In loving memory of Doge

Global meme icon Kabosu passes away

At a glance

  • Kabosu will forever be remembered as the Internet’s favorite doge.

MUCH LOVE, VERY WOW Kabosu gained popularity as being the face of the Doge meme

Kabosu, better known worldwide as the iconic Doge meme has passed away at the age of 18. It was revealed by her owner, Atsuko Sato, through a statement on Instagram. “To all of you who loved Kabosu, on the morning of the 24 May, Kabosu crossed the rainbow bridge. Thank you all so much for your support over the years,” posted Sato. Kabosu had already been fighting through leukemia and liver disease over the past year. Here are a few things to remember the beloved Japanese shiba inu by.

Kabosu was adopted from an animal shelter by Sato, a kindergarten teacher, back in 2008 after the puppy mill she came from shut down. Sato thought of the name from a popular Japanese citrus fruit of the same name as she felt the dog’s face was similar to how round the fruit is. Kabosu first went viral on the blogging site Tumblr after one account posted an edited photo taken from Sato’s personal blog. Comic Sans font was placed over the original photo Sato took and was shared around by Tumblr users. This would later be used as the go-to format for creating different memes by other users. Kabosu’s image would be surrounded by text portraying her inner thoughts. Online users referred to her as “Doge,” possibly serving as an homage to the popular webcomic Homestar Runner where the term can be traced back.

QUITE TASTY, HECK TON OF FUN A special cake was also prepared for Kabosu during the unveiling of her statue

Eventually, the Doge meme started to spread outside the Internet. In 2013, software engineers Bill Marcus and Jackson Palmer created the cryptocurrency Dogecoin. Through a number of publicity stunts, Dogecoin slowly crept its way into the crypto market. Elon Musk, the CEO of X (formerly Twitter) has tweeted countless times about his fondness for the cryptocurrency. As of writing, one Dogecoin is equivalent to ₱9.49. Dogecoin isn’t the only popular cryptocurrency centered around Kabosu. During the height of the non-fungible token (NFT) market in 2021, a user once purchased a Doge–themed NFT for over $4 million (₱232 million) worth of Ethereum cryptocurrency.

SUPER PROUD, VERY ALIKE Balltze, a fellow shiba inu, followed suit by becoming the face of the Cheems meme

In recent years, other meme variations of Doge started to spread online. One of the most notable ones was Cheems, derived from another shiba inu named Balltze, who was characterized to have a speech impediment. Sadly, Balltze also passed away last year in August after also succumbing to cancer.

FOREVER IMMORTALIZED A monument dedicated to Kabosu was put up in Sakura last year

For those of you willing to make the trip, you can even visit a monument dedicated to the beloved dog. It’s located in Sakura City’s Sakura Furusato Hiroba riverside park. There, you’ll find a bronze statue of Kabosu sitting on a stone sofa and surrounded by a trio of bronze felines.

Kabosu will forever be remembered as the Internet’s favorite doge. Rest in peace, Kabosu!