Guinness a day helps lizard to old-age record

Nik Venon, 38, a joiner from Leicestershire, is the owner of the world's oldest pet bearded dragon lizard, as verified by the Guinness Book of Records.  The lizard is aptly named Guinness and is 14 years and 7 months old, much older than the average lifespan of the creatures, which is between 5 and 9 years.   (Photo by Diensen Pamben / newsteam)
Nik Venon, 38, a joiner from Leicestershire, is the owner of the world's oldest pet bearded dragon lizard, as verified by the Guinness Book of Records. The lizard is aptly named Guinness and is 14 years and 7 months old, much older than the average lifespan of the creatures, which is between 5 and 9 years. (Photo by Diensen Pamben / newsteam)

A PET reptile has been crowned the world’s oldest bearded lizard after living to 14 years – thanks to a daily tipple of Guinness.

Aptly named ‘Guinness’, the pet has set a new world record after living to 14 years eight months - almost THREE times the age of normal lizards.

LEICESTERSHIRE, UNITED KINGDOM - APRIL, 01, 2012:  Nik Venon, 38-year-old, a joiner from Leicestershire, is the owner of the world�s oldest pet bearded dragon lizard, as verified by the Guinness Book of Records.  The lizard is aptly named �Guinness� and is 14 years and 7 months old, much older than the average lifespan of the creatures, which is between 5 and 9 years.   (Photo by Diensen Pamben / newsteam)

LEICESTERSHIRE, UNITED KINGDOM - APRIL, 01, 2012: Nik Venon, 38-year-old, a joiner from Leicestershire, is the owner of the world�s oldest pet bearded dragon lizard, as verified by the Guinness Book of Records. The lizard is aptly named �Guinness� and is 14 years and 7 months old, much older than the average lifespan of the creatures, which is between 5 and 9 years. (Photo by Diensen Pamben / newsteam)

Owner Nik (corr) Vernon, 38, is convinced his beloved pet’s long life is down to his daily teaspoon of stout.

He has now received a certificate confirming the record - from Guiness World Records.

Joiner Nik, from Fleckney, said: “I bought him from a lizard fair when he was a baby in 1997 and named him after my favourite drink, which was Guinness.

“When he was six weeks old I was having a pint while watching TV and he looked curiously at the glass.

LEICESTERSHIRE, UNITED KINGDOM - APRIL, 01, 2012:  Nik Venon, 38-year-old, a joiner from Leicestershire, is the owner of the world�s oldest pet bearded dragon lizard, as verified by the Guinness Book of Records.  The lizard is aptly named �Guinness� and is 14 years and 7 months old, much older than the average lifespan of the creatures, which is between 5 and 9 years.   (Photo by Diensen Pamben / newsteam)

LEICESTERSHIRE, UNITED KINGDOM - APRIL, 01, 2012: Nik Venon, 38-year-old, a joiner from Leicestershire, is the owner of the world�s oldest pet bearded dragon lizard, as verified by the Guinness Book of Records. The lizard is aptly named �Guinness� and is 14 years and 7 months old, much older than the average lifespan of the creatures, which is between 5 and 9 years. (Photo by Diensen Pamben / newsteam)

“I poured a bit in a saucer and he lapped it up.

“I couldn’t believe it and my mates laughed that he was living up to his name.

“He doesn’t have much, just a few sips but it perks him up and his skin is healthier, he’s livelier and it obviously can’t be doing him any harm.

“When I got him it came with his birth certificate which confirmed he was born on July 26, 1997.

“A month or two ago my local pet shop owner was asking how long I had had the ‘old boy’ and said he could be a record breaker.

“I did some research on the internet and the only other oldest bearded lizard was 12 and that was unconfirmed.

“I contacted the Guinness Book of Records who confirmed he was a record breaker.”

Guinness, a Pagona Viticep bearded dragon lizard, is native to Australia.

Most lizards have a life expectancy of between five and nine years but Guinness is only just three months away from celebrating his 15th birthday.

Married Nik said Guinness comes second to long-suffering wife Rochelle, 39, a primary teacher.

He said: “I’ve been married to Rochelle for 10 years but she always knew she comes second to Guinness and she knows that.”

Last week Nik received a certificate from Guinness World Records confirming Guinness was the oldest living pet bearded dragon on the planet.