Is Disney‘s Goofy a dog? It’s a question that’s defined key moments in pop-culture (see: Stand By Me), and it seems to plague humanity whenever we get too bored. Well, people are certainly bored while on quarantine lockdown due to the coronavirus pandemic, so its a perfect time to dust off this age-old Disney debate. In a new interview with Yahoo! the voice of Goofy since 1987, actor Bill Farmer, decided to weigh-in on the debate over Goofy’s species origins. According to Farmer, while Goofy is definitely a character that looks like a dog, he’s not an actually a canine!
“He is not a dog,” Farmer says. “Pluto is a dog, but Goofy seems to be in the canine family in the same way that a wolf is not a dog, but they also are in the canine family. I think Canis Goofus is the technical Latin term for what Goofy is. He’s just Goofy.”
That explanation not only answers the debate about whether or not Goofy is a dog, it also addresses how Goofy and Pluto can look so similar in design. Honestly, that’s probably the biggest hangup for a lot of Disney fans: the fact that Mickey Mouse’s gang has two characters that look like dogs, but one acts like a dog (Pluto), while the other acts like a human (Goofy). It was maddening! Farmer’s answer let’s the situation breathe, so we can all relax about this. “Canis Goofus” is a thing now.
…Or is it?
The tricky thing about these sort of answers from actors is that they’re just that: answers from the actors. If the studio doesn’t like what is said by an actor, you better believe that we’ll see them swoop in and offer some corrective statements.
Not saying Disney would feel that strongly about this particular instance – but just for comparison, let’s remember the Sesame Street Bert & Ernie incident of recent years. When former Sesame Street writer Mark Saltzman offered up the idea that characters Bert & Ernie were gay, Sesame Street was all too quick to respond:
“As we have always said, Bert and Ernie are best friends. They were created to teach preschoolers that people can be good friends with those who are very different form themselves. Even though they are identified as male characters and possess many human traits and characteristics (as most Sesame Street Muppets do), they remain puppets, and do not have a sexual orientation.”
This Goofy situation is not that serious (form any kind of cultural standpoint), but it is one fans have been fixated on for awhile. So, while we now have the semi-official answer on Goofy’s species, we’ll need to hear it from Disney before “Canis Goofus” can actually be considered official canon.
Disclosure: ComicBook is owned by CBS Interactive, a division of ViacomCBS.