A dog who was found abandoned in a supermarket car park has gone on to become a Guinness World Record holder, being named the world’s oldest living dog.
Chihuahua cross Spike – who is 23 years old and lives in Camden, Ohio – was taken in by Rita Kimball and her family after they found the “severely neglected” pooch in August 2009.
Ms Kimball said that despite the dog being in the condition he was, as soon as she opened the car door “Spike jumped right in and sat on the seat, as if he knew where we were going. It was meant to be”.
Years later, the almost blind and hard of hearing Spike has made himself at home with his family, waking up at 7am on most days and visiting the animals on the Kimballs’ farm, which include horses, cows and cats.
He has also proved to be a fighter, having survived multiple attacks from other animals despite being given a low chance of survival each time.
Ms Kimball – who first thought that her dog could be a Guinness World Record holder (GWR) after watching a Jimmy Fallon episode which featured a picture of a former oldest living dog GWR winner who was younger than Spike – said that seeing her pooch get the accolade is a testament to his positive nature.
“Most of our family knew that Spike was old, but (they) didn’t know he had a shot at being oldest in the world”, she said.
“Now that he is a (Guinness World Records title) holder, they look at him like a celebrity. They can’t believe he lived this long.
“I believe he is still here because, after having such a terrible life at first, he makes the best of every day and now sees his rewards in his later years.”
Spike achieved the title on December 7, 2022.
The previous record holder for the oldest dog living was Gino Wolf, who achieved the record at 22 years and 52 days, which was verified on November 15, 2022.