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Japanese kindergarten teacher Atsuko Sato rescued Kabosu the Shiba Inu when he was a puppy, and posted photos online that found their way into the 'Doge' memes that inspired Dogecoin. Even in old age, the dog would come with her every day to delight students in her class in Narita, east of Tokyo.PHILIP FONG/AFP via Getty Images

Kabosu, the Japanese dog that became a global meme and the face of alternative cryptocurrency Dogecoin has died at 18, her owner announced in a blog post on Friday.

The Japanese Shiba Inu passed away while sleeping, her owner Atsuko Sato wrote.

Kabosu became recognizable as the face of Dogecoin, an alternative cryptocurrency that began as a satirical critique of the 2013 crypto frenzy.

But the token jumped in value after Tesla boss Elon Musk, a proponent of cryptocurrencies, began tweeting about it in 2020. Since then the billionaire has repeatedly promoted the coin.

Dogecoin added as much as $4 billion to its market value last year when the billionaire, who bought social media site Twitter in 2022, briefly replaced Twitter’s blue bird logo with an image of Kabosu. Musk subsequently renamed Twitter X.

With a market capitalization of around $23.6 billion, Dogecoin is now the ninth biggest cryptocurrency, according to data site “The impact this one dog has made across the world is immeasurable,” Dogecoin posted on social media site X on Friday.

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