Woof! Couple credits barking shiba inu for NT$1 million lotto win
Taipei, Jan. 27 (CNA) A husband and wife in New Taipei's Ruifang District have credited the timely barking of a lottery shop owner's dog for a NT$1 million (US$33,132) scratch lotto win.
According to Taiwan Lottery Co., the couple in their 50s were at their local lottery shop on Wednesday and decided to make their purchase soon after hearing the barking of the owner's pet shiba inu.
In Mandarin Chinese, the sound of a dog barking -- wāng or 汪 -- is a near homophone for the word wàng (旺), meaning flourishing or prosperous.
Soundtracked by the dog's continued barking, the couple scratched off a "NT$20 million Super Red Envelope" lottery ticket and found that they had won a NT$1 million prize, Taiwan Lottery said, citing an account from the owner of the shop near Ruifang train station.
To celebrate the Jan. 20-29 Lunar New Year holiday, Taiwan Lottery has unveiled several limited-time scratch lottery cards, including the "NT$20 million Super Red Envelope," which cost NT$2,000 each.
The scratch lottery card offers seven top prizes of NT$20 million each, 10 second prizes of NT$2 million plus a Mercedes Benz sports utility vehicle, and 850 third prizes valued at NT$1 million each.
As of Wednesday, lotto players have claimed one of the first prizes, two of the second prizes, and 173 of the third prizes, according to Taiwan Lottery.
Among other recent winners was a young woman who visited a lottery shop in New Taipei's Xinzhuang District with six of her colleagues on Wednesday after attending their company's Lunar New Year party.
Using the NT$1,000 she had won in a company raffle, the woman pooled money with her coworkers to buy a "NT$20 million Super Red Envelope" ticket and ended up winning a NT$1 million prize, Taiwan Lottery said.
The lottery company said the winners had split the prize money, which they will either save or use to travel with family or friends.
Meanwhile, another winner this week was a man who went with three of his brothers to a lottery store in Taichung's Dali District.
According to the shop owner, the man decided to buy a "NT$20 million Super Red Envelope" card after seeing the smile on the face of the store's Maitreya Buddha idol -- itself a gift from a past lottery winner.
After making the purchase, the man returned to the store the next day to say he had won a NT$1 million prize, the shop owner said, adding that he had credited the smiling idol for giving him "confidence" that he would win.
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