It’s safe to say every Riverdale fans agree Cole Sprouse‘s version of Jughead Jones is one of the best parts of the show. This role literally got him back on our television screens after being gone for years since he and his twin brother Dylan decided to take a break from acting and go to college. So you know this character is something special. OG Archie Comics fans know though there are certain criteria he needed to meet, like the famous crown, the dark hair, a love of burgers and his dog, Hot Dog. Cole has most of these traits locked down already as we’re three seasons into Riverdale: his locks are always the perfect shade, he is rarely ever without that crown beanie, and he’s made it clear he’s always down to eat a burger at Pop’s anytime. So what about his beloved pooch?

Jughead’s dog Hot Dog has appeared on Riverdale.

Yes, that’s right, the dog has been on the show already! And in the Season 3 premiere episode, he was part of a rather intense storyline. Jughead as we know is now a full-blown member of the Southside Serpents and rival gang the Ghoulies actually captured poor Hot Dog and weren’t feeding him properly. So it was up to Jughead, Betty, Cheryl, and the Serpents to rescue him.

hot dog riverdale
The CW

Before this big scene though, it seems like fans didn’t even realize Hot Dog had appeared on the show before and was well, a dog and not a human Serpent.

But we had seen Hot Dog before! In the Season 1 finale, the Southside Serpents stop buy to officially welcome Jughead into their crew, leather jacket and all. And as he’s getting his warm welcome, a dog barks and one of the Serpents tells Hot Dog that Jug is family. 

hot dog riverdale

So Hot Dog serves more as a mascot for the Serpents and isn’t just Juggy’s dog. He means something to all of the Serpents!

The character was a fixture in the Archie Comics and his appearance on the show to begin with was all thanks to Cole’s insistence, something the showrunner of the series, Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa told MTV all about.

“Listen, that was all Cole. He really wanted Hot Dog. In a way, Cole is even more of a purist than I am, especially when it comes to Jughead and the Jughead mythology. For me, I was like, ‘I don’t know if the Serpents are going to have a sheepdog. He’s more like a junkyard dog. TV adaptations reinvent stuff all the time.’ And Cole was like, ‘Fine. But you’re not reinventing Hot Dog.’ He had a really good point. Cole is an artist. He’s very passionate, and I’m glad Hot Dog is a sheepdog and that he’s now in our universe,” Roberto said.

Roberto was ready to find a totally different type of dog, but Cole didn’t want it any other way, so they made it happen.

“He really wanted a sheepdog to play Hot Dog. He was really passionate about that. It was very hard to find a sheepdog in Vancouver who could deliver all of the nuance that Hot Dog required. It all happened at the last second. Basically, when we got the dog, I said to Cole, ‘We’re going to try and make this work, but if this dog comes in and he can’t deliver as Hot Dog, we’re just going to do the scene without Hot Dog.’ And he was like, “That dog better deliver.” And the dog did great! You’ll be seeing more of Hot Dog in Season 2 for sure.”

Will Hot Dog be in the show more?

OK, so according to Roberto, there is possibly more Hot Dog scenes on the way that Jughead is a full-blown Serpent. But when Cole appeared on Late Night with Seth Meyers and spilled about how he fought to find the perfect Hog Dog, the 26-year-old actor explained that the experience wasn’t the best.

“Jughead’s dog in the comics is a dog called Hot Dog and he’s undoubtedly the worst part of the digests, hands down, he’s the scariest thing and really adds not too much but for some reason I was addicted to the idea of having an English sheepdog like he is in the comics and he was originally pitched as like a pit bull. And I thought okay well we need to figure out a way to get an English sheepdog,” Cole explained. “So for like a week, I was trying to wear Roberto down about this and we got this dog and this dog was the worst actor I have ever worked with. It barks the whole time, it didn’t hit its mark, it broke fourth wall consistently, it was just no good.”

YIKES, this Hot Dog didn’t leave the best impression on Cole. Now, Cole being Cole was obviously telling this story with a joking manner, but it seems like this particular pooch just isn’t cut out to be one of the stars of The CW series after all. So the Hot Dog we saw in Season 3 is most likely a different dog! Perhaps we’ll be seeing more of him as the series continues since Hot Dog really is such a staple. 

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