In a past post, I talked about how Toki loves to sit at a certain window of our house and watch the activity below. We jokingly call that her “Dog TV”. She especially likes to watch “cartoons” on weekend mornings . . .
Interestingly, she has never shown much interest in the real TV. That is, until last night when we watched Hachi, A Dog’s Tale. Hachi is based on a true story about a loyal Akita named Hachiko. From Wikipedia:
In 1924, Hidesaburō Ueno, a professor in the agriculture department at the University of Tokyo, took in Hachikō as a pet. During his owner’s life, Hachikō greeted him at the end of each day at the nearby Shibuya Station. The pair continued their daily routine until May 1925, when Professor Ueno did not return. The professor had suffered from a cerebral hemorrhage and died, never returning to the train station where Hachikō was waiting. Every day for the next nine years the golden brown Akita waited at Shibuya station.
The permanent fixture at the train station that was Hachikō attracted the attention of other commuters. Many of the people who frequented the Shibuya train station had seen Hachikō and Professor Ueno together each day. They brought Hachikō treats and food to nourish him during his wait.
This continued for nine years with Hachikō appearing precisely when the train was due at the station.
For some reason, Toki took a liking to Hachi, the movie. She sat with us on the couch and uncharacteristically perked her ears while watching Hachi fail to fetch balls, eat treats, and romp in the backyard with his family. She even went up to the TV speakers and sniffed them curiously.
As a caveat – Hachi is probably a movie that only a dog lover (or a dog) could love. Let’s just say that I don’t need much of a plot when I can watch an adorable Akita (and a Shiba Inu playing Hachi as a puppy) cavort across the screen. However, it’s such a tear jerker for the last third of the movie that I wouldn’t really recommend it to anyone. It was just way too sad! (Toki wisely munched her bone and ignored the sad parts. If only I had been so smart.)
Speaking of TV, Nestle is taking a new approach to advertising by designing a commercial to appeal directly to your dog. The commercial, for Beneful dog food, includes higher frequency sounds that are audible to dogs but not humans. You can watch the video on YouTube, but unless you’re living in Germany where these aired, you won’t be able to test it out on your pup. That’s because the video was compressed–and therefore lost those high frequency sounds–when it was posted on the web.
Given Toki’s general disinterest in TV content, I doubt whether she’ll take much notice of the Beneful commercial. But based on the web traffic this story has been getting, it looks like it’s been a successful advertising campaign for the two-legged set!