Tibetan Mastiff

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tibetan mastiff
Tibetan Mastiff 2

The Tibetan Mastiff is an ancient breed originating from Tibet. This giant, double coated breed was originally bred as a guardian to flocks, herds as well as monasteries and palaces. The Tibetan Mastiff is also known as do-khyi loosely translating into “home guard”, “door guard”, “dog which may be tied” and “dog which may be kept”.

The Tibetan Mastiff is poorly named as it is not a mastiff at all. They are more closely derived from the mountain dog family. Ranging from 25-31 inches at the withers this giant dog usually weighs 140-180 lbs.

Due to the long double coat, weekly brushing is necessary. This breed moults once to twice a year, requiring full grooms.

The Tibetan Mastiff is considered a primitive dog breed as it typically retains the instincts which would be required for it to survive in Tibet. In addition, it is one of the few primitive dog breeds that retains a single estrus per year instead of two. This characteristic is also found in wild canids such as the wolf. Since its oestrus usually takes place during late fall, most Tibetan Mastiff puppies are born between December and January.

Like all flock guardian breeds, they are intelligent and stubborn. Therefore intense training is recommended since this is a strong-willed, powerful breed. Socialization is also critical with this breed because of their reserved nature with strangers and guardian instincts. They are excellent family dogs — for the right family. Owners must understand canine psychology and be willing and able to assume the primary leadership position. Lack of consistent, rational discipline can result in the creation of dangerous, unpredictable dogs.

In 2011, a male Tibetan Mastiff puppy created quite a stir in the dog breeding world. The 11-month puppy named ‘Big Splash’ was reportedly purchased by a Chinese Coal baron for 10 million yuan ($1.5 million US). Via DigitalJournal.com.

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