Beloved Dog of Internet's 'Doge' Meme Has Died

Kabosu, the Shiba Inu from Japan who spurred the famous crypto meme, has passed at the age of 18
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Dec 28, 2022 8:04 AM CST
Updated May 24, 2024 10:10 AM CDT
UPDATE May 24, 2024 10:10 AM CDT

Kabosu, the beloved Shiba Inu behind the "doge" meme, has passed on to that great puppy paradise in the sky. That's per a blog post by the pet's owner, kindergarten teacher Atsuko Sato of Sakura, Japan, who announced the dog's death on Friday, per CNN. Sato said Kabosu ate well the previous night, chowing down on a meal of rice and water, but in the morning light, with Sato by her side, "[she] passed away quietly," per her post. Sato notes she was "the happiest person in the world" as Kabosu's owner, and that a farewell party for her pup will take place on Sunday. Tributes to Kabosu from the crypto world and elsewhere are already populating the internet. "The impact this one dog has made across the world is immeasurable," the official Dogecoin account tweeted on X. "She was a being who knew only happiness and limitless love."

Dec 28, 2022 8:04 AM CST

You may not know her name, but if you've spent any time on the internet over the past decade, you almost certainly know her face. Kabosu, the Shiba Inu from Japan who became the face of dogecoin and graced countless "doge" memes, turned 17 in October, which is past the usual 12 to 15 years that Shiba Inus usually live. Kabosu seems to be on the decline, however: Her owner, kindergarten teacher Atsuko Sato, announces the pup now has liver disease and chronic lymphocytic leukemia. In a series of Instagram posts, Sato shows a weak-looking Kabosu cuddling with her and the family cat.

"Right now, the liver level is very bad and jaundice appears," Sato writes in her latest post from Tuesday. She adds, however, that Kabosu is able to eat and drink, and that antibiotics will hopefully help her current condition improve. Last week, Sato had blogged that her pup "has a great appetite and is very energetic, but it is taking a lot of time to walk, eat, and take care of various things."

story continues below

Kabosu's popularity kicked off in 2010 when a photo of her spread across Reddit, 4Chan, and Tumblr, spurring memes that included an "imagined inner monologue in broken English using scattered Comic Sans text," as CNN Business puts it. The "doge" meme even ended up on dogecoin, a satirical cryptocurrency meant to jab at bitcoin. Sato says she's grateful for fans now offering Kabosu their well wishes. "To all of you who are worried, Thank you very much," she writes on Instagram, adding that Kabosu is "getting power from all over the world!" (A "doge" meme NFT has sold for millions.)

Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
Install the Newser News app
in two easy steps:
1. Tap in your navigation bar.
2. Tap to Add to Home Screen.