Hachiko

In case you still haven’t seen that tearjerker of a movie, Hachiko is perhaps the most famous dog in all of Japan. His owner was a professor at the University of Tokyo and they would walk together to Shibuya Train Station every morning back in 1924. At the end of each work day Hachiko would meet the professor back at the station and then go home together. This routine continued on for about another year until the professor suffered a fatal haemorrhage at work. For the next nine years, Hachiko returned and waited patiently at Shibuya station for his owner that would never return again.

121204_HachikoSoon enough, people started to notice and bring treats to feed Hachiko while waiting. He became a national symbol of loyalty and soon enough a bronze statue was erected in one of Shibuya Station’s exits to honour him.  Unfortunately though, the original bronze statue was recycled during World War II and the above is the second statue commissioned in 1948. This bronze masterpiece still stands today and is a popular meeting spot in an otherwise crowded Shibuya.

Hachiko died in 1935 due to terminal cancer and a worm infection. His stuffed remains are kept in the  National Science Museum of Japan.

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28 thoughts on “Hachiko

  1. Hi! I’ve seen that film too only about a couple of months ago. My son prodded me to watch it. It’s profoundly moving. Story’s quite poignant…Yes! I cried like everybody else, especially when the professor’s wife and Hachiko met on the prof’s 10th death anniversary…Thanks by the way for visiting my blog that led me to your lovely site.

  2. Lovely post about Hachiko. Thanks, I was unfamiliar with it and him. That’s the beauty of dogs, though, their loyalty and their innocence. That’s why we cry so at dog movies, because they are utterly innocent. I think we see so little innocence these days, it makes us more sensitive to it in our animals.

  3. Aw thats such a gorgeous heartbreaking story. It makes me think of Greyfriars Bobby, who was Edinburghs equivalent dog 🙂 He sat beside his masters grave in Greyfriars cemetry, refusing to ever move, and so people started to feed him. He has a bronze statue too, at the top of Candlemaker Row!!

  4. This story is similar to that of Edinburgh’s Greyfriars’ Bobby (which just happens to be described in the prologue of Jaspa’s Journey: The Pride of London). Just goes to show that people could sometimes learn a thing or two about loyalty from dogs!

  5. i don’t have the guts to watch the movie, just reading the synopsis makes me cry. Hachiko is really a special dog. One of my dream is to visit that Hachiko’s statue and there is another loyal dog in Italy “Lampo” he is a traveling dog. I hope to visit their statues someday..

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