What My Adoption Bio Would Say:
If you’re looking for the fluffiest cuddle buddy and a fierce protector, I’m the pup for you. You might think that you’re smarter than me, but trust me, I know you’re not. But don’t worry! I’ll love and protect you with all I have anyways.
Bred as guard dogs, the Tibetan mastiffs’ temperament is protective yet affectionate. They bond well with their family and will protect them fiercely. It’s best to shield Tibetan mastiffs from arguments where their protective nature could escalate the situation.
Most of their activity is motivated by their patrolling nature in outdoor settings, so they are often fairly calm indoors. Many can be very playful, but most prefer work-related tasks. Be alert, as Tibetan mastiffs are known for having random bursts of energy.
Left unstimulated, Tibetan mastiffs may develop destructive chewing habits, so be sure you give them something to do.
Tibetan mastiffs are highly intelligent and learn quickly. However, they are also highly stubborn and often won’t respond to traditional obedience training. They don’t care to learn the same thing more than once.
The Tibetan mastiff is not a breed for new dog owners or pet parents who lack confidence. This breed’s stubbornness often makes them prefer to do things their way, especially if they disagree with their owner.
Tibetan mastiff puppies should still be socialized early and introduced to training techniques. Safe introductions to strangers are especially important for this breed.
Although they can have short bursts of energy, Tibetan mastiffs lack endurance and only require moderate daily exercise. A large, private fenced-in area is best for their activity needs and interests.
Walks are acceptable, but Tibetan mastiffs should never be off-leash due to their unreliable recall. It’s also best to switch up their walking routine so they don’t become territorial over a specific route.
Tibetan mastiffs are good dogs with kids. They are affectionate and gentle with their family unit. Tibetan mastiffs should still be supervised around young children due to their large size.
Tibetan mastiffs are usually good with other dogs in the household, even small ones. However, they may not be appropriate play mates for strangers’ pets.
Tibetan mastiffs aren’t known to be excessive barkers during the day time, but they are known to be night barkers. To avoid barking a lot during the evenings Tibetan mastiffs should be kept indoors.
The Tibetan Mastiff — officially accepted into the AKC in 2006 — has a very rich history as an ancient breed:4
- The Tibetan mastiff is still considered a primitive breed, meaning they evolved with minimal human interference.
- They are believed to be the original ancestor for all modern mastiffs and mountain dogs.
- In Tibet, they are called “Do-Khyi” which means “tied dog.”
- A Tibetan mastiff named Big Splash holds the Guinness World Record for the most expensive dog.5 Big Splash was purchased for the equivalent of $1.5 million USD in 2011.
Cross breeding Tibetan mastiffs with other breeds is fairly rare, but some popular Tibetan mastiff mixes include:
- Tibetan mastiff husky: Tibetan mastiff and husky mix
- Mastipoo: Tibetan mastiff and poodle mix
- Tibetan mastiff and German shepherd mix
The Tibetan mastiff is a fairly healthy breed, but all dog breeds can experience health issues. The Orthopedic Foundation for Animals and the Canine Health Information Center recommend Tibetan mastiffs receive health evaluations for:6
- Elbow and hip dysplasia: These are painful joint conditions.
- Autoimmune thyroiditis: Tibetan mastiffs may have an underactive thyroid.
- Eye conditions: Tibetan mastiffs are prone to entropion, ectropion, and progressive retinal atrophy.
A MetLife Pet Insurance1 policy for your Tibetan mastiff could help cover the cost of expensive vet bills related to these common issues.2
Hip dysplasia is common in large breeds. It is a condition that affects a dog’s hip joint and their surrounding cartilage. If left untreated, hip dysplasia can be extremely painful for your dog. It’s diagnosed through a physical evaluation and x-rays. Surgery is required to treat hip dysplasia.
According to the Merck Veterinary Manual, hypothyroidism is a form of autoimmune thyroiditis.7 This condition affects a dog’s thyroid gland leading to a lower metabolism. Diagnosing hypothyroidism can involve laboratory tests and ultrasounds. Dogs diagnosed with this condition are prescribed daily medication.
The Merck Veterinary Manual states that entropion in dogs is an inverted eyelid that causes eyelashes and facial hair to rub against eye tissue.8 If left untreated, entropion can lead to corneal scarring. Surgery is needed to treat established cases.
For more information on how pet insurance can help your Tibetan mastiff, check out our guide on how pet insurance works. Consider signing up for dog insurance while your furry family member is a puppy. While adult and senior Tibetan mastiffs can still benefit from pet insurance, early coverage is key to avoiding pre-existing conditions.