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Google Japan Debuts Adorable Dog Version of Street View as Tribute to Hachiko

It was only a matter of time before dog lovers in the town of Odate, Japan strapped a live feed to the lead harnesses of their Akitas.

Odate is a small town in Akita Prefecture of Japan. It is known all over the globe thanks to the story of Hachiko, the Akita dog who waited nine years at the same train station for his master to come home. The Akita epitomize canine loyalty, and faithful Hachiko is memorialized with a statue in the city center. Hachiko has made the Akita inu breed so famous that the city's Akita Dog Preservation Society even established a museum dedicated to the breed and its most beloved representative, Hachiko.

Now, a group of dog-loving Google employees have taken Odate's love for Akita dogs to the next level. More than 80 years since Hachiko waited at the station, these adorable canines are making headlines again as local Google employees debut a special version of Google Street View, this time from the backs of the town’s furry friends.

In the video feature below, three pups – Asuka, Ako and Puuko – bounce and burrow through a wintry Odate. It’s Google “Pup-View,” and yes, it’s real:

Video and pictures from the project showcase some tourist destinations in the town, such as snow-laden shrines on the outskirts of town, and, of course, the famous statue of Hachiko. Local officials expressed hope that the “pet project” (quite literally) might stimulate tourism in the area.

"Beautiful views with [the] fuzzy coat of [an] Akita dog is a special and unique idea that only Odate city can provide," said Shimada Kyosuke, a spokesperson for the town.

We can only thank them for their innovation, which provides dog lovers around the world the opportunity to see through canine eyes. Enjoy “Pup-View,” which both marks the cutting-edge of mapping technology and welcomes the Year of the Dog in a way only Odate can:

Video by Youtube Channel Google Japan.

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