Tibetan mastiff | All Dog Breeds

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Tibetan mastiff is the most expensive dog breed in the world. This giant looking teddy has gained immense popularity due to the record breaking price at which it is being sold. Tibetan mastiffs may look like they are lazy when they just sit and watch you playing, but it is not true. They are not much playful dogs and they do love you incredibly.

History and Origin

Tibetan mastiff is an ancient dog breed which was developed centuries ago in Tibet. Tibetan Mastiff was originally bred as guard dogs to guard livestock and property. Mastiff means a large dog and this breed originated from Tibetan Plateau and that is how it got the name Tibetan mastiff.

They are also known as the ‘Divine Hound of the Orient’ and are one of the furriest dogs in the world. They are independent dogs with a reserved personality. This breed has many other names such as Bhote Kukur, Zang ao, Tzong ngou etc. People from different regions have given them different names as per their locality.

About Tibetan mastiff

As per AKC grouping they are categorised in working dogs group and ranks 131st in the popularity rankings. Tibetan mastiff may not be more popular in the AKC rankings; however it has been popular for being the most expensive breed in the world. Today in China owning a Tibetan mastiff is considered as a status symbol.

The average weight of a male Tibetan mastiff can vary between 45 to 73 kg and of a female it can be between 34-54 kg. The minimum height of a male Tibetan mastiff is 26 inches and minimum height of a female Tibetan mastiff is 24 inches. The average lifespan of a Tibetan mastiff is between 10 to 14 years.

Tibetan mastiff is a massive bulky furry dog. Due to their long coat they can easily adjust to cold weather, although they might not be able to adjust in hot weather they need cool and dry climate. Tibetan mastiff comes in various coat colours such as black, blue, gray, black and tan, brown, and red.

Interesting Facts and stories

In China a 11 month old Red Tibetan mastiff puppy named ‘Big Splash’ holds the record for being sold for $1.5 million to a Chinese businessman named Hong Dong in the year 2014. Earlier this record was held by a Chinese lady who had spent $500,000 on a mastiff named Yangzte.

The breeder of the Big Splash Lu Liang had said that this dog has the blood of a lion and it was the perfect specimen and was worth the price he had received. He had also said that the Tibetan mastiffs with lion blood are rare in the world. According to him this breed is of the best quality and their height can grow up to 31 inches and their weight can be around 90 kg or even more.

The owner however had said that he himself wanted to breed these dogs and that was the reason he had purchased a top quality breed.

Tibetan mastiff is all weather dogs; their coat gets adjusted to the climate easily. During the warm weather Tibetan mastiffs blow their undercoat outer layer to protect them from hot weather. However since their fur is extremely thick too hot weather may not be for them. They can easily adjust to a moderate climate.

As a Family Companion

Tibetan mastiff can be a best companion and a family dog and guard the family. They are incredibly affectionate with family and kids. They can also socialise with other dogs and animals easily. They are loved by dog lovers not only for their size but also for their barks. Tibetan mastiff barks to a great extent and is too loud. It is their way of announcing their presence and keeping the predators away. If you are a person that prefers calm atmosphere then Tibetan mastiff is not the dog for you.

Tibetan mastiff is huge in size and hence they cannot adapt to apartment and small house living. They are extremely protective and loyal to their people. They are muscular and have the strength to protect their families in any situation. This large guard dog loves and cares about their families and will always be alert towards any strangers. They do not behave friendly towards strangers and can even attack them.

They like to follow a particular routine for the things they do and if there are any changes with their routine they do not like that and it makes them difficult as a pet dog. This breed is also stubborn and will not change if they set their mind to something. Hence it is important to make them realise that they are not the leaders of the pack and you are the leader.

They like to spend their time during the day in the house with their owners, which will look like they are lazy, but they save their energy during the day so they can guard their families at night.

This breed might look like a teddy bear with his long fur but they stand on top of the guard dog list. They are so powerful and strong that two mastiffs can even kill a lion. Even though they are dangerous they are incredibly loyal towards their families. If you look at this dog from far you will definitely get the feeling of looking at a lion.


Tibetan mastiff have double and heavy coat especially on their neck and shoulders and it gives him appearance like a lion. They shed heavily during shedding season and require regular grooming. Even though they have long coat they are easy to groom. Since their coat is long and thick it should be brushed at least once a week.

They also need occasional bath and trimming of nails and cleaning ears and keeping them dry. Brushing their teeth is also important as a part of their basic hygiene needs.


This breed dogs are always high in energy and active, hence training them can be difficult and thus training Tibetan mastiff should start at an early age. Tibetan mastiff is a dominant breed and hence they need to be socialised from a young age. Tibetan mastiff breed is naturally born leader and to have control over them needs lot of patience and energy.

It is important to socialise them and make them familiar with different places and with different people to avoid their aggressive behaviours. The male dogs in this breed are not as aggressive as the female dogs. They need to be trained from a young age and if you are not the person who has enough time to train and socialise them then this dog is not for you.


It is generally a healthy breed but there may be some common health issues that can occur. Some of which are eye diseases, ectropionise, skin problems, auto immune problems, cardiac, cataract problems, hip dysplasia, ear infections, epilepsy. However a regular check-up from specialists can help to detect these problems early.

Buy a Tibetan mastiff?

The price of a Tibetan mastiff can range from $ 1500 to $ 5000. As per Google searches Tibetan mastiff is the world’s most expensive breed.

Fun Facts
Dogs are the direct descendants of wolves.

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