TV & Movies

Paul Anka's 7 Most Iconic Gilmore Girls Moments

Lorelai was right: who needs the poodles when you have Paul Anka?

Paul Anka on 'Gilmore Girls' at the Stars Hollow winter carnival
Warner Bros. Television

Gilmore Girls is widely known (and praised) for its witty dialogue, pop culture references, and wacky characters, but rarely on the show have those three aspects combined more perfectly than in the form of Lorelai's dog Paul Anka. The shaggy pooch is named for the mid-20th century hitmaker of the same name, which seems like an odd fit until you realize that Anka wrote and performed the 1960 song "Puppy Love." And Paul Anka's best moments on Gilmore Girls prove he was worthy of being named after such a legend.

Though it's tough to imagine Gilmore Girls without Paul Anka, the pup was absent for most of the show's seven-season run. He didn't make his debut until "Fight Face," the second episode of Season 6, during which Lorelei adopts him in order to quell her loneliness while feuding with Rory. The dog stayed in the family up through the end of the series and even returned (still played by the same dog!) for the 2016 Netflix revival, Gilmore Girls: A Year in the Life. So even though his time on the show was relatively short, Paul Anka still managed to fit in a number of iconic moments. Let's revisit, shall we?


When He Met Lorelai

Lorelei doesn't have the best track record as a pet owner, but when she sees Paul Anka (who at the time went by the name "Cocoa"), she knew that this time would be different.


When He Was A Swami

In "Just Like Gwen and Gavin," Paul Anka gets his own booth at the Stars Hollow Winter Carnival, where he dresses as the world's most adorable fortune teller. His predictions don't make the most sense (You will sing songs of gemstones?), but he sure looks cute giving them.


When He Dissed Salad

Owners can sometimes rub off on their dogs, and that was never more true than with Lorelei and Paul Anka. In this moment, Lorelei shows off a nifty trick she's taught her pup, where he'll echo the word "pizza" with excited barks but give the word "salad" the silent treatment. I wonder what he'll do for the word "coffee?"


When He Liked Rory Better

Even though Paul Anka is Lorelei's dog, he sometimes appears to show favoritism to others, like Rory. This moment shows that not only does he seemingly prefer Rory's company to Lorelei's, but he also apparently wants to go live with his owner's daughter (not to mention his knack for breaking into cars).


When He Broke Our Hearts

Paul Anka had his sad moments, too. When he got sick, it actually seemed like he could die. Thankfully he pulled through, but this was a big reminder to fans how important he'd become on the show.


When He Used His Charms On Luke

Luke likes to act tough, but he's really just a big softie. This is quite apparent when he tries to shoo away a begging Paul Anka while he's cooking some meat, telling him he needs to wait for the dish to cool before he can have any. Fast forward two seconds and Luke is blowing on the beef to give Paul a taste.


When He Met His Namesake In A Dream

This is it, the all-time greatest Paul Anka moment. As Lorelei's description of her wild dream is played out on the screen in black and white, we get to see the real Paul Anka (yes, that's really him!) come face-to-face with his canine counterpart, and when they meet it seems to have a universe-shattering effect.

Lorelai is right: who needs the poodles when you have Paul Anka?