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Famous Pets From Movies: Did You Know? (Part I)

This is part one of our miniseries about famous dogs, where we share fun facts from the extraordinary lives of famous pets—behind-the-scenes, heartwarming details and much more to follow.

Homeward Bound (1993)

Did you know …
… that they used four American bulldogs and four golden retrievers in the movie?
… that they used eight Himalayan cats for the role of Sassy?
… that the animals had seven months of prep time before filming?
This is Saccone’s Buckshot Boogie, the great-grandson of Rattler, a.k.a. Chance!
Photo credit: Kellie Saccone

… that the cats were trained to run toward a buzzer? This is how they filmed the scenes in which Sassy had to run up to a dog or toward the camera.
… that the registered name of one of the “Chance” dogs was Sure-Grip Rattler? He became a flammable- liquid sniffer dog for the fire department and also worked in protection and hog catching. He had many offspring after the movie, especially on the West Coast.
… that Blitz, another dog who played Chance, played in Cheaper by the Dozen afterwards and was adopted at age 10 and lived five more happy years?
… that 90% of the role of Shadow was played by two golden retrievers: Ben and Molly? They were both therapy dogs, and Ben was also the Delta Society’s 1993 spokesdog. Ben also appeared in several other movies like Maybe Baby, Purely Belter and Made in Hong Kong.

This is Buckshot, Chance’s great-grandson, bowling in the Three Guns Kennel

Air Bud (1997)

Did you know …
… that Air Bud’s Buddy was found as a stray in the Sierra Nevada mountains?
… that he also appeared in the television sitcom Full House for six seasons?
Buddy’s right hind leg had to be amputated due to cancer appearing near his joints. He died in his sleep due to complications. He was about 10 years old when he died, loved by millions for his great talent in sports. He fathered nine puppies.
Benji (6 movies from 1974-2000)
Benji in 1977
Did you know …
… that Benji’s real name was Higgins? He was found at the Burbank Animal Shelter as a puppy by Frank Inn, a trainer.
… that Higgins also starred in Beverly Hillbillies, Petticoat Junction, Green Acres and Mooch Goes to Hollywood?
… that Higgins was almost nominated for an acting Academy Award? So many people were praising him for his ability to express different facial expressions in his movies that people seriously considered adding him to the list of nominees.
… that Higgins’s daughter, Benjean was also starring in some of the Benji movies? They looked so much alike that people couldn’t tell them apart and even magazines published covers with the wrong dog.
… that after Higgins’s death at age 17, his owner, Frank Inn, asked that Higgins’s ashes be put next to him in the coffin when he dies. In 2002, they carried out his request.

Sources:
http://www.hollywoodpaws.com/homeward_bound.htm
http://www.funtrivia.com/askft/Question48978.html
http://wiki.answers.com/Q/What_happened_to_the_homeward_bound_movie_dogs
http://landofpuregold.com/perform-mollyandben.htm
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_individual_dogs
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Air_Buddy
http://ca.eonline.com/news/35939/hollywood-mourns-loss-of-air-bud
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Higgins_%28dog%29
http://www.benji.com/JoeCamp/BenjiTrivia.htm



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