North Korean supreme leader Kim Jong Un gifted two Pungsan dogs, a breed native to the country, to the Russian President Vladimir Putin, as reported by state media KCNA on Thursday. Kim and Putin were seen admiring the dogs, which were secured to a fence adorned with roses.
The two leaders bonded over animals, with Kim feeding carrots to a horse while Putin gently patted its head.
Putin presented a luxury Aurus limousine to Kim, marking the second time the North Korean leader has received this car model from Putin. Alongside the car, Putin also presented a tea set to Kim.
The meeting was punctuated by a test drive where Putin took the 40-year-old North Korean leader for a spin in the Russian-made Aurus car, concluding their day’s discussions.
Putin is known for his love of outdoor activities and his fit physique. Earlier in photographs distributed by Russian state media, he has been seen shirtless on multiple occasions, including one series where he was riding a brown horse, sporting wraparound sunglasses, a gold chain, and army trousers.
Similarly, Kim gained internet fame in 2019 when the Korean state media released photographs of him riding a white stallion through the snowy landscape of Mount Paektu, sparking a flurry of memes.
He was once again seen riding a white horse in a propaganda video, in 2022.
The horses ridden by Kim hold symbolic significance for North Korea, as the country named its post-Korean War economic recovery effort after the legendary winged horse “Chollima”. The nation’s most recent rocket booster also bears the name “Chollima-1”.
A pair of white Pungsans named “Gomi” and “Songgang,” were gifted to Moon Jae-in, the former South Korean president, by Kim Jong-un in 2018 during a period of improved relations between the two Koreans.
The Pungsan, a type of hunting dog which originates from a region in the northern part of North Korea.
(With inputs from agencies)