'Thank You For Loving Him': Noodle, the Bones or No-Bones Day Pug, Dies at 14

The elderly pug went viral in 2021 after his owner began trying to stand him up — and determining whether today was a "bones day" or not.

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By Gabrielle Bienasz • Dec 5, 2022

Last year, you might have checked the weather or your horoscope — or you might have checked whether or not Noodle had bones.

@jongraz

your Sunday reading

♬ original sound - Jonathan

The pug that told the internet how each day would go has died at 14, owner, Jonathan Graziano announced in a video Saturday.

"He made millions of people happy," Graziano said. "What a run. Thank you for loving him."

@jongraz

It has been the privilege of my life to care for Noodle these past 7 years. The sweetest man there has ever been and will ever be.

♬ original sound - Jonathan

It was a "bones day" if Noodle could be stood up from his plush bed, and a "no-bones day" if he fell back over. That could mean it was a self-care day, Graziano would say in daily (at one point) TikTok videos.

Graziano began posting on TikTok about his life and his dog in 2020, but the pair didn't become a full-on internet sensation until after the owner began to post videos in early 2021 of his pug's sometimes refusal to get out of his soft bed.

@jongraz Do your dogs do this too?? #pug #dog #humor #dogsoftiktok ♬ original sound - Jonathan

In one such early example, Graziano attempts to hoist Noodle out of bed. "He does this thing called no bones," when he doesn't want to go to the bathroom, he said in the March 2021 video.

"He becomes this flubbery sort of jello angel," Graziano added.

It evolved into regular videos where Graziano would film the pug on his soft bed to determine if it was a "bones" or "no bones" day.

"It's a no bones day, and you know what that means, it means you have to be kind to yourself… commit to a broth-based meal at some point today," Graziano told TikTok users on one no-bones day in December 2021, after Noodle crumpled into the bed.

The game became more popular on the app, and by the fall of 2021, caught the world's attention, resulting in a barrage of media coverage and online engagement.

In June 2022, Graziano's book about the pug, called, Noodle and the No Bones Day, was published by Simon & Schuster and became a New York Times bestseller. Graziano also has a Threadless shop where you can buy merch themed after various Noodle-isms.

As the New York Times noted, the bones idea caught on with everyone from the professional ice hockey sports team Colorado Avalanche, which cited a "no bones" day as a reason for a lost game, to the governor of Louisiana, John Bel Edwards, who told Louisianans it was a bone day and thus time to get vaccines.

And the governor:

It was also a joking way to tell your boss you didn't want to get any work done.

"I think people are just hanging on by a thread," Graziano told the Times in October 2021.

The self-care — and the communication of an off time — was kind of the point. People, "really need a distraction," Graziano added to the outlet at the time.

Users also said Noodle helped mental health struggles. In a more recent video, a user who says she is the mother of a child with autism said that the concept of a "bones" or "no-bones" day, facilitated her son communicating his emotions.

"Thanks to Noodle and your book, he's starting to understand different emotions and how he's feeling," she said, as well as that it is okay to "take it slow," on a no-bones day.

Graziano eventually stopped posting a daily bones reading but remained active on TikTok, popping in with the occasional forecast.

In a video posted several days before his death, Graziano showed Noodle on a walk around their home in New York City.

"Noodle just walked an entire city block," he said. "I don't think it's something he's done since — 2020... So we are officially having a bones evening."

"Everybody stay calm - WE'VE GOT BONES!!!" one user wrote, with bone emojis.

Gabrielle Bienasz

Entrepreneur Staff

Gabrielle Bienasz is a staff writer at Entrepreneur. She previously worked at Insider and Inc. Magazine. 

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