Kikome is a 5-month-old black chow chow, an ancient breed of dog that originated in China. She came from a Tokyo pet shop but her owner gave her up in two weeks because it seemed (surprise) that the young Kikome was not happy about being left home alone for hours on end. Chows need long walks and, even more so, respect. They need to have it and they need to feel it.

Kikome is stoic, clever and very trainable, but she does have an aggressive side due to the lack of socialization, consistency and stimulation she suffered in her first months. She's learning quickly, though, and loves attention and seeks approval. Kikome still struggles to control her bossiness, but with the right person — one who respects the breed — she'll be a "loyal companion and a charming, bright button of a dog."

If you are interested in adopting Kikome, email ARK at [email protected] or call 050-1557-2763 Monday to Saturday (bilingual) for more info. Tokyo ARK is an NPO founded by Briton Elizabeth Oliver. It is dedicated to rescuing and rehoming abandoned animals. All animals are vaccinated, neutered and microchipped. Prospective owners are requested to undergo a screening process. Web: