Paws > people. Loyal, loving, and downright adorable, dogs have been man's best friend since they were domesticated some 15,000 years ago. Even science agrees that dogs and their owners feel mutual love, as proven by rises in oxytocin (happiness) levels when they're near each other. It's impossible not to love dogs. They're too pure hearted.
So even if you think you're totally a cat person (I won't ask why), I guarantee these 15 precious pooch and human duos will warm your heart.
1. Scooby and Shaggy
Scooby Doo and Shaggy are the perfect pair. From ravenously munching on snacks to fighting evil, the two are rarely apart. That's because Scooby's personality is directly opposite that of a Great Dane's (namely, his cowardice, perpetual hunger, and funny speech impediment), but perfectly complimentary to Shaggy's. Rooby rooby roo!
2. Toto and Dorothy
Did you know this tiny terrier was paid $125 per week to star in The Wizard of Oz? Adjusted for inflation, that's quite the hefty sum of $2160! The Cairn Terrier actor, aptly named Terry, went on to appear in a whopping 13 more films after that.
While Toto was neither particularly heroic nor helpful in getting Dorothy back to Kansas, his importance as a comfort dog can't be understated. He always served as a friendly reminder of home and demonstrated doggy values of unconditional love and optimism.
3. Snoopy and Charlie Brown
Snoopy is probably one of the most iconic pups in pop culture. He's been memorialized in comic strips, TV shows, and even films. But, despite his fame, not many people know what breed of dog he is...even though his catchline is: "I ain't no stupid beagle!"
Snoopy has friends of various species (like Woodstock), but his favorite personality above all is Charlie Brown. If you're a fan of the comics, you know that Snoopy is not the most affectionate canine, being more concerned with where his next meal is coming from. But, once in a while, he does display his love, affectionately referring to Charlie Brown as his "Round-Headed Kid."
4. Lassie and Timmy
You can't help but fall in love with Lassie. In the movies, she represents bravery, integrity, and love that only a dog could harbor. She's the perfect role model, especially for young and impressionable Timmy.
The fictional character of Lassie was born in Eric Knight's 1939 short story. "Lassie Come Home," an instant hit, was adapted into a movie in 1943. Since then, five generations of Lassies (all relatives) have starred in the movie series -- all of them male!
5. Hooch and Turner
This lesser-known Disney film stars Tom Hanks as Scott Turner, an obsessively neat detective, and his partner-in-crime-prevention, a messy, slobbery, and talking (!!) Dogue de Bourdeaux. Spoiler Alert: Turner & Hooch portrays the unconditional love dogs have for their humans when Hooch tragically takes a bullet for Turner.
6. Clifford and Emily
Imagine how shocked you'd feel if your puppy grew 25 feet tall (and wide)! In Clifford the Big Red Dog, Clifford is only beloved more because of his huge size and clumsy demeanor. He lives a pretty normal dog life, spending quality time with adoring human, Emily Elizabeth, and his K9 buddies, Cleo and T-Bone. It turns out Clifford is pretty wise too; he acts as a bastion of wisdom to his friends throughout the series.
7. Marley and John
A true story, Marley and Me narrates the endearing relationship between an out-of-control yellow labrador (who flunked out of obedience school) and his humans. As the Grogan family grows, so too does Marley. Usually, it's dogs who show their unconditional love -- here, the tables are turned. Marley and Me teaches lessons of tolerance, familial love, and overcoming adversity.
8. Hachi and Parker Wilson
If and when you watch Hachi: A Dog's Tale, be prepared to use lots and lots of tissues. Based on a true story, the film portrays Hachi's undying love for his person. The real Hachiko, however, belonged to Dr. Eisaburo Ueno. In 1925, when Hachiko was only eighteen months old, Dr. Ueno died unexpectedly. For the next nine years, the faithful Akita Inu revisited the last place (Tokyo Station) his owner told him to wait...and, there, he stayed. In the movie, Hachi dies dreaming of the life he had with his owner. I wonder if our dogs really dream about us.
9. Bruiser and Elle
More of a lifelong companion than a sidekick, this pint-sized chihuahua is the perfect complement to Elle Wood's eccentric personality. (Both Elle and Bruiser are gemini, after all.) Sadly, Moonie, the actor, passed away in May 2016 after 18 long years of life. Rest in paradise, little guy.
10. Pluto and Mickey
Pluto and Mickey have never spent a day apart. Walt Disney even conceptualized the two together, first appearing in the 1930 short "The Chain Gang."
Although described as a mutt, Pluto can still sniff out anything and anyone, just like a bloodhound. His personality mirrors Mickey's; indeed, their innocence and clumsiness can sometimes get them both in trouble.
11. Snowy and Tintin
Snowy's (or Milou in the original Belgian comic) cynical personality is perfectly juxtaposed with Tintin's unwavering optimism. Though Snowy is easily distracted by bones, his talkative and intelligent personality makes him a fantastic lifelong companion.
Snowy is perhaps the most intelligent dog on this list. Not sure how I'd feel if my dog was smarter than me.
12. Max and the Grinch
Alright, so the Grinch isn't exactly human...but he's arguably anthropomorphic.
Unlike his lump of a grump owner, Max never needed to understand the true meaning of Christmas to be loyal and loving. He wore antlers on his head without one bark of resistance.
It's ok, Max. We know the Grinch loves you just as much.
13. Gnasher and Dennis the Menace
Gnasher and Dennis the Menace are definitely two peas in a pod, sharing a love for catastrophe and stirring trouble. You know how humans start to resemble their dogs after a while? Well, Gnasher was purposely designed to mirror Dennis' hair! Admittedly, Gnasher resembles a bear-like creature more than any dog, but he's still one of the most well-known dogs in pop culture history.
14. Old Yeller and His Entire Family
Old Yeller is the original man's best friend. I watched the movie as a little kid and it was my first understanding of tragedy. I can handle human deaths in movies, but not dog's.... Old Yeller's noble sacrifice for Travis still brings tears to my eyes.
15. Ghost and Jon Snow
A secondary, but sentimental, plot line of Game of Thrones tells of Jon Snow's adoring relationship with his direwolf, Ghost. Jon chose Ghost, the runt of the litter and the only to be born with his eyes open, to be his constant companion. Ghost never leaves Jon's side, trailing him through wilding territory and (spoiler alert!) protecting his owner's body after being fatally stabbed in Season 6.
...my cat will barely follow me outside the door.
Who's your favorite pop culture pooch? Comment below!
Love dogs? Check out 13 Heartwarming Photos of Dogs Before and After the Shelter!