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22 Labs Played Marley in 'Marley and Me'

In the film 'Marley and Me', 22 different labs played the part of Marley. A canine actor, named Clyde, starred in most of the scenes with an adult dog. He was a Hollywood newcomer, and a Labrador Retriever.

In an article from 2008 on Steve Dale Pet World's site, the director said the dog trainers rewarded Clyde to do all the things the rest of us try to train our dogs not to do.

"Like jumping up, or barking or peeing (indoors). Every time Clyde misbehaved, he'd get a treat. Talk about being a lucky dog."

Director David Frankel defended the novice Bowser actor in an interview"

"After all, Clyde was playing Marley, the most unruly Labrador Retriever in the world - so he was just getting into the part if he did something unexpected."

If you haven't seen this film, here's the plot:

Newlyweds John and Jenny Grogan (Owen Wilson and Jennifer Aniston) escape Michigan winters and move to South Florida, where they become reporters at competing newspapers.

What kind of dog is Marley?

In 'Marley & Me' the dog is often portrayed as the world's worst dog. The canine actors are played by adorable yellow labs and we all know that Labradors are also a breed that can easily be trained. Were these actors trained to be bad dogs?

Around half the 22 'Marley dogs' were puppies and a few were stunt dogs. But clearly Clyde was the star. Yet all Clyde had to do was act like a dog!

How many dogs were used in 'Marley and Me'?

According to an article in the Seattle Times, "it took 22 Labs of various sizes and temperaments to film 'Marley & Me,' which was shot in Miami and other parts of southern Florida last winter."

Does the dog die in 'Marley and Me'?

In this New York Times bestseller, dog owners were sad to find out that the dog does pass away in the end. As an animal lover, these are my least favorite movies so I actually didn't see this.

Spoiler alert: An aging Marley suffers a near-fatal intestinal disorder. He recovers, but, being too old for surgery, suffers a second attack. He is euthanized with his family by his side.

It's so awful that our best friends don't live forever.

Did you love this movie as much as we did? Let us know what characteristics you love about this breed!

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