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Tibetan Spaniel (Tibbie Dog): The Ultimate Guide in 2024

Last updated on February 18th, 2024 at 12:51 am

The Tibetan Spaniel, also known as Tibbie Dog, is a beloved pet among the monks, lamas, and other spiritual leaders living in the Himalayan Mountains of Tibet. Nowadays, more people in the United States are discovering the charms of this breed as a lovable family pet. With their cheerful temperament, curled tails, and unwavering loyalty, it’s easy to see why more and more people are becoming fond of them.

If you’re interested in learning about the Tibetan Spaniel pup, 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:10 inches
Weight:9-15 pounds
Lifespan:12-15 years
Coat type:Double, medium-length
Colors:Black, black & tan, cream, gold, red, sable, silver sable, white
Temperament:Playful, bright, self-confident
Suitable for:Thrive just about anywhere but do well in chillier temperatures



Energy level:


Tendency to bark:

Shedding amount:


In Eastern belief and legend, animals, including dogs, are highly respected. Buddhist monks in Tibet played a crucial role in preserving the native dog breeds of the region. They kept Tibbies as companions and watchdogs to work alongside the Tibetan Mastiff. Tibbies were known to be vigilant sentinels, watching atop monastery walls to scan the horizon for any signs of danger. They were also known to be good bed companions on freezing Himalayan nights. 


tibbie dog

Tibetan Spaniels are a small Asian breed. They have a well-proportioned body, slightly longer in length than their height at the withers. These adorable canines come in various colors and shades, with a silky medium-length coat. One of their unique features is their plumed tail, which curls down towards their back in a playful manner. Their triangular ears are medium in size, pointing downwards and framing their faces with feathery hair. 


Tibetan Spaniel dogs are popular pets among Tibetan monks and lamas for a reason. They are friendly, playful, and adaptable, making them an excellent choice for families, retirees, and single professionals. Originally bred to guard monasteries in ancient Tibet, these canines have superior senses and are always alert to potential danger. They are quick to warn their owners of any passersby or visitors.


If you own a Tibetan Spaniel, you should brush their coat and give them baths regularly to keep it healthy. Don’t forget to comb the hair on their rear fringes as well. Be aware that Tibetan Spaniels shed and can do so at any time of the year. If you take your Tibbie to a groomer, ensure they know not to cut the hair on their belly or between their legs. Otherwise, they may lick and itch uncomfortably. Finally, trimming their nails as puppies and training them to get used to it is crucial. This will help prevent issues with their nails in the future.


The Tibetan Spaniel pup is perfect for owners interested in a dog that can accompany them on long walks or jogs as they can keep up. They love daily walks and are content lying around at home or playing in the yard. But remember that a fenced yard is necessary for their safety. 


tibbie dog

Tibetan Spaniel dogs are intelligent and eager to please their owners. They excel in various canine activities, like agility, scent work, rallying, and obedience. However, they tend to have a mind of their own and may choose to do what they want. As a result, you need to begin training them early and make it enjoyable. Additionally, socializing them during their puppyhood is crucial.

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.


Most Tibetan Spaniel dogs are healthy. However, good breeders should test their furry friends for health issues like progressive retinal atrophy, cherry eye (a swelling near the eye that can be fixed with surgery), and patellar luxation. Before puppies go to their new homes, they should be screened for a liver shunt that affects blood flow around or through the liver.


It’s recommended to opt for a small-bite kibble if you’re feeding your Tibbie dog dry food, as they tend to have smaller mouths. However, make sure to avoid overfeeding as it can lead to obesity, which can cause health issues. While treats can be helpful in training, don’t give too many as it can contribute to weight gain. Additionally, keep in mind that some human foods can be toxic to dogs, so you must be cautious when introducing new foods to their diet. 

Living Condition

tibbie dog

Tibetan Spaniel dogs are adaptable and can live in different environments, such as apartments in the city or larger properties in the suburbs. These canines make great pets for people who work remotely or stay at home, as they love being around their humans. Additionally, the Tibbie dog has a thick double coat that protects them from the cold, making them comfortable in lower temperatures, as long as it’s not too extreme.

3 Little-Known Facts About the Tibbie Dog

1. Tibetan Spaniel Dogs Aren’t Technically Spaniels

Tibetan Spaniels are not related to traditional spaniel breeds initially bred as hunting dogs. Despite their name, they are not used for this purpose. The term “spaniel” actually comes from the French word “epagnuel,” which referred to a companion dog that women in royal courts loved during the Middle Ages.

2. “Simkhyi” Is Their Name in Tibetan

The Tibetan Spaniel is commonly called “Simkhyi” in Tibet. This name is fitting since they are known for keeping monks and lamas company in their day-to-day lives.

3. Tibbies Were Given as Gifts

Tibetan Spaniels were not sold but given as gifts to leaders in China and other Buddhist countries. Some experts believe that Chinese royalty mixed the Tibetan Spaniels they received with their own Pugs to produce the Pekingese. Others think that the Tibetan lamas developed the Tibetan Spaniel by crossing the Pekingese they got from China with their own Lhasa Apsos, another Tibetan breed.

Tibetan Spaniel for Sale

tibbie dog

The Tibetan Spaniel is not a widely known dog breed, but you may still find them at animal shelters and rescue groups. However, it may take some time to find one, so it is recommended that you get your name on a breed waitlist. On the other hand, expect to pay around $800 to $2,000 for Tibetan Spaniel puppies from a reputable breeder.

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 Spaniel is a breed that was once used as sentinels on the walls of Tibetan monasteries. These adorable dogs have a flat, silky coat and a majestic ‘lion’s mane’ around their neck. They are known for their expressive eyes, blunt muzzle, and plumed tail that curves over their back. Bonding deeply with their owners, Tibetan Spaniels are a perfect companion for those who appreciate the ancient traditions that gave rise to other popular Asian breeds like Pekes, Pugs, and Lhasas.


Do Tibetan Spaniels Bark a Lot?

Tibetan Spaniels are not known for being excessive barkers. These canines are alert, watchful, and may bark to warn you of strangers or danger, but they are not yappy dogs.

Is a Tibetan Spaniel a Good Family Dog?

Tibetan Spaniels are good family dogs with older children. However, they are independent and can be stubborn, so they require a firm but gentle hand and early training lessons.

Are Tibetan Spaniels Cuddly?

Tibetan Spaniels are not the most cuddly dogs but can be affectionate with their families. They may not enjoy being held or petted for long periods but will often curl up next to you on the couch or in bed.

How Much Is a Tibetan Spaniel?

The average price of a Tibetan Spaniel pup is between $800 and $1,200. However, it can vary depending on the breeder, the bloodline of the puppy, and the location.

Do Tibetan Spaniels Shed a Lot?

Tibetan Spaniels have a double coat that they shed twice a year. During the shedding season, they lose a lot of fur. However, regular brushing can help to control the shedding.

Can Tibetan Spaniels Fly?

No, Tibetan Spaniels cannot fly. They are dogs, not birds.

Are Tibetan Spaniels Rare?

Although they are not a widespread breed, Tibetan Spaniel dogs are not rare either. They are more popular in Europe and Asia than in North America.

Why Are Tibetan Spaniels Rare?

Tibetan Spaniels are not commonly found in the United States for a few reasons. They are a relatively new breed. Secondly, they are not recommended for first-time owners as they can be stubborn and independent. Lastly, finding Tibetan Spaniel puppies can be difficult as there are not as many Tibbie dog breeders in the United States.

Are Tibetan Spaniels Clingy?

Tibetan Spaniels can be clingy to their families but are not the most needy dogs. They are both happy to spend time alone and enjoy being with their people.

Can Tibetan Spaniels Be Left Alone?

Tibetan Spaniels can only be left alone for short periods. They are social dogs and need companionship. If you must leave your Tibetan Spaniel alone for a long time, it is vital to provide them with plenty of toys and activities to keep them occupied.

Are Tibetan Spaniels Intelligent?

Tibetan Spaniels are intelligent dogs. With patience and consistency, they can learn a variety of commands and tricks.

Do Tibetan Spaniels Have Health Issues?

Tibbies are generally healthy dogs. However, like other small breeds, they may have inherited health issues.

Are Tibetan Spaniels Like Cats?

Like cats, Tibetan Spaniels are small and agile. They have a calm temperament and love attention from their family. Unlike cats, these canines enjoy being close to their loved ones.

Are Tibetan Spaniels Hard to Train?

Tibetan Spaniel dogs are not the easiest dogs to train. They are independent and can be easily distracted. However, with patience and consistency, these furry friends can learn a variety of commands and tricks. 

Do Tibetan Spaniels Have Fur or Hair?

Tibetan Spaniels have a double coat of fur. Their undercoat is soft and dense, while their outer coat is coarser and longer. It can be straight or slightly wavy.

How Often Should I Bathe My Tibetan Spaniel?

It’s recommended only to bathe your Tibetan Spaniel when the dog is dirty or has an unpleasant odor, as this can remove their natural oils. Bathing every 6-8 weeks should suffice for most canines.

What Do Tibetan Spaniels Eat?

Tibetan Spaniels should eat a high-quality diet that is specifically formulated for small dogs. Avoid giving them table scraps or human food, which can cause health problems. And don’t forget to consult your veterinarian to determine the best diet for your Tibbie dog.

Do Tibetan Spaniels Get Along With Other Dogs?

Tibetan Spaniels can get along with other dogs with proper socialization. However, introduce them slowly and carefully.

How Much Do Tibetan Spaniels Weigh?

Tibetan Spaniel dogs typically weigh between 9 and 15 pounds.


  • https://www.tsca.ws/
  • https://www.akc.org/dog-breeds/tibetan-spaniel/
  • https://www.akc.org/expert-advice/lifestyle/7-facts-tibetan-spaniel/
  • https://images.akc.org/pdf/breeds/standards/TibetanSpaniel.pdf 
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