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Enjoy a selection of photographs from our collection showing talented canines on film sets and hanging out with human co-stars!

Man’s best friend—or, as we now like to call them, doggos, puppers, floofs and woofers—have been by our sides for over 20,000 years. Today, in national lockdown, they are physically by our sides all day and all night, and they have a job to do: bring comfort, joy and entertainment. (And they are doing a great job, of course.)

Which got us thinking about dogs working in the entertainment industry and if we had any photographs of canine movie stars. We’ve delved deep into our collection of 20th century photographs to bring you the goodest of boys from theatre, film and TV, resting up behind the scenes on movie sets and hanging out with their human co-stars. Hopefully you’ll enjoy meeting them as much as we did discovering them.

Horrid the English sheep dog waits for a well-deserved drink behind stage during rehearsals in 1964
Image: Daily Herald Archive/National Science and Media Museum/SSPL

Working on the new musical Camelot at the Drury Lane Theatre is thirsty work. Horrid the English sheepdog waits for a well-deserved drink behind stage during rehearsals in 1964.

Rex Harrison, canine co-star Waldteufel, and Kay Kendall on the set of ‘The Constant Husband’
Image: Daily Herald Archive/National Science and Media Museum/SSPL

Rex Harrison leans over seat-stealing canine co-star Waldteufel to speak to actress Kay Kendall on the set of The Constant Husband at Shepperton Studios in 1954.

Cary Grant and a poodle
Image: Daily Herald Archive/National Science and Media Museum/SSPL

Cary Grant looks to Bernardo Barkalotte for advice on a script at Universal Studios in 1964. The pair grabbed some time together between takes of their separate movies. Grant was starring in Father Goose at the time and Barkalotte in Wild and Wonderful.

Joan Collins and a terrier on set
Image: Daily Herald Archive/National Science and Media Museum/SSPL

Joan Collins gives Johnny the terrier a chin rub between takes of Turn the Key Softly in 1953.

Bill Sykes' bull terrier from Oliver Twist
Image: Daily Herald Archive/National Science and Media Museum/SSPL

Snooks was chosen to play Bill Sykes’ dog in David Lean’s 1948 film of Oliver Twist because of his ’tough and forbidding’ look. Are we looking at the same dog here? All we see is a very good boy.

Terrier with eye patch
Image: Daily Herald Archive/National Science and Media Museum/SSPL

Plucky British film star Patch almost lost his sight after chasing a rabbit, falling in a hole and getting a thorn lodged in his eye. Luckily, his manager Victor Gammon was on hand to whisk him off to the vet and get him fixed up. He made a full recovery and starred in Keep Smiling with Gracie Fields in 1938.

Dog with daisies in mouth
Image: Daily Herald Archive/National Science and Media Museum/SSPL

Hobo, a French poodle and German shepherd cross, bites down on a bunch of daisies after being cast for the new MGM comedy film Please Don’t Eat the Daisies in 1960.

Hobo’s English isn’t very good… are you going to tell him, or should I?

Lassie
Image: Daily Herald Archive/National Science and Media Museum/SSPL

And finally… MGM major movie star Lassie is very pleased to have his portrait taken with his Lucky Dog Medallion and Chain of Office in 1949.

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