In the first film, Perdita gives birth to a litter of fifteen puppies who are later kidnapped by two criminals named Jasper and Horace, who were actually hired by Cruella De Vil. While at Hell Hall, the ancestral home of the De Vil family, it turns out that Cruella had also gotten 84 other Dalmatians, but through legitimate means. It later turns out that Cruella wants to kill them and turn them all into dog-skin fur coats. Perdita and her husband, Pongo, rescue the original fifteen, and they decide to adopt the other 84 as their children because they don't want to let them get killed.
In the sequel, the movie revolves around Patch, who ends up being separated from his family. During the film, he meets their greatest canine hero (after their mother and father): Thunderbolt, the star of their favorite television series.
The puppies, along with other characters, appear in the television series House of Mouse. Their most notable appearance is where Ludwig Von Drake names many Disney characters and says them as one falls off and lands on Pongo, with Ludwig commenting, "They need another chair."
The puppies appear in the series as a quest Sora can partake during the game. At some point (likely following their capture by and subsequent rescue from Cruella De Vil) the Dalmatians' world was destroyed and they were separated from their parents. During the chaos, they were somehow bundled into groups of three and forced into chests which then landed in various worlds. During his journey, Sora can find and send them to Traverse Town, where Pongo and Perdita are.
In the Disney parks, the puppies are only seen in parades and shows such as Fantasmic! Patch can be spotted in it in Walt Disney World Resort's Magic Kingdom. In the Disney All Star movie themed hotel in Walt Disney World, a certain secetion is dedicated to One Hundred and One Dalmatians. They were seen in Disneyland Paris' Disney's Maleficious Halloween Party during Cruella's scene.
- In the 1985 One Hundred and One Dalmatians book, which was part of the Disney's Wonderful World of Reading collection, Perdita gave birth to only ten puppies. This was fixed for the 1996 re-issue of the book.
- In the 1996 movie, Anita originally said no when considering to take in the other 84 puppies, but Roger and Nanny talked her into it.
- At various points in the first movie (most notably during the climax and ending), the puppies' barks and whimpers were recycled sound effects from Lady, when she was a puppy, and Savage Sam from Old Yeller. Specifically, their whimpers were from Lady and their barks were from Savage Sam.
List of the puppies' names
The prominently-known puppies from the franchise
Named in the series
Named in the merchandise