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Japanese Shiba Inu of ‘doge’ meme fame dies at age 18

Shiba Inu of ‘doge’ meme fame dies on 24 May

Kabosu, the beloved Shiba Inu best known as the face of the viral “doge” meme, died on Friday (24 May), her owner announced on Instagram.

The expressive canine shot to stardom after her owner, Atsuko Sato, posted a photo of her giving the camera a side-eye while lounging on a sofa in 2010.

Source: @ownthedoge on Instagram

This image swiftly gained traction across the internet, evolving into a widely recognised meme often paired with humorous phrases in broken English, set in Comic Sans font.

So successful was the meme that it even played a pivotal role in the inception of the Dogecoin cryptocurrency, which has since grown into a multi-billion-dollar digital asset.

Kabosu died in her owner’s arms

According to Ms Sato’s post, Kabosu died in her arms on the morning of 24 May.

“She went very peacefully without suffering, as if falling asleep while feeling the warmth of my hands petting her,” she wrote.

Ms Sato also extended heartfelt thanks to all who had cherished and supported Kabosu over the years.

doge meme dies

Source: @kabosumama on Instagram

“I am certain that Kabosu was the happiest dog in the world,” she wrote in the caption. “That makes me the happiest owner in the world.”

Kabosu, a rescue dog, was estimated to be about 18 years old when she died, surpassing the average lifespan for a Shiba Inu.

Her last birthday was celebrated in November.

Famous ‘doge’ had leukaemia in 2022

Kabosu was diagnosed with leukaemia and liver disease in late 2022.

However, Ms Sato said in an interview with Agence France-Presse that it was the “invisible power” of prayers from Kabosu’s fans that helped the dog overcome her illnesses.

In November 2023, a $100,000 statue of Kabosu crowdfunded by crypto organisation Own The Doge was unveiled in a park in Sakura City, her hometown.

Source: Own The Doge

Ms Sato adopted Kabosu from a puppy mill in 2008, where she would otherwise have been put down.

Also read: Dog in South Korea treks 20km home to reunite with owner after going missing for 41 days

Dog in South Korea treks 20km home to reunite with owner after going missing for 41 days

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Featured image adapted from @popbase on X and @kabosumama on Instagram.

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