By Zhao Wei, Sina English
Perhaps, the Japanese politician are well aware of the fact that for "tough man" Putin, the gift of an Akita puppy might touch his "soft spot", thus lubricating negotiations between the two countries amid a long-standing islands dispute.
The Akita prefectural government on Monday unveiled to the press an Akita puppy, which will be given as a gift later this month to Russian President Vladimir Putin. The Akita puppy is the third dog of the kind to have been officially presented by Japan to an international personality.
The red-haired female puppy named "Yume" (meaning dream) will be delivered to Putin by Sunday following Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihiko Noda's offer during their meeting in Los Cabos, Mexico, in June on the sidelines of the Group of 20 summits.
Putin currently has a Labrador named Koni and a Bulgarian shepherd named Baffi, which was given to him by his Bulgarian counterpart Boiko Borisov in November 2010.
Japan's puppy offer this time may also be based on diplomatic reciprocity. The two countries recently agreed to resume talks to resolve a longstanding dispute over the Kuril Islands, controlled by Russia, but claimed also by Japan, which calls them the Northern Territory.