Current Affairs

Viral video of blind man in Japan kicking his guide dog sparks online outrage


A viral video of a blind man kicking his guide dog on the platform of a train station in Japan has sparked widespread outrage on Japanese social media.

It has since garnered over 614,000 views, and had more than 4,200 shares on Facebook alone, and was picked up by Chinese, Taiwanese and Hong Kong media platforms.

Kick captured on film

The incident happened on Oct. 8, at a train station in Saitama prefecture.

The guide dog was stationary when the blind man gave it a swift kick at its head. It was the man’s cue for the dog to start walking and lead him across the platform.

According to the onlooker who uploaded the video, he had already observed the man mistreating the guide dog, before deciding to film the man with his phone.

Anger and disbelief

Many netizens reacted with anger and disbelief at the mistreatment of the guide dog.

Translation: From the way the dog recoiled and cowered when the man lifted his leg, it seems like the man kicks his guide dog on a regular basis. Please don’t give a guide dog to this man ever again.

Translation: There’s no room for pity or forgiveness for the guy even if he’s a disabled person.

Blind man banned from owning guide dogs

Amidst media coverage and public backlash that included an online petition that gathered over 12,000 signatures supporting the tightening of  regulations to prevent abuse of guide-dogs, the blind man had his taken away from him.

It has been placed under the care of Rescue Japanese Animal Victims, was captured on film unharmed and happy, putting many netizens and dog lovers’ hearts at ease.

The Japan Guide Dog Association has since said that the man will not be granted another guide dog for life.

Guide dogs in Japan

The first guide dog for the blind in Asia was trained in Japan back in 1957.

According to official data, there are currently 1000 guide dogs in Japan, the most in Asia.

The Japan Guide Dog Association is funded mostly by public donations. Any certified blind person in Japan can apply to have a guide dog as long as he or she is 18 or above.

You can watch the video captured by the netizen here.

Top image via Youtube.

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