In this era of memes, viral videos, and internet celebri-pets, it comes as no surprise that some animals receive bigger paychecks than their humans. However, it may shock you to find out just how large some of their bank accounts really are! And let’s not forget the trust fund critters. A U.K. hen named Gigoo inherited a whopping $15 million, but her windfall is a mere pittance compared to the world’s richest dog and the number one pup on our list!
Before we dive into our top 5, there is one dog that deserves an honorable mention. Trouble, the beloved Maltese of notorious real estate tycoon Leona Helmsley, inherited $12 million when Helmsley passed away in 2007. The “Queen of Mean” famously snubbed two of her grandchildren in favor of her pup.
However, a judge thought $12 million was a bit much for a lap dog and cut the inheritance down to $2 million. The decision bumped “poor” Trouble off our list, but he still died a very wealthy dog in 2012.
5. The Roddenberry Dogs, Heirs to a Star Trek Fortune
Net Worth: $4 Million
Gene Roddenberry was the creator of the sci-fi hit, Star Trek. His wife, Majel Barrett Roddenberry was an actress and voice artist who starred in various episodes of her husband’s show. The couple kept several pups of different breeds, and made them some of the richest dogs in the world when they passed away.
When Majel died in 2009, she left the dogs $4 million, as well as a personal caretaker and a mansion for them all to live in!
4. Pontiac, Beloved Pooch of Golden Girl Betty White
Net Worth: $5 Million
Pontiac the Golden Retriever has a wealthy mom, but he’s also a working dog in his own right. He serves as the spokespup for Betty White’s charity of choice, The Morris Animal Foundation. White is an outspoken dog lover and defender of all animals. As such, she has made provisions for Pontiac in the form of a $5 million trust should she pass away first. He is the richest pup in Hollywood and he has an amazing mom – lucky dog!
3. Conchita Posner, Pocket Pup of a Corporate Heiress
Net Worth: $11.3 Million
Gail Posner was the Florida heiress to corporate takeover king, Victor Posner. When she passed away in 2010, she left behind her $3 million fortune to her three adored dogs. Conchita was a teeny-tiny Chihuahua, April Maria was a Maltese, and Lucia was a Yorkshire Terrier. Posner also bequeathed her $8.3 million Miami beach house to the dogs.
To ensure Conchita, April Maria and Lucia were cared for up to her standards, Posner left a total of $27 million to various body guards and household staff. They were allowed to live rent-free in the Miami mansion as long as they tended to the dogs’ every want and need.
Despite the luxurious lifestyle she set up for the dogs, Posner left her son a mere $1 million!
2. Oprah’s Dogs, Set to Inherit a Talk Show Dynasty
Net Worth: $30 Million
Oprah Winfrey may be the most beloved woman in the world. She began building her wealth as a humble talk show host in the 1980s and quickly became a media sensation, role model and generous philanthropist. Forbes estimates Oprah is worth $2.8 billion, putting her in 660th place on its list of billionaires. When you take that mind-boggling number into account, willing $30 million to a group of dogs doesn’t seem so outrageous!
As some of the richest dogs in the world, Oprah’s menagerie of Cocker Spaniels, Golden Retrievers and Springer Spaniels are accustomed to a luxurious lifestyle. Their media mogul mom has ensured they will maintain their fabulous way of life even if she is not there with them.
1. Gunther IV Leibenstein, The Richest Animal in the World
Net Worth: $373 Million
Gunther III was a German Shepherd and the lucky heir to German countess Karlotta Leibenstein’s $80 million fortune. When Gunther III passed away, his wealth passed to his son, Gunther IV who was born around 1991. Gunther’s staff of caretakers have been smart with his money over the years, parlaying his fortune into $373 million and making him the richest dog – and likely the richest animal – in the world.
If Gunther IV were alive today, he would be 28-years-old. Despite the fact that the German Shepherd traveling around the world from mansion to mansion still goes by Gunther IV, he is probably Gunther V, VI or VII.
Whichever dog is currently enjoying the Leibenstein fortune, he certainly has it made! He travels by limousine, has a custom-made swimming pool, and owns estates in Italy, Germany and the Bahamas. Gunther even owns a $7.5 million home in Miami that once belonged to Madonna.
Want to learn more about the richest pets in the world? ComparetheMarket.com compiled the first ever list of wealthiest animals with their 2018 Pet Rich List. Surprisingly, only 13 out of 35 are dogs!
H/T to BreedingBusiness.com