How Can the World’s Oldest Dog Have Died AGAIN?

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Not actually Uncle Chichi, but perhaps his spirit animal.
Not actually Uncle Chichi, but perhaps his spirit animal. Photo: Michael Webb/Keystone/Getty Images

Yet again, we must mourn the death of the world's possibly oldest dog. Sarah Maslin Nir of the Times, who's made a small specialty of reporting on old dogs, writes that one Uncle Chichi, a West Village–based toy poodle who was anywhere between 24 and 26 years of age and possibly held the oldest-dog crown, was euthanized last week. We, of course, feel sadness for Chichi's owners, but also a sense of deja vu. After all, it was just last month that we noticed another story about the world's oldest dog dying. And before that, just about two years ago, the world's oldest dog clocked in at 21, and New York's oldest dog was 20. Was Chichi — at least 22 then — merely hiding from the publicity? Or is it possible that these "oldest dog" titles are not totally accurate?

Now, we understand that the activity that the world's oldest dog is most likely to engage in is dying, and so this headline will happen a lot. To her credit, Nir points out that Chichi's owners didn't have proof of their dog's age, and that it's impossible to say, really, whether he was the world — or city's — oldest, even if they did. He was old, and he was on Good Morning America for it, which means at the very least he was the city's most famous old dog. But we just ask that someone take the time to really dig into the numbers on this — worldwide. Where is the Daily when you need it?