Lucy - The Taiwan Tu Gou Dog I rescued
I used to run an English school in Taiwan, and one day, when I went to work, there was a new dog sitting by the door of the school. A black Taiwanese Tu Gou, or aboriginal dog.
I had dogs when I was a child in England, but never since, so it was easy to make friends with her. An old woman nearby fed all the local stray dogs and cats - of which there were many.
So I didn't worry about her too much. Some people in Taiwan sort of unofficially adopt dogs or cats, and these animals are looked after by more than one person. These are "outside" pets, and sleep on the street.
This dog, who was about 18 months old at the time, was one of these. I made friends with her, and sometimes gave her and her companions food.
One day I heard loud cries from outside. Two men had wire around her neck and were dragging her across the street. The dog catchers threw her into a truck and drove off.
It took me a few days to decide to adopt her, and five more to locate her on a compound outside of Taipei City. She shared a cage with about 50 other dogs, and was due to be killed the following day. She recognized me immediately and ran to me.
Taking in a stray dog is difficult at first. Lucy was affectionate, but tried to bite me when I patted her back. I'm sure the person who abandoned her used to beat her. Eventually she learnt to trust me, and after about 8 or 9 months she also learnt how to play.
Because of her I also learnt a lot of dog related Chinese, and how to argue with people who tried to stop me walking down "their" street with a dog. I also, of course, made friends.
When I left Taiwan I was no longer able to look after Lucy. I flew her to France, where she now lives with my father. Lucy is now an old dog of about 13 yeas, and she spends most of her time relaxing in the French countryside.