Like most popular features, Walt Kelly’s Pogo went through some growing pains. Albert the Alligator had star billing early on, with Pogo a sidekick. When Kelly made Pogo’s appearance cuter and switched Albert to the role of sidekick, the strip took off. Kelly also featured a young African-American boy, Bumbazine, who did not survive long. Leaving humans out of the strip made it easier for Kelly to have the animals take on the roles of caricature humans, without the jarring sight of an actual human in their midst.
Speaking of cute, Upsy Daisy is certainly that. Kelly sometimes brought in characters that despite visual appeal made one appearance, did their part, and left the swamp.
From Animal Comics #9 (1944).
“De Fust Time” shows Albert and Pogo’s first meeting. Just click on the thumbnail.