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Sparkle 07-22-09 11:49 PM

Taco Bell Chihuahua Dies at 15
Taco Bell Chihuahua Dies at 15
Us Magazine - July 22, 2009 1:30 PM PDT

Story photo: Taco Bell Chihuahua Dies at 15
Gidget the Taco Bell dog at the "Cats & Dogs" premiere in Westwood, CA on June 23, 2001. Gregg DeGuire/WireImage.comUs Magazine

Gidget, the famed Chihuahua who appeared in Taco Bell ads, died Tuesday at the age of 15.

Karen McElhatton, Gidget's owner, tells Usmagazine.com the dog was with her trainer, Sue Chipperton, watching television when she began making "strange noises" and suffered a stroke.

Before the dog's death, "She had a good day and was running around as normal," McElhatton tells Usmagazine.com. "We're happy that she was very well off right until the end."

Gidget -- whose "Yo Quiero Taco Bell" spots debuted in September 1997 -- also had a cameo in Legally Blonde 2, in addition to appearing in other TV spots.

We enjoyed working with Gidget, and she will be missed by many," a Taco Bell spokesperson tells Us in a statement. "Our deepest sympathies go out to her owners and fans."

The dog had an exceptionally happy life, her owner says.

"She lived like a queen," McElhatton tells Us. "She had a great life. We're very sad. She's a wonderful little dog."

McElhatton tells Us the dog will likely be cremated.

Find out what celebs' dogs say about them

Adds McElhatton: "She was old. Of course, we were hoping she'd be around for a few more years, but if you have a dog that lives that long, you can't really complain."

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