Follow TV Tropes


Uncatty Resemblance

Go To

There's a saying that pets tend to look like their owners. Whether this is true in reality is obviously very debatable, but the magic of fiction allows this to be very true in media.

In fiction, pets tend to take after their owners, whether it's personality-wise or appearance-wise.


    open/close all folders 

  • Taronga Park Zoo in Sydney, Australia had the "You Belong In The Zoo" billboards. A long-beaked bird with a coloured crest would be staring through its cage at a long-nosed youth with a punk mohawk hairdo, or a gorilla staring at a hairy man with protruding jaw and thick lips.

    Anime & Manga 
  • Played with in Komori-san Can't Decline! where Ootani ends up adopting a cat that resembles Komori. It was originally going to be played straight since Komori's sister wanted to adopt it, but their mother is allergic to cats and is more of a dog person, anyway.
  • In Kuroko no Basuke, Kuroko and his pup Nigou have the same blank blue eyes. It's the reason for his full name, Tetsuya #2 (Nigou = #2).
  • Esmeralda, the Sixth Ranger fourth penguin from Mawaru-Penguindrum, has markings that mirror her owner Masako's heart-shaped face.
  • In Nekotalia, all the cats look just like their owners.
  • In Ouran High School Host Club, Tamaki's golden retriever Antoinette shares his hyperactive, friendly personality.
  • Pokémon:
    • Many minor characters of the day in the anime are obviously designed to look like their Pokémon.
    • This is taken to an extreme in the seventeenth movie, where antagonists Ninja Riot, Marilyn Flame, Millis Steel, and Argus Steel are all dressed in outfits that resemble their main Pokémon: Greninja, Delphox, Chesnaught and Honedge respectively.
    • Ash's Greninja has an unique Super Mode that bears a resemblance to Ash's outfit.
    • Zigzagged with Ash and Pikachu. While they share many attributes, there are multiple differences in their personalities. For example, Pikachu isn't an Idiot Hero like Ash and he also isn't a Chaste Hero like his trainer either.
  • Pokémon Adventures has a chapter where Red and Green switch Pokémon. When Red gets his Pokémon back, they all have eyes like Green's.
  • Slayers Revolution has an episode with animals groomed to look like their owners.
  • Yu-Gi-Oh!:
    • A chapter of the Yu-Gi-Oh! manga involves digital pets. Yugi happened to own a digital pet he calls U2, who has the same hair style as his owner.
    • Yu-Gi-Oh! ZEXAL: While not a pet, but Yuma's Chaos No.39: Kibou Ou Hope Ray Victory'snote  design bears a striking resemblance to ZEXAL II's armor. This might be intentionally, since both ZEXAL II and Hope Ray Victory were born in the same episode, the latter being created by ZEXAL II's power.
  • Mentioned in the chapter of Sgt. Frog that introduces Tamama. Seeing that the new Keronian is a Mood-Swinger much like his classmate Momoka (who also found him), the narration notes that Fuyuki was thinking, "The pet always resembles the owner."
  • A running gag for Maika in Blend-S is a tendency for her expression to become frightening when nervous. When she and Dino take their dog, Owner, to a dog park, Maika tries to help him woo a dog he likes, they both end up looking positively vicious and end up scaring the other dog away.
  • This is used (with personalities rather than looks) to drive the plot in the second episode of Massugu ni Ikou. It is ultimately subverted. Thanks to this belief, Mametarou believes that the aggressive Sora's owner is his owner's rude and mean-looking co-worker Kyousuke. Kyousuke's actually Sebastian's owner. Sebastian is a mild-mannered and cute Yorkshire Terrier.
  • In Comic Girls, all the main cast notice one thing in the second episode: Kaoruko and her cat Nyaos are both Shrinking Violets and have nearly synchronized emotions. They two characters are even played by the same voice actress, Hikaru Akao.
  • Played with in Kaguya-sama: Love Is War. Shirogane is noted on several occasions to resemble Fujiwara's pet dog, Pes (especially their eyes). Fujiwara even gets the two of them mixed up in the ninth Official Doujinshi chapter after she accidentally gets drunk on some alcoholic chocolate.
  • Miss Hokusai: Downplayed: instead of copying the appearance of one member of the household, the dog copies the behaviour of whoever would be funniest. On one occasion O-Ei returns to the house, and finds the dog and the lodger both lying on their backs with their legs in the air.

    Card Games 
  • Yu-Gi-Oh!
    • Atrax and Myrmeleo, members of the Traptrix archetype, both resemble their pets/host bodies. Atora's braids can be seen as the limbs of a spider and her decorations resembles a spider's fangs. Myrmeleo could be seen as an ant lion because her hair decorations resemble an antlion's jaws.
    • Rinyan is Lumina's pet cat, as Rinyan is wearing Lumina's headdress, necklace, and one armband on her tail,

    Comic Books 
  • The Beano, loves this trope. In Dennis the Menace, Gnasher's spiky fur resembles Dennis's hair, and he also has Rasher, a pig covered in spiky bristles; Pup Parade, featuring the pets of the Bash Street Kids; Roger the Dodger used to have a pet called Joe Crow with the same tuft of hair/feathers; and, in the silliest example, Cuthbert Cringeworthy, the Bash Street school swot, looks like Teacher. Because he's the teacher's pet.
  • Desperate Dan, the cover character in sister-comic The Dandy has a dog which shared his prominent chin.
  • And The Nutty, before it was folded into The Dandy had Nip and Rrip, about a boy with spiky hair and his spiky furred cat.
  • Boule et Bill: one gag involved Boule & Bill making fun of various dogs and their owners that play this trope very straight, until at the end they see a Chihuahua approach them and think this will be the ultimate example of the trope, only for the trope to be averted when the chihuahua’s owner turns out to be a tall, muscular man that doesn’t resemble his pet at all.

    Comic Strips 
  • Dilbert and his dog Dogbert both wear the exact same set of glasses and have the same mouthless faces.
  • Garfield
    • There was a comic strip where Jon and Garfield commented on this trope, with increasingly bizarre lookalikes. This culminated with some guy who looked like a bird in a suit and his pet canary.
    • Another one had Garfield deliberately doing this himself to people walking in the park by following them around and mimicking their mannerisms. This went sour when one fat guy caught him in the act, though:
      Garfield: I thought fat people were jolly...
    • Discussed in one strip where Jon reads in the paper that owners often look like their pets. He and Garfield then take a good look at each other...
    Jon: I think I'll get plastic surgery.
    Garfield: I think I'll go shave.
  • In Dennis the Menace (US version), the fur on the top of Ruff's head resembles Dennis' hair.
  • This was most noticeable in Footrot Flats when The Dog went to a dog show and saw heaps of dogs who resembled their owners. Although The Dog doesn't resemble Wal at all, there is a degree of resemblance between Wal and Major the pig dog (possibly coincidental) and also between the 3 Murphys and their dogs Tiger, Wolf and Cream Puff.
  • In Beetle Bailey Sgt Snorkel and his dog Otto look markedly similar, down to Otto wearing a uniform and walking on his hind legs.
  • In one Mafalda strip, three people who look a lot like their dogs are laughing at Mafalda because she has her pet turtle Burocracianote  on a leash like a dog. She angrily yells at them for being "racist".
  • Pluggers makes fun of this trope bizarrely, that fact both owner and pet are dogs

    Fan Works 
  • The Bolt Chronicles: Played with in “The Coffee Shop.” Mittens tells Bolt that Joe, the boyfriend he found for Penny, reminds her of himself.
  • In Neither a Bird nor a Plane, it's Deku!, Dexter is as furious and volatile as his owner, Bakugou. He even possesses the same burning animosity for Izuku when he tries to play with him, biting, scratching, and throwing toys at him the same way Bakugou throws explosions at Izuku. Of course, when you're the Alternate Self of a Red Lantern, rage comes naturally to you.

    Films — Animation 
  • Walt Disney's 101 Dalmatians evokes this a lot; see the page pic.
  • Scruffy has a scene displaying this. At the end, a number of dogs are adopted by people who resemble them.
  • In Mulan, Shan Yu looks very much like his pet falcon - right down to hawk-like eyes (while the bird has eyes with little irises just like a human).
  • How to Train Your Dragon and How to Train Your Dragon 2:
    • Hiccup and Toothless. Both are crippled with a limb which is fixed on a prosthetic. Both are smaller than their compatriots, fitting Weak, but Skilled and even share similar fun-loving, snarky personalities. By the end of the second film, the scrawny Hiccup inherited the title Chieftain of Berk from his massive father to become the leader of his people while the lithe Toothless challenged Drago's colossal Bewilderbeast and succeeded, becoming the Alpha and leader of his people.
    • The other Dragon Riders of Berk also ride dragons that resemble them both in appearance and personality: slender and fierce Astrid rides a Deadly Nadder, portly and gentle Fishlegs rides a Gronckle, boastful but cowardly Snotlout rides a Monstrous Nightmare, and the rude Half-Identical Twins Ruffnut and Tuffnut ride a two-headed Hideous Zippleback. In the TV series, Stoick the Vast gets to ride a Thunderdrum dragon, just as stocky and stubborn as him.
  • At the end of Shaun the Sheep: The Movie, Ugly Cute dog Slip, whose snaggletoothed face has been putting off potential owners, is found by the bus driver, who turns out to have a very similar smile.
  • In the last musical number of Pound Puppies and the Legend of Big Paw, several people are seen with dogs that look like them.

    Films — Live-Action 

  • There's a children's picture book called It's Easy to See Why in which a girl enters her dog into a dog show and is the only owner there who doesn't bear a striking resemblance to her pet. Her dog wins, though... because he looks just like the judge.
  • The Lord of the Rings: Treebeard says something similar to this in The Two Towers about Ents and trees becoming more like each other.
  • Grace Lockwood from the A to Z Mysteries book The Falcon's Feathers looks very much like a falcon when she reads an issue of Falconry Today in a picture at the end of Chapter 5.
  • Jane Eyre: Mr Rochester snarks that his dog Pilot looks more like him than his ward Adele Varens. Adele's biological mother claimed he was her father, but Celine Varens was cheating on him and Adele looks nothing like Mr Rochester.
  • In The Ruby Red Trilogy, Lesley is said to look like her Golden Retriever Bertie, mostly because of her hair colour.
  • The Roald Dahl short story "Royal Jelly" has a new mother mention this about her beekeeper husband. The reasons turn out to be rather sinister indeed.
  • Waldo's dog Woof from Where's Waldo? wears the same glasses, hat, and sweater he does.
  • The Dresden Files: After saving a litter of Temple puppies, dogs with holy powers who typically guard churches and temples, one of the litter decides to hide in Harry's car and stay with Harry. Harry names this little guy Mouse for being small enough to fit into Harry's coat pocket and quiet demeanor. When Mouse grows up, he, like Harry, is larger than average. Harry is 6'9" and Mouse is nearly 3ft tall. Both are good at moving carefully and trying not to seem threatening despite their physical size. Personalitywise, as Mouse's heritage means he is capable of human-level thought, Mouse's internal dialogue from his narration and few scenes he speaks and Harry understands him, reveals himself to be a Deadpan Snarker who is fiercely protective of his loved ones, a combat pragmatist, defiant to those who are supposedly stronger than him, and if need be die to save the life of a loved one. All of which fits Harry perfectly too.

    Live-Action TV 
  • In a variant, a murder victim on Bones who'd owned a chicken-processing plant somewhat resembled the chickens he worked with, due to a poultry-borne fungal infection which deformed his sinuses.
  • In an especially bizarre example, on 3rd Rock from the Sun, Wacky Guy Harry's pet from the home planet, "Pickles", shows up unexpectedly on Earth, and also took the form of a rubber-faced manic human in ugly sweaters.
  • Game of Thrones:
    • Ghost, not physically, but behaviorally. Like Jon Snow, Ghost is initially the unnoticed runt of the litter to individuals outside his family, but he's strong and loyal. Also like Jon, he has this habit of disappearing off to do his own thing without warning others and occasionally getting into hot water for it. Abandoning Jon may also not have been what it looked like, any more than Jon's "abandoning" of the the Watch to live with the Free Folk was. Whatever he got up to, this wolf probably had Reasons. Ghost's white fur is a subtle reference to Jon's biological father, Prince Rhaegar Targaryen, who had the classic Targaryen look of silver hair, whereas Jon himself mostly resembles his mother Lyanna Stark.
    • One of Daenerys' dresses in Season 7 is a red-and-black dress with dragonlike scales and spikes that resembles Drogon. Her Braids of Action also resemble a dragon's crest.
  • In Jake and the Fatman, the aforementioned "Fatman" (a no-nosense and very large prosecutor) has a pet bulldog named Max who looks quite a bit like him.
  • In The Golden Girls, Rose's news report on a dog show revolves around dogs who resemble their owners. She completely ignores the hostage situation occuring in the background.

    Tabletop Games 

  • Hello Kitty: Kitty White has a pet cat called Charmy Kitty. Charmy looks like a slightly scruffier, nude version of her owner, except that she walks on all-fours instead of bipedally.
  • Barbie sets that give the dolls pets have a tendency to match fur and hair color — Barbie with a blond-furred dog, Teresa with a brown-furred dog, etc.
  • Hairdorables: All twelve characters have pets that match their owner, even going so far as to have several with fur or skin colors that match the character and the same hair colors—in the same styles as their owner's signature looks. Zigzagged with Neila's pet fox, Comet: she doesn't resemble either of Neila's signature looks, with green fur, pink hair, and green and white stripes in her tail—but her overall look resembles Neila's Series One Rare chaser, Super Neila.
  • Treasure X: Starting with Series 2 of the toyline, the subline of "Mini Beasts" were introduced. They are skeletal animals that resemble the treasure hunters of that series. They'll have similar accessories, and, if the treasure hunter is themed after an animal, will be that animal.

    Video Games 
  • Not exactly a pet, but close enough. In the Sci-Fi chapter of Live A Live, the main character, a robot named Cube, is always wearing a baseball cap and glasses, that its owner also wears, this has the side effect of making it very cute (although this chapter is so unrelentingly bleak and moody that Cube's appearance actually provides some small relief).
  • In The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword, Loftwings more often than not have some resemblance to their masters.
  • The Medic and his doves (especially Archimedes) in Team Fortress 2. They were both stuck in lucrative but ultimately unsatisfying careers (wedding dovery and medicine, respectively), but met when Medic hijacked a catering van at the Prime Minister's wedding. His doves share his enthusiasm for blood, and when perched on his shoulder as an in-game item, Archimedes blinks and opens his mouth whenever Medic speaks (due to the item being tied to Medic's facial flexes).
  • Pokémon:
    • In Pokémon Diamond and Pearl and Pokémon Platinum the Team Galactic executives Mars, Jupiter, and Saturn all fit this category. Mars has hair that resembles Toxicroak, Jupiter's hair resembles Medicham, and Saturn's hair resembles Purugly.
    • An NPC in Pokémon Black 2 and White 2 tells you that you and your Pokémon resemble each other.
    • Warlords in Pokémon Conquest, when transformed, have armour that deliberately invokes their perfect partner's appearance. With humanoid Pokémon, you usually end up with a cosplayer's dream costume (Fūma Kotarō almost exactly resembles his Zoroark). More... articulate Pokémon have simple accessory references (Kanbei gets something straight off of the Light Emperor to resemble his Chandelure)
  • Metal Gear Solid V: The Phantom Pain has the grizzled, one-eyed mercenary Big Boss acquire a shaggy one-eyed wolfdog companion, D.D., who even gets his own eye patch.

    Web Animation 
  • The short film Pig Me revolves around this trope.

    Web Comics 
  • Many of the lusus in Homestuck resemble the trolls they're the guardians of, especially in horn shape. This is most obvious with Tinkerbull, Tavros' guardian who shares his horns, and the Virgin Mother Grub has Kanaya's horns and lips.
  • Stand Still, Stay Silent: Reynir's dog fylgia, in addition to having a personality close to his by its very nature, has fur of a dominant color identical to Reynir's hair.

    Web Original 

    Western Animation 
  • Looney Tunes does this in multiple episodes.
    • In Charlie Dog's debut cartoon "Little Orphan Airedale", he plays with this trope by mimicking the faces of people passing by (and even the odd "Duh, duh, duh..." Verbal Tic of one guy) until he sees Porky Pig, showing that both of them have similar faces.
    • In an episode of The Sylvester and Tweety Mysteries, the Scottish shepherds look a lot like Sam Sheepdog, up to his iconic Blinding Bangs.
    • K-9 wears the same helmet, military skirt, and even tennis shoes (though he wears two pairs) as his owner, Marvin the Martian.
  • In Rugrats, Angelica's pet cat Fluffy is designed to look like her. One Nickelodeon UK advert narrated from Spike the dog's perspective lampshaded it.
  • In the episode of Doug where everyone goes to the dude ranch, the horses assigned to each character have an unnerving habit of resembling them. Of particular note are Romulus and Remus, a pair of purple, bespectacled horses for the purple, bespectacled pair of Al and Moo Sleech.
  • In Handy Manny, Mr Lopart's cat, Fluffy, has brow-whiskers stretching across her forehead in the same manner as his combover.
  • In the Dexter's Laboratory episode "Dexter's Lab: A Story", Dexter finds a stray Laborador retriever. At the end the dog is reunited with its actual owner, a manic surfer dude who looks (and acts) very similar to him, even having an identical voice provided by the same actor.
    Man: Hey! It's my dog! I found my dog!
    Dog: Hey, it's my man! I found my man!
    Both: I found you, I found you, I found you! I found you!
    Man: Let's go for a ride! You wanna go for a ride?
    Dog: Yeah, ride, let's go for a ride!
    Both: Let's go for a ride!
    [exit both; Dexter directs a baffled stare at the camera]
  • The Simpsons featured in the episode "Homer's Triple Bypass" a Show Within a Show called "People That Look Like Things", which had the host make fun of people who resembled inanimate objects. All of them were seen adjacent to the object they happened to look like.
    Man Who Looks Like Jack-O-Lantern: All we ask is to be treated with dignity and respect.
    Host: And a new candle now and then?
    Man Who Looks Like Jack-O-Lantern: Yes, and a new c— No!
    • In the episode "Last Exit To Springfield", Mr. Burns has a pet vulture that looks like him and makes the same shuddering sound he does when he's disgusted by something.
    • Bit of an odd example in "I (Annoyed Grunt)-Bot", in which Lisa (because Snowball II is dead) buys several cats (who die in quick succession once they get home) and one of them, named "Coltrane", looks like Bart. And acts like him too, because he freaks out and jumps out of Lisa's bedroom window to his death after he hears two seconds of Lisa playing John Coltrane music on her saxophone.
  • Hi Hi Puffy AmiYumi has Kaz resemble his dog Domo, with a Running Gag of lack of awareness.
  • In the Classic Disney Short Mickey's Polo Team, four Disney characters (Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck, Goofy, and the Big Bad Wolf) play a game of polo with four caricatures of movie stars of the day (Charlie Chaplin, Stan Laurel, Oliver Hardy, and Harpo Marx). Everyone's mount, including that of the referee, Jack Holt, looked exactly like their riders. Donald Duck, however, has a donkey that doesn't look much like him but has his cantankerous personality. Harpo Marx rides an ostrich, which does look like him, complete with curly Non-Mammalian Hair just like the rider's own hair.
  • In his last TV shows, Mr. Magoo has a pet bulldog that not only has his jowly face, but also shares his distinctive disability.
  • In the episode "McLeish Unleashed" of Pound Puppies (2010), Milton Feltwaddle (who took over when McLeish was promoted) instituted a system where dogs and humans were matched up by how similar they looked to each other. This didn't work out so well, however.
  • My Little Pony Friendship Is Magic:
    • Inverted (somewhat) with some pets. Genki Girl Pinkie Pie with The Comically Serious Gummy (an alligator), Shrinking Violet Fluttershy with Jerk with a Heart of Gold Angel Bunny (a rabbit), Lightning Bruiser Rainbow Dash with Mighty Glacier Tank (a tortoise)...
    • Zigzagged with Applejack and Winona (a collie who's as athletic as her owner but much more happy-go-lucky and silly) and Rarity and Opalescence (a white Persian who likes quality fashion and treatment as much as her owner but is a lot less sweet-natured) and played straight with Twilight and Owlowiscious (an owl).
  • Dozer the bulldog from Mister T has the same mohawk as Mr T.
  • An episode of Garfield and Friends has John worrying that he was becoming too much like Garfield.
  • When space cats hypnotize the crew in Futurama, each feline the characters take as "owners" mirror colors and traits of the them, human or otherwise.
  • All of the Diamonds in Steven Universe have been attended by Pearls with similar appearances and location of their gems at the same place as their mistresses; Blue Diamond's Pearl is tinted blue and has Blinding Bangs that mimic her mistress' hood, while Yellow Diamond's is tinted yellow, has a similarly pointy hair style, and has flared sleeves in a similar style to her Diamond's shoulder pads. Pink Diamond's original Pearl is pink, and has a belly opening in the same shape. When White Diamond took her away, her color changed to white, and the replacement she apparently made has White's gem placement, white skin, and clothes that include pink, blue, and yellow. This is very likely Invoked, as Pearls are apparently made and customized for specific owners.
  • In Trollz, all of the Trollz' pets look like their owners and have similar hairstyles.
  • In SpacePOP, all the Space Pets resemble their owner and have similar hairstyles.
  • Catwoman in Batman: The Animated Series has a pet black cat who bears a strong resemblance to Selina's costumed appearance.
  • On Family Guy, Herbert's dog Jesse is, like him, old, toothless, and disabled (Herbert uses a walker, while Jesse's back legs are paralyzed). He's even prone to making humming noises, mirroring Herbert's Verbal Tic.
  • Toonsylvania featured this in the Night of the Living Fred segment "Dead Dog Day Afternoon", where Fred Deadman entered his pet dog Frisky into a dog show. Several of the other dogs participating happened to resemble their owners.

    Real Life 
  • Moons:
    • Rhea, the second-largest moon of Saturn, is the only moon in the Solar System to actually have rings around it.
    • Similarly, Ganymede, the largest moon in the Solar System, is also the largest moon of Jupiter, the Solar System's largest planet.
    • The moon Triton is blue like its parent planet, Neptune.
    • Inverted by our very own Moon, usually defined as a gas giant's moon in a small rocky planet's orbit.
  • According to this website, there's a strong correlation in the British Isles between the prevalence in an area of ginger cats and the proportion of that area's population who have ginger hair.
  • A sort-of-informative show in Germany tried to prove this by showing pictures of dogs, then of owners to random passengers, asking them to arrange the pictures. Most of them were right. However, this show is notorious for only showing the results they found interesting, so who knows.
  • The first American cat breeder to raise the Khao Manee, a white breed of cat from Thailand that's prone to heterochromic eye color and deafness, has one blue and one brown eye. Her husband and daughter are also deaf.
  • Cats in general have faces remarkably similar to humans; it's likely a reason why they're such popular pets in the first place. A cat and a human will instantly know if they're looking into the others' eyes, which is very convenient for simple communication.
  • Pet magazines and similar publications will occasionally invoke this, encouraging owners to send in photos showing how much they and their pets look alike (usually allowing costumes in place of a strong natural resemblance).

Alternative Title(s): Dog Owner Resemblance


How well does it match the trope?

Example of:


Media sources: