Cadpig is the runt of her litter and she is the smallest dog on the farm. She is very much into New Age philosophies and does her best to promote her ideals and spread goodwill throughout the world. While her small stature has prevented her from obtaining the same level of strength as her brothers and sisters, she is much more learned than them and has a better understanding of the world. She also has an extensive vocabulary and often makes use of what Spot refers to as "metaphysical metaphors," which those whom she is speaking with are seldom capable of understanding.
Despite her positive vision for the world, Cadpig is considered to be an antagonist by many of her fellow denizens on the Dearly Farm, as her efforts to generate harmony often generates animosity. This is primarily due to the fact that she sticks her nose into the conflicts of others when her assistance hasn't been requested; she tends to ignore the obvious and instead favors psychoanalysis in order to discover the root cause of their conflict, which is something that everybody she has met has intensely disliked. However, she is incredibly gifted at doing just that and has proven on numerous occasions that she can talk to animals and completely break their spirits, discovering their emotional scars within moments and exploiting those emotional scars in order to achieve her objective.
While Cadpig has proven that she is a kind individual who strives to be as good as possible, her underlying hostility has caused her desire for peace and harmony to be something of a façade, as even though she has a genuine desire to do the right thing, she often fails to practice what she preaches and has proven on multiple occasions that she can be quite ruthless. Not only has she physically assaulted various individuals on the Dearly Farm, including her own family members, she has also expressed a desire to manipulate the President of the United States' dog so that she could tell him what to do and in effect take over the world. While such remarks are seldom taken seriously, her friends are often left bewildered by them, as they appear to come out of nowhere.
She is noted for keeping up a constant chatter of relentlessly upbeat, self-inspirational philosophy. However, Cadpig's New Age-ness really masks a passive-aggressiveness that's much more aggressive than passive, as her upbeat, cheerful and positive outlook on life is merely a thin veneer for some underlying hostility. Cadpig is one-fourth of a group of misfits led by her brother Lucky, which includes another sibling, Rolly, and a chicken named Spot who believes she's really a Dalmatian trapped in the body of a chicken. Outside of the gang, she's good friends with Two-Tone.
Despite Cadpig's naive belief that she can view the world through rose-colored glasses (as the axiom says), she is quite capable of facing a daily barrage of life's problems, especially those caused by Cruella De Vil and her lackeys, Jasper and Horace, as well as the discipline inflicted by Lt. Pug of the "Bark Brigade," and Mooch the Mutt and his gang of rowdy pups. Sometimes, she believes that there's some good deep down in someone as evil as Cruella; on a few occasions, she's proven right.
The Bark Brigade
Like many others her age, Cadpig is a member of the Bark Brigade, a de facto military academy devoted towards instructing young puppies and having them undergo drills in order to learn how to be productive in the world. Despite her best efforts, her small stature has resulted in her being a below average cadet; she often underperforms during the drills and has been known to cheat and bypass various obstacles altogether in order to reach the finish line. The fact that she often talks back to Lieutenant Pug, her superior officer, hasn't helped her case either. The two of them are often as opposite ends of the moral spectrum and Cadpig often chides Lieutenant Pug for his superiority complex and his tendencies to demean those who are serving beneath him. This has created friction between them and Lieutenant Pug frequently goes out of his way to harass Cadpig, intentionally getting her name wrong and forcing her to do push-ups when she tries to convince him to do the right thing. While Cadpig's time in the Bark Brigade has been relatively unsuccessful, her diplomatic skills and her verbose nature have helped her comrades on more than one occasion.
In September, 1997, Disney released a television series, which was a reboot in their 101 Dalmatians franchise rather than a continuation. In the series there were four main characters: Lucky, Cadpig, Rolly and Spot. Cadpig is voiced by Kath Soucie (who also voiced Rolly).
In original concept art for her, she is shown to have had black ears (slightly different to her official model) and also had a pink nose and bow. Eventually, her design was changed so she have white floppy ears, black nose and a blue collar instead. Her concept design can still be seen on the business card of a Disney cartoonist.
Cadpig was the youngest of the 99 Dalmatian puppies, and she was also the runt of the litter, being physically smaller than her brothers and sisters. Her physical appearance also has some characteristics that are unique to her, as she has a larger head than most of the other Dalmatians, along with floppy ears and blue eyes. Despite her small stature, however, Cadpig can perform feats of strength that her brothers and sisters often cannot do (such as being able to lift another character who is twice her size), though she usually only exhibits such strength when she is angry; she also has an adept sense of hearing, which is stronger than that of her brothers and sisters. Cadpig also seems to have an extensive knowledge of (fictional) tribes and cultures.
Many of the denizens on the Dearly Farm have trouble understanding what Cadpig says, since she loves to speak in what Spot calls "metaphysical metaphors," though she once mentioned that she got a thesaurus for Christmas, which she implied has helped expand her vocabulary, especially when it comes to synonyms of stupidity such as moron.
Cadpig also displays a great gift for sarcasm. The remarks are usually used to bring Lucky back to earth when he is on an ego-trip. Some examples are:
- "Attention, Flight Director Lucky, your ego-trip has been cancelled."
- "Welcome to Lucky's rich fantasy life, and now, back to reality!"
- "Yeah, and maybe the Tooth Fairy will fly away to Lollipop Land and get a cavity!"
- "Of course Rolly's a robot! We're all robots! Whirrr! Whizz!"
Cadpig has had several alternate personalities in various episodes of the series, each of which is a manifestation of her true personality. In one episode, when Cruella De Vil took over all the television networks, the Dalmatians decided to imagine how an episode of "Thunderbolt P.I." would end, in which Cadpig's ending involved an alien known as Gipdac, "Gipdac" being "Cadpig" spelt backwards. Gipdac was dedicated to finding peace in the universe; she speaks with others, not through oral discussion, but through a form of telepathy. She travels the universe in her heart-shaped spacecraft that is disguised in storm clouds, and she has her two assistants, who appear to be Horace and Jasper, assist her in her endeavors to teach the way of peace to others.
In the Christmas special, when Cruella De Vil was visited by the ghost of Jasper and Horace, he warned Cruella that she would be visited by three spirits. Later in that episode, Cadpig came to Cruella as the Ghost of Christmas Past, who told Cruella that she was going to take her on a journey trough her childhood. When Cruella initially refused, Cadpig resorted to using special effects in an attempt to scare her into changing her mind, which ultimately succeeded. As the Ghost of Christmas Past, Cadpig did her duty and she showed Cruella why she is evil today, though Cruella's lack of caring over her past misdeeds only frustrated Cadpig, she cuts their journey into the past short, claiming her hour is up (despite Cruella insisting that it's only been fifty minutes and wanting the full hour).
However, some of Cadpig's "alter egos" aren't really alternate egos, but rather, a shift in her personality to achieve a greater goal. In the three-part series finale, when Cadpig realizes that she had to do what she could to save Anita, she decided to dress up, with green algae and a headband with two planets, as the Shaggy Green Messenger, a prophesied being that the "SAUCER-DOLTS" (Society for Achieving Utopian Consciousness through Extraterrestrial Rebirth & Desert Operational Lacrosse Team) are looking for, as they believe that the Shaggy Green Messenger would take them to the Mother Ship, and to their (disagreed upon) planet such as Squignon, where the rivers run with cream soda, or Dripnon, where the rivers run with gold, and many other planets. Cadpig's antics managed to free Anita from the group in question and through such, Cadpig was ultimately responsible for saving Roger and Anita's marriage, though it was later revealed that in doing such, the "SAUCER-DOLTS" managed to find the Mother Ship, which suggested that she really was the Shaggy Green Messenger.
Spinoffs and Other Info
There were accounts that in the novel Patch and Cadpig were never seen apart from each other. This account is also observed in the 1961 Animation where Patch and Penny are always seen together, thus supporting the idea that Cadpig is "Penny" in the animated 101 Dalmatians. Also, in various dubs of the series, Cadpig is often renamed as Penny.
Cadpig enjoys hanging out with her three main friends: Lucky, Rolly and Spot Chicken; she has also been known to spend time with Two-Tone, even though she dislikes her shallow nature. Her best friend out of the group is her older brother, Lucky; the two of them often spend their free time playing with one another, and whenever Lucky does something that is dangerous or stupid, she is usually there to help him out. She may tease him from time to time, as most siblings do, but she genuinely loves her brother and out of everybody on the Dearly Farm, she has grown to rely on him the most.
In Cadpig's mind, her sexuality is merely another tool at her disposal when it comes to converting the masses to her ideal ideology. An example of this is the relationship that she had with Mooch, the local bully and wrestling champion who was getting prepared to fight in a match with a champion from another town. In order to prevent him from fighting in the match, Cadpig acted like she loved him and the two of them got into a romantic relationship, but as soon as she convinced him to conform to her lifestyle, and forfeit the match, she dumped him and broke his heart. She also had an interest in the German Shepherd puppy named Blaze. She was impressed with his world experience and thought that he was a hunk, but she later discovered that he had lied about his life story.
- Although she is one of the characters in Dodie Smith's book, she did not appear in the 1961 animated film or the 1996 live-action film.
- She is one of the main characters in the series along with Lucky, Rolly and Spot.
- When Kath Soucie did Cadpig's voice, she sounded like a cross between Lil DeVille (Rugrats) and a non-French Fifi La Fume (Tiny Toon Adventures).
- She has a very strong tail and defeated El Diablo with it. ("My Fair Moochie")
- Despite not being a bird, her ears can make her fly. ("Coup DeVil") After Dumbo, she is the second non-bird Disney animal to do so.
- Oddly enough, she wasn't in any of the franchise's films with the other dogs, not even in House of Mouse, despite being a major character in the series.
- She has some strength as she can push a wheelbarrow with Spot in it, ("Alive N' Chicken") but needs help with her friends to push a large box.
- She can shout very loudly to have all the farm animals listen to her. ("Mooove It On Over").
- Cadpig has diagnosed herself with PDS, Petting Deficit Syndrome. The symptoms are sinusitis, a "poofy" tail and aggressive behavior. ("Animal House Party")
- Cadpig phones her agent, whose name is apparently Sandy. ("The Maltese Chicken")
- She owns a thesaurus (she claims to have gotten it for Christmas) and a book on conflict resolution.
- In one episode, she owns a plushie Go-Go, a famous champion racing Greyhound.
- She is at least one year old, as she mentions that she had gotten the same toy from last year. ("A Christmas Cruella")
- In the German version of the series, her name was changed to "Goliath" or "Goli" for short, which is ironic, considering that Goliath is a giant.
- Cadpig is the only Dalmatian with blue eyes.
- Spot Chicken
- Dalmatian Puppies
- Jenny Brown - character with similar traits