Feb 16, 2018 By Niklas Westerlund , eChinacities.com

According to the Chinese zodiac, we've just entered the Year of the Dog. Let’s shake some paws and wag our tails for that! The Year of the Dog officially starts on Feb 16, 2018, bringing with it new advantages and challenges for China. In the name of preparedness and silliness, we've consulted the stars and our crystal balls to bring you our horoscope for China in the Year of the Dog.

Photo: Patrick Kwan

First, let’s take a step back and look at how the Chinese zodiac works. The zodiac consists of 12 animals, each representing a year in the lunar calendar. Each sign has a certain set of characteristics much like the the animals in the Western zodiac, and also comes with a fixed element, either Water, Wood, Fire or Metal. Theses elements represent another set of characteristics to compliment the animal sign.

What makes the Chinese zodiac extra complex is that alongside the fixed element, every zodiac also receives an extra element with each cycle. Last year, for example, was the year of the Fire Rooster, while this year we have the Earth Dog. Lucky for us, Earth Dog is a very good sign for many reasons.

With all this in mind, here’s our China horoscope for the year of the Earth Dog:

    • An important feature of the Dog sign is sympathy and care for others. Add to that the Earth element of 2018, which represents stability and support, and you might start to get hopeful for some socially responsible development in China, or at least attempts at it. China’s new Environmental Protection Tax Law is a good example of Earth Dog thinking, as is China’s massive investment in renewable energy. We predict less pollution and bluer skies foe everyone!

    • Decisions based on collective interests are also traits of the Earth Dog, and lo and behold, we predict that the Hong Kong-Zhuhai-Macao bridge will finally be completed this year. Don’t trust Google, which states that the bridge opened in 2016. It’s been waiting for the stars to align perfectly in the Year of the Dog.

    • Perhaps in a somewhat ironic twist, the community-spirited character of the Earth Dog will also be seen in a further crackdown on VPN services, slated to happen at the end of March. Such a move will see the internet purged of subversive ideas, and the Chinese government will finally be able to show they mean business when they talk about their Internet sovereignty. The Earth Dog is all about collective consciousness.

    • Another important characteristic of Earth Dog is the ability to reap the rewards of hard work in the past. In this respect, Ice Boy may very well be a perfect example of Earth Dog determination. The Georgian New Year had barely started when the Internet melted (pun intended) over a picture of the now world-famous kid from Yunnan, who walked almost five kilometers to school every day without proper clothing. One day, he arrived with frost covering his hair and face, and promptly become an internet sensation when a photo was shared online.

    Donations have rightfully been pouring in to Ice Boy’s school, meaning all his hard work trudging through the snow has finally paid off. Okay, so all this happened while we’re technically still in the year of the Fire Rooster, but the rewards will be reaped in the Year of the Dog. Ice Boy’s tale has sparked a renewed debate about child poverty in China, which will hopefully lead to more positive changes this year.

    • The Earth Dog is also socially progressive. We predict this year’s BOAO Forum, a non-governmental and non-profit organization striving to promote and empower Asia, will spark some forward thinking when it arrives in Hainan province in April.

Lastly, we admit that taking any zodiac or equivalent superstition and arbitrarily connecting it to upcoming events may not be the best way to predict the next year in China. But with a country as complicated and fast-changing as this, it’s our best bet.

Do you have any further predictions for the Year of the Dog in China? Drop a comment below. 

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Keywords: Year of the Dog China

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