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Meet Tonkey: Adorable Shar Pei Takes The Internet By Storm (Photos)

| by Sean Kelly

A 4-month-old puppy that bears a striking resemblance to a teddy bear is quickly becoming an Internet sensation, garnering over 100,000 followers on Instagram.

Tonkey, a bear-coat Shar Pei, was adopted by Christine Park and her boyfriend David Ngu in May and now lives with them at their home in Alberta, Canada.

The couple adopted Tonkey after falling in love with her bear-like features, and soon decided to share her with the world.

“She's a funny character. Her tail wags at lightning speed - even when she's in trouble; those eyes could melt the coldest of hearts,” Park said, according to Daily Mail. “She cuddles every day, loves children, and is friendly and curious towards strangers.”

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In just two months, Tonkey’s Instagram account, set up by her owners, found a large following. 

“We started Tonkey's Instagram account because we felt she was exceptionally cute,” Park said. “The bearcoat Shar Pei was new to us and we wanted the world to know her. Dave and I love that Tonkey's followers get as excited as we do.”

Tonkey has taken a liking to the couple’s other dog, Maxi, and the two became fast friends.

“Tonkey is Maxi's best friend and they are the perfect balance for each other,” Park said. “Tonkey learns from Maxi. She teaches her to obey commands, learn tricks and learn manners. Maxi was our first dog, and is the glue in our little family.”

Park said that raising a Shar Pei comes with its challenges, as the breed is notoriously stubborn and also known for certain health issues.

“Shar Peis can be hard work -- Tonkey has a tendency to be hard-headed and independent but actually she turned out to be a good listener and smart,” she said. 

“But she can be stubborn and feisty, although I can't tell if it's just because she's a puppy," Park added. "Tonkey's breed is prone to certain health problems, so she's had three check-ups so far as I am a paranoid mum [sic]. She is perfectly healthy but it's good to be prepared.

"Our bond as a family grows every day and Tonkey is a welcome addition.”

Sources: Daily Mail, People

Photo credit: Instagram