There have been suggestions in the past that Japan’s falling birth rate and the increase in pets are connected. The growing legion of little dogs, it is said, are more than merely companions, they are child substitutes.
Now how true this is it’s hard to say, but there’s no denying that these pooches are generally pampered way more than your average pet. They are continually cooed over, and clothing is practically compulsory, ranging from colourful winter woolies to rather more stuffy school uniforms. The odd one or two even wear wigs.
And as for walkies, well, that could tire the poor tyke out. Much better for master to take care of that.