Things were very different for Zhou Tianxiao four years ago. Back then, he was broke and living with his grandmother in Beijing, and he didn’t feel like he had a purpose in life. Zhou dropped out of school at age 15 and spent most of his time after that escaping the real world by playing video games, drinking, and gambling. But one day, he met a tiny, black-and-white puppy, and he fell in love at first sight. Zhou brought the little ball of fur home and named him Sylar after a character from his favorite show, Heroes.
Sylar did turn out to be Zhou’s hero, as the little Border Collie gave the man a sense of purpose. It became his goal to give Sylar a great life, and he started to put down the video games and researched dog training techniques, instead. He trained with Sylar under a bridge every day, and soon a small crowd formed to watch them. Then the crowd got bigger. Zhou used his phone to record Sylar’s tricks and posted them to Meipai, China’s version of YouTube.
People shared Zhou and Sylar’s videos online, and before long, the pair went viral with millions of views and hundreds of thousands of followers on social media. Other dog lovers began asking Zhou for advice on how to train their own pups as Sylar became a celebrity in China. All of the attention inspired Zhou to create an online store where he could sell pet food, toys, and other supplies. In 2017, Zhou had made enough money to start a new life and give Sylar all the things he deserved.
A Doggy Mansion
Zhou bought a warehouse in a Beijing suburb and renovated it into a doggy mansion for Sylar worth about $500,000. He put in air conditioned rooms, a swimming pool, and a big backyard with a training field among other cool stuff. Along with his girlfriend, Liu Wei, Zhou opened Sylar’s palace to the public. They hired a staff of ten people to help manage the facility where dogs can come for a massage, a bath in the spa, or an overnight stay in one of the rooms with giant pillows. Zhou, now 31 years old, is successfully running a business and has a much better life, all thanks to the dog that inspired him. Sylar is a good boy who shows us all what a difference a dog can make.
Are you happy to see Sylar living it up in his mansion? Have you ever felt motivated to work hard because of your dog? Let us know in the comments below!