The Truth About Cats & Dogs (1996)

PG-13  |   |  Comedy, Romance  |  26 April 1996 (USA)
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Ratings: 6.3/10 from 21,949 users   Metascore: 64/100
Reviews: 106 user | 49 critic | 18 from

A successful veternarian & radio show host with low self-esteem asks her model friend to impersonate her when a handsome man wants to see her.



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1 nomination. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
La Tanya M. Fisher ...
Faryn Einhorn ...
Dechen Thurman ...


Janeane Garofalo plays Dr. Abby Barnes, the "Truth About Cats and Dogs" radio question-and-answer show host who unwittingly entices a listener over the radio with her soothing voice and personality. This listener, Brian, tries to meet the Abby from the radio, but Noelle, played by Uma Thurman, is mistaken for the real thing when Brian comes to the studio. Instead of clearing things up right away, the self-conscious Abby allows her best friend, Noelle, a tall, stunning blonde, to take her place for a while. Abby takes on the made-up persona of Donna, while thinking Brian would never go for her, a short, cute, brunette, who thinks she's unattractive. As the real Abby woos Brian over the phone and radio, Noelle, the pseudo-Abby, takes her place in the flesh. As time goes on, Abby feels more and more confident that Brian would rather have the beautiful Noelle than the simply attractive Abby. Written by Joelsef <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Brian's about to discover the woman he loves isn't the woman he loves.


Comedy | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 on appeal for a sex-related scene and brief strong language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:





Release Date:

26 April 1996 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Adevarul despre câini si pisici  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

£302,403 (UK) (19 July 1996)


£1,903,493 (UK) (16 August 1996)

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


Janeane Garofalo, a shade over five feet tall, sometimes had to stand on a box just to be in the same frame with 6-foot co-star Uma Thurman. See more »


When "Donna" (Abby) is in the bar with Brian, she spills salsa on her shirt twice, which leaves two stains. The shape of the stains change and the the way that the t shirt hangs from her changes. See more »


Noelle: Maybe it was all the cake he fed me.
Dr. Abby Barnes: What is that, the twinkie defense?
See more »

Crazy Credits

In the opening scene, when Janeane Garofalo is about to get on the elevator, as the credits come to an end, Micheal Lehmann's credit is crushed by the elevator doors. See more »


Referenced in Who's the Caboose? (1999) See more »


Angel Mine
Written by Michael Timmins and Margo Timmins
Performed by Cowboy Junkies
Produced by John M. Keane (as John Keane) and Michael Timmins
Courtesy of Geffen Records
See more »

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User Reviews

I'm impressed by the comments here.
6 January 2003 | by (California) – See all my reviews

This is a lovely, funny and well done romantic comedy. I have to admit I am impressed by the folks who continue to say they felt JG was too pretty to be Abby and that it just didn't ring true to them because of that fact. Well I'm here to tell you folks that this movie is closer to the truth than you realize. One of the things that DOES make this film soo good is that Abby is truly a lovely woman but is surrounded by main stream media and what it says beauty is, namely, Noelle, played admirably by Uma Thurman. Yes Abby is a beautiful woman, but as a woman who looks nothing like all the adds on TV or magazines like JG it is easy to see why she would think she isn't. And honestly I know way too many men who would pass her by in favor of the Noelles of this world. I have a beautiful friend who is very similar to JG and she has had the same problems Abby has in this movie because of perceived images of beauty. THAT is the message this film is trying to make that Abby is beautiful and the media has put too much emphasis on stereotypes. No I don't think they should have hired an UGLIER actress that is simply ridiculous, the film was not about an ugly woman but a beautiful woman who has fallen into the trap of "THINKING" she is unattractive! Watch the movie again folks, you'll see what I mean.

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