Napoleon is a Bloodhound and Lafayette is a Bassett Hound. The two are stray dogs that live on an abandoned windmill site in the French countryside. Their one hobby is chasing any humans who come near their territory, whether or not they're in a car.
Napoleon is a big, slim purebred Bloodhound with brown fur, dark-brown ears, and a red collar around his neck.
Lafayette is a little, stocky purebred Basset Hound with short legs, brown with white fur, long ears, and a black collar (though it was seen only one time).
Napoleon and Lafayette are a classic double act.
Napoleon is the cleverer of the two and is often aggravated by Lafayette's stupidity. He always reminds Lafayette of his superiority, although he usually takes Lafayette's advice anyway. He has very good hearing and can discover various details about something just by listening to it.
Lafayette is the stupider, dopier of the two. He usually trips over his ears and has to lift them with his paw to hear things properly. He's also annoyed by the way Napoleon always bites an intruder on the butt while all he bites are the intruder's tires on his vehicle. Lafayette sometimes speaks before he thinks. He once asked Napoleon what color a pair of shoes were, not knowing that not even Napoleon can hear colors. He also makes light of the fact that they've been outsmarted twice by Edgar, causing Napoleon to beat him on the head.
Despite Napoleon and Lafayette hailing from France, they spoke with a heavy Southern United States accent since their voice actors Pat Buttram and George Lindsey were both from Alabama.
Their first appearance is when Edgar the butler rides his motorcycle through their patch where he hopes to dump Duchess and the kittens. Napoleon and Lafayette are woken by him and chase him down a riverbank, where Edgar drops the basket with the cats. After a spectacular chase scene, with Edgar being bitten on the butt several times; both of his shoes accidentally being removed from his feet; and his right leg chomped by Lafayette, Edgar escapes leaving defeating the two dogs who have fallen in the mud.
Despite being beaten and humiliated, Napoleon and Lafayette scavenge Edgar's belongings that he had left behind during the scuffle. Napoleon uses his side carriage as a bed, his umbrella (or bumbershoot as he calls it) as a souvenir and his bowler hat as a token of authority. Lafayette uses the cats' basket as a bed.
Edgar returns to the farm to steal his possessions back so they're not found by the police. He manages to outwit Napoleon and Lafayette. He scratches Napoleon in his sleep, enabling Edgar to steal his hat. He then scoops up the basket and drops the sleeping Lafayette into Napoleon's lap, distracting him in time to fish his umbrella using a fishing rod. He then steals his side carriage while Napoleon and Lafayette go searching for the thief. When they see Edgar trying to escape in a "one-wheeled haystack," they give chase again, but again they were defeated, this time crashing an old wheelbarrow into a powder mill. Lafayette says to Napoleon "you can't win them all." Then Napoleon angrily hits Lafayette on the head.
Napoleon and Lafayette make a brief appearance at the end of the film. They hear Scat Cat and his band celebrating off-screen and join in by howling. Napoleon is then hit in the head by the words: "THE END."
Napoleon and Lafayette appear in the episode "Pluto Saves the Day" with the Pet Shop Dogs band singing "Everybody Wants to Be a Woof". Later, they are seen with the other Pet Shop Dogs fighting off Pete (who's disguised as Snow White) and then chasing him out along with the rest of the dogs and Pluto.
- Napoleon and Lafayette were voiced by Pat Buttram and George Lindsey, respectively. These two would later reunite in Robin Hood (as the Sheriff of Nottingham and Trigger the vulture) and The Rescuers (as Luke and Deadeye).
- Napoleon was named after General Napoleon Bonaparte, a French military, political leader, and Emperor of the French and Lafayette was named after Gilbert du Motier, Marquis de Lafayette, a French aristocrat and a general in the American Revolutionary War and a leader of the Garde nationale during the French Revolution before being tried as an enemy of the state in the aftermath of the latter event and forced out of France with his life.
- Napoleon tends to be very bossy while Lafayette tends to be clumsy. This happened at one point in the film when Lafayette started signaling an attack on Edgar. But Napoleon stated that he's the leader and said when to start the attack. This would continue throughout the film.
- Napoleon and Lafayette never once meet the cats, as their purpose is to simply serve as comic relief.
- During their first encounter with Edgar, the normally collarless Lafayette mysteriously gains a collar just so that he can be yanked upwards by the windmill's blades.
- In the first draft of the film's story, after Edgar got his things back from Napoleon and Lafayette, the two dogs would have chased him back to Paris, and would later have their revenge against him, by helping O'Malley, as well as Scat Cat and the Alley Cats saving Duchess and the kittens, and sending Edgar to Timbuktu.
- Some of Napoleon and Lafayette's barks are recycled from the dogs during the Twilight Bark scene from One Hundred and One Dalmatians.
- In the end of the film, the two dogs break the fourth wall: Lafayette says, "Hey, Napoleon. That sounds like the end," and when Napoleon points out that he's the leader and will say when it's the end, he declares that "it's the end" right after being hit in the head by the "THE END" words.
- It is never revealed in the film whether Napoleon and Lafayette are stray dogs or if they are the pets of the farmer of their field. However, given the fact that they give no reference to their boss, and the fact that Lafayette doesn't have a collar, are probably clues towards the implication that they are strays.
- In the 1988 film Who Framed Roger Rabbit, Napoleon and Lafayette can be seen as a cameo with the toons singing Smile Darn Ya Smile in the final scene.