Digital Life is Eternal! Doge Meme Shiba Inu Passes Away, Vitalik Buterin Expresses Condolences

SuperEx
4 min readMay 31, 2024

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With her front legs crossed, a tilted cute face, and a pair of determined eyes… This is the global meme star “Doge.” On May 24th, the real-life Shiba Inu behind the meme, Kabosu, passed away at the age of 19, with her owner by her side.

For many cryptocurrency enthusiasts, the name “Kabosu” might not ring a bell, but Dogecoin certainly does.

**The Origin of Doge**

Kabosu was born in 2005 at a purebred dog breeding facility. Shortly after her birth, the facility went bankrupt, and Kabosu, along with other dogs, was sent to various animal shelters, becoming a true stray puppy.

In 2008, Atsuko Sato, a kindergarten teacher, met Kabosu and decided to adopt her. This encounter changed both their lives and influenced countless others around the world.

In 2010, Atsuko uploaded a photo of Kabosu with a disdainful and proud look, which immediately went viral. Internet users turned her expression into various memes, and thus “Doge” was born.

Thanks to her cute appearance and cheeky expressions, Kabosu became a beloved internet celebrity.

**The Rise of Dogecoin: A Cryptocurrency Phenomenon**

On February 13, 2010, Atsuko Sato posted a series of Kabosu’s photos on her blog. One photo, showing Kabosu leaning on a sofa with crossed front paws, a sideways glance, and raised eyebrows, quickly went viral on American social networks like Reddit and Tumblr and ended up on the ShibaConfessions blog.

The “Shiba Inu joke” (known as the Doge Meme) began to spread widely on social media platforms like Facebook and Tumblr, with a surge in searches on major search engines in Europe and America.

In December 2013, American programmer Billy Markus and Australian marketer Jackson Palmer created the cryptocurrency “Dogecoin,” inspired by Bitcoin, and used Kabosu’s image as its logo.

Initially, Dogecoin was meant to satirize the speculative frenzy around Bitcoin. However, during the 2021 bull market, its value soared to a peak of $0.7316 per coin. Following this rise, Dogecoin became popular for tipping on social networks. Elon Musk further boosted its popularity by announcing plans to take Dogecoin to the moon on April Fool’s Day and calling himself the “Dogefather,” driving Dogecoin’s meteoric rise.

According to Coingecko, Dogecoin’s market value reached $75 billion during the 2021 bull market, placing it among the top three cryptocurrencies by market capitalization.

Accompanied by its iconic meme, Dogecoin successfully brought cryptocurrencies into the mainstream, sparking a MEME coin craze that led to the creation of many animal-themed coins, including Shiba Inu Coin (SHIB) and Floki Coin (FLOKI). The market value of Shiba Inu Coin increased by 70,000 times within a year in 2021.

**Kabosu’s Passing, but the Meme Craze Continues with PEPE Rising Over 1100% This Year**

Last April, PEPE was launched with the vision of replacing DOGE, with a maximum token supply of 420.69 trillion.

Data shows that PEPE has surged over 100% this month and over 1100% year-to-date, climbing to the position of the third-largest memecoin with a market value of $6.2 billion.

Like Doge, PEPE is one of the most famous memes on the internet. Its rise can be traced back to its cultural significance. Recently, with Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s efforts to align with the cryptocurrency community through specific events and policy promises, the PEPE team, which has clear connections to MAGA culture, saw a market push. They aimed to turn this development into a narrative driving token growth.

With its recent surge, PEPE has climbed to the top of the memecoin hierarchy, currently boasting a market value of over $6 billion.

Memecoins like Doge, which initially started as a joke, have evolved into significant cryptocurrencies. The recent growth of PEPE further proves the strong influence of memecoins in the current cycle and the continued strength of ETH-based assets.

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