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The Plague Dogs (1982)

Two dogs escape from a laboratory and are hunted as possible carriers of the bubonic plague.


Martin Rosen


Richard Adams (novel), Martin Rosen




Cast overview, first billed only:
John Hurt ... Snitter (voice)
Christopher Benjamin ... Rowf (voice)
James Bolam ... The Tod (voice)
Nigel Hawthorne ... Dr. Boycott (voice)
Warren Mitchell ... Tyson / Wag (voice)
Bernard Hepton ... Stephen Powell (voice)
Brian Stirner ... Laboratory Assistant (voice)
Penelope Lee Penelope Lee ... Lynn Driver (voice)
Geoffrey Matthews Geoffrey Matthews ... Farmer (voice) (as Geoffrey Mathews)
Barbara Leigh-Hunt ... Farmer's Wife (voice)
John Bennett ... Don (voice)
John Franklyn-Robbins ... Williamson (voice)
Bill Maynard ... Editor (voice)
Malcolm Terris ... Robert (voice)
Judy Geeson ... Pekingese (voice)


An animated adaptation of Richard Adams' novel, about a pair of dogs (Snitter and Rowf) who escape from a research laboratory and try to survive in the wild with the help of a cunning fox (The Tod). The lab director tries to keep the escape quiet, but as an increasing number of sheep are found killed, word leaks out, together with rumors that the dogs might be plague carriers. Written by Michael Brooke <michael@everyman.demon.co.uk>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Escape to a different World...And share the adventure of a lifetime.

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for violent images and thematic elements | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

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Did You Know?


The final theatrical movie of Dandy Nichols (Phyllis) before her death in 1986. See more »


[first lines]
Stephen Powell: I think he's starting to pack it in.
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Alternate Versions

The 2008 UK Optimum DVD contains both prints of the film. See more »


Referenced in Isle of Dogs (2018) See more »


Time and Tide
Composed and sung by Alan Price
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User Reviews

When can all animated features be this great?
10 June 2002 | by krytensyxxSee all my reviews

I first saw Plague Dogs when I was about 4 years old, right after I first saw Watership Down. I did not understand much of the film then, but now I do. This movie is not about happy endings, zesty lines, or colorful musical scenes. This is about the hardships of life and the ever growing errors of man's interuption in the animal kingdom. You will walk away depressed, but at the same time be more aware of how important respect towards animals is. If possible buy or rent this movie as soon as you see it. I do not believe it has ever been re-released in any form. The acting and direction feels very much like a live action film. Many things about Plague Dogs will stick in your mind for years.

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Frequently Asked Questions

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Release Date:

9 January 1985 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Plague Dogs See more »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


| (TV)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Stereo


Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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