This series was published in the US by a now defunct company called “Gutsoon! Entertainment”, also known as ‘Raijin Graphic Novels’, back in 2004. Only 2 volumes were ever released in English, and boy am I depressed.
It is not surprising this series faded into the abyss since it’s US publication has been terminated, but what I’m most shocked about is that this series has literally no scanlations online. It is impossible to find it anywhere. Sure, you can still buy the manga in Japanese, and the first two volumes in English, but this series has so much to offer and it’s saddening that Bow Wow
Wata is not more well known.
What’s great about this manga is that it’s created by a certified veterinarian who has incorporated her experiences and veterinary practices into this series. Not only is it educational, she also doesn’t sugarcoat real issues of what animals go through and how they sometimes suffer from illnesses and abuse from humans. I can only imagine what the rest of the series is like.
Surprisingly, the characters are really fleshed out in the two volumes that are readily accessible. You have Tasuke, who is the son of a Shinto god, develops the ability to talk to animals just like his father. The Shinto dad is a veterinarian who wants to see Tasuke thrive with his newly developed powers to help animals in need. Even though Tasuke is a grumpy teenager who didn’t want to talk to animals to begin with, you see how he learns from his ignorance and he really takes the time to make up for his mistakes. Then you have Wata, a dog that Tasuke takes in to help out his crush, Misato, who cannot have Wata in her new apartment. The dynamic between Wata and Tasuke is really hilarious, and how they both work together as a team despite their differences really advances the story and character development at a great pace. There is nothing rushed here. The pacing is perfect. Without giving anything away, you learn why Tasuke talks to animals at specific times; I think this piece of the plot is so crucial later on in the story.
Overall, It really bums me out that I’ll never know how this series actually ends.
Bow Wow Wata is 11 volumes long AND there’s a sequel!!! It baffles me that there is no way to read this anywhere online. This is truly an underrated gem that deserves more attention. I feel that if ‘Gutsoon!’ never shut down, ‘Bow Wow Wata’ would never have been neglected to this harsh extreme. This company really did this series dirty. I highly suggest readers to purchase the first two volumes of BWW. Not only will it support the series but it could help bring attention even after all these years. For the love of god and all that’s holy, I really hope another publisher will pick this series up. PLEASE! I BEG someone to translate this series!!