Old Yeller by Fred GipsonAt first, Travis couldnt stand the sight of Old Yeller.
The stray dog was ugly, and a thieving rascal, too. But he sure was clever, and a smart dog could be a big help on the wild Texas frontier, especially with Papa away on a long cattle drive up to Abilene.
Strong and courageous, Old Yeller proved that he could protect Traviss family from any sort of danger. But can Travis do the same for Old Yeller?
Old Yeller Played by Spike, a Lab/Mastiff Mix
Who reading this cried when Old Yeller got shot? It was a touching tale of a young boy bonding with a dog that wanted to stick around, so of course it was bound to be sad when Old Yeller finally succumbed to rabies. But it did teach us a little something about compassion and about life and death. In the movie a real golden Lab was used, but in the book the dog was described as a black-mouthed cur, which is similar but less bulky. They would both on to star in The Swiss Family Robinson and The Shaggy Dog, but would also explore other movies throughout their careers.
The movie was about a boy and a stray dog in post-Civil War Texas. With the father away on a cattle drive, the two sons, Travis and Arliss, do the best they can to keep up with all the tasks on the family farm. Meat is being stolen from their smokehouse and some animal has been disturbing the hens. The boys soon find that the culprit is a stray, yellow-colored dog. Travis, the older brother played by Tommy Kirk, tries to drive the dog off, but Arliss Kevin Corcoran protects the dog he calls Yeller. One afternoon Arliss is trying to capture a black bear cub by offering it food. Old Yeller appears unexpectedly and drives the bear away.
The Dog Old Yeller
After Katie bids him a tearful goodbye, he tells Travis that he must now assume responsibility as man of the house, promising to reward him with a horse upon his return. The next day, he is working the small corn field with Jumper, the family mule, when a stray dog chases a rabbit into the field.
In the late s in Texas, young Travis Coates has been working to take care of his family ranch with his mother and younger brother, Arliss, while his father goes off on a cattle drive. When a "dingy yellow" dog comes for an unasked stay with the family, Travis reluctantly takes in the dog, which they name Old Yeller. The name has a double meaning: The fur color yellow pronounced as "yeller" and the fact that its bark sounds more like a human yell. Though Travis initially loathes the "rascal" and at first tries to get rid of it, the dog a yellow cur  , eventually proves his worth, saving the family on several occasions, rescuing Arliss from a bear, Travis from a bunch of wild hogs, and Mama and their friend Lisbeth from a loafer wolf. Travis grows to love Old Yeller, and they become great friends. The rightful owner of Yeller shows up looking for his dog and recognizing that the family has become attached to Yeller, trades the dog to Arliss for a horned toad and a home-cooked meal prepared by Travis' mother, who is an exceptional cook.