The recently released LEGO Collectible Minifigures gave us a number of new elements, including a brand new dog mould. I find it fascinating that it has been only in the last few years that LEGO started to add more animals to their sets. Most people – especially kids – love animals, and puppies, kittens, ponies, bunnies, birdies and other adorable creatures have been used as toys from pretty much the beginning of human history. So why with all their resources and research LEGO is only waking up to this reality is quite baffling and amusing. 🙂

While new animal moulds are still quite few and far in between, there are definitely much more than we have seen in the past. To welcome to the pack the new Bulldog, I thought to do a bit of research on the history of LEGO dogs and when they were released.

The first LEGO dog appeared in 1986 in the LEGO DUPLO line; a small black Terrier named Scotty. In regular LEGO sets, we didn’t get a dog until 1994, when a few different variations (standing, sitting, various prints) were added to the LEGO Belville and LEGO Scala sets. However, because both LEGO Belville and LEGO Scala had larger human figures, the animals are also larger than what would be an appropriate next to standard minifigs.

The first minifig-scale dog was released in 2004 – this is the standard LEGO dog most LEGO fans are familiar with. Because of the very generic shape, it represented both a dog (brown) and a wolf (gray) in LEGO sets, and was unprinted. A slightly updated mould variation of the same dog appeared in 2011 in different colors and with various prints to create some variety. This is still the most common dog that comes with regular LEGO sets. Notice that we are now in the 21st century and we still only have one dog mould!

LEGO Friends came onto the scene in 2012, and the theme finally gave us more dog variations. We got a number of different puppy moulds and colors, however all of them have a more rounded, and cutesy style, which fits well with LEGO Friends style figures, but doesn’t always look good in traditional LEGO settings.

For regular LEGO sets, we slowly and gradually got four more dogs, and interestingly, the majority of them first appeared in the LEGO Collectible Minifigure line. The Chihuahua came with the LEGO Collectible Minifigures Series 10 Trendsetter released in 2013, and since then appeared in three regular LEGO sets. The Husky came with the LEGO City Arctic sets released in 2014, and have been added to a few other sets since then. The Terrier came with the LEGO Collectible Minifigures Series 16 Dog Show Winner released in 2016, and still hasn’t shown up in any other sets. And finally, this year (2017), we got a little Bulldog with the LEGO Collectible Minifigures Series 17 Connoisseur.

In addition, there are a couple of non-standard dogs like Santa’s Little Helper that came with one of The Simpsons LEGO Collectible Minifigures in 2015, and Scooby-Doo (two mould variations, five different prints) in the LEGO Scooby-Doo sets also released in 2015.

To summarize, we are still lacking dogs, but there is some hope. The LEGO Friends theme is the best source of puppies, but their style doesn’t always fit well with regular LEGO displays. In standard LEGO sets, the original generic dog is the most common, and printed versions have been offering some long overdue variety. There are four other LEGO moulds that came out in the past few years, however only two of them have been used in regular LEGO sets (Chihuahua, and Husky), the other two (Terrier and Bulldog) have only appeared in the LEGO Collectible Minifigures packets. So, if you have any of these rare LEGO dog varieties, treasure them!

What do you think? Would you like to see more dogs and other animals in LEGO sets? Do you collect LEGO animals? Which ones are your favorites? Feel free to share and discuss in the comment section below! 😉

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LEGO is running a new contest at their ReBrick website, this time for LEGO robotics fans. Remember that contests at ReBrick are for teen and adult LEGO fans, so you need to be at least 13-years-old to enter. Below are the details on how to enter and what you can win. 🙂

Here is the description of the LEGO SuperBots Contest: Create a video of your LEGO robot helping you do something super! It’s time to do some superpower thinking and show us your SuperBot! Make it super cool, super smart, or super fun, and tell us what makes your robot a SuperBot – and what dilemma, challenge, or chore it rescues you from! The greatest SuperBot will send the winner on a super-duper trip to LEGO World Copenhagen.

And here are some details on how to enter the contest: Create a robot using LEGO bricks and your LEGO MINDSTORMS robot (EV3 or earlier model) or LEGO Power Functions to solve an everyday challenge of your choosing. Create a 15-30 seconds video showing your creation in action. Upload your video to the video hosting site of your choice, such as YouTube. Enter the contest by going to the “submit entry” page on ReBrick and submit maximum 5 screenshots from your video. Make sure to also add the link to your video before you submit. Use the description field to describe your robot and its features. When you receive a “Success!” pop-up notification after clicking “submit” on the entry submission page, your entry has successfully been submitted. ReBrick’s moderation team will review it within 1-3 working days to make sure it fits all the contest rules. The deadline to enter is August 18th, 2017 at 10:00AM EST. If you’re not sure what time zone you’re in you can use an online time zone converter.

A panel of judges from the LEGO MINDSTORMS team will select one grand prize winner and 2 runner-ups. They will judge entries upon: super-factor originality – 25%, attention to contest theme – 25%, innovative building techniques and functions – 25%, and innovative use of LEGO elements – 25%. In addition, three bonus prize winners will be selected at random. The winner will be contacted on the email address associated with their LEGO ID account after August 28th, 2017 and announced on ReBrick when the winner has returned the signed Winner’s Certification Documents. A winner who does not return their Winner’s Certification Document within one week of receiving it will be disqualified, and a new winner will be selected.

There will be one grand prize winner, who will receive a trip for two to LEGO World Copenhagen 2018 in February, including transportation and hotel room stay, the #31313 MINDSTORMS EV3 signed by a LEGO MINDSTORMS designer, and a LEGO MINDSTORMS T-shirt. There will also be two runner up winners, who will receive the #31313 MINDSTORMS EV3 signed by a LEGO MINDSTORMS designer, and a LEGO MINDSTORMS T-shirt. And, there will be three bonus winners, who will receive a LEGO notebook and brick key chain, and a LEGO MINDSTORMS T-shirt.

So, if you have the LEGO MINDSTORMS  kit, or any LEGO Power Functions elements to make a robot, this is your chance to show your creative skills! When you are ready to enter, head over to the LEGO SuperBots Contest page, and make sure you read all the rules. Also, remember that the LEGO Cars 3 Brick Poster Contest is still open for a few more days.

What do you think? Are you planning to enter the LEGO SuperBots Contest? Do you have some ideas for making an awesome robot? And have you entered any of the previous contests? Feel free to share in the comment section below! 😉

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LEGO Star Wars family photos & questions

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Yesterday LEGO posted a series of Star Wars related images on their social media pages, which created quite a bit of discussion in the LEGO fan community. Below I have included all four of the images along with what all the talk is about. 🙂 The first picture (see above) is to commemorate the 40th […]

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365 Things to Do with LEGO Bricks book

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The LEGO Ideas Book series by DK Publishing has been an excellent resource for LEGO fans with some really great quality custom creations. The first book in the series is the THE LEGO IDEAS BOOK, the second is the LEGO PLAY BOOK: IDEAS TO BRING YOUR BRICKS TO LIFE, the third is the LEGO AWESOME […]

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LEGO Palace Cinema custom movie posters

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Amongst all LEGO Creator Modular Buildings, the #10232 LEGO Creator Palace Cinema is the only one that includes stickers (in the other sets in the series the decorated pieces are all printed). LEGO most likely made the decision to use stickers because the decorations depict large movie posters and signs and would be expensive to […]

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LEGO Creator Carousel available now!

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Just a quick update that the #10257 LEGO Creator Carousel is now available for LEGO VIP members (general release will be on June 1st). We have talked about the set before, and you can see the designer-video and other basic information here: LEGO Ideas Apollo & LEGO Creator Carousel. I have also added some additional […]

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The LEGO reverse engineering challenge

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There is a very interesting LEGO fan group on flickr that I became aware of through the LEGO Ambassador Forum. It’s called the LEGO Reverse Engineering Challenge. The idea is to figure out how small but complex LEGO creations were built. Once a challenge is posted, members submit their solutions, which are then shared in […]

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LEGO Milano extra large & upgraded version

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The Milano is the most iconic spacecraft used by the Guardians of the Galaxy, with the elegant and imposing shape of a bird of prey. The ship is also quite colorful, making it a perfect medium to recreate in LEGO. LEGO themselves released two versions of the Milano; the first one in the #76021 LEGO […]

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