The Japanese word for wolf is ōkami (traditional Japanese) and urufu (English loanword). Below is a list of wolf-related words and their Japanese translations.
|Wolf (English loanword)|
|Pack of wolves|
|Ōkami no mure||狼の群れ|
Interesting facts about wolves in Japan
In the Shinto religion, the wolf (ōkami) is regarded as a messenger of the kami spirits and provides protection for crops against wild boars and deer. The mountains of Japan, known to be dangerous places, are closely associated with the wolf, which is believed to be their guardian and protector. In Japanese mythology, wild animals such as wolves, are connected to the mountain spirit Yama-no-kami.
Two subspecies of the gray wolf – the Honshū and Hokkaido wolf – used to live in Japan. Despite these wolves being highly respected in Japan, their population was greatly affected by the introduction of a complete rabies eradication policy and a loss of habitat. This policy, which was implemented during the Meiji Restoration period, eventually led to their extinction in the early 20th century.