A lot or a little?
The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.
What parents need to know
Parents need to know that this updated version bears little resemblance to the original 1980s cartoon of the same name, but it is filled with heartwarming messages about friendship, compassion, and the ties that bind animals and their human friends. The characters are a motley crew of both breeds and personalities, but they all adhere to one goal, which is to help their fellow dogs find loving homes. Expect a fair amount of good-natured bad behavior (snooping on humans and sabotaging their plans, for instance) and some mild name-calling (“bonehead” and “numbskull,” to name a few), but the rest of the content is doggone great for kids.
What's the story?
POUND PUPPIES is the story of an underground network of canines whose mission is to match up homeless dogs with dog-less people. Operating from a secret command center beneath Shelter 17, Lucky (voiced by Eric McCormack), Cookie (Yvette Nicole Brown), Strudel (Alanna Ubach), and the other Pound Puppies befriend newcomers to the shelter and set to work identifying their ideal human match. Creativity is key to the process, since all of this must be done under the not-so-watchful eyes of the distracted shelter director Mr. McLeish (Rene Auberjonois) and the dimwitted dog catcher, Olaf (M. Emmet Walsh).
Is it any good?
Pound Puppies originally burst onto the scene in the mid-‘80s as sad-eyed plush animals whose instant popularity spawned a TV special, an animated series, and a movie. This 2010 version borrows little more than the name from the original, with all new characters and a new direction for the stories. The good news is that its focus on the do-gooder dog pack has some imbedded messages about empathy and helping others, since the Pound Puppies aren’t out to help themselves -- and some of them even have their own families to go home to.
From tough-talking Cookie to resourceful little Squirt (Michael Rappaport), kids are sure to love the diverse doggie characters in this cute series, and their minor transgressions won’t have any adverse effect on a young audience because it’s clearly done in humor. There is some name-calling among the pups, but the rest of the show is well suited -- and even a bit heartwarming -- for kids.
Talk to your kids about ...
Families can talk about helping others. In what ways do the Pound Puppies help their friends? In what ways are their actions difficult for them? What reward do they get from helping others? How do you feel when you help someone?
Parents and their kids can talk about pet care. Why is having a pet a big responsibility? What are some of the jobs associated with having a pet? If you could have any animal, what would it be? What special needs would that animal have? Could you fulfill those needs, or would you need help?
Kids: In what ways do TV shows or movies influence your likes and dislikes? Does seeing a show or movie with particular characters make you more inclined to want toys or books with those same characters? What are some of your favorite TV shows? What, if any, other products do you have with characters from those same shows?
Themes & Topics
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For kids who love pets and animals
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