We have a particular connection with our four-legged friends, and whether we have a dog or a cat, we want to do everything possible to keep them safe and make their lives as enjoyable as possible.
The easiest and best way to do this is to ensure that you register your pet’s microchip within the first few months you have them, which alongside regular vet appointments will ensure you are on the right track with taking care of them.
However, for people who are uncertain if they are ready for the responsibility of taking care of pets, an unusual way to find out was found in early 2000s arcades.
Inu no Osanpo, literally known as Walk the Dog, was a 2000 video game by Sega designed for arcades that gave players a full-body experience of having a dog and walking them through several different types of routes from dog food runs, walks to a field to play frisbee or walking home through a city.
It was controlled in a very odd way, using a treadmill and a leash that was attached to a plastic dog in front of the player, with the aim to keep the dog happy by walking at their pace and avoiding potential hazards such as rubbish and rotten food.
Walking too slowly can upset it and cause it to tug at the leash, but walking too quickly can drag the dog along. Both issues can upset the dog’s mood meter, which will lead to the game ending if it falls down to zero.
The game had a bonus stage where you chased a cat, which only compounded the sheer strangeness of the experience, which may explain why the game did not leave its native Japan, unlike the similarly themed game Nintendogs.
This is somewhat of a shame, as no game exists quite like Walk the Dog, and it is unlikely that a similar game will ever be made again.