4 Facts About Tibetan Mastiffs

tibetan mastiff puppies in the snow

Just as the name implies, Tibetan Mastiffs are massive! But, don’t let their size scare you off. These mellow giants are loyal companions as well as faithful guard dogs. Here are a few more facts about Tibetan Mastiffs:

1. Tibetan Mastiffs are Known as “The Bear Dog”

Tibetan Mastiffs look more like a bear than a dog; and frankly, act more like a bear, too. Like bears, the Tibetan Mastiff is often described as aloof. They’re guard dogs, and will often go off on their own to patrol. Tibetan Mastiffs value personal space and are highly protective of their territory and their family.

Much like bears, this breed likes to follow their own schedule and they do not appreciate being told what to do. Because of this stubborn streak, these dogs need firm, consistent trainers. But, with enough practice and patience, Tibetan Mastiffs will work with their owners to come to a compromise.

2. Their Name is Actually a Misnomer

Even though Mastiff is in their name, this breed is not a true Mastiff. These dogs were called Mastiffs by the first Europeans arriving in Tibet. In Europe, Mastiff was a term referring to any large dog.

Tibetan Mastiffs weren’t the only dogs in Tibet to be incorrectly named by settling Europeans. A truer name for this breed would be Tibetan mountain dog or Himalayan mountain dog. These names much better reflect the regions from where the dog originates.

3. Tibetan Mastiffs Were Ancient War Dogs

Tibetan Mastiffs have a long and fascinating history. Their ancestors are said to have accompanied the Persians during the reign of their empire. They conquered continents with the Romans and the Huns, and historians believe Tibetan Mastiff forerunners were celebrated as war dogs until they settled in Tibetan valleys.

After staying isolated for years, they eventually became more domesticated. They didn’t lose their independence, though. The dogs stayed in homes during the day but roamed free at night for the village’s protection.

Over time, they became trusted and revered by villagers throughout Tibet and the Himalayas. Tibetan Mastiffs are still one of the most independent dog breeds, but they are also loyal and devoted to their families. When your Tibetan Mastiff finally becomes your companion, they’ll be your defender for life.

4. They Are One of the Largest Dog Breeds

Just like their name implies, these dogs are huge and are one of the largest dog breeds. Male Tibetan Mastiffs can reach 26-30 inches tall at the shoulder while females can grow 24 inches or more. On hind legs, they can stand almost as tall as humans. In some cases, even taller than humans!

A healthy weight range for male Tibetan Mastiffs is 100 to 150 pounds while females can range from 70 to 120 pounds, or more. And, their heavy coats just add to their size!

Despite their stature, these calm giants are actually quite light on their feet. When they meet something they perceive as a threat, they will act quickly and with an agility that is certainly surprising given their size.

These are just a few facts about Tibetan Mastiffs. Tibetan Mastiffs are loyal, loving companions that guard and protect with everything they have. Don’t let their independent nature fool you – they are mellow and content to be with the people they love.

If you think this could be the right dog breed for you, learn more about them, then take a look at the available Tibetan Mastiff puppies. You could end up finding the perfect addition to your family!