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Fur Times | June 18, 2019

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Hachi: A Dog’s Tale

Hachi: A Dog’s Tale
FurTimes

Hachi: A Dog’s Tale, tells the beautiful and touching story of the love between a dog and his owner.

Hachiko, an Akita, was born in 1923 in Ōdate-shi, Ōdate City in the north of Japan. At 2 months, he was taken to Tokyo, and after being lost at a train station, was taken in by
Ueno Hidesamurō, a professor at the University of Tokyo

Hachikō and Hidesamurō formed a bond so strong that every morning, they walked together to Shibuya train station, Hachiko would stay at a nearby park while his owner traveled to work. In the afternoon, Hachiko would return to the station to greet Hidesamurō.

For nearly two years this continued until on May 21,1925, Hidesamurō did not return. He had suffered a heart attack at the university that day and had died. During the days and months that followed, Hachi, was seen waiting every day in front of Shibuya station. Days passed and the news came to the pedestrians who were accustomed to seeing Hidesamurō and Hachiko at the station. Hachi became even more widely known by all the locals, as he continued to faithfully wait for his beloved owner regardless of the harsh weather that winter.

The people of Ōdate City were so touched by Hachi’s loyalty, that on April 1934, they hired Teru Ando,​a famous Japanese sculptor, to make a bronze statue of Hachiko in the very place were Hachi was seen waiting for his master. On March 7, 1935, due to age and health complications, Hachiko died in the same place where he so faithfully awaited his mater’s arrival for the past ten years.

During WWII, all the bronze statues in Japan were removed and melted for manufacturing weapons. The people of Shibuya, wished to relive Hachi’s memory, and so after the war, they asked Takeshi Ando, (son of​Teru Ando) to make a new statue of Hachi in the same place where the original had been placed.

Today, the statue is still standing, and the 8th of April each year commemorates Hachikō in Shibuya station.

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