GenreAdventure, Family, Fantasy Music directorBrahm Wenger CountryUnited States
Release dateNovember 23, 2010 (2010-11-23) Based onCharacters
by Paul Tamasy
Anna McRoberts WriterRobert Vince, Anna McRoberts CastReese Alexander (Doctor), Jan Bonny (Reporter), Chris Coppola (Gus), Patrika Darbo (Mrs. Claus), Richard Riehle (Santa Claus), Kaitlyn Maher (Quinn) Similar moviesRelated Robert Vince movies
TaglineThe Search is On!
The Search for Santa Paws is an American-Canadian adventure-fantasy-film released in 2010 (direct to video). The movie is a prequel to Santa Buddies, as well as a spin-off from the Air Buddies film franchise and the tenth film in the Air Bud franchise. It was released on November 23, 2010.
When Santa Claus (Richard Riehle) travels to New York City and gets hit by a cab, loses his memory and the crystal that keeps him eternal is stolen, it's up to his new friend, his puppy named Paws (Zachary Gordon) to save him. Meanwhile, a young orphan named Quinn (Kaitlyn Maher) arrives at a foster home run by a strict and no-nonsense woman named Ms. Stout (Wendi McLendon-Covey) who does not approve of anything that children love: toys, Christmas decorations, singing, and even pets. She has a furnace which she uses to burn all the toys she confiscates from the girls who rightfully own them. Despite the strict rules she has to respect while staying at the foster home, Quinn eventually befriends the girls, including Janie (G. Hannelius) and Willamina "Will" (Madison Pettis). In order to save Christmas, Eli (Danny Woodburn) and Eddy (Richard Kind) the uncanny elf dog have to go to New York City to save Santa and Paws. But when Santa (Bud) is in the hospital, it takes the help of Quinn and Will to save Santa. When Kate and James take Bud from the hospital, Paws tells Eli to put his crystal next to Santa, but then he wakes up to find that Paws is a stuffed animal. They rush back to the North Pole and Paws turns into a full-grown dog named Santa Paws (Mitchel Musso) and Christmas is back on. Ms. Stout is fired from taking care of the orphan girls at the foster home, much to the excitement of the girls, and Will and Quinn are both adopted by James and Kate Hucklebuckle.
Kaitlyn Maher as Quinn, a young orphaned little girl who believes in the true spirit of Christmas. She finds Paws in the alley behind the foster home.
Madison Pettis as Willamina (Will for short), the oldest girl out of all the orphans who serves as an older sister figure to Quinn. She does not believe in Christmas until she accidentally gets stuck in the basement with Paws.
Richard Riehle as Santa Claus.
Danny Woodburn as Eli, Santa's head elf.
Wendi McLendon-Covey as Ms. Stout, the strict no-nonsense headmistress of the girls home and the main villain of the film. She finds Christmas, toys and anything that children love annoying or offensive. She is eventually fired as a result of the abusive treatment she has inflicted upon the girls.
G. Hannelius as Janie, an orphan who is best friends with Will.
Michelle Creber as Taylor, an orphan.
Kathryn Kirkpatrick as Mrs. Gibson, a kind social services woman who takes over the orphanage after Ms. Stout is fired.
Melody B. Choi as Mary, an orphan.
Nicole Leduc as Meg, an orphan.
John Ducey as James Hucklebuckle, husband of Kate Hucklebuckle and grandson of the late Mr. Hucklebuckle.
Bonnie Somerville as Kate Hucklebuckle, wife of James Hucklebuckle.
Chris Coppola as Augustus (Gus for short), a poor homeless man who takes Santa's magic crystal, unaware of its power.
Jonathan Morgan Heit as Jimmy, a boy scout who helps search for Santa.
Patrika Darbo as Mrs. Claus.
Pete Gardner as Franklin, Ms. Stout's boyfriend as well as a dogcatcher.
Bill Cobbs as Mr. Stewart, James and Kate's caseworker who says they must successfully run Hucklebuckle toys profitabily for one Christmas season.
Zachary Gordon as Puppy Paws and Mitchel Musso as Santa Paws, the Great Pyrenees of whom only people that believe in Christmas can understand what he's saying. He is a stuffed animal when the crystal on his neck is removed.
Richard Kind as Eddy, a happy-go-lucky elf dog Jack Russell Terrier who is also Eli's assistant.
Jason Connery as Haggis, a Scottish Terrier who's "always ready to take action", he befriends Paws and is looking to get off Santa's Naughty List.
Christopher Massey as Rasta, a reggae Puli who is "laidback" and "easygoing", he befriends Paws and is looking to get off Santa's Naughty List.
Josh Flitter as T-Money, a streetwise hip-hop Bulldog who is "super cool", he befriends Paws and is looking to get off Santa's Naughty List.
Diedrich Bader as Comet, one of Santa's reindeer.
Michael Deyermond as Dancer, one of Santa's reindeer.
Angela Walker, writing for ChristianCinema.com, gave the DVD three stars out of five, but said that the film fits the normal Disney DVD formula. However she went on to say that the film was predictable and a little clichéd, but that kids would enjoy it and that the film adds to the "spirit of Christmas".
A sequel, Santa Paws 2: The Santa Pups was released on November 20, 2012.