HE was an unlikely movie star - a larger than life rescue dog whose owner exit him, claiming that was as well aggressive.

You are watching: Fang from harry potter type of dog

But top animal trainer Julie Tottman spotted star top quality in Neopolitan Mastiff Monkey - who went on come sprinkle some animal magic on the take care of Potter films.



Monkey starred together gamekeeper Hagrid's dog Fangs from the fourth film onwards

Julie, 50, who credits encompass Game the Thrones, 101 Dalmatians and several James bond films, has written a book around how she turn starving, unruly Monkey into the dog that played Fang in the well known movie franchise.

She says: “I had actually an instant link with him. Once I found him he to be desperately malnourished, and desperate for love and also attention. I had no idea if that would make him a an excellent dog because that the movie yet I knew i wouldn’t have the ability to resist trying!”

As Harry potter’s head animal trainer, Julie trained over 250 animals for the movie franchise in between 2000 and also 2011 - from owls come cats and also even spiders.

One the the crucial animal characters is Fang, the dog belonging come gamekeeper Hagrid, play by Robbie Coltrane.


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Julie likes to usage rescue pets for movies to provide them a brand-new lifeCredit: Damien McFadden
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When Julie rescued that he was a 'bag that bones' but quickly bulked up with consistent mealsCredit: WENN

In the first three films the role was played by a Neopolitan Mastiff called Hugo, that memorably splattered referents Fern Britton v drool throughout an illustration on This Morning.

But with just weeks come go before filming started on the fourth installment, take care of Potter and The Goblet that Fire, the decision to be taken the ageing Hugo necessary to pensioner - leaving Julie through a huge hole that required urgently filling.

She recalled: “I knew it would certainly be a big challenge to replace him in such a brief time frame. Neapolitan Mastiffs are a rare breed and they have the right to be quite tricky to job-related with. TIme was not on ours side.”

Devoted to pet welfare, Julie constantly tries to use rescue animals where she deserve to - so began by ringing round dog rescue charities.


She explained: “I constantly tried to actors rescue pets for movies because there are so many deserving animals languishing in shelters who room desperate because that a new life.

“It breaks my love to think of the cruelty and neglect humans can inflict top top animals, however no issue what horrors a creature has actually endured, a bit of kindness and some mindful training deserve to turn them into stars.


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Monkey came to be a certain favourite with the actors including Robbie Coltrane
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Julie didn't have long to acquire Monkey screen-ready yet still controlled itCredit: Damien McFadden

“The human being writes them off, however I knew from experience that rescues are frequently the hardest working, many loyal and also loving animals.”

After hitting several dead ends, Julie lastly struck the lucky v a professional mastiff rescue charity who had a Neopolitan Mastiff the very same blue colour as Hugo.


But there was one trouble - his vault owner had actually abandoned the claiming he to be aggressive, which would certainly hardly make him a great fit because that a collection full of son actors.

Julie made decision the dog to be worth exploring anyway. She explained: “Often owners say a dog is aggressive together an excuse to get rid of them. However nine times the end of ten it’s due to the fact that they weren’t prepared for how big the dog obtained or exactly how expensive that is to feed them. People prefer to blame the dog than blame themselves.”

As shortly as she collection eyes ~ above Monkey, then recognized as Hercules, Julie knew she was appropriate to have actually trusted her gut.

Although full of energy and spirit, he remained in a sorry state. She recalled: “He was incredibly skinny – little much more than a bag the bones. A Neapolitan mastiff should have skin the hangs loosened over the solid absent of their body, however this dog’s crease were choose old rags draped about his bony frame. It damaged my heart to see just how he must have been starved and neglected by his previous owners.”


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Monkey had been abandoned by owner who declared he to be viciousCredit: Getty
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Julie's brand-new book details the story the Monkey and also his trip to coming to be a movie star

What’s more, it was clear Hercules to be soppy and also affectionate - a much cry indigenous the vicious beast his previous owners had made him the end to be.

She added: “He looked up in ~ me through a watch of together gentleness that I immediately knew that everything I had actually heard around his aggressive side must have been wrong. I might tell this was a dog who just longed to it is in loved.”

Renaming the Monkey to fit his goofy, cheeky nature, Julie chose to take him home to Tring, Hertfordshire, ~ above the spot.

She knew he required feeding up, attention and something to placed his energy into - for this reason the film might be simply what he needed.


Julie to be responsible for a number of animals on the film including CrookshanksCredit: Damien McFadden

But it to be still a race versus time to get him ready.

She said: “Usually, if i was beginning from scratch with a new dog I’d desire at the very least twelve mainly working with them prior to taking them on set, beginning by simply structure a relationship before moving ~ above to an easy commands and eventually the specific moves they’d require for the film. The Goblet that Fire started in much less than half that time.”

In she book, Julie explains how Monkey walk from course clown come a star rotate who thrilled his young co-stars, including Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint.

But that’s no to say over there weren’t a couple of mishaps along the way. Top top one occasion, Monkey introduced himself in ~ a priceless, anamatronic dragon - reasoning it was a supersized dog toy and not a bespoke masterpiece that had taken the props department months to conceive.


And another scene experienced him shower head the whole set in drool - after ~ shaking his enormous head at simply the not correct time.

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Julie said: “He to be a big, clumsy oaf that a dog who just had a knack for making you laugh.”

Monkey sadly died in 2013 after arising cancer, but he is immortalised in the Warner brother Studio Tour near Watford, wherein a video clip showing the being put through his paces by Julie is projected onto the wall.

She says: “His personality shines with the screen. Also though we had actually to say goodbye come him, I know he’ll live on because that fans and also people who remember the - and also that because that me is the actual magic.”