Have you ever seen one of Dr Pepper’s oldest mascots, Frosty Dog? He was introduced in 1956 and stuck around until the early 1960s. He was often caught saying frosty man, frosty! as he and Pup brought cold, delicious Dr Pepper to consumers.
During his time as the face of Dr Pepper, Frosty Dog appeared in a wide variety of different advertising. These included cartoons, signs, a dog naming contest, and even a float in the Annual Cotton Bowl Parade in Dallas.
Frosty Dog also got around quite a bit when his signs appeared on the syrup truck-trailers in Baltimore, Birmingham, and Dallas in May of 1959. These large rolling billboards traveled all across America boasting the frosty man, frosty! slogan and promoting “the awareness that Dr Pepper is ‘going places.’” These colorful baked enamel signs were great for advertising because they lasted a long time on the road and did not cost significantly more than the painted signs generally placed in grocery stores.
The Dr Pepper Company was not the only one who had the idea of taking Frosty on the road. Also in 1959 the R. J. Mealey Corporation created its own talking St. Bernard, which Richard Mealey himself strapped to the back of his station wagon and took off on an adventure. The R. J. Mealey Corporation, however, was not ground-breaking in its use of a talking Frosty dog; the original talking St. Bernard debuted at a Columbus, Mississippi plant in 1958. Regardless, this pooch, affectionately named the Happy Huckster, traveled an impressive 25,000 miles in his journey across eight western states to visit different Dr Pepper bottling plants.
Impressively the Happy Huckster didn’t have any trouble weathering the adverse climate conditions he encountered on his journey, including snow, rain, and dust. Ultimately the R. J. Mealey Corporation teamed up with the Dr Pepper Company and created several hundred Happy Hucksters for them to use at their own bottling sites. This promotion ended up being very good for business because the presence of these talking dogs often led to a two to three times increase in sales.
Although Frosty obviously enjoyed a great deal of success as a face of Dr Pepper during his time, his popularity reached its peak with the Name the Dog contest in the summer of 1959. While the Dr Pepper Company tried to incorporate Frosty Dog in their new direction with the introduction of the Frosty Pep, a float of vanilla ice cream drenched in Dr Pepper, they ultimately moved on to the It’s Different…I Like It campaign.
With warmer weather here, don’t forget this blast from the past and stay frosty man, frosty!
The Dr Pepper Museum is located at 300 S. 5th Street in downtown Waco. The Museum is open Monday through Saturday from 10:00 AM until 5:00 PM and Sunday from Noon until 5:00 PM, last ticket sold at 4:15. For more information, visit us on the web at drpeppermuseum.com. To purchase your own Dr Pepper memorabilia, visit the Museum’s online gift shop.