R.I.P. Tillman, The World’s Most Famous Skateboarding Bulldog

Tillman, the world-famous skateboarding dog, has died in Southern California due to heart problems, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Tillman’s human, Ron Davis, broke the news Wednesday via a Facebook post.

“I’m sorry to announce the world lost a true legend…My best bud Tillman passed away last night. We shared so many memories skating, surfing and hanging out together. No words can truly describe how much he’ll be missed. Thanks for all the good times, Tilly.”

According to the Huffington Post, Tillman, who was 10 years old at the time of his death, was rushed by Ron to the veterinary hospital when he noticed the English bulldog “lapsing into a sudden bout of labored panting.” Davis performed cardiovascular resuscitation on Tillman but the English bulldog reportedly died on the way to the hospital.

Tillman has been suffering from an irregular heartbeat over the summer, which eventually developed into a heart muscle disease.

Tillman holds the Guinness World record for “the fastest 100 meters on a skateboard by a dog.” As a regular competitor in the Tournament of Roses parade, Tillman was beloved by many. Not only was Tillman a fierce competitor as a skateboarder, he was also known for his stunning good looks and ebullient personality.

“He was my best friend, my brother and my shadow, and when it was show time, it was amazing,” Davis told the Times. “He made millions and millions of people smile throughout the world. He was a little 60-pound butterball of inspiration for a lot of people.”

Tillman became an Internet sensation in 2007 when a YouTube video of him skateboarding went viral on the web. In the video, the world’s most famous bulldog was seen skateboarding at a beachside park, moving at full speed and changing directions deftly like a human professional. Said video has been viewed on YouTube more than 21 million times.

Apple then featured Tillman in an early iPhone advertisement, catapulting his fame to new heights. In 2009, Tillman skated more than 100 meters within 20 seconds, which earned him the Guinness World Record as the world’s fastest skateboarding dog.

In September 2013, Tillman’s record was broken by a very slight margin (a.028 second difference) by Jumpy the Dog on the set of Officially Amazing in Los Angeles, California, USA. Davis said that Tillman tried to regain the record early this year during the Super Bowl festivities in Phoenix, but the rain caused the rubberlike surface for the event to become too slow. Despite the record being broken, Tillman was still the most beloved skateboarding dog in the world. For one, Tillman was multi-talented. On top of skateboarding, he was also made famous by his surfing and snowboarding skills, as well as his knack for riding in his special seat in an all-terrain vehicle, as previously reported by NBC News.

Tillman wasn’t just an Internet sensation, he was also a reality TV star. The brilliant bulldog was the lead star in the Hallmark Channel’s 2012 reality show Who Let the Dogs Out. In the series, Tillman and his human Ron embarked on a mission to travel the country in search of the most talented dog At the end of the journey, Tillman and his friends were tasked to select the most talented pooch in America.


Davis said that he was never able to teach Tillman traditional dog tricks such as rolling over and begging. The famous pooch, according to him, took to skateboarding naturally. Despite that, it took hundreds of hours of training before Tillman mastered skateboarding, said Davis.

[Photo by Frazer Harrison/Getty Images]

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