Rare “Raccoon” Dog Rescued in Japan Lives in Lap of Luxury!

Tanu is a member of the canid family. That same family also includes dogs, and wolves as well.

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A tanuki, or raccoon dog, is a rare animal indeed.  Recently, a man from Japan rescued one and brought the tanuki into his home.  The photos the man is taking of Tanu are quickly going viral as the world gets a chance to see this rare, beautiful creature.


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Tanu is a member of the canid family.  That same family also includes dogs, and wolves as well.


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Tanu’s rescuer, who goes by the Twitter handle “@chibi_tori,” has been taking tons of photos of Tanu, and is sharing them all over the internet.


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In Japan, tanuki have a special spiritual and artistic significance.  They are also supposed to have magical, shape-shifting too, but once again, only in spiritual tradition.  The adorable little creatures have such a mythos about them there that famed Anime makers Hayao Miyazaki and Isao Takahata made a film called Pom Poko, featuring a pack of tanuki.


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Animal experts do not recommend adopting raccoon dogs.  They are mostly found in eastern Asia, and can sometimes also be found in Western and Eastern Europe.  They may look a bit like a raccoon, but they are 100% canine.  They can get anywhere from eight-13 pounds, and range from 19 to 26 inches long.


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In the wild, they like to eat frogs, lizards, rodents, birds, seeds, fruit and some sea creatures as well.  A lot of them seem to enjoy living by the ocean.  Tanu seems to eat just about anything his rescuer puts in front of him!  Along with his own food bowl, Tanu also has a special heater that is just his size.


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Tanuki are also one of the only canids that goes into “torpor” during cold winters.  It’s similar to hibernation, but when it warms up enough, they will wake up mid-winter to go search for food.


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Tanuki are very rare in the United States.  There aren’t any in the wild, and so far, the zoo in Atlanta, Georgia is the only place on the east coast of the US that Americans could possibly see one “in the fur” so to speak.  However, as long as his human keeps posting cute photos of him, we’ll have plenty to look at thanks to the internet!

50 thoughts on “Rare “Raccoon” Dog Rescued in Japan Lives in Lap of Luxury!

  1. These are the same beautiful critters assholes rip apart alive in most cases for their fur. Just soo fatass ignorant fuckers could look rich and classy in their minds. No you just look like a heartless asshole. BAN FUR!!!!!

  2. Life With Dogs – It is good to see informational posts about all species of animals in the context of educating people, but this article gives very little information about this breed or how it came to be – so I am not so sure sharing these kinds of stories is helpful. The article states these animals are rare in the US – I wonder how long that will hold true as more people become aware that they can be tamed as pets and FB will no doubt help spread the word. We have dogs and cats dying in shelters every minute of every day – and yet people want to adopt exotic animals. Wild animals need to remain wild (or in sanctuaries when necessary).

  3. I this animal is kept captive, how will it find it’s mate or possibly a family that it has in the wild. It should be left out whee it was found. I am sure that more are out there…to make more babies!

  4. We have a pair of raccoons dogs at the zoo where I work. They certainly aren’t rare, they’re actually considered pests in Europe. In the 18th Century they were released from Asia into Russia, the population went crazy & they now displace native species all over Europe.
    Our two (Sumo & Sushi) were both ‘pets’ in the UK who were dumped in the woods after people realised they aren’t good pets at all. They bite, they moult a heavy coat once a year & they really, REALLY smell!! They aren’t domesticated & you don’t want one as a pet, trust me. They can be incredibly vicious & we’ve had to throw bowls & things away after they’ve sprayed them because they smell so bad. Do not let this become a craze!

  5. YouTube has videos of these animals being skinned alive. Their skinless bodies are in piles while they squirm and blink at the photographer. Some are seen wandering around. The people who collect the skins stun them with a club and give no regard to the fact they are still alive while their skins are yanked off their bodies. It is one of the most horrible and vile videos showing the lack of animal rights in China.

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