Carl Dean Switzer (August 7, 1927 – January 21, 1959) was an American actor, professional dog breeder, and hunting guide. Switzer began his career as a child actor in the mid-1930s appearing in the Our Gang short subjects series as Alfalfa, one of the series' most popular and best remembered characters. After leaving the series in 1940, Switzer struggled to find substantial roles due to typecasting. As an adult, he appeared mainly in bit parts and B-movies. He later became a dog breeder and hunting guide. Switzer married in 1954 and had one son before divorcing in 1956. In January 1959, he was fatally shot by an acquaintance over a dispute about money.