Cat, Dog & Co.

film no. 87

technical details:

Production G-21.

Filmed February 20 to March 2, 1929. See the 'miscellaneous' section below for details.

Cutting continuity dated April 16, 1929.

Music recorded July 26, 1929.

Copyrighted September 3, 1929, by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures Corporation. Registration no. LP650. Renewed September 13, 1956, with registration no. R176914. This copyright is currently due to expire at the end of 2024.

Released September 14, 1929. It was the 91st film in the series to be released. However, if "Lazy Days" came out later, as some sources state, than "Cat, Dog & Co." would have been the 90th release.

Silent two-reeler with synchronized music track and sound effects, on disc only.

Opening title: '"Our Gang" Comedies - Hal Roach presents His Rascals in "Cat, Dog & Co."'

the crew:

Produced by Robert F. McGowan for Hal Roach
This is the way Maltin & Bann put it. The film credits Roach as a presenter, with a separate credit reading "A Robert McGowan Production."
Supervised by Robert F. McGowan
This credit appears in the film, but without his middle initial.
Directed by Anthony Mack and Robert F. McGowan
The film credits Mack only, who was actually Robert A. (for Anthony) McGowan, the nephew of Robert F. According to Rob Stone's list, two units operated from February 22nd through 26th, with the uncle directed the other one.
Photographed by Art Lloyd
This credit appears in the film.
Edited by Richard Currier
This credit appears in the film.
Titles by H. M. Walker
This credit appears in the film.
Special effects and animation by Roy Seawright
Maltin & Bann give him this credit in the text section for this film, which is corroborated by his payroll status as the studio animator during this period. In addition to the optical effects involving a miniaturized Wheezer, there is also a cartoon flea in the cast.
Story by Robert F. McGowan
This credit doesn't appear in the film.
Animal Trainer: Harry Lucenay
He was Pete's owner and trainer.
Music performed by the Norbert Ludwig and William H. Reitz
According to the Victor ledgers, as described at the DAHR website. Ludwig played the organ, while Reitz played traps.
Teacher: Fern Carter
Released by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer
Indicated in the opening title card.
Passed by the National Board of Review
As indicated in the film.
studio personnel
general manager - Warren Doane
assistant general manager - L. A. French
secretary-treasurer - C. H. Roach
assistant secretary - Mat O'Brien
construction supervisor - C. E. Christensen
laboratory superintendent - Charles Levin
optical effects supervisor - Roy Seawright
still photographer - Bud "Stax" Graves
transportation director - Bob Davis
possible uncredited involvement
assistant direction - Possibly Charles Oelze.
cutting - Possibly Lloyd Campbell.
writing - Robert A. McGowan, Jean Yarbrough and Charlie Hall may have been among the gag writers.
property department - Charles Oelze, Don Sandstrom, Thomas Benton Roberts and Bob Saunders were probably involved in this capacity.
animal training - Tony Campanaro may have been among the animal trainers.

the kids:

Bobby "Wheezer" Hutchins as "Wheezer"
Featured role. Introduced in the titles as "Wheezer the Slayer." He mistreats the animals, but changes his ways after having a nightmare.
Joe Cobb as "Joe"
Featured role. His name is revealed on the wall of the barn, where it says "Joe is boss." His loyalty to the society is repeatedly put to the test by a flea that keeps riding on him.
Allen "Farina" Hoskins
Supporting role. He repeatedly reminds Joe that he's not to harm the flea.
Donnie Smith
Supporting role. Maltin & Bann indicate that the "Beezer" moniker was used in this film, but it wasn't. He's identified in the cutting continuity as "Don," and in the publicity photos as "Don Smith." He joins Wheezer in setting all the animals free.
Mary Ann Jackson as "Mary"
Supporting role. Her big scene is one in which she vacuums up a mouse.
Harry Spear
Supporting role. He's given mostly ensemble work to do in this film.
Jean Darling
Supporting role. She's given mostly ensemble work to do in this film.

the animals:

Pete (no. 1)
Supporting role. He starts off as the locomotion for Joe's car, and then accompanies the gang throughout the film.
monkey 004
Small part. Presumably the same monkey as seen before. He's the prosecuting attorney during the trial.
dog 034
Small part. He's the bailiff during the trial.
dog 087a
Small part. This is the dog serving as locomotion for Farina's car.
Bit part. Or perhaps not. The dog serving as locomotion for Harry's car looks like him.
dog 087b
Bit part. This dog is bandaged up and is one of the witnesses in the trial.
Bit part. The MGM lion appears at the opening of the film.
other animals
Small parts, bit parts and extras.
(1.) The owl that serves as the judge in Wheezer's trial. Possibly the same owl previously seen.
(2.) Donnie's puppy, "Hercules."
(3.) The black cat chased up the tree.
(4.) The hairless dog, possibly the same seen in "Big Business" (no. 23).
(5.) The little shaggy dog playing the hairless dog before his hair is removed.
(6.) The bulldog that serves as the other bailiff.
(7.) The mouse with the ring around his eye.
(8.) The chicken that guards over Wheezer during the trial.
(9.) The drunken goose at the trial.
(10.) The puppy, chicken and goat serving as witnesses at the trial.
(11.) The jury at the trial, including several chickens, geese, and at least one turkey.
(12.) The five dogs freed from the dogcatcher, one of which is the one carried by the dogcatcher.
(13.) Numerous rabbits, frogs, mice, rats and guinea pigs freed from the laboratory.
(14.) The chickens freed from the poultry market.
(15.) Several chickens and at least two ducks in the farmyard, some or all of which might be present at the trial.

the adults:

Hedda Hopper as "Mrs. President of the Be Kind to Animals Society"
Supporting role. She convinces the boys to take up the cause of protecting animals.
Adele Watson as the lady who snitched
Bit part. She alerts Hopper to what the boys are doing.
Jack O'Brien as "Tony," the fruit vendor
Bit part. According to Maltin & Bann. It's hard to be sure, but it looks like him. His cart is overrun by lab animals. The character name is revealed by a publicity photo for this film.
Silas D. Wilcox as the cop
Bit part. He orders the kids to retrieve all of the animals.
Syd Saylor as one of the pedestrians
Bit part. Listed by Maltin & Bann as Sid Saylor. He appears to be the last of the flea-infested pedestrians to get a closeup.
woman 087 as one of the pedestrians
Bit part. This is the second pedestrian at the bus stop to be given a closeup. I'm pretty sure she later appeared in "Shivering Shakespeare" (no. 95).
Ray Cooke as one of the pedestrians
Bit part. He's the second of the three flea-infested men at the busstop to get an extreme closeup.
Chet Brandenberg as the chauffeur
Bit part. Maltin & Bann refer to him as a cab driver.
Bob Saunders as the trucker
Bit part. I'm assuming that Maltin & Bann mean the guy on the back of the truck when it pulls away after delivering to the laboratory, but I'm not familiar with this actor.
other adults
Bit parts and extras.
(1.) The dog catcher.
(2.) The woman who jumps onto the awning and screams. Maltin & Bann list both Clara Guiol and Dorothy Vernon as pedestrians, and this is the only woman that looks to me like either one of them.
(3.) The woman getting her shoes laced.
(4.) The man lacing the woman's shoes with a mousetail.
(5.) The two construction workers.
(6.) The man working at the laboratory that receives the delivery.
(7.) Many pedestrians during the loose animals sequence, as well as a handful shown in the background of earlier scenes. Most notable are the woman with the mouse in her purse, the man whose arms she jumps into, and the three remaining people waiting for the bus. Maltin & Bann list Jack Hill, but I still need to familiarize myself with him. In the first edition of their book, they listed Don Sandstrom, but they must have considered this to be in error by the time the second edition came out. One of the people at the busstop looks like Paul Wiegel made up to look younger.

the music:

The Victor ledgers, which are described at the DAHR website, list a few of the tunes used in this film, some of which are identified on this list. However, five of them are not, since I haven't been able to match them with the unidentified pieces below. These are "A Busy Thoroughfare," "Happy Go Lucky," "Speed," "Chicken Walk" and "Ouch."

"What Does The Pussy Cat Mean When She Says 'Meow'" by Harry Pease, N. T. Granlund and Ed. G. Nelson
Published in 1924. This opens the film, with cat and dog sound effects added.
piece 087b
This is played when we first see the boys with their dog-powered carts.
"Me-ow" by Mel B. Kaufman
Published in 1918 with lyrics by Harry D. Kerr. This is played by the organ, in a medley with the other songs, when we see the cat being chased up the tree.
piece 087c
This is played as we see Donnie and his puppy.
"Don't Be Like That" by Maceo Pinkard
Published in 1928, with lyrics by Archie Gottler and Charles Tobias. From the Broadway musical "Good Boy." This song was a number 16 hit for Helen Kane in 1929. This is played as the snitch informs the boys that they've been reported.
piece 087d
This is played as Hopper surveys the situation with the dogs in the carts. It returns as Hopper makes the boys honorary members of the society. It returns again as the boys scold the girls for hammering a flea. A faster version is played as the kids warn Wheezer about his behavior. A slower version is played as Wheezer and Donnie free the lab animals.
piece 087e
This is the solemn piece played as Hopper convinces the boys to change their ways.
"So Blue" by Ray Henderson
Based on a theme by Mrs. Jesse Crawford. The lyrics to this song were written by Lew Brown and Buddy De Sylva. Paul Whiteman had a number 5 hit with this song in 1927. The organ plays a very short part of it as Jean discovers the flea with blue eyes and Mary hammers it.
"Animal Cartoonix" by Morris Aborn
This is played as we're introduced to the animated flea. It returns as Joe first discovers the flea on his person. It returns again when Farina removes the flea from Joe. It returns again as Joe discovers the flea while at the dog catcher's wagon. It returns again as Joe finds the flea again and continues as the dogs are released from the wagon a second time. It returns for the last time when Joe tries to kill the flea.
"Down Home Rag" by Wilbur C. Sweatman
Published in 1911. Also known as "Downhome Rag." This is played while Wheezer is with the chickens and throwing a rock at the owl. A variation is played as Wheezer and Donnie free the chickens from the poultry market.
"Mean To Me" by Roy Turk and Fred E. Ahlert
Ruth Etting had a number 3 hit with this song in the spring of 1929. This is played as Wheezer is taking an axe to the chicken. It returns as Wheezer is pulling the tail off the chicken in the flashback scene and continues as the monkey shows what the tail looks like now. It returns again as Wheezer puts hair remover on the dog.
"Dreamy Melody" by Ted Koehler, Frank Magine and C. Naset
This was a number one hit for Art Landry and His Orchestra in 1923. This is played as Wheezer falls asleep and a miniature version of himself appears.
piece 087j
This is played as we're introduced to the various animals in the trial.
"The Prisoner's Song"
Traditional song with lyrics by Robert Massey. Copyrighted by Guy Massey in 1924. Vernon Dalhart's 1925 version was the biggest selling non-holiday record of the pre-1955 era. The organ plays this as the chicken tells Wheezer he's on trial.
piece 087k
This is an effects piece played as the dog says "hear ye, hear ye."
"The Village Clown" by William Axt
Published in 1926. This is played as we're introduced to the judge. It returns as we're introduced to the hairless dog. It returns again as the jury reaches its verdict.
piece 087m
This is played as the first witness, a chicken, tells what happened to her tail. It returns as the monkey shows a photo of what the hairless dog looked like before Wheezer came along.
piece 087n
This is a short solemn piece played as Wheezer pulls the hairless dog out of the barrel.
piece 087o
This is similar to 087g and may be a variation of it. It's played as the chickens peck at Wheezer and he wakes from his dream.
piece 087p
This is played as Wheezer scolds Donnie.
piece 087q
This is played as the gang frees the dogs from the wagon. The piece played as the dogcatcher chases them away and Wheezer first sees the lab animals seems to be a continuation.
piece 087r
This is played as Wheezer and Donnie continue to free the lab animals and as the pedestrians first react to them. It returns as Mary uses the vacuum cleaner on the mouse.
piece 087s
This is played as the pedestrians react to the loose animals.
piece 087t
This is played as the cop orders the kids to retrieve the animals, and as the chaos continues. A variation of this is played as the kids chase the chickens around the street.
"Yes, We Have No Bananas" by Frank Silver and Irving Cohn
Published in 1923. This is played when we see the fruit cart.
piece 087u
This is played when the lady jumps on the awning and screams.
piece 087v
This is played as Pete barks at the mouse with the ringed eye.
piece 087w
This is played as Pete discovers he has a flea.

the locations:

Motor Avenue and Woodbine Street, Palms district, Los Angeles
This seems to be the location where Hedda Hopper gets out of her limousine.
Hal E. Roach Studios
The New York street set was used for the sequence with the loose animals.


9 shooting dates went into the making of this film. One week after shooting finished for "Little Mother" (no. 86), the 'start' date arrived for "Cat, Dog & Co." on Feb. 20th. Shooting continued until the 'finish' date of Mar. 2nd. No shooting took place on Feb. 24th, which was a Sunday. On Feb. 27th, the entry in the 1929 studio datebook reads 'production suspended - not working today.' Anthony Mack directed on each of the shooting dates, but on Feb. 22nd, 23rd, 25th and 26th, Robert F. McGowan directed a second unit, presumably to film footage for the animal courtroom sequence. After the finish date, three days passed before the Our Gang unit began to film "Saturday's Lesson" (no. 88).

The 16-inch disc masters containing the music and sound effects were Victor matrix MVE-55728 (for reel 1) and Victor matrix MVE-55729 (for reel 2). The takes were all recorded at the Church Bldg. in Camden, NJ. The takes for reel 1 were numbered 1, 1A, 2, and 2A, the latter two being "with effects." The takes for reel 2 were numbered 1A, 2, 2A, and 3, the first and last of which were "with effects." In neither case is the master take indicated. The Victor ledgers use the word "Inaudible" to indicate that the soundtrack contains no dialogue or other closely synchronized sound. They also note the use of the "Western Electric system."

The animated flea's name is "Flora."

Publicity photos refer to the kids as Roach's Rascals.

A publicity photo for this film reveals deleted footage in which the five older kids have feathers all over them.

The script submitted to MGM was given the catalog number B373.


The Little Rascals Remastered & Unedited Vol. 15 (VHS) from Cabin Fever and
The Little Rascals Remastered & Unedited Volume Three (4 LD set) from Cabin Fever
Released 1995. This is a complete original print with excellent picture qualty and the original soundtrack. The footage totals 20:52 from the beginning to the end of the soundtrack. There's also a clip lasting 0:01 shown during the opening sequence of all the Cabin Fever releases, which shows Joe wiggling. This version has appeared on numerous bootlegs.
The Little Rascals Remastered & Unedited - Rare, Original Silent Episodes (VHS) from Cabin Fever
Released 1996. This is identical to the other Cabin Fever release.
Our Gang Silent Comedies Vol. 8 (VHS) from HenryButch
This is copied directly from Vol. 15 of the Cabin Fever releases. The recording is a few seconds shorter, since the beginning and end of the soundtrack are edited.
Our Gang Volume #7 (VHS) from Grapevine Video and also from The Picture Palace
This copy is a home movie print from Blackhawk, but with the company name blacked out. The inter-titles are remade, but retain the original wording. The picture quality is good. The print totals 19:57, with about 17:05 of it original footage. This version has appeared on numerous bootlegs.
Jackie Remembers Our Gang - The Silent Era (VHS/DVD) from Jackie Taylor
A clip lasting 4:25 is included, showing the beginning of the film, with narration added.

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© Robert Demoss.

My thanks to the following people for assisting with this page:
Rob Stone (for providing the production number and shooting dates)
Joe Moore (for providing the copyright information)
Piet Schreuders (for identifying the tunes common between this film and "Wiggle Your Ears")
Robin Cook (for identifying "Mean To Me," "Down Home Rag," "So Blue" and "What Does The Pussy Cat Mean When She Says Meow")
Elliot Unkefer (for identifying "Don't Be Like That")
Ed Slonina (for pointing out the DAHR website containing the sound-on-disc info)
Paul Mular
Matt (for identifying "Dreamy Melody")

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