The Quick Report

Man Who Spent a Year Living as a Dog Now Wants to be a Different Animal

A Japanese man spent $14K on an incredibly realistic collie costume to fulfill his “dream of becoming an animal.” But after spending nearly a year as a dog, the man now wants to try living as a different animal. Maybe living as a dog turned out to be too ruff?

Man spends $14K on a realistic collie costume to fulfill dream of living as an animal

We’re not sure if you heard, but a Japanese man announced on YouTube video back in June 2022 that he wanted to fulfill his lifelong dream of being an animal. 

The man, now known as Toco the Human Collie, told the media that he “had a vague dream of becoming an animal” since childhood.

Last year, a psychologist interviewed by The New York Post referred to Toco as a “therian.” The term refers to someone who identifies as a specific nonhuman animal. A therian can also describe a person who, on some level, believes they are an animal in a human body.

Toco told a Japanese news outlet that “quadrupedal animals” are his favorite. He told an Indian news outlet that he believed a dog would be a good fit for him “considering that it would be a realistic model.”

Toco hired Zeppet to create a custom-made collie suit. According to Zeppet, the costume took about 40 days to create. He told the media he spent roughly $14,000 on the incredibly lifelike collie costume. 

Toco the Human Collie steps out in public

Toco’s story went viral again in the summer of 2023 when he stepped out in public for the first time wearing the costume.

“I made it a collie because it looks real when I put it on,” Toco told the media.

Later, Toco confessed that he felt both “nervous” and “scared” before wearing the costume in public for the first time.

Naturally, people online have thoughts. Some called it “disturbing,” while others called it “bizarre.” 

“This is my hobby, so I will carry on,” Toco said regarding the negative comments. “It makes me happy and other people happy too.”

“Rather than being tough or physically uncomfortable, the feelings of excitement and fun I receive from this experience are stronger,” Toco told the New York Post during an interview in September 2023. “I’ve wanted to be an animal ever since I can remember.”

But now he wants to be a different animal

Toco the Human Collie may have to change his moniker. Toco was recently interviewed by a Japanese news outlet and made a major life announcement. After spending a year living as a dog, he now says he wishes to live as a different animal.

Toco acknowledged that just the motor requirements of maneuvering and ambulating like a dog are physically challenging.

“Dogs and humans have different bone structures and the way they bend their legs and arms,” Toco said, “so it’s very difficult to make movements that look like this.”

“I might realistically be able to become another dog, a panda or a bear,” Toco continued. “A fox or a cat would also be nice, but they are too small for humans to try.”

“I’d like to fulfill my dream of becoming another animal someday,” Toco added.

As of now, it is unclear which animal Toco will choose when he changes his quadrupedal identity. Choosing a large animal with bipedal habits that can occasionally walk on its hind legs might be less taxing on Toco’s body. His obvious choices would be a bear, a kangaroo, or a gorilla. Although large, an emu or an ostrich would probably be too much of a stretch (pun intended).

Toco has around 64,800 YouTube subscribers who are undoubtedly waiting with bated breath to find out which animal he will choose next.