Top 10 Most Famous Dog Actors in History

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Photo: Cesar Millan and Scooby-Doo celebrate their 40th birthday together at the East Valley Animal Shelter. (PRNewsFoto/Cartoon Network, Jordan Strauss)

Top 10 Most Famous Dog Actors in History
by J Amos

Sometimes when the name of a movie eludes you, you can still remember the dog actor who starred in it. That’s because animals have a way of lingering in our hearts, and forgetting their adorable faces and even their names isn’t easy.

The following are the top ten most famous dog actors in history. You’re sure to recognize their names, but you’ll learn a little something about them that you didn’t know before. The list is in no particular order because all of these talented canine actors deserve to have their name in lights.

Old Yeller

Who could forget the faithful yellow lab named Old Yeller who stole the hearts of movie goers in the Walt Disney classic of the same name? Did you know his real name was Spike, and he was discovered in an animal shelter? Spike was rescued for a mere three dollars, and went on to become one of the most famous dog actors in history.

Rin Tin Tin

This world famous German Shepherd is said to be the most recognized name in the history of the breed. The original Rin Tin Tin was only five days old when he was rescued from the bombed-out ruins of Lorraine, France during World War I. His 107 year lineage has entertained audiences ever since.

Gidget, The Taco Bell Chihuahua

Gidget quickly became the sensation of the advertising world with her thirty second takes for Taco Bell. Comic Carlos Alazraqui is the distinctive voice behind this 8-pound 11-inch tall bundle of attitude.

Spuds MacKenzie

Honey Tree Evil Eye was the real name of the famous Bull Terrier Bud Light beer dog of the late 1980s. One thing should be mentioned here. He was actually a she.


The original Lassie was a Collie named Pal. Lassie was actually a fictional dog in a short story that appeared in the Saturday Evening Post. Pal actually started out as a stand-in stunt dog of sorts during the original filming of the movie version of the story. But, Pal out shined the intended star of the movie and became the courageous and faithful lassie. Pal’s decedents (10th generation) are still cast in the role of Lassie today.


Wishbone is that hype Jack Russell Terrier who stars in his own show of the same name on PBS. In addition to his starring role on the show he has also won five Emmy Awards, and his show was named the Best Children’s Show in 1996 and 1997.


This Great Dane, although a scaredy-cat at heart, always seemed to be the hero in the cartoon series named after him (1969-1972). He and his bosom buddy, Shaggy, got into more mischievous than any other friendship combo in the cartoon world.


People of all ages know who this proud beagle is. He and his odd counterpart, a yellow bird named Woodstock, began capturing the hearts of people of all ages in the 1950 comic strip, Peanuts. His loyalty to his master Charlie Brown, and that zany happy signature dance of his, makes him one of the most well known cartoon dogs of all time.


Another Great Dane that graced many a newspaper comic strips is Marmaduke. This giant dog showed readers what loyalty was all about, both he for his owners and they for him.


This Jack Russell Terrier may sometimes be defiant when it comes to obeying, but the loyalty he shows to his handicapped, ex-cop owner is truly heart touching. Eddie, formerly known as Moose, was a rambunctious terrier that his owners couldn’t keep out of mischief. He was given to the manager of Birds and Animals Unlimited in Florida, and eventually made his way to Hollywood.

About the Author: J Amos blogs about how to get a vet tech degree online.

Which dogs would be on your list of the top 10 most famous dog actors? Leave us your suggestions in the comments box!

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About Grace Sydney

Grace Sydney is the Assistant Editor of DogTipper.com and CatTipper.com, covering celebrity-related rescue news. She operates the @HollywoodDogs Twitter account sharing information on celebrity fundraising for rescues and shelters.