Once upon a time in a remote mountain village in Japan there lived an honest old man and his wife. The old man was out plowing his field one day when a little white puppy came fleeing toward him, crying. The puppy had been mistreated by the greedy old man who lived in the next field over. "Oh, you poor thing." exclaimed the old man, and taking him in, gave the puppy the name "Shiro." ("Shiro" in Japanese means white)
The old man and his wife loved Shiro very much. Shiro, in turn, became devoted to the old couple, and helped the old man with his work in the field every day. Shiro ate and ate, and quickly grew into a big dog.