6 Mickey Mouse facts you probably didn't know

This year is Mickey Mouse's 89th birthday.

(CNN)Most parents would never let rodents near their kids -- unless, of course, it's Mickey Mouse.

Here are six facts about the world's most iconic critter.

1. He started off as a rabbit

Before Walt Disney created Mickey Mouse, he made Oswald the Lucky Rabbit. But in a dispute with his business partner at Universal, Disney lost the rights to Oswald. The loss of his first character inspired the birth of the Mouse. If you look at the two characters, you can see the resemblance. Red shorts, big ears and wide eyes sound familiar?
    Disney's "holy grail" film, "Sleigh Bells," was rediscovered in 2015.
    Disney's "holy grail" film, "Sleigh Bells," was rediscovered in 2015.

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      Disney's "holy grail" film, "Sleigh Bells," was rediscovered in 2015.

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    Disney's "holy grail" film, "Sleigh Bells," was rediscovered in 2015. 00:46

    2. He's married to Minnie

    Yes, married. While there was never a wedding in any film, Disney decided in the studio that the two mice already were happily hitched. Like any loving couple would want, Mickey and Minnie shared their big screen debut together in "Steamboat Willie" in 1928. Every year on November 18, they get to celebrate their birthdays together. How romantic is that?

    3. He's silent for 8 films and then exclaims, 'Hot dogs!'

    Mickey Mouse is clearly a huge fan of hot dogs. He chose to reveal that to the world in 1929 in his ninth film, "The Karnival Kid," and even did a hot dog dance. Sure, he had laughed and squealed before, but he didn't show us he could utter words until this film.

    4. His magic turned kids into stars

    Remember how Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake got their big career breaks? Of course, the magic of the Mouse had something to do with their success. The child sensations starred in the revival of the 1950's "Mickey Mouse Club."

    5. He doesn't wear white gloves for fashion

    Mickey's white gloves actually help distinguish his hands from the rest of his body. The first time we see him in the famous accessory is in the cartoon, "The Opry House," in 1929.

    6. He's frequently a write-in candidate in elections

    Unfortunately, votes for Mickey Mouse usually end up in the trash, along with those for Donald Duck. Voters are allowed to dream big though, right?