What better way to usher in a new year in Japan than with a cute collection of dogs in kimono?

During the first few days of the New Year, old traditions come to the fore in Japan, with many people choosing to dress in formal wear for hatsumode, the first shrine visit of the year. Now the nation’s dog population can join in the festivities with their own range of specially designed kimonos! 


From big dogs to small dogs, fluffy dogs to bulldogs, there’s a traditional outfit to suit any four-legged companion, whether they’re simply relaxing at home or out paying their respects at the local shrine.

▼ A formal occasion calls for a special outfit and this sweet dog looks absolutely adorable!

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▼ This resplendant pup guards against the chill with a posh faux fur collar.

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▼ Bulldogs show how it’s done, stepping out confidently in traditional dress.

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Indoors, kimono-clad dogs are often surrounded by traditional New Year decorations. The beauty below appears with a couple of hagoita paddles (right), which are used to play the New Year’s game hanetsuki, a kagami mochi (mirror rice cake), and a kumade (bamboo rake), which is said to “rake” in happiness and money for the coming year.

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▼ This couple poses for a photo in the year of the snake, with a traditional kadomatsu pine decoration behind them.

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▼ These two are pretty enough to be ornaments themselves!


▼ Dogs in kimono make for excellent nengajo New Year cards to send to friends and family.

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And when it comes to the traditional osechi New Year’s meal, lucky dogs can enjoy their very own version, filled with treats designed to bring fortune and happiness in the coming year.

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▼ Some dogs actually look a little human when they’re dressed up in formal finery.

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▼ But any breed of pup looks adorable in traditional Japanese dress!

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Dog1Image: Yuria

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▼ Getting dressed up for a celebration is always much more fun when you have a friend or two to do it with!

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▼ Thank you, kimono dogs. When it comes to celebrating, you know how to bring the cute to the party!

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If you enjoyed this journey into the world of kimono dogs, you might like to see what Japan’s kimono cats have been up to. It’s a whole other world of cute!

Top Image: Coco&Tiara&Bambi