The film “Hachiko: The Most Faithful Friend” was released over 10 years ago and is rightly considered one of the most impactful animal films. But until now, not everyone knows that the devoted dog is not an invention of filmmakers, he actually waited for his deceased owner for several years at the station. They even erected a monument to him, next to which Tokyo lovers still meet.
Hachiko is an Akita Inu dog. He was born on November 10, 1923 on a farm in Adate, Akita Prefecture, Japan.
In 1924, Hidesabura Ueno, a professor at Tokyo Imperial University’s Faculty of Agriculture, adopted Hachiko as a pet and brought him to Tokyo.
Hidesaburu Ueno worked at the university and commuted daily to Shibuya Station, which was not far from his home. Hachiko has always seen the man and at the end of the working day he met him to say hello.
And so it went from day to day, until May 21, 1925. One day, Ueno didn’t come back…
The man suffered a cerebral hemorrhage while giving a lecture. He died and never returned to the station, where Hachiko already usually sat and waited for him.
And every day, for nine years and nine months, Hachiko waited for his master. He came exactly when the train arrived at the station.
After a while, the dog began to attract the attention of other passengers. Some of them knew Hachiko and Professor Ueno, having seen them together at the train station.
Newspapers started writing about Hachiko. After the first article about him appeared, people started visiting the dog and bringing him food and treats.
One day, a former student of Ueno, Hirokichi Saito, who studied the Akita breed, tracked the dog to the teacher’s former gardener’s house and learned the whole story of Hachiko’s life. After that, the student started making a census of Akita dogs in Japan. It turned out that there were only 30 purebred Akita Inu left, that is, with Hachiko. He began to visit the dog frequently and soon wrote several articles about the dog’s devotion.
In 1932, one of his articles placed the dog at the center of attention throughout Japan.
Since then, Hachiko has risen to fame. Everyone knew him. His loyalty and devotion to his master touched the entire Japanese people. School teachers spoke of Hachiko as a role model. And a Japanese artist made a dog sculpture, since then the Akita breed has become very popular.
Hachiko died on March 8, 1935, he was 11 years old. People found the dog on the street in the Shibuya district.
It wasn’t until 2011 that scientists were able to establish the true cause of Hachiko’s death: he had cancer and an infection.
The dog’s remains were cremated and the ashes were buried next to the grave of its owner, Professor Ueno.
Statue of Hachiko in Tokyo.
March 8, 1936, the year Hachiko died.