Take a Bow Wow: Canine Star Retires

Feb 6, 2012 1:42pm

gty uggie dog nt 120206 main Take a Bow Wow: Canine Star Retires

Uggie, the famous pooch who captivated audiences as the dog in the Oscar-nominated film, “The Artist,” is retiring from the big screen.

Reports surfaced that the 10-year-old Jack Russell terrier developed a mysterious shaking syndrome, but his trainer, Omar von Muller, says his age is the reason he is retiring.

“He does shake, but the main reason he’s retiring is because he’s getting old. He’s been working his whole life and he’s just getting old,” von Muller told ABC News.

Von Muller said Uggie loves starring in movies, but the hours are just too long.

“Being in ‘The Artist’ was a great experience for us. It was a little chaotic, but Uggie bonded really well with everyone,” the trainer said.

Uggie has a particularly special bond with co-star Jean Dujardin, who plays George Valentin in the movie — a bond that undoubtedly contributed to the movie’s success.

But before the charismatic pup leaped off the silver screen and into America’s heart, he lived the rags-to-riches story.

“He would have gone to a pound because he was too crazy,” von Muller said. “So I took him in.”

The once pound-bound pooch is now being formally recognized for his achievements. He was recently nominated for two “Golden Collar Awards.” He was nominated for the best dog in a theatrical film category, once for his performance in “The Artist”  and the other for his role in “Water for Elephants.”

While we won’t see any more of Uggie on the silver screen, von Muller assured ABC News that the pooch is only retiring from big projects like movies that require long hours. He’ll still do appearances and short commercials.

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