Tyson, an Alaskan Malamute, is probably the biggest dog in Richmond. The giant three-year-old pooch weighs in at a whopping 150 pounds and a body length of 1.6 metres — not including his equally long tail.
Currently, this big guy is living in Richmond, and owned by Loki Cheung and Nyx Li together, who are both students here. But despite his huge size, his temper is mild. In fact, he tends to be very submissive to other dogs and people.
“When he first arrived, he was only 28 pounds, and we never thought he could grow this big,” said Loki Cheung. “We heard his dad weighed 150 pounds, but we had no idea what 150 pounds means for a dog.”
Cheung says that Tyson consumes more than 3 pounds of raw meat a day, plus an extra bowl of dog food and junk food. “Before, he was only eating dog food, but regular dog food contains too much fibre and would make him poop five to six times a day,” said Cheung. “His stool would totally fill up three poop bags. Other people in the dog park would laugh when they saw us collecting all the poop on the ground.”
Having such a large dog has also led to some bizarre events at home, such as the time a guest fell through a cavernous hole in the couch. “We then turned the sofa upside down, and found a huge hollow cavern there, with a big hole cut from the back of the sofa,” said Cheung. “It turned out that Tyson had been secretly playing with his friend, the sofa, for a year.”
Because of his large size, Tyson must exercise for a minimum of two hours a day. Without adequate exercise, he will lie on the floor and not eat, looking as if he is depressed. That means he’ll have visits to the dog park, along with swimming at the beach at least three times a week.
“We are students here and our parents are in other countries,” said Cheung. “Though it takes us a lot of time to take good care of Tyson, in general, we feel happier to have his companionship.”
Though raising Tyson is a lot of fun, Cheung and his girlfriend sometimes feel overwhelmed with the public’s enthusiasm towards this big guy.