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Home > Most Famous Dogs - Stars from Movies and Television

Most Famous Dogs - Stars from Movies and Television

            Lassie - Movies and Television
The character of Lassie was created by British-American author Eric Knight in the short story "Lassie Come Home" published in the Saturday Evening Post in 1938 and as the novel Lassie Come Home in 1940. In 1943, the book was made into the first Lassie movie, Lassie Come Home, which generally followed the plot of the book, and which starred Roddy McDowall and Elizabeth Taylor. The movie was a hit. Between 1954-1974, there was a long-running television series, Lassie, in the U.S. Eventually, other series followed in the 1980s and 1990s from different production companies.
                     Rin Tin Tin - Movies
Rin Tin Tin was the name given to several German Shepherd dogs in film and television. The first of the line was a shell-shocked pup found by American serviceman Lee Duncan in France, less than two months before the end of World War I. He was named for a puppet called Rintintin.  Nicknamed Rinty by his owner, the dog learned tricks and could leap 11 feet 9 inches. The dog's big break came when he stepped in for a recalcitrant wolf in The Man From Hell's River (1922). His first starring role, 1923's Where The North Begins, playing alongside silent screen actress Claire Adams, was a huge success often credited with saving Warner Brothers from bankruptcy.
                         Asta - Movies
Asta (born Skippy) was a Wire-Haired Fox Terrier best known for his acting work in the 1934 detective comedy The Thin Man. He was trained by owners Henry East and Gale Henry East, and Frank Weatherwax. His other notable film performances include The Awful Truth (1937), as Mr. Smith, the subject of a custody dispute between Cary Grant and Irene Dunne; Bringing Up Baby (1938), as George, the bone-hiding pup belonging to Katharine Hepburn's aunt; and Topper Takes a Trip (1938), as Mr. Atlas. Due to the enormous popularity of Asta, interest in pet terriers skyrocketed.
           Petey - Our Gang Movie Shorts
Pete the Pup was a famous dog character in Hal Roach's Our Gang comedies during the 1920s and 1930s. Otherwise known as "Pete, the Dog With the Ring Around His Eye", or simply "Petey", he was famous for having a circled eye that was added on by Hollywood make-up artist Max Factor. The original Pete (sired by Earl Tudor's "Black Jack") named Pal the Wonder Dog had a natural ring almost completely around his eye; dye was used to finish it off.
      Murray - Mad About You - Television
Maui or "Murray" on Mad About You is a 9-year-old collie mix. He got his first major break as Murray, the lovable but slightly dim-witted dog on "Mad About You," during the comedy series' first season (1992-93). When Maui enters his seventh season, he will have to contend with the Buchman's first baby, whose presence will undoubtedly challenge Murray's role in the Buchman household.
              Moose - Fraiser - Television
Moose (December 24, 1990 – June 22, 2006) was a veteran canine actor. He was a Jack Russell Terrier and is most famous for his performances as Eddie Crane on the television sitcom Frasier. DeCagny has been quoted as saying that Moose was very highly trainable and won the role on Frasier after only six months of training. Moose had the ability to fix Kelsey Grammer with a long hard stare; this became a running sight gag on the show.
             Benji - Movies and Television
Benji is the name of a fictitious dog who was the focus of several movies in the 1970s and 1980s and is also the title of the first film in the series. His character was a lovable mutt who had an uncanny knack for being in the right place at the right time, usually helping a person overcome a problem. The real name of the dog who first played Benji was Higgins. Higgins had a role in the TV show Petticoat Junction in the mid 1960s, as did Edgar Buchanan, who also starred in the first movie.
            Gidget - Taco Bell Commercials
Gidget, the Taco Bell chihuahua was a popular advertising figure and mascot used by Taco Bell. The Chihuahua is a breed commonly associated with Mexico, as are the tacos the restaurant serves.   In commercials, the dog was depicted as a Mexican revolutionary wearing a beret or as a bandit wearing a sombrero. He was made to speak through special effects. His advertising catch-phrase was "ˇYo quiero Taco Bell!", Spanish for "I want Taco Bell!". It was subtitled on commercials as "I want some Taco Bell."
                       Air Bud - Movies
Air Bud is the 1997 feature film that sparked the franchise centered around the fictional dog Buddy, a Golden Retriever. The movie's title may be wordplay with "Air Jordan", a nickname of basketball superstar Michael Jordan. The following list indicates the sequel, its position in the series, and which sport is featured in it: Air Bud: Golden Receiver (1998), Air Bud: World Pup (2000),vAir Bud: Seventh Inning Fetch (2002), Air Bud: Spikes Back (2003), Air Buddies (2006) and Air Bud: Aussie Rules (2008).
           Sandy - Comics, Stage, Movies
Sandy, who overcame abuse as a puppy and was nearly put to death at a pound before achieving Broadway fame as the best friend of Little Orphan Annie and a member of President Franklin D. Roosevelt's inner circle. The dog, a beige terrier mix, lived in Haddam, Conn., with his owner and trainer, William Berloni. Sandy thrilled youngsters for the entire run of the musical ''Annie,'' which opened at the Alvin Theater on April 21, 1977, and closed on Jan. 2, 1983, after 2,377 performances. Sandy missed only 14 of those performances.

Lassie - Behind the Scenes

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