AKC Group: Non-sporting
14 - 17 inches (Male)
20 - 30 pounds (Male)
Tibetan Terriers are lively and playful, so they need daily exercise. They're usually friendly with strangers, kids and other pets. They're stubborn, however, and hard to housebreak. When they bark, they make an unusual sound that resembles a siren on a fire truck.
Straight or wavy with lots of hair on the face. Brush or comb at least every other day. Tail curls over back; ears hang down; feet are webbed.
White, gold, gray, silver, black, patched and shaded. Eyes are dark, and nose is black.
The Tibetan Terrier is not really a terrier but actually a herding dog. Over time, the sheepherding and flock-guarding dogs who served the hardworking people of Tibet developed their own identities through their work, and two in particular emerged: the Tibetan Mastiff, for guarding, and the Tibetan Terrier, for herding. Tibetan Terriers also provided a first line of defense, often alerting the Tibetan Mastiffs to intruders in a village or on a farm.
The Tibetan Terrier was introduced to the West by Dr. H.R. Grieg, an English physician. She was given several by a patient whose life she saved and also by the Dalai Lama. She brought the dogs back to the United Kingdom with her, where she started a kennel. The Tibetan Terrier was recognized by the Kennel Club (KC) in 1937 and the American Kennel Club (AKC) in 1973.
Having watched over and been adored by the Tibetan lamas for centuries, the Tibetan Terrier has mastered companionship. He is typically outgoing and friendly, although he can be reserved with strangers. Protective of his family, he makes an excellent watchdog. This warm and affectionate dog bonds closely with his family.
The Tibetan Terrier is extremely adaptive to his family, accommodating those with more easygoing lifestyles as well as those who are more active. Truly versatile, he can live just about anywhere, provided he gets the companionship and attention he loves. He is a true watchdog, which means that he likes to bark! The Tibetan Terrier is a very low shedder and so is often recommended for allergy sufferers. He loves to travel and is happy to accompany his owner on any dog-friendly outing. Not known as a roamer, it's still important to exercise him in a secured area or on leash because he is not known for a reliable recall.
The Tibetan Terrier is an excellent jumper and is quite agile, making him an able participant in outdoor activities and dog sports. He enjoys high-energy sports like agility and flyball, and he does just fine at obedience.
The medium-sized Tibetan Terrier enjoys getting outside and exploring and playing. He is content to spend as much time exercising as his owner desires, which can be a lot or a little. If he isn't taken for many walks, though, he needs the physical (and mental) stimulation of playtime and extra attention.
The Tibetan Terrier is a good eater who should be fed a high-quality food twice a day. Be careful not to overfeed or succumb to his imploring eyes when it's your turn to eat. (His desire will show through even the hair that falls in his face!)
Intelligent and responsive, the Tibetan Terrier also has a stubborn side that can tax you to the limits. However, when trained with positive methods that inspire and encourage him, the breed learns quickly and will do almost anything.
The Tibetan Terrier adores children and loves to play and invent games with them. His protectiveness can manifest as territorial behavior with other dogs, and socialization is recommended from puppyhood.
The average life span of the Tibetan Terrier is 12 to 16 years. Health problems may include canine ceroid lipofuscinosis (CCL); cataracts; hip dysplasia; hypothyroidism; lens luxation; patellar luxation; and progressive retinal atrophy (PRA).
The Tibetan Terrier's Tibetan name is Dhoki Apso.
His long, fine outercoat and woolly undercoat make for a grooming challenge. To prevent tangles or mats, he needs to be brushed and combed frequently using a pin brush, slicker and a comb.
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