The origin of the catchphrase ‘It’s a Dog’s Life’ is obscure. One of the earliest popular reference is Charlie Chaplin’s 1918 film called ‘A Dog’s Life’. There is also a well known 1955 film by Herman Hoffman, this title include the It’s – ‘It’s a Dog’s Life’.
The phrase is so evocative of the downtrodden hero, that it’s perfect for Charles M. Schulz’s Snoopy. It’s a dog’s life has also inspired music and also T.V. episodes of popular programs such as ‘Murder She Wrote’.
There was a time when dogs weren’t allowed in the house. Dogs were fed scraps and if they were lucky they had a kennels. Thus a whole family of sayings arose around ‘It’s a dogs life’. For example, going to the dogs, dog tired, dog’s dinner, dogsbody and dog eat dog.
However, nowadays, dogs have it cushy, they live indoors are pampered with dog food, and even get their own dog basket. In consequence the young generation are perplexed by the saying, ‘It’s a dogs life’.