Pug Dog Plushie


When I first saw this 1930s photobooth photo from Germany, I thought this young lady was holding a Mickey Mouse stuffed doll. Closer inspection revealed the toy to be a pug dog decorated with a tiny bell on its collar. At least I think it is a pug. I cannot find anything like it online, but if you Google “German 1930s vintage stuffed toy pug” the results are wonderfully amusing!

With her head tilted forward on an angle, it is hard to determine how old this girl might be. She appears to be a teenager as she is wearing earrings and a necklace.  I don’t believe that would have been the norm for a younger child of this era.  As well, her hands look to be those of an older child. Given the dog appears to be soiled around its muzzle, from lots of kisses and snuggles, I hope, I wonder if he is a relic of her childhood? Would she have deliberately set out with an old toy to get a photo taken with it? Against my theory that it is an older possession, is the fact that its paws are clean and unworn. Maybe it was new?

The pattern of her cardigan was recently, albeit briefly, back in fashion here in Australia. I’m not a great fan of this type of geometric knit, but the sitter wears it well. She obviously loves this toy. How wonderful that she is now able to share that love with us.


    • I like to get confirmation like that Ted, as I am generally clueless about picking someone’s age. 😊❤


  1. I agree with all you have to say, but I dunno. She is a little too old to be holding a toy like that with such loving affection. Like you I also think her hands are a old, and she is holding them in a slightly odd way. Do you not think she might be one of those beautiful, but slightly simple, children a high grade Downs perhaps? But then, maybe she was perfectly fitted for 1930s German culture, and I am interpreting the picture with modern eyes. My wife disagrees with me, and I must bow to her superior knowledge!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Tony,
      I agree that looking through modern eyes makes it hard to interpret. I sometimes see old photos that completely confuse me, when it comes to the way the subject is dressed and the things they are playing with, in light of their apparent age. I think that not only have times changed, but particular families might have been more old fashioned in their day, too. I know one lass who was born in the same year as me, who grew up in rural USA. As a teenager she was dressing in frilly, lacy, babyish clothes, that I wouldn’t have been caught dead in at the same age. Her mother made every for her and she had no choice in the matter.

      Liked by 2 people

  2. atrmws said:

    In another life, she’d be Hildegard Traudel.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I hope not! Wasn’t she one of Goebbels’s children? Not a nice ending for that family.


  3. An intriguing photograph. The girl looks around 17 to me and maybe her hands look different because they are nearer the Photo Booth lens and there could be some distortion going on there or, maybe, arthritis or something like that. As it’s a German photograph I’m wondering if it might be a Steiff stuffed toy – had a quick internet search but could only find a hand puppet.
    It’s fascinating I think looking at an old photograph and trying to work out the history. I have to be careful, otherwise I spend hours too many on the computer!

    Liked by 1 person

    • I like the distortion theory, Catherine. Not so sure about the arthritis idea. She would have to have been very unlucky to be afflicted with that at so young an age. I like the Steiff idea, too. There were some very rare models made about that time.

      I love your enthusiasm for imaging things about photos! It can be very time consuming indeed, but also invigorating.


  4. I’ve come back to this puzzling portrait several times and find myself agreeing with Barry:

    Pleasant and strange… and a tiny bit sad.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for coming back John. It is funny how some images have an emotional resonance that is difficult to pin down. There is an enigmatic and sad quality this one . . .

      Liked by 1 person

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