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A Comprehensive Guide to Lion Tibetan Mastiff for Lovers

Last updated on February 5th, 2024 at 02:58 pm

Have you ever heard of the Lion Tibetan Mastiff from Tibet? These adorable canines may start as cute little puppies, but they grow up to be incredibly strong and determined dogs that could easily be mistaken for lions or bears due to their size and power. Their origins are shrouded in mystery, but it’s believed they were originally bred to protect herds, monasteries, and palaces in the Himalayas.

If you’re interested in learning about the Tibetan Mastiff, you’ve come to the right place! This post will give you the lowdown on this adorable pup. So sit tight and get ready to discover everything you need to know!


Asian origin:Tibet
Height:Minimum 26 inches (male), minimum 24 inches (female)
Weight:90-150 pounds (male), 70-120 pounds (female)
Lifespan:10-12 years
Coat type:Double, medium-length
Colors:Cream Sable, blue gray, brown & tan, red gold sable, blue gray & tan, black, black & tan, brown, red gold, cream
Temperament:Independent, intelligent, reserved
Suitable for:Experienced owner, cooler and even cold weather zones, large house



Energy level:


Tendency to bark:

Shedding amount:

Lion Tibetan Mastiff pictures


It’s difficult to say exactly how or when Tibetan Mastiffs came to be due to their ancient origins and Tibet’s isolation. What we do know is that for many centuries, they were powerful protectors of the Himalayas, and it’s believed that they’re the ancestors of all modern mastiffs. Evidence suggests that early Tibet travelers were sometimes gifted these giant canines, which were then used to develop mastiff breeds in the Middle East and Europe.


lion tibetan mastiff dog

The Tibetan Mastiff is a large dog breed that is athletic and impressive. They have a solemn but kind appearance and stand on their toes with solid feet. Their body is slightly longer than their height. The head is wide and impressive, with deep-set, almond-shaped eyes. Their muzzle is broad and well-padded, giving them a square appearance. 

These dogs have a watchful expression. Their coat and heavy mane are thick, with coarse guard hairs and a wooly undercoat. Their tail and britches are well-feathered and wrap over their back in a single curl that falls over their loin, balancing their head. 


The Tibetan Mastiff is a smart, independent, and strong-willed dog that tends to keep their distance from strangers. They’re highly protective of their family and property. In the show ring, they may appear reserved or unenthusiastic, but shyness is considered inappropriate for a breed that is known for guarding abilities.


Tibetan Mastiffs have a double coat with a thick, wooly undercoat and coarse guard hair. They’re low-maintenance and require minimal grooming throughout most of the year. Weekly brushing with a slicker or a long pin brush is enough to remove surface dirt. Additionally, using a wide-tooth comb on the tail, mane, and breeches will eliminate tangles.

They undergo heavy shedding in late spring or summer, where they ‘blow’ their undercoat. During this time, it’s best to use an undercoat rake or de-shedding tool. According to the breed standard, the Tibetan Mastiff dog should not be clipped or trimmed except to shape the feet and give a clean appearance to the hocks. They must be shown naturally.


The Tibetan Mastiff dog requires moderate exercise daily. This exercise doesn’t have to be structured or organized, as they prefer work-related tasks like patrolling their territory instead of playing games like fetch or chasing a flying disc. They’re more active in cooler weather and tend to conserve energy until they need it. These Mastiffs usually have short bursts of activity and lack endurance. They make great throw-rugs in winter, and air-conditioner vent covers in summer!


lion tibetan mastiff dog

The Tibetan Mastiff dog is not responsive to traditional obedience training. They’re intelligent, quick learners and don’t like repeating what they already know. They will comply with their owners’ requests as long as they trust and respect them. However, Tibetan Mastiffs tend to follow their instincts instead if they have doubts. 

This breed is not usually motivated by food or treats as a training tool. They may behave perfectly in class but disregard all commands when returning home. Also, keep in mind that trusting them off-leash is unsafe, as they don’t have reliable recall.

Many readers have loved learning how to train their dogs based on scientific methods from a free workshop conducted by Dr. Alexa Diaz (one of the top service dog trainers in the U.S.) and Eric Presnall (host of the hit Animal Planet TV show “Who Let the Dogs Out”) at the K9 Training Institute. In the free workshop, you’ll discover:

    1. How to train your dog using body language rather than verbal cues
    2. The 3 key techniques that service dog trainers use to train dogs and how you can use them too
    3. The most important step that “normal” dog owners have been missing (this is very important to get your dog’s attention, and it works 100% of the time)
    4. How to stop bad behaviors like excessive barking, pulling on the leash, jumping, etc.
    5. Why a lot of dog owners are unable to establish the amazing bond that service dog trainers have with their dogs


Whether your dog is a puppy or an adult, this pre-recorded workshop will help you train them successfully. You may not want to miss the chance to learn these groundbreaking techniques. Here’s the free workshop.


Responsible breeders should screen for conditions like elbow and hip dysplasia, hypothyroidism, and eye anomalies such as entropion and ectropion. Although seizures have been reported, it’s not a common issue for this breed. In general, the Tibetan Mastiff dog is relatively healthy.


Tibetan Mastiffs don’t require a special diet. They may surprise you with how little they eat, as adults typically only need two to four cups of quality food daily. Sometimes, they even skip meals. If you’re curious about what human foods are safe for your dog, talk to your vetenarian. Don’t forget to make sure they always have access to clean, fresh water.

Living Condition

lion tibetan mastiff dog

Tibetan Mastiffs require experienced owners. They have a dense coat that allows them to thrive in cooler weather. As the temperature drops, they become more active. They make great indoor companions and will snuggle up to the fire or fan, depending on the season. In addition, these dogs are happy with a yard to roam and protect, but it must be fenced in as they’re considered skilled escapers.

3 Little-Known Facts About the Tibetan Mastiff Dog

1. The Biggest Tibetan Mastiff in the World Is Yushu

Have you ever heard of Yushu, the biggest Tibetan Mastiff in the world? This animal resides in Tibet and may weigh up to a whopping 250 pounds! In simple terms, Yushu’s size is comparable to that of a spectacled bear or a striped dolphin.

2. The Most Expensive Tibetan Mastiff Is Also the Most Expensive Dog

The Tibetan Mastiff dog is known for being very expensive. Some of them have sold for millions of dollars. In 2014, a puppy was sold for nearly $2 million in China. Specifically, a property developer paid around $1.95 million for the dog at a premium pet fair in the eastern province of Zhejiang. The puppy was 31 inches tall and weighed almost 200 pounds.

3. They’re Also Called “Do-Khyi” or “Tied Dog”

Tibetan Mastiffs are known as “do-khyi” or “tied dog” in Tibet. They’re often tied to the gate during the day and released at night.

Lion Tibetan Mastiff Puppy for Sale

lion tibetan mastiff dog

If you are considering owning a Tibetan Mastiff, it’s important to know that this breed requires an experienced owner. We recommend you contact a reputable breeder to learn more about what it’s like to live with them. Although adult Tibetan Mastiffs may occasionally be available for rescue, it’s more likely you will need to work with a breeder and join a waitlist (which can be long) for a puppy. Expect to pay between $1,500 to $6,000 for a purebred Tibetan Mastiff dog.

Becoming a dog parent is one of the most memorable moments of life. But before bringing your new best friend home, it’s vital to have all the right things to make sure the adoption is really smooth and makes them feel right. You may feel overwhelmed by tons of puppy products on sale and not sure what items your puppy actually needs. That’s why I’ve compiled this minimalist puppy checklist to help you get started.


The Tibetan Mastiff is a large and furry dog that is known for being an excellent guard dog. They have a broad head with high-set, V-shaped ears and brown eyes that give them a wise and noble expression. It’s not surprising that their size and imposing presence can deter potential intruders.


Are Tibetan Mastiffs Good Family Dogs?

The Lion Tibetan Mastiff dog can be a good family pet with proper training and socialization. They’re fiercely loyal to their families. However, they’re also very independent and can be stubborn, so they require experienced owners who can provide them with firm but fair leadership.

Are Tibetan Mastiffs From China?

No, the Tibetan Mastiff dog is not from China. They are originally from Tibet, which is now an autonomous region of China.

Are Tibetan Mastiffs Illegal to Own?

Before owning a Tibetan Mastiff dog, it’s important to check your local laws and regulations. While there are no breed-specific bans on this dog in the United States, some cities and counties have restrictions on owning large or potentially dangerous dogs. It’s always best to research and ensure you know the rules before bringing a new pet home.

Are Tibetan Mastiffs Intelligent?

Tibetan Mastiffs are intelligent dogs, but they’re not always the most eager to learn. They’re independent thinkers and can be stubborn, so they need patient and consistent training.

Are Tibetan Mastiffs Legal in the UK?

Yes, the Tibetan Mastiff dog is legal to own in the UK. However, they’re considered a dangerous breed, so they must be kept on a leash and muzzled in public.

Can Tibetan Mastiffs Be Pets?

Yes, Tibetan Mastiffs can be pets, but they’re not the best choice for first-time dog owners. They require experienced people who can give them proper training and socialization.

Could a Tibetan Mastiff Beat a Wolf?

A Tibetan Mastiff could potentially beat a wolf in a fight, but it’s not guaranteed. Tibetan Mastiffs are large and powerful dogs, but wolves are also very intelligent and resourceful animals. The outcome of a fight between a Tibetan Mastiff and a wolf would likely depend on a number of factors, including the size and experience of the two animals.

How Much Is a Tibetan Mastiff in China?

The price of a Tibetan Mastiff dog in China can vary depending on the breeder, the bloodline of the dog, etc. However, they’re generally considered to be one of the most expensive dog breeds in the world.

Is the Tibetan Mastiff a Mastiff?

Yes, the Tibetan Mastiff is a type of mastiff dog breed. 

Is There a Dog Breed Bigger Than a Mastiff?

The Great Dane is known as the tallest dog breed. Other giant breeds are the Irish Wolfhound and the English Mastiff.

Is Tibetan Mastiff Danger?

The Tibetan Mastiff dog can pose a risk if they are not trained and socialized correctly. These dogs are sizable and robust. They can also act protectively towards their owners and territory.

Is Tibetan Mastiff Stronger Than German Shepherd?

Tibetan Mastiffs are generally considered to be stronger than German Shepherds. 

Is Tibetan Mastiff the Most Powerful Dog in the World?

There is no definitive answer to this question, as there is no standard way to measure a dog’s power. However,  the Tibetan Mastiff dog is considered to be one of the most powerful breeds in the world.

Why Are Tibetan Mastiffs So Rare?

Tibetan Mastiffs are rare outside Tibet due to the challenges of breeding and raising them. They’re also costly, which makes them less accessible to the general public.

Why Is the Tibetan Mastiff the Most Expensive Dog in the World?

There are a few reasons why the Tibetan Mastiff dog is the most expensive breed in the world. They’re difficult to breed and raise, in high demand, and considered a status symbol.

Why Are Tibetan Mastiffs Popular in China?

The Tibetan Mastiff dog is popular in China because they’re admired for their strength, loyalty, and ability to protect.


  • https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/2022/10/05/most-expensive-dog-in-the-world/8062598001/
  • Tibetan Mastiff Size & Growth Chart: How Big Do They Get? (misfitanimals.com)
  • https://www.tibetanmastiff.org/
  • https://images.akc.org/pdf/breeds/standards/TibetanMastiff.pdf
  • https://www.akc.org/dog-breeds/tibetan-mastiff/
About us: Pet Chao is a community for Asian dog breed enthusiasts. Our goal is to keep you and your four-legged friend healthy and happy by providing valuable resources and fostering a like-minded community.

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