Dog Day
(November 1st)

●犬 a dog
●子犬 a puppy
●雄犬 a male dog; a he-dog
●雌犬 a female dog; a she-dog; a bitch
●保護犬 a rescued dog
●捨て犬;野良犬 a stray dog; an abandoned dog; a homeless dog
●野犬 a wild dog
●迷子犬 a lost dog
●ペット a pet
●ペットショップ a pet shop; a pet store
●ペットフード pet food
●ペットホテル a pet motel; a pet hotel; pet accommodations
●ペットロス pet loss; pet grief
●動物愛護 animal protection; animal rights; animal welfare; animal protection
●動物愛護団体 an animal rights group; animal rescue; humane society
●動物愛護管理法 Law of Humane Treatment and Management of Animals
●動物愛護週間 Be Kind to Animals Week
●殺処分 (安楽死)euthanasia; (家畜)culling; slaughtering; killing
●殺処分する (to) euthanize; (to) put down
●保健所 a (public) health center; a health care center
●アニマルシェルター an animal shelter

According to the survey by Japan Pet Food Association, the estimated number of pet dogs in Japan is around 90 million.

Dogs are still very popular as pets though the estimated number of cats kept as pets exceeded dogs in 2017 (Heisei 29th yr) for the first time since the survey began in 1994 (Heisei 6th yr).

Japan Pet Food Association designated November 1st as “Inu-no-hi (Dog Day)”, and February 22nd as “Neko-no-hi (Cat Day)” in 1987 (Showa 62nd yr).

◆英語で「Dog Days」の意味は「盛夏の蒸暑い日」ですが、日本の犬の日の趣旨は「犬についての知識を身につけ、犬をかわいがる日」とされています。
The purpose of Dog Day in Japan is “to acquire knowledge of dogs and love them” though “Dog Days” in English means “the hot sultry days of mid-summer”.

The reason why they chose this date as Dog Day is “1, one” sounds like “wan”, Japanese for “woof”; therefore, November 11th (11/1) can be pronounced as “wan, wan, wan”.

“2, two” can be pronounced as “ni” in Japanese language and they chose February 22nd (2/22) for Cat Day because of its similarity in pronunciation to “nyan, nyan, nyan (meow, meow, meow)”.

Following this concept, any of January 1st (1/1), January 11th (1/11) and November 11th (11/11) also meets the conditions; however, the association said that no one knew a clear reason but probably January is a busy New Year month and too close to Cat Day; therefore, November was chosen.

They did not choose November 11th (four 1s) but November 1st (three 1s) probably because Cat Day is February 2nd (three 2s).

In Japan, dogs were kept outdoors and many of them were mixed Japanese breeds some decades ago; however, more and more dogs recently have been kept indoors; therefore, small dog breeds have been more popular than big ones.

The top 10 popular dogs regularly ranked are Toy Poodles, Chihuahuas, Miniature Dachshunds, Miniature Schnauzers, Yorkshire Terrier and Mame-Shiba (Miniature Shiba Inu).

Japan is a developed country but is still a developing country with regard to pets such as pet shops where dogs are easily bought and sold.

Unfortunately, many stray dogs are brought to public health care centers, and if they do not find foster home volunteers or appropriate adopters, sadly they are euthanized.

“戌の日(inu-no-hi, the Day of the Dog)” and “犬の日(inu-no-hi, Dog Day)” are homophonous words in Japanese and both “inu” mean “dog”; however, the meaning of each day is totally different.

In Japan, there is a traditional calendar which was introduced into Japan from China more than 1500 years ago: 12 kinds of animals called Junishi, the twelve animal signs of the Japanese zodiac, are assigned to each year, month and day.

The animals are the followings: Ne (Rat), Ushi (Ox), Tora (Tiger), U (Rabbit), Tatsu (Dragon), Mi (Snake), Uma (Horse), Hitsuji (Sheep), Saru (Monkey), Tori (Chicken), Inu (Dog), and I (Wild Boar).

“Inu-no-hi” comes around every 12 days just as the others do.

Dogs are considered to be a symbol of safe delivery because they are prolific breeding animals and have relatively easy deliveries

Therefore, many expectant mothers usually go to temples or shrines to pray for their safe deliveries on Inu-no-hi in their 5th month of pregnancy, namely the golden period.

In the US, “National Dog Day” on August 26th celebrates dogs, and various events are held such as dog shows, dog adoption events and demonstrations by guide dogs, search dogs and police dogs.

People in the US also celebrate “National Spoil Your Dog Day” on August 10th though most of them maybe spoil their dogs every day.

In the US and the UK, they have “Bring / Take Your Dog to Work Day”.

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