The Fascinating Story of Toto, the Cairn Terrier from the Wizard of Oz

If you're a fan of the classic movie "The Wizard of Oz," then you surely remember the adorable little Cairn Terrier named Toto who stole the hearts of viewers everywhere. But what many people might not know is that Toto was much more than just a beloved movie character. Here is the fascinating story of Toto, the Cairn Terrier from "The Wizard of Oz."

Toto's Early Life

Toto was born in 1933, just one year before "The Wizard of Oz" was filmed. He was originally named Terry, but after being cast in the movie, his name was changed to Toto. Toto was a male Cairn Terrier, a breed known for their fearless and energetic personalities. He was brought to Hollywood by his owner, a dog trainer named Carl Spitz, who trained Toto to perform for the camera.

Toto's Role in "The Wizard of Oz"

Toto was cast in "The Wizard of Oz" as the loyal companion of Dorothy, played by Judy Garland. Toto's role in the movie was small but memorable, and he quickly became a fan favorite. Toto was with Dorothy every step of the way as she journeyed through Oz, and his bravery and loyalty helped her through some of her toughest moments.

Toto's Legacy

After "The Wizard of Oz" was released, Toto became a bona fide movie star. He made appearances on talk shows and in magazines, and even received fan mail. He went on to appear in 13 more movies throughout the 1930s and 1940s, including "Toto Takes a Chance" and "Toto Gets Fresh." Toto's popularity helped to raise the profile of Cairn Terriers as a breed, and he became a beloved icon of Hollywood's golden age.

Toto's Life Off-Screen

While Toto was a famous movie star, he was first and foremost a beloved pet. He lived with his trainer, Carl Spitz, and his family. Toto was known for his friendly personality and his love of attention. He was also a skilled performer, and his acting abilities went beyond his work in movies. Toto was trained to perform in circuses and other live shows, and he was known for his ability to do tricks and acrobatics.

Toto's Death

Toto passed away in 1945 at the age of 12. He was mourned by his owner, Carl Spitz, and by fans all over the world. Toto's legacy lived on, however, and his contributions to the world of movies and to the popularity of Cairn Terriers as a breed continue to be remembered today.


Toto may have been a small dog, but his impact on the world of movies and on popular culture as a whole was enormous. His performance as Dorothy's loyal companion in "The Wizard of Oz" captured the hearts of viewers everywhere, and his legacy as a beloved movie star and pet continues to this day. For fans of the movie and of Cairn Terriers alike, Toto will always hold a special place in our hearts.

If you're interested in learning more about dog breeds like Cairn Terriers or tips for caring for your furry friend, be sure to check out our Tips and Information page on our website. You can also find information on our Puppy Adoption Questions page if you're considering adding a new four-legged family member to your home.

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