Best Family Films Featuring Dogs

March 18, 2021

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There is just something so cosy about snuggling up and watching a film with the family. 

Sure, someone might ask 95 questions that you don’t have the answer to, and most of the time, the popcorn is gone before the opening credits are finished… 

Yet, it has always been one of the best ways for families to spend time together. 

With that said, what are the best family films featuring our furry four-legged friends? 

Yep! Dogs. 

Dogs are a firm family favourite in films, from animated to animatronic. 

They just bring something so emotive, and who doesn’t love a talking dog movie? 

Here are some of the best films featuring dogs. 

101 Dalmations

A cruel Cruella De Vil is known for loving her fur coats, hats and more. Offices and designs adorned with the pelts of countless animals. 

Enter Roger and Anita, who have the wonderful Pongo and Pudita (Purdy), find themselves with a small gaggle of puppies. 

Unbeknownst to them, Cruella has hatched an ugly plan to capture the puppies – oh uh! 

In the end, they end up with a huge 101 Dalmation puppies and foil her plan! Good old Disney. 

You could choose the 1961 cartoon or the remake (or both!). 

Lady and the Tramp

A forbidden puppy love, a spaghetti strand shared in a dirty alley, and a giant rat. 

Lady and the Tramp is a sweet film and has a lot of drama for a cartoon. The remake is fun, but the classic cartoon is really the best one. 

This is a 1955 cartoon but still feels fresh and such high quality. It’s fun watching the dynamics of the other dogs playing together. 

After Lady and the Tramp one, the sequel Scamp’s Adventure is just as fun. 

Scratchy, the junkyard dog from Scamp’s Adventure, who always appears to have fleas, is a neat reminder it might be time for your pooch to get a dog flea collar too! 

Best Family Films Featuring Dogs

Homeward Bound

Cartoons are fun, but live-action dog movies are even cooler sometimes. Homeward Bound brings back childhood memories for most adults, making it the perfect pick. 

Although the movie is from 1993, it is timeless. 

You quickly get a feeling for their personalities. The dependable and gentle Shadow, a Golden Retriever. A high maintenance fluffy Himilayan cat called Sassy (it suits her), and the bouncy loveable Chance. 

There are some sad moments in the film, but they are short-lived. 

Ultimately we follow the three as they get lost, go through some scary moments, and have some funny moments. 

A film for all ages!

Marley and Me

There are many adult moments, but most of the film is suitable for slightly older children. 

Marley and Me pulls at the heartstrings, and you join the family as they grow and age up. 

There are some completely magical moments and some that will have more than just a few tears shed. 

Marley and Me leave everyone hugging their dog a little bit more and appreciating all of the antics that they come with. 

All Dogs Go To Heaven

This movie deals with an awful lot, yet is still suitable for many children. The emotional film might be one that needs some consideration before shown to smaller kiddos. 

All Dogs Go To Heaven is a much darker movie than many of the others. It deals with themes like death, gambling, orphans and more. 

It’s funny, brimming with hope and a healthy dollop of love – but this 1989 movie might leave children with a few questions! 

Great but one to watch with caution depending on your child’s disposition. 

Turner and Hooch

Another one that older children and parents can enjoy together. Turner and Hooch does have some violence, a lot of drool and some moments that make you catch your breath. 

That said, Hooch is a beautiful dog, lots of drool, and true to form, will do anything he can to protect his partner. 

Solving a crime and getting to know each other along the way. 

Togo

If you want a movie that will pull at your heartstrings, and give you that flutter of hope in your chest as you watch, then the 2019 version of Togo is it. 

What makes it more incredible, if you know the Balto story (also a great movie), Togo sets the record straight about who REALLY got the medicine most of the way to the children in need. 

The story moves back and forth, and we follow Togo as he goes from a hopeless weak runt to the hero with the biggest heart. 

It has some tragic moments, some nailbiting moments and a lot of hope. 

An unforgettable movie, with a mention of the real Togo at the end. 

A Dog’s Purpose

A Dog’s Purpose is a beautiful film. You follow the soul of a dog through many lives until they fulfil what their life’s purpose is. 

Of course, it is essential to note that in order to move on through these lives, we do experience a number of dogs passing away on screen. 

The movie gives you just the right amount of happiness, love, joy and sadness. 

A healthy reminder that our four-legged buddies don’t get to stay with us forever, and maybe just a little insight into the world of a dog. 

Beethoven

An oldie but a goldie. Beethoven is one of the most fun movies about dogs. This St. Bernard is big, clumsy and always hungry. 

However, much like all of the dogs on the list, he goes above and beyond to protect his family – even when they don’t realise it. 

Gentle comedy, and a lot of frustrated dad shouting and a fluffy dog that you couldn’t love more if you tried. 

Best Family Films Featuring Dogs

Note: as a bonus, Secret Life of Pets is an excellent option for younger children and has a brilliant soundtrack too. There is also a range of other pets.

So there are some of the best family films featuring dogs. There are highs, lows and a lot of laughs. Ultimately, movies with dogs seem to be a family favourite and are a friendly reminder of just how much love and support a dog can bring into our lives. 

Need some top tips? Check this post > How to Plan a Fun Family Night In 

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