Dogs are big business in Japan. Pet ownership is growing over recent years while some canines reach legendary status. Hachiko, the faithful hound immortalized as a statue outside Shibuya station, is world famous, while another Akita dog, Wasao, was famous as the tourism mascot of his hometown, Aomori. Although puppers can certainly get into trouble, they are perennially beloved in the land of the rising sun.

And for a good reason. As noted before, dogs are particularly expressive. Many like artist Eiji Tamura have leveraged this fact to their benefit. Eiji focuses on capturing the expression of dogs using a style inspired by street art. His pieces are colorful, and deservedly popular. As a matter of fact, the artist just concluded an exhibition in Tokyo.

A little privacy

Indeed, dogs can be just as expressive as their human counterparts. However, there is one look that seems to be universally understood across the animal kingdom—and, ahem, it’s associated with a situation that is far too awkward to paint and post in an exhibit.

Recently, manga artist Yu Ishihara (@K5dbZRmjNe77i5r) touched on the issue in a lighthearted way. After some serious asking around, he seems to have determined exactly why his dog looks at him every time he--well, just see for yourself:

Reproduced with permission from Yu Ishihara (@K5dbZRmjNe77i5r)

Reproduced with permission from Yu Ishihara (@K5dbZRmjNe77i5r)

Yup, it’s hard to know exactly what to say. Every dog owner is guilty of it. But why would an owner stand around just watching—well, anyway…

Readers of the post commented:

  • “Is there a reason for his melodramatic expression?”
  • “I thought that expression meant ‘What are you looking at? This is difficult.’ I learned something.”
  • “I didn’t know this. Still, his expression seems somewhat irritated.”

Indeed, it seems like we all learned something today.

Regardless, if you liked this post you can find more like it on Yu's Twitter page. Enjoy!

By - Luke Mahoney.