This blog explores the history of Phoenix, Arizona and a little bit of Los Angeles and San Francisco, California

Being a dog in old-time Phoenix - 1901


Since I've always loved dogs, I often wonder what their lives would have been like in old-time Phoenix. Let's travel back to 1901 and be dogs.

I'll be Judge Ruppert (pictured above), who lived in Phoenix at that time. He was a big, big, dog. And since this is my story, and my imagination, I get to be the biggest dog in town. You can be anything you like, but maybe not a Chihuahua, or else I might step on you accidentally. No, not a Dachshund either, I suggest that you just be an ordinary dog.

Support Arizona history by becoming a patron on Patreon

Click here to become a Patron!
History Adventuring blog posts are shared there daily, also there's "then and now" images, billboards, aerials, and super high-resolution photos of historic Phoenix, Arizona

It's good to be a dog in old-time Phoenix. We can wander all over town, there's no such thing as a "dog park" and no requirement for leashes. If we're lucky we'll get into some good fights in Melinda's Alley. Or maybe we can just chase things. There's a lot of wide-open space in Phoenix in 1901!

Let's go into town, maybe someone will take our picture with one of those new-fangled "Kodaks" that are becoming so popular. I once had my picture taken right there on the sidewalk on Washington between 2nd and 1st Avenues. Yes, you could see the Fleming Building, and the Monihon Building behind me.

Wandering around town is a dog's life. Everyone is happy to see us. Well, almost everyone. I've had a shoe or two thrown at me, but that's OK, I can run! And I love to run!

I suggest that we stay in the alleys, and maybe someone will give us some scraps. You never know!


Sadly, Judge Ruppert was accidentally killed by a fire engine in 1902. As the city got more crowded, things like that were happening, unfortunately. He was a good dog. And a very, very big dog!

Judge and his human, Ed Ruppert, at 9th Avenue and Washington, where they lived.


Sadly, Judge Ruppert was killed by a Fire Engine in 1902