Skip to main contentSkip to footer

Uggie the dog, star of The Artist, dies at 13

Share this:

He stole hearts – and scenes – as the canine companion of Jean Dujardin in The Artist. Now the sun has set on Uggie the dog's time in the limelight after his death aged 13. His trainer Omar von Muller announced that Uggie was put down on 7 August , suffering from prostate cancer.


uggie © Photo: Getty Images

Uggie has his paw prints immortalised outside Grauman's Chinese Theatre

His was a quintessential rags-to-riches Hollywood story. Omar rescued the Jack Russell terrier from the dog pound before training him for showbiz glory. He had been rejected by his first two owners as far too wild but Omar spotted his star potential.

Explaining his success, the trainer said: "He was a crazy, very energetic puppy, and who knows what would have happened to him if he [had] gone to the dog pound. But he was very smart and very willing to work.

One of the most important thing[s] is that he was not afraid of things. That is what makes or breaks a dog in the movies, whether they are afraid of lights, and noises and being on sets.

"He gets rewards, like sausages, to encourage him to perform, but that is only a part of it. He works hard."

uggie 2 © Photo: Getty Images

Uggie travelled the world and had a loyal following

Uggie started out in commercials before winning the role of The Dog, who stayed with Jean's character George Valentin through thick and thin. The Artist went on to win five Oscars including Best Picture.

Fans failed in a campaign dubbed 'Consider Uggie', urging the Academy to seek recognition for their hero's part in the film.

The BAFTA Academy also snootily refused to consider him, saying: "Regretfully, we must advise that as he is not a human being and as his unique motivation as an actor was sausages, Uggie is not qualified to compete for the BAFTA."

Uggie was, however, awarded a Palm Dog award at the Cannes Film Festival.

He was also became the first dog to leave his paw prints at Grauman's Chinese theatre in Hollywood. Uggie had previously been in Water for Elephants opposite Reese Witherspoon and Robert Pattinson.

His memoir Uggie, the Artist: My Story was pawed in 2012. In it he spilled the beans on his Hollywood lifestyle, detailing his friendships with Reese, Katy Perry, Gerard Butler and Whoopi Goldberg.

More Celebrity News

See more