Famous skateboarding dog Tillman dies at age 10 in California

Thu Oct 29, 2015 4:40pm EDT
Email This Article |
Share This Article
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
| Print This Article | Single Page
[-] Text [+]

By Alex Dobuzinskis

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Tillman, the English bulldog who in 2009 set a Guinness World Record as the fastest skateboarding canine and starred in videos that demonstrated his four-wheeled prowess, has died in Southern California at age 10, his owner said on Thursday.

Tillman, who suffered from an irregular heartbeat, died on Tuesday night after lapsing into a sudden bout of labored panting, according to his owner, Ron Davis, 46.

Davis, who lives in the coastal town of Oxnard just northwest of Los Angeles, said he rushed Tillman to a veterinary hospital and performed cardiovascular resuscitation in a failed attempt to revive his beloved pet.

"He was my best friend, my brother and my shadow, and when it was show time, it was amazing. He made millions and millions of people smile throughout the world," Davis said of his pooch. "He was a little 60-pound (27.2 kg) butterball of inspiration for a lot of people."

Tillman gained legions of fans with his appearance in a 2007 YouTube video that showed him pushing his skateboard with his paws and riding around a concrete path at a beachside park, tilting his body to steer.

The video has been seen more than 20 million times on YouTube and was featured in an early commercial for Apple Inc's iPhone to demonstrate the video-playing abilities of the device.

Recognized for his light brown coat, white face and white chest, Tillman also appeared in the Hallmark channel's reality television series "Who Let the Dogs Out."

In 2009, Tillman's talents landed him a Guinness World Record as the fastest skateboarding dog after he rolled across 100 meters (yards) in 19.678 seconds at the X Games in Los Angeles.   Continued...

Surfer Dog Tillman rides a wave at the Surf City surf dog contest in Huntington Beach, California in this September 28, 2014 file photo. REUTERS/Lucy Nicholson/Files