STEPHANIE ANGELES, 30, yoga teacher
CHING CHING, 3, Shih Tzu
Despite being famous with more than 125,000 followers, Ching Ching the Shih Tzu is extremely shy. We paid the furry star a visit at her Thomson home, where she “greeted” us by darting under the table and letting out soft, wary growls. “She’s not usually like this! She’s just scared of strangers,” her paw-rent, Stephanie, says with mild embarrassment.
That said, the diva Ching Ching is a natural in front of the camera. She posed and looked straight into the lens, “smizing” for us with her big, bright eyes. Complementing her peepers is her customised, one-of-a-kind haircut. “It’s a cross between the teddy bear and puppy cut: Her face is perfectly round and trimmed around the eyes so she looks clean, and her body fur is cut to around two inches thick. My husband wanted her to look like a living teddy bear,” explains Stephanie. He has most definitely succeeded.
Why did you decide to create an account just for Ching Ching?
I used to work in the marketing industry, and created an account for Ching Ching as a social media experiment and creative outlet. I wanted to see if I could get at
least 200 followers.
What is the most memorable fan encounter Ching Ching has had?
Once, a follower messaged us because she wanted Ching Ching to be a part of her graduation photo. She shared that Ching Ching helped her get through the
stress of university, and it meant a lot to her to have a photo with Ching Ching. Unfortunately, we could not make it tothe photo shoot, but we did meet her for
brunch and she was delighted! Cheesy as it may sound, it brings me joy that Ching Ching is able to make other people happy. I feel like I am making Ching
Ching’s life more meaningful by virtually sharing her with other people.
What’s a typical day in your lives?
We are just a normal family of three. We wake up in the morning, feed Ching Ching, and play with her before leaving for work. I come back right after I teach yoga and stay at home with her. The photos are taken randomly during the day.
Why do you think Ching Ching’s Instagram account became famous?
I’d like to think the account became popular because it’s funny, entertaining, and most of all, authentic. I don’t look for perfect photos; I look for perfect moments and tell the stories behind them. Both my husband and Ching Ching have very interesting personalities and I just tell the stories as they unfold. Followers enjoy their daily antics.
To read more about Ching Ching and other local pet celebrities (@ekdikisis and @chubby_cary), flip to People and their Pets of our Jun-Jul issue!