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Hachikō

Nov. 10, 1923 - Mar. 8, 1935
Breed: Akita

A Dog's Life

Hachiko was adopted by Hidesaburo Ueno, an agricultural department professor at the University of Tokyo in 1924.

Ueno would commute to work each morning and Hachiko would travel to Shibuya station at the end of each day to await the professor. This routine continued daily, until Ueno’s sudden death in May 1925. Ueno had suffered a cerebral hemorrhage during a lecture and never returned.

Every day for the next nine years, nine months and fifteen days, Hachikō would arrive to the station at precisely the time the train was due and await Ueno’s return.

Hachiko eventually became a national sensation in Japan. The faithfulness he showed was used as an example to all, as a spirit of family loyalty that everyone should strive to achieve.

After his death in 1935, Hachiko was cremated and his ashes were buried alongside Professor Ueno’s in Aoyama Cemetery, Minato, Tokyo.

Every Dog Has Its Day

After his death in 1935, Hachikō was cremated and his ashes were buried alongside Professor Ueno’s in Aoyama Cemetery, but he was far from forgotten:

  • Hachiko's faithfulness became a national symbol of loyalty
  • A bronze statue of Hachiko was erected at Shibuya Station in 1934, but it was recycled for the war effort during WWII
  • A new statue was commissioned in 1948 by the son of the original artist, Takeshi Ando, which still stands today
  • The station entrance near the statue is called “Hachiko-guchi” (The Hachiko Entrance/Exit)
  • A similar statue of Hachiko stands in front of Ōdate Station, in his hometown, and in 2004 another new statue was placed in front of the Akita Dog Museum in Odate, on the original stone pedestal from Shibuya
  • Hachiko’s story has also been told in several movies, two of the more well-known ones being Hachi-kō (Hachiko Monogatari -- “The Tale of Hachiko”) directed by  Seijiro Koyama in 1987, and Hachi: A Dog’s Tale, an American-made movie about Hachiko released in 2009