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We already had two strikes this month in our attempts to attend the annual Shiba Inu Picnic (missed due to lost leash) and the NorCal Basenji Fun Day (afternoon events canceled due to extreme heat). I didn’t say much in advance of this year’s Taiwan tugou / Formosan Mountain Dog meetup for fear of jinxing things. However, last Saturday, we were finally able to catch one of the events we had planned for the month — Formosa-pa-looza 2012, organized by the same people who put together last year‘s event.

As usual when we attend meetups, I trotted the Bows around the other side of the park to expend a bit of energy before throwing them into the crowd. Far from the rendezvous point, we encountered a dog that looked like he belonged to the group. Turns out that this beautiful brindle, Cooler, had not come specifically for the meetup, but he was a Taiwan dog rescue.


Just goes to show how prevalent they are around here! You’ll run into these Formosans without even trying.

Cooler and Bowpi

Then as we looped around the other side of the park, we ran into another regular, Asu, whom we know to be a Taiwan rescue. I had mentioned the meetup to Asu’s people earlier, so they knew to be there that day. But apparently Asu was much more eager to playplayplay, and it was harder to do that in the main crowd where sandwiches were distracting would-be wrestling partners.

Three's a crowd

So they sought out more open turf, and Asu lost no time making connections.


Having been forewarned that food was going to be present, I lingered for a while and thought to give the main party a chance to finish up their lunches before we wandered over. I know that Bowdu can be unpredictable in the presence of high value [human] food, to say nothing of all the other personality quirks that come with “primitive” breeds in general. Indeed, once we got to the main group, we witnessed some posturing and canine body language that looked very familiar…

Laser really wants that crumb

Many (though certainly not all) of these Taiwan dog rescues had a stint of life on the streets. No doubt that scrounging, defending one’s space, and resource guarding become deeply ingrained habits that are not easily forgotten.

All better now

Or maybe they’re just dogs being dogs.

Noses to dirt

At least we didn’t encounter any real bad behavior, even when the treats came out.

Laser powers up

23 June 2012 Happy faces

Anyway, it was a pretty sizeable crowd, but widely dispersed, with a broader mix of dogs in comparison to last year’s “typier” representatives. There was plenty of action all around, and I’m happy to have briefly shared the company of some interesting dogs.

23 June 2012 Bambi23 June 2012 Laser advances
Bambi (L), Laser (R)

We recognized this little lady from last year from her distinctive red harness and the shape of her flying ear tips.

Annie runs free

Bowdu was also inspired to go off on a Shiba 500 that lasted about six laps…


… before he finally collapsed in the shade, too tuckered out to follow along during the pack walk.

Resting in the shade

So we broke off from the rest of the pack and headed home.

Pack walk

This won’t be the last we’ve seen of this crew!