Tibetan Mastiff Dog Breed Information - All About Dogs

Tibetan Mastiff

Tibetan Mastiff



The Tibetan Mastiff is one of the largest dog breeds in the world, originally from Tibet. The history of this breed goes back to 1121 BC. So it is not surprising that many legends have risen to this breed. The first detailed descriptions are from Marco Polo 1271 traveled to Asia and reported on the dogs of Tibet. This large dog breed is mellow and calm around the house, devoted to family, reserved and territorial with strangers. The Tibetan Mastiff was officially recognized by the American Kannel Club in 2007.

Height: 24-30 inches  Weight: 70-150 pounds  Lifespan: 12-15 years


Independent and courageous, the Tibetan Mastiff is a great guard dog, this breed was used to protect sheep from wolfs, bears, leopards and tigers. This breed needs a job to do, otherwise it can get bored and destructive. Tibetan Mastiffs have a strong will and remarkably independent mind, and they are used for various purposes. With the right training, the Tibetan Mastiff will be very obedient. Comparable Breed: The Great Pyrenees and Newfoundland.


Dogs of this breed are fearless and extremely loyal defenders. Tibetan Mastiffs have a very protective nature, they are intelligent and quite stubborn. They enjoy human company and therefore make great companions for hiking. Keep in mind that the Tibetan Mastiff should never be walked on a leash.

Coat / Care:

The Tibetan Mastiff has a long, thick, rough coat. The undercoat is soft and dense, designed to protect the dog from low temperatures. In hot weather, the undercoat thins. Tibetan Mastiffs shed abundantly once a year, but they lack doggie smell which is peculiar to big dog breeds. During the shedding season, these dogs need thorough cleaning on the everyday basis. Out of season, weekly cleaning is enough.

Health Problems:

The Tibetan Mastiff is a generally healthy breed. However, it is important to be aware of possible health concerns. Hence, the most common diseases in this breed are canine hip Dysplasia, Dysplasia of the Elbow Joint, Hypertrophic Neuropathy, Autoimmune Hypothyroidism, Panosteitis (inflammation of the long bones), Osteochondrosis Dissections (OCD) and Canine Inherited Demyelinative Neuropathy (CIDN). The Tibetan Mastiff has a life expectancy of 12 to 15 years.

Weight / Height

The male Tibetan Mastiff dog breed’s height is around 26 – 30 inches and weighs around 90 and 150 pounds. Female dogs can reach a size from 24 – 29 inches and weighs between 70 and 120 pounds. Male dogs are generally larger than females.


This breed needs a strong, dominant coach, who will be able to conduct consistent and varied workouts. Without proper training, the Tibetan Mastiff can be extremely aggressive. Also, socialization is very important for this breed. Let the dog meet new people, but always with an understanding attitude to the fact that it may be very suspicious of strangers. Moreover, Tibetan Mastiffs have a powerful intuition about the people, and they can experience a strong aversion which is very difficult to overcome.


The Tibetan Mastiff needs constant physical and mental stimulation. However, training should not be too demanding, otherwise the dog will have problems with joints. This breed needs a spacious yard for regular walks.

Photo credit: mastino0100/Flickr

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