National Dog Day special
National Dog day is upon us!*
A day which was officially created to recognise rescue dogs, hero dogs, cute dogs, your dogs – all dogs! To celebrate just how wonderful dogs are, let’s take a look at both a real and fictional dog whose stories highlight just how astonishing dog’s relationships with people can be.
The story of Hachiko – the dog who become Japan’s National Treasure
Hachiko was an Akita bought by Eizaburo Ueno in Japan 1924. The pair were inseparable and Hachiko soon took to accompanying Ueno to the train (which Ueno took to work), finding his own way home, and then returning later the same day just before Ueno’s commuter train arrived at Shibuya. For a year Hachiko would always meet Ueno until tragically in May 1925 Ueno died unexpectedly at work and never returned home.
Although Hachiko was adopted by Ueno’s gardener, for the 9 years until his death Hachiko would return to the station every day to wait for his master. The locals started to notice him coming every day and in 1932 a reporter published a story on Hachiko which led to national recognition. People started to come from far and wide to see Hachiko who they called ‘Chuken’; the faithful.
He never gave up and stayed loyal to Ueno until the end, he was found having died peacefully on a street near the station in 1935 aged 12.
His story and infinite loyalty awarded him a permanent remembrance: a Bronze statue now stands of Hachiko at Shibuya Station.
Fictional Icon – Lassie the Rough Collie
Lassie a fictional rough Collie created by author Eric Knight is a true depiction of just how amazing dogs can be. Lassie treks over miles to reunite herself with her young owner – a boy whose parents have to sell her for money during England’s depression.
She is one of only three animals to have been awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Although fictional, Lassie stands for all those pets who would, like Hachiko, do anything to stay loyal to their master.
The Newfoundland ‘Nana’ in the much loved children’s book Peter Pan by J.M Barrie is also a great depiction of canines at their best. It is easy to see why Barrie used a dog as the character of the Darling children’s nanny; loyal, dependable and loving.
There are many children’s stories that feature dogs; Lady & the Tramp, 101 Dalmatians and Scooby Doo to name but a few. They make the perfect subjects – both as a human companion and as a tool to teach children the attributes of love, loyalty and bravery.
So why not spoil your pooch this National Dog’s day in celebration.
*National Day dog is now the 31st August (having been moved permanently from 26th August)
[Pet Pavilion supports Battersea Cats and Dogs Home – please remember all the rescue dogs that need a loving home and much needed care.]