Moskov the Chummy Chow Chow

Animal Scene - - ANIMAL PERSON - Text and il­lus­tra­tion by NOR­MAN B. ISAAC

Iwant to prove to other pet own­ers that Chow Chows are not ag­gres­sive but very friendly,” Carla Euse­bio stresses as she and her eight-month old Chow Chow named Moskov. Carla, 22-year old col­lege grad­u­ate with a de­gree in Con­sular and Diplo­matic Affairs, is one of the scores of pet own­ers at­tend­ing the Pet Party at SM Ba­coor. “On the con­trary, to­tal strangers can touch Moskov or hold it even though it doesn’t know them,” ! ! "cud­dles the friendly cream-col­ored Chow Chow, be­ly­ing its scowl­ing ex­pres­sion with its deep set al­mond-shaped eyes.

“{It just looks like a] bad dog… that’s the mis­con­cep­tion,” Carla sighs. It is said that Chow Chow is orig­i­nally from north­ern China. Ag­gres­sion is the big­gest is­sue of Chow Chows, though it is a prob­lem that can be avoided. Chows are nat­u­rally ag­gres­sive to­ward dogs of the same sex. They are im­pa­tient dogs, and don’t like to be teased or treated harshly; how­ever, a chow will be lov­ing and re­spect­ful in re­turn if treated the same way, as what Carla and Moskov prove. An an­i­mal lover Carla has had a bea­gle named Bella, guinea pigs, rab­bits, and love­birds. “I’m not into cats. [They scratch]! (laughs) I ac­quired Moskov through a news­pa­per ! " $ % think. I wanted a new dog worth R 10,000 to re­place my Siberian Husky named King, which had a puz­zling death. A neigh­bor bor­rowed it for stud pur­pose and af­ter two weeks he had bloody stool and died of di­ar­rhea. My neigh­bor ! & re­counts. The ar­rival of Moskov less­ened Carla’s grief af­ter the un­timely death of King. As a pup, ' * + ! check­ing its ag­gres­sive be­hav­ior go­ing to adult­hood. “Moskov is the baby of the fam­ily. It sleeps in our air-con­di­tioned bed­room, mindful of its thick coat. It wears [a] baby di­a­per every night,” she laughs. “One chal­lenge for me is to potty train it. Kitchen is its fa­vorite spot. Moskov has its fa­vorite white towel, its se­cu­rity blan­ket of [sorts],” she adds. Chows are ex­cep­tion­ally easy to house train, and many Chow own­ers say that even as puppies, their dogs never have “ac­ci­dents” in the house. “Moskov loves to play ball. My play­ful pet is a stress re­liever. Af­ter a hard day’s / + en­thu­si­as­tic greet­ing erases the fa­tigue,” she says. “Some­times it sleeps with my younger brother.” True enough, Chow Chows tend to at­tach deeply to one or two mem­bers of the fam­ily. “But Moskov is afraid of my mom. She yells when­ever it becomes un­ruly. [And it is]!” “It’s easy to main­tain Moskov. On the aver­age, I spend 500 for its food. We visit the vet every 3 months. Yes, it has com­plete vac­ci­na­tions. It loves pizza, chicken, but no choco­lates,” she warns. Which brings to mind the anec­dote of a fa­mous Chow Chow owner — US Navy Ad­mi­ral George Dewey, who got a Chow Chow in Hong Kong in 1898 and named it Bob. Bob rarely left the ad­mi­ral’s side and had the run of the cruiser USS Olympia. Bob died in 1899 af­ter eat­ing choco­lates given to Dewey by well­wish­ers upon Olympia’s ar­rival in New York City. The boom­ing voice of the Pet Party em­cee, the loud mu­sic, and the bark­ing of ! area. The party be­gins as I take a cou­ple of shots of Carla and her chummy Chow Chow Moskov. Its un­usual blue tongue is stick­ing out — an an­cient dog breed and an anachro­nism in a hot, hu­mid coun­try.

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