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Farewell ceremony held for beloved late police dog 'Kinako'

Trainers at Marugame Dog School and offspring of the dog Kinako watch as Kinako's coffin is carried at a ceremony in Marugame, Kagawa Prefecture, on March 23, 2017. (Mainichi)

MARUGAME, Kagawa -- People gathered to mourn the passing of the former police dog Kinako, who died of old age on March 20, at a funeral hall here on March 23.

The organizers say they were allowed to use the hall as a special favor from a funeral company. Around 60 people from both within and without the prefecture gathered to say goodbye to the beloved dog.

Kinako was a female Labrador retriever, and died at age 14 and 10 months. For six years in a row she failed a police dog test, but the sight of the determined canine won people's hearts, and she was widely shown on television and even in a movie.

At the farewell ceremony, Chisa Kawanishi, 33, a trainer at Marugame Dog School where Kinako grew up, said tearfully, "Kinako cheered me up with her smile. We can't meet each other anymore, but I won't forget the days we spent together."

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