Toto is one of the most beloved and most well-known dog characters of all time. Even people who haven’t necessarily seen the Wizard of Oz films or read the original book are probably familiar with the character—or at least the famous phrase, “Toto, I’ve a feeling we’re not in Kansas anymore.”
Toto has appeared in many of the official “Oz” books, later spin-offs, films, TV shows and even musicals. Whether you’re a diehard “Oz” buff or you’re just a lover of cinema dogs, consider the following interesting trivia about the world’s most famous pet.
In the books, Toto can talk—sometimes
In the original The Wonderful Wizard of Oz, Toto was an ordinary dog who did not talk, even though other animals living in Oz had the power of speech. In the books that followed, it was revealed that animals living in Oz gained the ability to talk, but Toto himself did not talk until The Tik-Tok of Oz. In ‘Tik-Tok,’ Toto finally speaks, revealing that he can talk in Oz, but he simply chooses not to. In subsequent books, Toto will occasionally talk, especially if it’s to help out Dorothy.
His exact breed is unknown
L. Frank Baum never specified Toto’s exact breed. Instead, he described Toto as a small black dog with “long silky hair and small black eyes.” The illustrations of the original book appear similar to both Yorkshire and Cairn Terriers. In the MGM film, a Cairn terrier (Terry) was used.
There is a memorial to Terry the Terrier at the Hollywood Forever cemetery
Terry the Terrier, who played Toto in the 1938 MGM film, died at the age of 10 or 11 in 1945. Terry had appeared in 13 total films, including her most famous role as Toto in The Wizard of Oz. In 2011, a memorial for Terry was erected in the Hollywood Forever Cemetery.
Toto accidentally becomes the ruler of Arfrica in the Oz books
In Toto in Oz, published in 1986, Toto accidentally becomes the ruler of a town called Arfrica after he finds an ivory scepter that he thought was a chewing bone. He is dubbed the First Magistrate of the town, but when he finds out that he will have to marry a human princess for political reasons, he runs away and elects a Second Magistrate of the town to serve in his place.