Garfield and Odie think their fence-dancing act cannot be beat, as does Jon, who watches a TV show called Pet Search, which is looking for talented pets, and if their pet is determined by the audience as "The Most Talented Pet of the Week" they will win $1,000 and go on to the National Finals in Hollywood. After seeing last week's winner, a man playing a banjo while his dog simply yelps after his tail is squashed by a rocking chair, Garfield thinks he has it in the bag. Jon wishes that they could be on the show which makes Garfield and Odie dance for him, showing him that they can dance. Jon is excited about winning the $1,000, while Garfield is not overly impressed by it, especially when Jon brings out his guitar.
They go to the local studio where their competition consists of a flipping chihuahua, a parrot, a jumping fish (in which Garfield eats before the show begins), a dead canary named Petey, and tap dancing pigeons. Jon's act is "Johnny Bop and the Two Steps", in which he dresses like Elvis Presley and plays his guitar to the Elvis-styled song "Wizard of Love" while Garfield and Odie are backup dancers dressed in kitschy 1950s costumes. Despite Garfield's utter humiliation over being part of the act, Jon manages to get some applause. The final act is Bob the Wonder Dog, a dog who plays five instruments at once; he is disqualified when Odie unmasks him as merely a man in a dog costume. Odie, Garfield, and Jon end up being the winners, as they are the only act not to be booed by the audience. That night, Jon celebrates his new-found wealth and anticipates the forthcoming trip to California, while Garfield remarks that it was not worth making a spectacle of himself on local TV, let alone the entire country.
Garfield, Odie, and Jon drive to Hollywood and start to see it as a paradise. While they enjoy living the Hollywood highlife, Jon tells the pets not to get used to it as they will have to go back to reality pretty soon. Not wanting to give it up, Garfield and Odie discuss their plans to win, and their first action is to destroy Jon's guitar while he is out to avoid performing his mediocre Johnny Bop routine. With Jon out of the picture, the pets are free to make up a new act for the finals.
Garfield, Odie, and Jon later arrive in their private dressing room to get ready for the finals, and Garfield admits that the new competition (like a pig playing a piano and three dogs doing ballet) will be more of a challenge than back home. The prizes are bigger, as well: the winners will win a contract with a big Hollywood movie studio, six weeks on a world cruise, matching limousines parked by the pool of their brand new home, and a check for $1,000,000. The second-place winners will win a boat.
The Limon Sisters perform their singing and dancing act, then the Tumbling Garbanzo Brothers perform their acrobat act and Miles the Jazz Canary performs his jazz music whistling. Jon is now much more serious than before, saying that he thinks being able to return to their old life will be the best prize of all. Garfield thinks Jon has lost it as he and Odie perform their new tango dancing act "The Dancing Armandos". Garfield is confident that they will win until the final act, Desiree the Classical Cat, appears and sings an incredible opera song that shatters every bit of glass in the room.
The judges declare Desiree as the winner, and the Dancing Armandos take second-place. Garfield acts like a sore loser, with Jon telling him that they are still a family and still have each other. Garfield replies with an angry "Big, fat, hairy deal."
On their sailboat they won as second place, Garfield and Jon agree that it was all for the best that they are home again. While dressed as a yachtsman, Jon talks about places they should sail to while Garfield makes recommendations. The camera pans out to show that their boat has been put in their backyard.
- Announcer (voiced by Gregg Berger)
- Pet Search Contestants
- Mountain Man Dan and Blue
- Fernando and Flippy
- Pierre and Chatterbox
- Grandma Fogerty and the Amazing Petey
- Five Tap-Dancing Pigeons and Herbie
- Bob the Wonder Dog
- Limon Sisters
- The Tumbling Garbanzo Brothers
- Miles the Jazz Canary
- Desiree the Classical Cat
- Bert (voiced by Frank Welker)
- Bob (voiced Gregg Berger)
- Bear and Trainer
- Fish and Trainer
- Some elements of the special were utilized in Garfield Goes Hawaiian.
- Odie as "Mr. Skins" had previously appeared in the comic strip from July 22nd, 1985 to July 27th, 1985.
- Pet Search is a parody of the television series Star Search.
- In "The Wizard of Love", Jon makes a reference to the Yellow Brick Road from The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.
- During the dream sequence, Garfield dresses as Gene Kelly from Singin' in the Rain, Fred Astaire in Royal Wedding, Judy Garland in The Wizard of Oz (with Odie as Toto), Esther Williams in Dangerous When Wet, and Astaire again with Odie as Ginger Rogers in no specific film.
- The Lemon Sisters appear to be a parody of The Andrews Sisters or The Lennon Sisters.
- Miles The Jazz Canary may be an allusion to jazz legends Miles Davis and Charlie Parker (often nicknamed "Bird" or "Yardbird").
- Desiree the Classical Cat is likely a reference to Desirée Goyette.
- Garfield puts his foot on the stone slab footprints of John Wayne's at Grauman's Chinese Theatre.
- Several areas and landmarks are seen such as The Hollywood Sign, Wilshire Boulevard, Beverley Hills, Rodeo Drive, The Hollywood Freeway (Freeway 101) and The Hollywood Bowl.
- Several Hollywood Stars from the Hollywood Walk of Fame are seen such as Julie Andrews, Edgar Kennedy, Greta Garbo, Olivia Newton-John, and Judy Holliday.
- The "Piano Pig" plays Sergei Rachmaninoff's Prelude in C-Sharp minor.
- The "Ballet Dogs" dance to Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky's The Nutcraker Suite, Op. 71a: II. Danses caractéristiques: Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy.
- The local Pet Search competition has an added competitor, Backflip the High-Diving Cat (who naturally freaks out as soon as he lands in the water) with his owner Ruby.
- The bear in the local competition constantly screams whilst going out of control on his skates; his animated counterpart is silent.
- In Hollywood, Miles the Jazz Canary is absent from the competition.
- Jon's attitude towards winning in Hollywood is different from the televised version. In the book, he wants to win as much as Garfield does and tells Garfield and Odie that he can almost taste the film contract after their act is done. When Desiree is named the winner, Jon is too disappointed to say anything.
- "They Love Us" performed by Lou Rawls
- "The Wizard of Love" performed by Thom Huge and Desirée Goyette
- "Hollywood Island" performed by Lou Rawls
- "Desiree's Meow Solo" performed by Desirée Goyette