Jul 04, 2023

Celebrating National Dog Day: Disney dogs we all love

Landon McReynolds, Producer

ORLANDO, Fla. – Disney is packed with some memorable stories featuring beloved characters, including “Cinderella,” “The Little Mermaid” and “Peter Pan.”

Sure, they all have a prince or princess that we know about, but they also have “paw-ssibly” some of our favorite dogs.

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Saturday, Aug. 26, is National Dog Day. This entire day is dedicated to celebrating our best friend, companion or future pet that is ready for adoption.

Disney has several furry sidekicks and stars that have stayed loyally by our sides for decades.

Check out a few of our favorites below.

One of the most recognizable Disney dogs is Mickey Mouse’s pet dog, Pluto. He first appeared as a nameless bloodhound in the 1930s’ “The Chain Gang.” According to Disney fan site D23, during one of Pluto’s first on-screen appearances, he was referred to as Rover, and actually was Minnie Mouse’s pet dog. It wasn’t until the third cartoon where he received the name Pluto.

Yes, if you didn’t know, everyone’s favorite character, Goofy, is actually a dog. The accident-prone goofball was first introduced in the 1932 short film “Mickey’s Revue,” under the name Dippy Dawg. Over the decades, Goofy has appeared in more than 49 cartoons and even had his own movie and TV series.

Who doesn’t love the two dogs who fell in love over a plate of spaghetti and meatballs. Lady, a young cocker spaniel from a respectable home, falls in love with Tramp, a mutt who lives along the railroad yards. The classic film had its world premiere in Chicago on June 16, 1955, and general release on June 22, 1955. It was released in theaters several times over the years and even had a live-action film created for audiences to watch in 2019 on Disney+. Honorable mentions in this film also include Lady’s neighborhood dog friends, Jock, the Scottish terrier, and Trusty, the bloodhound.

Audiences were first introduced to Pongo and Perdita in 1961. The adorable pair and their 15 puppies became the target of Cruella De Vil, one of the most evil Disney villains out there. The film “101 Dalmatians” has helped inspire live-action films, TV series and most recently the Disney film “Cruella” starring Emma Stone.

He’s the basset hound that some people forget about, but he is one of my personal favorites. Toby, in the “Great Mouse Detective,” helps the characters Basil and his partner Dr. Dawson solve the kidnapping in the 1986 feature film. Toby’s nose helps track down and stop Professor Ratigan and Fidget, his bat sidekick.

One thing that makes Dug, from Disney and Pixar’s 2009 film “UP,” really special is that he can talk all thanks to his high-tech collar that translates his thoughts. Dug is one dog you want to keep around because he is playful, friendly, and lovable. He is also good at detecting one thing - squirrels. Did you know Dug makes a cameo in Ratatouille? Disney fans spotted his shadow early in the film when Remy is running through several homes.

We’re first introduced to the “hairy and slobbery” Max in the opening scene of Disney’s 1989 animated feature film “The Little Mermaid.” The Old English sheepdog is Prince Eric’s loyal companion. At the end of the classic film, Max smells Ariel, now in human form, further on down the beach and excitedly alerts Eric. Way to go, Max!

Copper is a hound dog from the Disney film “The Fox and the Hound.” The animated story is about two friends who didn’t know they were supposed to be enemies. Released on July 10, 1981, Tod, an orphaned baby fox, raised by Widow Tweed, is best friends with Copper, a young hunting dog. The two grow up together before a big moment near the end of the film when Copper defends Tod, standing in the way of a Copper’s hunter master. Did anyone else need a tissue near the end of this film, or was it just me? Copper is one dog we all need in our lives.

This has to be one of the coolest dogs roaming the streets of New York City. Dodger from “Oliver and Company” is a white and brown terrier mix who befriends the small kitten named Oliver. Voiced by Billy Joel, Dodger has one of the biggest songs of the movie, “Why should I Worry.” Did we mention he loves sausages, which he sports around his neck during the big number.

Gliding in from the graves in “The Nightmare Before Christmas,” Zero is Jack Skellington’s pet ghost. Despite his ghostly form, he is loyal and acts like any other dog. He also loves chasing and collecting bones that are pulled from Jack’s skeleton. Zero also plays a crucial part of the movie - he helps lead Santa’s sleigh with his small glowing jack-o-lantern like Rudolph’s red nose.

Rounding out the list is Slinky Dog from “Toy Story.” The southern-talking, wooden-toy dachshund is extremely loyal to Woody, everyone’s favorite cowboy. Slinky tries to save the day near the end of the first film after he is tossed from the moving truck to Woody and Buzz. Slinky has been featured in all the “Toy Story” films and even has his own roller coaster at Disney’s Hollywood Studios.

Celebrate National Dog Day with some Disney dog merchandise.

Click here to see the collection.

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