This is not a Fu Dog | Pi Yao / Pi Xie / Pi Xiu / Kei Loon / Kirin / Qi Lin / Bi Shou / Chimera

In China-heavy posts, Home Page posts on May 17, 2009 at 5:26 pm

In a similar vein to the last post, where I went through actual dog breeds looking for the precursor to the dog-aspect of a Fu Dog, this post shows some of the mythical animals that can be listed or found online as Fu Dogs but are not. What? There are some creatures in myth that are not Fu Dogs? – yes, I know, amazing, and yet these creatures can be found on the internet labeled as Fu Dogs. Here are some of the many, many names they could be posted under:

Pi Yao / Pi Xie / Pi Xiu / Kei Loon / Kirin / Qi Lin / Bishou / Chimera

From here: “It’s easy to confuse the Pi Yao with the more commonly seen Fu Dogs or Chi Lin, and since they’re all symbolic animals, artists like to put their own spin on their physical appearances.”

From here: “In Chinese Feng Shui, a Pi Xiu is a mythical animal which is depicted with the head of a dragon and a dog or lion’s body often with hoofs, little wings and a tail.”

From here: “The Qi Lin is a mythical creature belonging to the Taoist Goddess of the West Xi Hwang Mu. Sometimes called a Chinese Unicorn, the Qi Lin has the head of a dragon, the body of a horse and the scales of the carp.”

From here: “There are lots of spin-offs to the name kei loon – qi lin, kirin (like the beer!), chi lin, and much much more.


Well, here is a caveat – some of the following images I found were listed as Fu Dogs, using one spelling or another, and some I found specifically as examples of the animals listed above. Rights belong to the pictures owners.  Pictures are from (please visit their links), in order from left to right top to bottom, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here, here,

Qilin-shaped_incense_burner_2_CAC 562px-QingQilin_preview piyao kirin kirin1 notafudog notafudog1 notafudog2 bishou - winged cat notafudog3 notafudog4 bishou - winged cat2


Now this little bit of research brings some clarity to some of the previous images I’ve wondered about and posted on Fu Dog Blog, and, to some of the images I’ve seen that claim to be Fu Dogs and I just can’t believe are Fu Dogs. Now I know. If the image has wings then it is not a Fu Dog. If the image has scales over its body it is not a Fu Dog. If the image has hooves or claws instead of paws then it is not a Fu Dog. If the image has a horn protuberance, or multiple horns coming from its head then it is not a Fu Dog. If it has the body of a dragon then it is not a Fu Dog. Per previous posts in this blog, a Fu Dog partakes in physical representations that are a merger of Persian Lion and Dog – nothing else.

What I have noticed is that those parties interested in selling an item will put any spin on the item that will put that item before the most people – therefore, if an entity is selling a Qi Lin (which is not so famous as a Fu Dog) then it would reach the most people to take the word Fu Dog out of a marketing campaign and replace it with Qi Lin – those who search for a Fu Dog will find the description matches and the history matches and think they have found a unique Fu Dog (called a Qi Lin) and will be happy and the seller makes a sell by pretending that the Qi Lin has the same history of a Fu Dog. I haven’t pursued too much what these alternative mythical creatures came from nor how they evolved any further than to know that they are not Fu Dogs, but do partake in the mythology of dragons and guardian animals – a close (mythically close, but not physically close enough) match for the Fu Dog.

Oh, the following are not Fu Dogs either; just for your information – (and are from here, here, here):

notafudog7 notafudog6 notafudog8

  1. How come you dont have your website viewable in wap format? Can not see anything in my netbook.

  2. Sorry – I’m not so savy on web work – I’ll look at changing the layout so it can be ‘mobile’ and ‘netbook’ ready. Thanks for the heads up about it!

  3. This may be from a year or more ago but another common creature mistaken for a foo dog and is nearly impossible to find due to being misnamed is the Luduan, a Chinese incense burner creature that detects truth. They are often crafted with a snake under their feet due to a snake’s lies. They often have removable heads due to the use of incense within them. Other forms allow the use of sticks so they have no need to remove the head. They have a singular curved horn on their heads similar to the Pi Xiu but have dragon like claws instead of the more feline paw like like Pi Xui. They can range from very colorful to a normal golden sheen depending on crafter. It is common for them to have smoke like swirls on their body. Take a quick look on google for Ludan. They are a beautiful part of Chinese culture and are always called by another creature’s name giving them very little attention.

  4. Thanks very much for the info – I’ll have to look them up. At first I thought you were heading towards the QiLin, but it usually has two horns, no snake, etc – so glad to find another cool creature/statue/mythic animal!!

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