Flax law, dog care and ISPs


Flax laws

MW, who was trying to find a coppersmith (Lifelines; Nov. 30) writes: “Many thanks for the advice . Although I’ve been in Tokyo since forever, I still managed to neglect to check with the Traditional Craft Center.”

MW wonders if she can now be of some assistance regarding RZ’s search for flax seed, in the same column. She points out that Tengu Natural Foods (Tel: 0429-82-4811; www.alishan-organic-center.com/en/tengu/shop/index.htm ) states the following on their Web site: “Raw Flax Seed can no longer be sold legally in Japan. Flax Seed Oil is still available through Tengu.”

This is correct. A law went through quietly this summer prohibiting its sale in Japan. Apparently the government is concerned about minimal traces of arsenic and cyanide in the seed.

Pet problem

Sid and partner, who live in Tokyo’s Nerima-ku, are considering buying a small dog but will not do so unless they can find a “dog kennel/doggie hotel” that can take care of the animal when we go for a few weeks of vacation to other countries, etc.

“Do you have any information on such dog kennels or people who will watch dogs at their homes? We have considered having the dog stay at our house and having a house sitter, or taking it to relatives in Japan, but neither will work well for us (or them).”

Japan has a flip-flop attitude to animals in general. With Animal Rights a relatively new concept, it is customary for a “guard” dog to be left outside in all weathers, while some fluffy “lapdog” inside is near pampered to death.

Find a good reliable vet and usually that person can recommend good reliable pet hotels, or even dog/house sitters. (This is how my daughter sorts out her animals in Toronto.)

Check with your local City Office to find out what is available in the area.

Talk with the Foreign Residents Advisory Centre in Shinjuku, on (03) 5320- 7744. They’re a valuable source of help and support. In the meantime, maybe some of our dog-owning readers can help with recommendations?


Scott was a bit surprised that I recommended YahooBB as an Internet provider. “Do they have English support now? I don’t see any English on their Web site. I would think you’d give some choices, such as the usual services that have been supporting the English speaking community: GOL on home.gol.com/english/ ; JENS on www.spinnet.jp/indexe.html

Scott has dealt with both and says they have very good customer service.

As I said before, we have had no problems with Yahoo, but, there again, my Significant Computing Other is Japanese. Having said that, YahooBB does have an English Web site. Go to www.bbapply.com/appl.htm and search Apply in English. On “English Yahoo! BB and BB Phone Application Procedures,” you will find price comparisons (with other providers), a support forum, and service details.