A huge thanks to Tatyana, Joy, and Tiffany for donating their sewing services to make these pug themed face masks for Pug Rescue of Korea.

Batch #1: April 22, 2020 by Tatyana Surenyan-Krech Tatyana is a full time English professor at Pasadena City College. She teaches face-to-face and online classes that include courses in freshman composition and advanced composition. She is a published author of poetry, short stories, and textbooks. Aside from her passion for literature and writing, Tatyana enjoys a daily yoga practice, crocheting, quilting, and playing with her adopted dogs Luke & Lucy. She plans to incorporate her writing skills in future projects that includes all her interests as well as YouTube videos.

Batch #2: May 4, 2020 by Joy Middo

Hi PRK supporters- I am happy to sew these masks for PRK! I work for LA Wilshire Periodontics as a registered dental hygienist and have been doing this for the past 32 years. I love bringing oral health back to my patients. When I am not working, I help out as a Girl Scout Leader mentoring girls on their Gold Award projects. I have 3 grown children and a husband who adore pugs and all animals! I was first introduced to PRK when we decided to adopt a pug. We got Boba in 2012, formerly Balloon, who was fostered by Stacy Rolison in San Diego. Since then, we've fostered 3 pugs and became a foster failure with Chibi, formerly Cherybell. I love the unselfish work Kim does for the pugs in Korea and the group who supports her here in Cali. Stay safe everyone!

Batch #3: May 25, 2020 by Tiffany Thong

I'm a physical therapist aide working at the hospital in Fresno, CA. I'm also a board member/volunteer for Hope of Sanger homeless shelter. We have been fostering for Animal Compassion team of Fresno for over 2 years. We adopted Pirate (formerly Carlos) from Pug Rescue of Korea in 2016. My husband Michael and I are proud parents of 2 human kids and 4 rescued four - legged kids. Lucky and Bear are GS, Pirate the pug and KeKoa the Saint Bernard. I enjoy going on a cruise, red wine and cooking.

  • Melody Chalaban

Kim with rescue pug "@," Oct 2010. Her mom named him "@" because he was tiny like an @ symbol.

Who was the first pug you rescued?

Eunbi, the girl pug from the official shelter in Seoul in 2000. It covers cities surrounding Seoul called Gyunggi-do. Her owner, who was from a province north of Seoul, surrendered her to that shelter.

In Korea, it is forbidden people come to the shelter and surrender their dogs. At that time the staff who had her own pug got her privately and asked me to get her. I had applied for a pug at that shelter, but she had pneumonia and wouldn’t make it. Staff said for me to get Eunbi instead.


Eunbi means silver rain. She was just 9 month girl. Malnourished I could easily feel her ribs. She was so afraid of daylight lived at the basement like the movie, “Parasite.” Even she could not make step forward outdoors. She lived with me and passed away at 13 yrs old.

If your pug has a taste for Starbuck's, this is why. Here are naughty Eunbi and Shirley trying an iced latte, May 2011.

What do you like to feed your pugs and your foster pugs?

I give dog food like Royal Canin or Natural Balance. But I think fresh vegetables, fruits, grains and proteins they need so I offer apple, watermelon, Korean gyul (like tangerine), zucchini, spinach, carrot, eggplant, cucumber, sweet potatoes, boiled eggs, meat and chicken. Whenever I can give depending on what kind of food I make for dinner.

Bowie and Potato, Jun 2019

Do you have any funny memories of a pug you rescued?

Last year, I rescued a girl and a boy, Potato (fka Dolly) and Bowie, who lived together. I drove my car to the owner's apartment to get them. The owner was waiting for me at the gate. He got into the passenger seat of my car and we headed to his basement. Owners said they have to take care of sick parents and can't care for the pugs.

I came back to mom's house with Potato and Bowie. Pet shop lady (who helped advertise the pugs) called me and said the owner was suspicious that I am puppy breeder. Why he thought so was the condition of my car.

My car was so similar to puppy breeders: Filled with hairs and not clean (does not mean dirty). Seemed like the car was used for delivering dogs.

So, he checked my ID and I showed him a video of how the pugs were doing. Every time I met a pug owner who wanted to rehome, they felt so comfortable when they saw me in person. So, I was astonished that this particular owner didn’t trust that I wasn’t a puppy breeder! Now it feels like so funny. Haha

What are some differences about how dogs are taken care of in Korea vs. the US?

So sad that most Koreans do not walk their dogs. This is the important reason why I make adoptions in US.

I do not want dogs raised like fishes in the jar.

So easily they are rehomed when the owner get marry, having babies and babies are born. I don’t want single person in Korea to buy dogs without concern but so often they do.

One of many grumbles Kim has fostered, Sep 2011

What’s the hardest part about doing rescue work?

Many difficult things, but the hardest thing is budget. If I have more money, I can save more. For healthy dogs, I pay around $400 per dog plus more for gas for all my driving. If I get pugs owner relinquished, I still have to pay.

I wish I could have reserved money for preparing adoption to the States. If the rescued pug has the special sickness like heartworm, Parvo or pneumonia, it takes a lot of money before their adoption while they are staying and recuperating in Korea.

How’s Blanca the white pug-mix doing?

​She is a little bit crazy when she is in euphoric mood. But during the day, she is so gentle. Same age of other fawn and black pug I’m fostering-- they are really crazy. She likes cuddling. Happy walker. She loves fruits. Apples, Korean Gyul and blueberries. She wants to play with my pug Luce, but he does not want because he is old. (Luce prefers to sleep all the time with occasional walking outside.)

  • Melody Chalaban

This handsome fella is Theo! He’s living his best life in LA now—a much improved life from where he started.

His start in Korea was rough. His former owner was mentally ill, who meant well but was not equipped to take care of Theo.

“When I picked up Theo, we met at the train station. Owner was very stressed, high anxiety. Eccentric-looking and spoke strangely. After I got him, she messaged and called often. Her mind was up and down. It was difficult for me. Then finally she would say, please take care of my dog,” said his rescuer, Kim.

Let’s hear from his mom, Leslie-Anne Huff, now!

Current age: about 9 Gotcha day date: October 8, 2012

Instagram: @theopugstable

Theo's Tinder, I mean...Petfinder picture

How did you happen upon this pug?

We found him on Petfinder, which lead us to Happy Angels, which led us to Pug Rescue of Korea!

What’s Theo’s adoption story?

Theo went through a lot with his pug mom in Korea, but he was ultimately forfeited. He needed multiple surgeries for hip dysplasia, patella problems, and bladder crystals. Poor guy! Kim took him in and took good care of him through his recovery until he was ready to be fostered in the States by the amazing Jan Roberts (Theo calls her Mama Jan). She helped him continue his recovery and fostered him for several months before we found him!

Theo with his foster sister, Jelly

How did you know Theo was the “one?”

When we went to "Mama Jan's" house to meet Theo for the first time, he was still recovering and a little wobbly on his feet. He spent a lot of the meet-and-greet lying in bed with his foster sister, Jelly, who was young and rambunctious. We knew Theo was "the one" watching him interact with Jelly: she laid on him, nibbled on his ears, squished him, and tried to get him to play. Theo was happy to just lay there patiently, letting her have her fun; that's Theo! Little did we know that many days later, he would be the same way with his little brother Buddy (also from Pug Rescue of Korea!).

Theo and his little brother, Buddy

Describe the moment you met him.

Well, the moment before we met him, my husband and I drove by Theo as he was out for his walk. He was so cute, we fell in love instantly! Before we went in to officially meet him, I cried with nervousness because I really wanted him to be ours! I remember crying to my husband, saying, "I just hope they like us!" Thankfully, it was all meant to be!

What’s Theo's personality like?

We believe there's no pug like Theo! He is a very chill, relaxed pug. Nowadays, he's such a slow walker that we don't even need the leash anymore! He's so chill that when guests are over, he just lays there; we say he "makes them work for it." But once he knows you, he loves a rub down and will lay and warm your feet.

The only time he's not chill is when it’s time to eat! He eats first thing in the morning and his dinner time is 5pm. But, by 3:30pm, his biological clock starts going off, and he’s begging us to feed him!

It's 5:00 somewhere!

Aside from eating, he also loves his "binkies" (stuffed toys) and is very possessive of them. He likes to hold them in his mouth while he takes naps - sometimes he'll even sigh loudly and make noises like he's really happy and content! Also, like most pugs, he snores very loudly—so loud that he can't sleep in our room with us. Instead, we let him fall asleep in our room and then once he's asleep, we gently pull his bed into the living room! He also loves to sleep with his chin on our legs or wrapped up in a blanket. He is the sweetest and such a funny boy!

Theo is our baby, our son, our sunshine.

La Famiglia

How has Theo fit in with your family and in your home?


What’s his favorite food, or rather--let’s make this pug-appropriate-- is there anything your pug won’t eat?

There's NOTHING he won't eat! If Theo could talk, what would he say?

"Can I please have more food?" If he had thumbs, what would he do?

Open the cabinet where his kibble is and gobble it ALL down!

If Theo could drive, what kind of car would he have?

Theo would have an old Oldsmobile! 

We are so grateful to Kim, Jan, and everyone at Pug Rescue of Korea. We adore Theo and we're so grateful for all who took care of him before he came to us and grateful for all that they continue to do for countless other pugs!

Connecting Seoul Mates Since 2009




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