There have been many popular dog movies throughout the years, capturing the hearts of audiences worldwide. While popularity can vary depending on personal preferences and time periods, here are some of the most well-known and beloved dog movies.
Is yours one of them on our list?
Some of the Most Famous Dog Movies To See on the Big Screen!
1. A Dog's Way Home (2019)
It is very similar to the story of Lassie, except the dog (Shelby) can speak to viewers. She is sent miles away from her owner, who is supposed to meet her there soon after. However, Shelby does not know this and escapes to find her hometown and owner again. This movie is extremely emotional from the start showing her desperate travels to find her owner, but it has a happy ending that will leave you appreciating a dog's love and loyalty.
2. The Art of Racing in the Rain (2019)
This movie follows the life of a dog called Enzo who was taken in as a puppy by an aspiring Formula One driver. This golden retriever believes he was born to be a race car driver and can see the techniques used on the track should also be used in life's journey. This is a unique movie involving both adorable puppies and action thrilled race car driving. It will make you laugh and cry all in one and will leave you with an important message that you should achieve your dreams no matter what stands in your way.
3. Dog (2018)
The film was inspired by a real road trip director Channing Tatum took with his dying dog, a Pitbull mix also named Lulu, after she was diagnosed with cancer in 2018. Tatum said, "When I went on my last road trip with my puppy, [I experienced] that feeling of, 'There's nothing I can do. The film stars Tatum as an Army Ranger who is tasked with escorting the military dog of his fallen friend to his funeral. Two former Army Rangers are paired against their will on the road trip of a lifetime. Briggs (Channing Tatum) and Lulu (a Belgian Malinois) race down the Pacific Coast to get to a fellow soldier's funeral on time.
4. A Dog's Purpose (2017)
Based on the best-selling novel, this heart-warming film follows the story of a dog named Bailey who reincarnates into different dogs' lives and forms bonds with various owners. This movie series will have you wailing a cycle of tears every 10 minutes. It has a happy ending all in all, but it's a journey to get there. The second movie is called A Dog’s Journey, both endings are happy and heartfelt, but you need to be strong to make it to the end.
5. Oddball (2015)
A white Maremma Sheepdog was the star of this lovable pooch story. In the movie, an eccentric chicken farmer and his granddaughter train the mischievous Oddball to protect a penguin sanctuary from fox attacks. You will love seeing the unique interaction and goofiness in Oddball in the way he interacts with the beloved penguins. The movie is based on the true story of a Maremma dog who protected small penguins on Middle Island in Southwest Victoria.
6. Max (2015)
This family adventure film centres around a military working dog named Max who forms a strong bond with his handler's teenage brother and helps him uncover a mystery. This heartfelt movie shows the highs and lows of gaining a loyal, but scared dog's trust. This movie breaks you into tears at the grief this dog experiences from the death of his handler but puts a smile on your face as you see Max move on and learn to love again. It uniquely shows a dog's side of working in the military.
7. Red Dog (2011)
A sad dog movie based on a true story, Red Dog is a moving Australian drama about a friendly and loyal dog who's adopted by the residents of a local mining town. Over time, Red Dog forms a special bond with the community, and becomes a staple figure – up until he gets sick. Red Dog's incredible story will make audiences feel a deep connection with the endearing canine, who reminds everyone around him why dogs are such beloved creatures. Its unforgettable conclusion further emphasizes the remarkable loyalty dogs can have for their owners, and viewers can expect to be crying real tears as Red Dog demonstrates this level of love and devotion in one of the saddest dog movies ever.
8. Hachi: A Dog's Tale (2009)
It is based on a true story of an Akita dog who is extremely loyal to his owner. The dog ends up waiting at a Tokyo train station every day for his owner to come back from work. Even after the owner's death, the devoted dog still waits for nine years at the train station every day until he eventually passes. This movie reminds audiences of the unique and beautiful loyalty dogs have for people without any other intention but will break your heart into a million pieces.
9. Marley & Me (2008)
This movie covers a period of 14 years and, 22 yellow Labrador Retrievers were used during filming. This adorable, yet naughty and neurotic puppy will cause more havoc than any child. Fans watch Marley grow into a senior dog, developing an emotional bond with the pup and its owners. You will have many laughs throughout this movie, but you should be prepared for the films notoriously heartbreaking ending. This movie shows viewers what unconditional love truly is in its most beautiful form. It shows the stresses and problems in a family. Be prepared for a good cry, but it does guarantee a newly built appreciation for your pets.
10. Eight Below (2006)
Inspired by a true story, this survival drama portrays a group of sled dogs stranded in Antarctica and their incredible journey to survive harsh conditions. Set in the unforgiving chilly landscape of Antarctica, Eight Below is an adventure drama film centred on a group of dogs who are left behind by their owners because of a sudden storm. Its depiction of the unique bond between a dog and its owner makes it a classic, and will move, inspire, and remind dogs owners to keep their dogs where it's warm and comfortable.
11. Air Bud (1997)
Inspired by a true story, this family film introduces Buddy, a Golden Retriever with remarkable basketball skills, who becomes the star player for a young boys’ basketball team. The Golden Retriever was originally played by Buddy—the inspiration behind the film itself. Buddy was discovered in the Sierra Nevada mountains and the stray dog was brought to San Diego where his trainer Kevin di Cicco taught him to play basketball, baseball, football, soccer, hockey, and chess. Sadly, Buddy passed away in 1998 of cancer.
12. Lassie (1994)
This film is a remake of the classic story about a brave and loyal Rough Collie named Lassie who helps her young owner overcome various challenges. Lassie is a family adventure movie released in 2005. It is about a dog, Lassie, who is reluctantly sold by her family. This heartbroken pup is moved hundreds of miles away from her family; however, she makes it her mission to find them against all odds. It is heartbreaking watching this confused pup try to find her way home, but thankfully has a happy ending.
13. Homeward Bound
The Incredible Journey" (1993): This heart-warming adventure film follows the journey of two dogs, Shadow and Chance, and a sassy cat named Sassy as they travel through the wilderness to find their owners.
14. Beethoven (1992)
This comedy film follows the misadventures of a lovable and slobbery St. Bernard named Beethoven and the Newton family that takes him in. This canine hero was a slobbery, droopy-faced—but lovable! —St. Bernard dog, who had a knack for getting his human family into mischief. Chris the Dog starred in Beethoven and Beethoven’s 2nd and worked closely with respected animal trainer Karl Lewis Miller. Chris was later replaced by other dog actors in the direct-to-video sequels after passing away shortly after filming was completed on Beethoven’s 2nd in 1993.
15. Turner & Hooch (1989)
This comedy-drama stars Tom Hanks as a neat freak detective who reluctantly partners with a slobbery and lovable Dogue de Bordeaux named Hooch to solve a murder case. The unlikely pair—Hanks is a detective on a high-profile murder case and Hooch is his only witness to the crime—form a strong bond in this charming comedy caper. Beasley was born in a Wisconsin dog kennel where he was purchased by trainer Clint Rowe. This would be Beasley’s only film appearance. He died in 1992.
What’s Your Favourite Dog Movie You Have Seen?
These are just a few popular dog movies that have entertained audiences of all ages and there are many more that have captured the hearts of dog lovers and moviegoers over the years. Enjoy watching these heart-warming, funny, soul sobbingly sad, and sometimes adventurous tales of our beloved canine friends!