickets to his show around the same time she adopted the puppy.
Shore laughed, “And I just thought it would be funny to name a tiny little three-pound dog after this big, 6-foot, 250-pound man.”