You’ll laugh, you’ll cry…you’ll want to go out and befriend a yellow Labrador. We’ll be surprised if watching Dog Gone on Netflix doesn’t make you want to do all three, and audiences have cherished the film since its release on Friday, January 13, 2023.
Directed by Stephen Herek, the American biographical drama film is a must-see for dog lovers and centers on father-son duo John (played by Rob Lowe) and Fielding Marshall (Johnny Berchtold) in search of their lost dog, Gonker .
Inspired by a true story, it is a comforting and moving journey. So, let’s dive into Dog Gone’s ending and explain it.
WARNING: MAJOR DOG GONE SPOILERS
Dog Gone ending explained
Fielding’s adopted dog, Gonker, lives with him in college, but the couple later return to their parents, who love man’s best friend.
A stick in the mud comes when Gonker is diagnosed with Addison’s disease and has to get vaccinated every month for a life-saving treatment. That doesn’t seem like too much of a problem until Gonker goes missing one day after chasing a fox.
When he doesn’t return, Fielding and John search for him on the Appalachian Trail while John’s wife, Ginny, helps with the search locally.
The race is on as Gonker will essentially die in 20 days without his life-saving shot. On the other hand, their efforts are strained as Fielding has stomach problems, which he hides from his father lest he call off the research.
Fielding eventually becomes much weaker, and he wakes up one morning in the car to find his father has driven them home. John and Ginny try to dissuade him from continuing the search for Gonker, and Fielding prepares to reveal the stomach pains he is suffering from.
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Do they find Gonker in Dog Gone?
Yes. The family receives a phone call from someone saying they saw the dog from the missing posters eating out of their garbage cans just recently.
Before Fielding can confess his stomach to his parents, they head to the man’s house and he shows them the nearby trees where he saw the dog come out. They call him but he doesn’t appear right away.
Nevertheless, after the spirits fall, he comes out of the trees to lift them up, safe and sound. When they return to Gonker’s house, Ginny also imagines reuniting with her childhood dog named Oji.
While Fielding’s beloved friend is safe, Fielding himself passes out and is taken to hospital with ulcerative colitis, undergoing life-saving surgery.
He remains in the hospital during the recovery process but struggles to sleep without Gonker, so John ushers him in to lie down alongside Fielding, bringing him the familiar comforts and allowing him, finally, a good night’s sleep. .
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“That’s the really important part of the story”
While chatting with Movieguide, Rob recently opened up about his love of dog movies and what makes Dog Gone so special:
“First of all, I love a good movie about dogs and I love a good movie that’s going to make you cry. Don’t traumatize the cry…happy cry. But the story of the father-son bonding and, you know, the healing of that relationship and the family getting to know each other in a way that they didn’t before they went through this crisis…I think that’s the really important part of the story.”
Discussing Fielding and his character John, he claimed that “they see the world differently. They react differently and for the first time I think they are a good team. They have different strengths, different weaknesses and before it probably wasn’t easy, but now it’s actually a strength.
Dog Gone is now streaming exclusively on Netflix.
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