From '101 Dalmatians' to 'Rio': 7 Pet-Friendly Movies to Watch With Your Furry Friends – Collider

For movie time with a good boy!
There’s nothing more comforting than cozying up with your favorite movie, popcorn, and your pet, snuggling right next to you. If you are a pet parent, then you would know how much your fluffy friend/s also enjoy watching TV or staring at your laptop screen, occasionally jumping to exciting action sequences, or hiding under the blanket during a scary scene. That’s how involved pets are in our lives. So, it’s only fair that they get enough and the right kind of entertainment from their loving "hoomans".
This summer, we are geared up for a bunch of movies and shows featuring daring creatures fighting the good fight and saving the day. From Kung Fu Panda: The Dragon Knight to Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank, and DC League of Super-Pets, it’s going to be a fun season for you and your pet. Along with these new releases, you can also add the following pet-friendly movies, that your little furry bestie would also enjoy. If you haven’t seen them yet, then add them to your watch list right now for a fun time with your pet.
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A story about a macaw and his adventures across the Amazon is something that might excite your pet too, especially if you are a bird parent. Rio follows Blu, a domesticated male Spix’s macaw, who is smuggled out of the Amazon and lands in Minnesota and is found by a young girl named Linda. They grow up together but Blu never learns to fly. Linda learns that Blu is the last known male of his species and he needs to mate to keep his breed alive. So Linda, along with her ornithologist friend Tulio, goes to Rio de Janeiro so Blu can mate with the last female Spix macaw, Jewel. Thus begins Blu’s adventures, where he falls in love, befriends wild birds and animals, and escapes a life-threatening situation with his new mate, Jewel.
Directed by Carlos Saldanha, who also created the Ice Age film series, Rio stars Jesse Eisenberg, Anne Hathaway, Leslie Mann, Rodrigo Santoro, Jemaine Clement, George Lopez, Tracy Morgan,, and Jamie Foxx, as voice cast. With feet-tapping music, colorful dance, and flight sequences, Rio is a pure delight for your senses. Don’t miss the sequel, Rio 2, released in 2014.
One of Studio Ghibli’s best productions to date, My Neighbor Totoro is a 1988 Japanese animated film written and directed by Hayao Miyazaki. Considered a classic, this fantasy feature follows two sisters, who discover magical beings when they move to a new home. When their mother falls sick, professor Tatsuo Kusakabe and his daughters Satsuki and Mei move to a new house outside the town to be close to the hospital where their mother is recovering. Mostly by themselves in the big, old house, surrounded by woods, the girls discover a giant rabbit-like forest spirit when they start calling “Totoro” and start interacting with them. The name Totoro comes from the word “troll” which Mei, the younger sister, mispronounces as Totoru.
The animation features the voices of Noriko Hidaka, Chika Sakamoto, and Hitoshi Takagi as the leading cast. My Neighbor Totoro or Tonari no Totoro (Japanese) and its characters are considered a legacy in the Japanese fantasy animation genre with Totoro and the cat bus being popular elements of pop culture ever since.
From tabby cats and various species of dogs to pet parakeets, pigs, guinea pigs, and a rebellious stray bunny, The Secret Life of Pets is a funny and crazy animal adventure that your pet would love. But be warned, your little friend might get ideas to go on a wild ride like Max and Duke.
The plot follows Max, a pet dog who isn’t happy that his owner, Katie, brought home a new dog called Duke. When Max tries to lose Duke in an alley, they get attacked by a clutter of stray cats who plan to get them caught by Animal Control. When Max and Duke go missing, Max’s love interest, Gidget, and his other pet neighbors try to rescue them. Despite being jealous of Duke, Max realizes that he has to keep their differences aside and save themselves first. Directed by Chris Renaud and Yarrow Cheney, Secret Life of Pets boasts an ensemble voice cast with the likes of Kevin Hart, Louis C.K., Dana Carvey, Jenny Slate, etc.
Related:8 Best TV Pets Of All Time
A Disney classic, 101 Dalmatians is an all-time favorite of dog parents and dog lovers. And we are pretty sure your canine friends would also enjoy it. After all, who wouldn’t want to watch a supersized litter of cute dalmatian puppies scampering about on the screen! Take your pick from the animated or the live-action version, you and your pooch would love them both.
The story follows couple Anita and Roger, and their two dalmatians – Pongo and Perdita. Anita works as a fashion designer at the House of De Vil, owned by the vicious Cruella de Vil. When Pongo and Perdita have a litter of puppies, Cruella steals them to use their fur for making a new line of coats. So, Pongo and Perdita set out to hunt their babies and save them from the evil lady, albeit with help from Anita and Roger.
This 1996 live-action film was a reboot of the 1961 eponymous animation film and is an adaptation of Dodie Smith's 1956 novel The Hundred and One Dalmatians. A sequel, 102 Dalmatians was released in 2000, followed by a reboot in 2021, titled Cruella, with Emma Stone featuring in the titular role.
There are dogs and then there are super-dogs, like Bolt. Or so he believes. Bolt follows the titular dog, a television superhero, who spent his entire life on sets, believing that he has superpowers, like the character he plays. When his owner and co-star, Penny, is taken away from the set, Bolt thinks she is kidnapped and sets out to rescue her. He teams up with a feral alley cat, Mittens, and his hamster fan, Rhino, on a cross-country adventure to find Penny.
This movie is a delight to watch with your pooch and who knows they might wonder if they have superpowers like Bolt too! Directed by Chris Williams (Big Hero 6) and Byron Howard (Tangled), Bolt boasts an ensemble voice cast with John Travolta, Susie Essman, Mark Walton, Miley Cyrus, Malcolm McDowell, Diedrich Bader, Nick Swardson, and Greg Germann, among others.
Moving on from dogs and cats, here’s a classic story about a little white mouse, which might be of interest to your feline friend. Based on the 1945 novel of the same name by E. B. White, Stuart Little is directed by Rob Minkoff, who’s also directing the new animation comedy, Paws of Fury: The Legend of Hank.
The live-action/animation follows Stuart, an anthropomorphic mouse, who is adopted by Eleanor and Frederick Little. But his new brother, George doesn’t seem to like him, which makes Stuart sad. So, the Littles decide to find Stuart’s real parents. Meanwhile, Stuart is threatened by the house cat, Snowbell, as well as the neighborhood stray cats, Monty and Smokey. The voice cast of Stuart Little features Michael J. Fox, Geena Davis, Hugh Laurie, Nathan Lane, Chazz Palminteri, Steve Zahn, Bruno Kirby, and Jennifer Tilly, among others.
This is a must-watch for cats and cat lovers alike. Another Studio Ghibli production, this fantasy animation is based on the Manga of the same name by Aoi Hiiragi.
The Cat Returns follows Haru, a young schoolgirl who seems to have a special ability to converse with cats. One day, Haru rescues a cat from being run over by a truck, who turns out to be a cat prince called Lune. Thankful for his son’s life, the Cat King, asks Haru to marry Lune and is whisked away to the Cat Kingdom, where Haru starts to develop cat-like features, paws, tails, and all. Shocked and upset with this unwanted transformation, Haru seeks help from the mysterious Baron cat and a stone raven who come to life to rescue her.
Filled with mystery, fantasy, magic, and thrilling escape, The Cat Returns is a heartwarming feline adventure to share with your little ball of fur.
Maddie is a freelance Resource Writer at Collider. She is also a content marketing consultant and works with lifestyle brands. When not working, Maddie is often found baking, improvising on recipes, and managing her newfound Instagram store.
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