Update from Chico – Animal Star from Hachi: A Dog’s Tale

Hachi: A Dog’s Tale saw a few talented, monumental dogs play Hachi himself. Chico was one of them. Let’s get a Chico update since he played Hachi.



Birth date:

July 31, 2005


August 4, 2018


Mark Harden


Debra Crespo of Sunrock Akitas

What is your favorite toy or past time?

My favorite pastime is sitting at the bay window upstairs and watching people come and go. My favorite toy is my Busy Buddy Bone.

What was your favorite scene you were in from Hachi: A Dog’s Tale?

Digging under the fence and jumping over it. It just felt good to be physical.

Other than Hachi: A Dog’s Tale, what films or live appearances have you made?

I basically retried after Hachi when I went to live with Mark and his family. I back Layla up sometimes, but she’s the worker.

When you have those funny dreams where you kick and bark in your sleep, what are you dreaming of?

I’m not really a dreamer.  My life has been a dream!

What are you up to these days?

I hang out at home and tolerate the parade of dogs Mark brings home to work. I do my best work when Mark is asking another dog to do a trick that I know.

Update from Mark Harden, Chico’s owner:

If you do the math, you will realize that Chico is already 12 1/2 years old!  The time has gone too fast. Chico lives at our home and is quite content being a house dog. He sleeps late and puts himself to bed when he’s tired.

He loves to drag out his toys and play (by himself) every night when we sit down to dinner. That way he knows we will be less likely to interrupt him by trying to play with him. I work with many different dogs and bring them home to train.

He has been very patient with every one of them. Chico is currently helping me raise a little boxer mix named Murphy.

Chico has had a few medical issues through the years but is currently in tip-top shape. He has his geriatric physical every six months and gets a clean bill of health. Though he is moving a bit slower and his sight and hearing are starting to dim, he still loves his walks to the park and prancing around our cul du sac marking his territory. Once a month or so, I used to take him to the Animals for Hollywood ranch to visit his sister, Layla.

His coat is still beautiful and he his heartwarming smile remains as big and bright as ever.

Announcement of Chico’s Passing

Chico, the last of the three Akitas who together played the part of Hachi, passed away on Saturday morning, August 4, 2018. He joins sister Layla and Forrest over the Rainbow Bridge.

Chico’s awesome presence in Hachi: A Dog’s Tale was breathtaking. Diligent and hardworking, Chico created a perfect Hachiko and graced us with a powerful and moving performance. You can leave your tribute to Chico right here! 


Hands Up if you can relate to:

~ Feeling stuck & frustrated with the daily “sameness” of your life.
~ Struggling to get clear on priorities and your authentic self.
~ Filled with regrets over “the road not taken”.

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