(犬塚一族, Inuzuka Ichizoku)
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The Inuzuka clan (犬塚一族, Inuzuka Ichizoku) or Inuzuka family (犬塚家, Inuzuka-ke) is a family of shinobi in Konohagakure known for their use of ninken as fighting companions and are easily identified by the distinctive red fang markings on their cheeks.
The members are given their own canine partner(s) when they reach a certain age. Thereafter, the shinobi and their dog(s) are practically inseparable. The shinobi and canine allies fight using collaboration jutsu, such as the Fang Passing Fang or Fang Rotating Fang techniques amongst others, that take advantage of their teamwork and their sharp claws and teeth. The clan members are also able to communicate with canines even if unlike Kuromaru, the dogs cannot talk. The members of this clan, much like their canine partners, have greatly enhanced senses especially the sense of smell. By concentrating chakra to their noses, this sense is amplified to an even greater extent allowing the user to be able to detect, track and monitor targets from fairly long distance away. The clan's fighting style primarily revolves around their enhanced speed, strength and agility granted by the Four Legs Technique and other canine-based attacks, in conjunction with the tactical advantages granted by their heightened senses.
Other Notable Clan Members
- During A and Killer B's flashback, an Inuzuka and his ninken partner were seen alongside Minato when they faced the Kumo-nin.
- Another Inuzuka clan member with a scar on his left cheek is seen in Shippūden episode 261.
- The name "Inuzuka" (犬塚; Literally meaning "Hill of Dogs"), belongs to a clan which was one of the most powerful in the Chiba Prefecture in Japan during the Edo period. They were known as "dog warriors" and worshipped Inu ("Dog"), a deity representing the zodiac sign of the dog. The name "Inuzuka" also originates from the Nansō Satomi Hakkenden, a 19th-century series of novels about a group of samurai brothers who each embodied the eight fundamental principles of Buddhism.
- The known Inuzuka members are all named after a part of the body of a dog (fang, nose and claw), while their dogs are named after colours (red, grey and black).
- Kiba notes that his mother, Tsume, scared his father away. It is currently unknown what this father's involvement with the clan was.
- The facial markings of the Inuzuka clan members are similar to the facial markings on San's cheeks, from the Miyazaki film, Princess Mononoke.
- All known members of this clan have a near feral appearance except for Hana.