The Shiba inu dog is the meme and face of Dogecoin

Kabosu, the dog behind the “doge” meme, has passed away after 14 years of online fame, her owner said.

Japan’s Shiba inu inspired a generation of online pranks and became the face of the cryptocurrency Dogecoin.

She suffered from leukemia and liver disease and died on May 24.

“She passed away quietly as if sleeping while I caressed her,” Atsuko Sato wrote on her blogThank you Kabosu’s fans.

“I think Kabo-chan is the happiest dog in the world. And I’m the happiest owner.”

As a rescue dog, Kabosu’s actual date of birth is unknown but Ms. Sato estimates her age to be 18.

In 2010, two years after adopting Kabosu from a puppy mill where he would have been abandoned, Ms. Sato, a teacher in Sakura, east of Tokyo, took a photo of her pet. Cross your legs on the sofa.

She posted the image to her blog, from where it spread to the online forum Reddit and became a meme that spread from college bedrooms to office email chains.

The memes often use silly English to reveal the inner thoughts of Kabosu and other shiba inu “doge” – pronounced like pizza “dough” but with a “j” on the end.

The photo later became an NFT piece of digital art that sold for $4m (£3.1m) and inspired Dogecoin, which started as a joke between two software engineers. soft and is currently the eighth most valuable cryptocurrency, with a market capitalization of $23 billion. .

Dogecoin has been backed by hip-hop star Snoop Dogg and Kiss bassist Gene Simmons.

But its most ardent supporter is billionaire Elon Musk, who joked about the coin on X – causing its value to skyrocket – and hailed it as “the people’s cryptocurrency”.

Kabosu fell ill with leukemia and liver disease in late 2022, and Ms. Sato said in a recent interview with AFP that the “invisible power” of prayers from fans around the world had help her get over it.

Ms. Sato, 62, said she had become so accustomed to “unbelievable” events that when Mr. Musk changed the Twitter icon, now X, to Kabosu’s face last year, she “even not that surprising”.

A $100,000 statue of Kabosu and her sofa crowdfunded by Own The Doge, a cryptocurrency organization dedicated to memes, was unveiled in a park in Sakura last November .

Sato and Own The Doge have also donated large sums of money to international charities, including more than $1 million to Save the Children. The NGO said this is the “largest cryptocurrency donation” it has ever received.


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