Photos of Tanuki, Rare Japanese Species That Resembles Raccoon, Surface Online

January 26, 2016 Updated: June 5, 2017
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A Japanese canine species that resembles the raccoon is capturing attention across the Internet.

Photos of a tanuki, a rare animal popular in Japanese folktales, surfaced online recently and have since gone viral.

The tanuki in question is named Tanu, and his adventures are documented on his owner’s Twitter feed.


Apparently the owner found Tanu abandoned and took him in.

The species is so fascinating because they look more like raccoons than dogs. In Japanese art and folklore, the tanuki is often portrayed as a mischievous shape-shifter.

Twitter user chibi_tori told BuzzFeed that Tanu enjoys sleeping and eating all kinds of food, and also loves to warm up near the stove.