Kung Hei Fat Choi! Welcome the Year of the Dog!

恭喜发财! Kung Hei Fat Choi! Wishing all my readers a belated Happy New Year (because the Lunar New Year actually began last Friday).

2018 is the Year of the Dog, the 11th of the 12 Chinese zodiac animals. Dogs are loyal, friendly, and kind, and people born in dog years are said to share those traits as well as being honest, easygoing, and helpful to others. Rather than seeking money and power they are more likely to try to make the world a better place. However, people born in a dog year can also be critical, stubborn, and cold at times. They can have trouble communicating and possibly become pessimistic. The strength or absence of these personality traits will depend on the lunar month of the year in which someone is born.

Lucky numbers for those born in a dog year are 3, 4, and 9, and unlucky numbers are 1, 6, and 7. Lucky colors are red, green, and purple, while blue, white, and gold are considered unlucky. Dogs are traditionally compatible with people born in a rabbit year, but not with those born in dragon, goat, or rooster years.

Unfortunately, this year is predicted to be an unlucky one for people born in a dog year because contrary to what you might think, the years that share your birth sign are thought to bring bad luck! If you were born in a dog year it’s recommended that you do everything you can to try to stay calm as well as relaxed as possible throughout the year. One superstition says you can hold off bad luck by wearing red underpants every day!

Industrial projects and developments in energy are predicted to be successful in 2018, while projects or undertakings based on greed will be rejected or fail. Family relationships will be especially important during the year. It’s also a good year to make lifestyle changes but you may also experience short periods of loneliness or sadness. This year has the potential to be one of hope, with differing cultures working to achieve solidarity and rejecting indifference.

Some famous people born during a dog year include Madonna, Steven Spielberg, Bill Clinton, Mother Teresa, Michael Jackson, and Donald Trump.

Chinese Lunar New Year celebrations go on for over two weeks. I was in China for the end of the Lunar New Year in 1999, in Changsha, Hunan Province. I was staying in a big, fancy high-rise hotel with a friend, and had just met and adopted WenYu the day before (Brett had stayed home with Meiling). When the fireworks started, to signal the end of the New Year’s celebrations, we thought war had been declared and the hotel was being shelled. The noise was deafening, literally earth-shaking, and one of the most frightening experiences of my life!


4 thoughts on “Kung Hei Fat Choi! Welcome the Year of the Dog!

  1. So interesting…thanks for sharing. My niece has been teaching ESL in China and is home on her first break. She spent some time on the beach in Thailand and then came to her father’s house where they have feet of snow up north. But she is loving the break.


  2. CNY is still a big deal for the girls, although this year is the first we didn’t give them a lucky red envelope. YaYu did have long noodles for dinner that night, and jio tzu (dumplings), so we did observe the day. Of all the islands, Kaua’i has the smallest Chinese population – there’s really no CNY celebration here to speak of. It’s really big in Honolulu though.

    How exciting for your niece! Where in China is she teaching? I had several chances to teach there, but the jobs were always during the summer when it was HOT, and I don’t handle hot very well. Plus, I never could have gone without taking the girls, but then what would they have done all day while I worked? So, I turned down every offer. No regrets, but it would have been an amazing experience.


    1. She is in Shenzhen, Guangdong. The first few months were a real challenge for her, but she’s really risen to the occasion.

      My strongest memories of CNY were always the closing of all the suppliers when I was still working. We had to plan around it every year so we didn’t miss shipments to our customers. 🙂


      1. Shenzen is a busy place! It was just a fishing village when Brett and I visited Hong Kong in the early 80s. But, location-wise it’s great – easy to get to both Guanzhou and Hong Kong. I can imagine though it would be a challenge working there.

        Back in Portland we attended many CNY celebrations, but nothing here. We can barely get decent Chinese food here.


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