Watch: Japanese man who spent $16K to become a ‘dog’ meets real dog

Watch: Japanese man who spent $16K to become a ‘dog’ meets real dog
via @I_want_to_be_an_animal / YouTube
Carl Samson
By Carl Samson
December 14, 2023
The Japanese man who shelled out thousands of dollars to turn himself into a “dog” has finally interacted with a real canine.
What happened: The encounter took place while the man — who goes by the online alias Toco — subjected himself to an agility test, which he apparently failed, as seen in a new YouTube video. Toco previously only posted photos of himself going through the Crufts-style course.
In the video, Toco for the first time can be seen interacting with a real dog for a relatively longer period. Unfortunately, the unnamed Shiba Inu appeared suspicious, though there were a few moments in which it looked to be more curious and playful, facing him directly.

The big picture: Toco, who spent 2 million yen (around $16,000 at the time) in 2022 to commission the creation of his hyperrealistic rough collie costume, previously expressed disappointment for being shunned by actual dogs. While he had close encounters with at least two real canines in his first public walk, he said they did not treat him as an equal.
Toco, whose real identity remains a secret, has amassed over 60,000 subscribers on YouTube, where he chronicles his journey as a four-legged critter. Some viewers have described him as a therian, or a person who spiritually or psychologically identifies as a nonhuman animal either spiritually or psychologically.
 
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