Since he was a child, a Japanese man has always dreamed of becoming an animal, such as dogs, cats, among others. When he grew up years later, he saved up enough money to purchase an animal costume. In 2022, he reached out to The Puppet Outfit Company and spent around US$14,000.00 for a Border Collie shepherd dog costume. After getting into the costume for the first time, he shared photos of him on the internet, which have since gone viral and attracted the attention of people around the world.
Recently, he has taken a step into going public for the first time. Alongside a person who acted as his dog owner, he went for a walk in a park full of people. A foreign media who went to Japan to witness him firsthand captured a video clip and recorded reactions of passersby and people walking their pets on the person in a dog costume.
In April 2022, the counterfeit dog named TOCO shared a video on YouTube entitled “Becoming a Shepherd Dog”, which instantly attracted the attention of various media locally and abroad. He immediately became popular on the internet. Later, TOCO shared more videos of him in his Collie costume, most of them shot inside his home and outdoors, not far from his house. One day, he finally made a breakthrough. A TV station from Germany traveled to Japan to interview him. During the interview, they agreed to let a German reporter stand in as the owner of TOCO while they take a walk together in a park full of people for the first time. This would also be the first time for TOCO to come out in public wearing his Collie costume in hopes to capture the reactions of passersby and some furbabies.
In the video captured by the foreign TV station, many people were attracted to TOCO and were quite surprised by the realistic representation of the costume. The resemblance was astonishing. Hilariously, some passersby did not realize that TOCO was a man in a Collie costume at first.
The park was also filled with pet owners who took their furbabies for a walk in the park where TOCO was hanging out. Most of the dogs’ reactions were a mixture of fear and confusion. However, one puppy seemed to be attracted by his appearance as he approached, but the next second, he suddenly felt frightened and bounced away from TOCO. Later in the video, some more dogs were seen reluctant to approach TOCO, keeping their distance and not daring to come near him abruptly.
As soon as the video was shared on various social media platforms, netizens were quick to react and comment:
“Even a dog knows something is wrong.”
“Imagine a dog waving at you like a human…”
“I have to say. This costume is well-made. Sophisticated, amazing facial features.”
“Dogs are not easily fooled. They trust their sense of smell, but they must be frightened.”
“They probably smell a person but find that the person in front of them is a dog.”
“Real dogs will doubt a fake dog.”