One of the most famous movie dogs since Rin Tin Tin and Lassie was Uggie, a scrappy Jack Russell Terrier who stole the show in 2011’s Best Picture winner, “The Artist.”
After battling prostate cancer, the 13-year-old star crossed the Rainbow Bridge Friday.
“We regret to inform all our friends, family and Uggie’s fans that our beloved boy has passed away,” his dog dad and trainer, Omar Von Muller, announced on Uggie’s Facebook page today.
“He was a real friend. He was very special,” Von Muller told the Associated Press.
Indeed he was. After “The Artist,” for which Uggie received the Palm Dog award at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival, he was featured in the films, “Water for Elephants” and “Mr. Fix It.”
In 2012, Uggie became the first dog star ever to have his paws immortalized in cement at Grauman’s Chinese Theater in Hollywood.
When Uggie retired from show biz three years ago, Von Muller made sure the star didn’t turn into a couch potato.
“If they don’t get their exercise, they get old too fast, just like people,” he said.
Years ago, Von Muller saved Uggie from being sent to an animal shelter by his original owners, who thought he was too wild.
“The main message that Uggie would like to send to everybody out there is to please adopt,” Von Muller said at the Chinese Theater ceremony, according to the AP.
“He’s adopted. He made it. If you guys can adopt a dog, even if they don’t make it on the big screen, they’ll be big stars at your house.”
Photo via Facebook