The Akita did not receive official recognition in its native land until 1931, but it has had a special place in the hearts of the Japanese from earliest times. The dog has a mysterious quality, it is highly intelligent, aloof with strangers and yet shows an absolute devotion to its family and would die rather than fail them. The Japanese people prize their heritage and culture, and the Akita has always been associated with good luck and fortune. An effigy of the Akita is often given at the birth of a baby or to someone who is sick or injured. The breed has been regarded as a status symbol from Shogunate times and it is said that one Shogun owned some four hundred Akitas and kept a special servant to care for each and every one of them. Over the centuries many owners kept the pelts of their most treasured dogs to serve as a lasting reminder, and today the Akita has the distinction of appearing on postage stamps and other official documents. The breed is valued so highly in Japan that if the owner of a champion Akita falls on hard times, the Government will pay for the upkeep of the dog for as long as necessary.
Perhaps the most famous Akita of all was one named Hachiko, owned by Dr. Eisaburo Ueno, a professor at Tokyo University. Each morning the dog would walk with his master to Shibuyu railway station to see him off to work, and he would return each day at 3pm to greet him as he returned on the afternoon train. On May 21st. 1925, the doctor left as usual, but he did not return. He had suffered a stroke and died at the university. Hachiko returned to Shibuyu station every day, each morning and each afternoon for the next ten years. Over the years, the people of Tokyo came to know and love this devoted dog, and gave him food and water. Many made a special journey just to feed and pat him, and to be able to say: “l have seen Hachiko.” Finally, on March 7th, 1935, the dog was found dead at the station. But he was not forgotten. In 1943 a small bronze statue was erected in the place where he died, at Shibuyu station. Unfortunately, the war effort meant that all statues were confiscated by the government to be melted down for ore, and the statue of Hachiko was lost. However, in 1948 a son of the original sculptor was commissioned to create another statue, and this was placed in the same spot. Today, the spirit of Hachiko lives on, for the statue has become a special meeting place for lovers. The dog has become a legend in Japan and is a symbol of all that is best in the Japanese Akita – – a dog that is uniquely loyal to its master.Immobilienmakler Heidelberg Makler Heidelberg
Source by Amy S Morin