If you’ve ever turned on the television and watched The Simpsons, chances are you’ve seen Santa’s Little Helper at some point. He’s not a main character, but he’s the family’s beloved pup throughout most of the series and finds himself getting into all sorts of trouble throughout the series.
Santa’s Little Helper is a Greyhound, and while he displays some signature Greyhound traits early on in the series, throughout the episodes, he takes on all sorts of roles! We’ve highlighted some fun Santa’s Little Helper facts for you here, and we’ve picked out some other famous cartoon dogs for you to think about too.
Top 7 Fun Facts About Santa’s Little Helper
Santa’s Little Helper is a beloved character in The Simpsons, and throughout the years, he’s portrayed in tons of different roles and ways. We’ve highlighted seven different facts about Santa’s Little Helper for you here:
1. He Was the Mascot of Duff Beer
Duff Beer is Homer’s favorite drink, and in the episode “Old Yeller-Belly,” Santa’s Little Helper became the official mascot for Duff Beer! Santa’s Little Helper was also known as Suds McDuff during this timeframe.
2. He Almost Died From Gastric Torsion
Gastric torsion is a very real disease that can be fatal to dogs, and it’s what affected Santa’s Little Helper in one of the episodes. The show called it a “twisting of the stomach,” but this is exactly what happens with gastric torsion.
3. Mr. Burns Once Owned Santa’s Little Helper
At one point, Santa’s Little Helper ran away from the Simpson family, and when this happened, Mr. Burns adopted him and turned him into a bodyguard. This isn’t a typical Greyhound role, but hey, it’s a comedy show!
4. Santa’s Little Helper Was a Police Dog
Santa’s Little Helper is full of fun jobs throughout the series, and in one episode, he teams up with Officer Lou as a police dog. During this episode, the show portrays Santa’s Little Helper as a very brave and intelligent dog.
5. He Sired 25 Puppies!
If you’re looking for tiny Santa’s Little Helpers around Springfield, there’s no shortage to pick from! Throughout the seasons, Santa’s Little Helper sires 25 puppies, and surprisingly, the show names all 25 of them.
6. He Was Once a Race Dog
Homer brings home Santa’s Little Helper after discovering him and betting on him at the track. Santa’s Little Helper finished last in the race. Homer bet on him, and because of his string of last-place finishes, his owner abandons him. Homer picks him up and brings him home, and the rest is history!
7. He Was a Seeing-Eye Dog
Another surprising role that Santa’s Little Helper completes during his time on the show is a seeing-eye dog. This is during a time when Bart actually got another dog, but eventually, Bart gets bored with his new dog and goes to find Santa’s Little Helper once again.
Other Famous Cartoon TV Dogs
Americans love dogs, and perhaps nothing highlights this quite like the fact that there are tons of cartoon dogs in shows. We’ve highlighted five of the most famous for you here, but the truth is that there are far more than that out there.
The Jetsons is one of the oldest animated television series around, and they also had a well-loved dog named Astro. Astro is a Great Dane in the year 2062, and since they were all living in outer space, we still have a little way to go over the next 40 years if we’re going to get there.
Brian from Family Guy is a talking dog that’s warmed hearts for close to 25 years now, and since they’re still making episodes with Brian, his story is far from over. Brian is a White Labrador, and Family Guy portrays Brian as an extremely smart and sophisticated dog.
If you’re looking for the largest cartoon dog out there, that accolade has to go to Clifford. They don’t call Clifford the big red dog for nothing, as his giant size gets him into all sorts of trouble. There are countless books about Clifford, a TV series, and in 2021, a movie was also made.
Pluto might just be the oldest cartoon dog out there, with a history dating back to 1930. Pluto is a Bloodhound, and he’s a beloved and loyal friend of Mickey Mouse. Pluto is a dog through and through, even though Goofy is a dog that can walk upright and talk in the same series!
Scooby-Doo is another classic dog from the cartoon series Scooby-Doo. Scooby Doo is a notorious scaredy-cat, and he actually shares the same voice actor as Astro from The Jetsons. Scooby Doo might try to run from everything, but he’s helped unmask plenty of monsters over the years.
Cartoon dogs have been in our shows for quite some time, and with so many still featuring prominent roles, it doesn’t seem like they’re going anywhere any time soon! In fact, The Simpsons are still making new episodes, so Santa’s Little Helper’s story isn’t over just yet!
Featured Image Credit: Characters by 20th Television Animation, property of The Walt Disney Company. All rights reserved to the copyright owners.