Tibetan Terriers are from Tibet, but they're not actually terriers. They're terrier-sized, but that's where the similarities end. These “Holy Dogs” were once considered bringers of luck by the Tibetan monks who bred and raised them. They also accompanied nomadic herders across frozen, high-altitude plateaus to protect their tents. Their broad, flat feet work similarly to snowshoes, helping these dogs navigate slippery, snowy terrain.
These days, though, Tibetan Terriers are more likely to be canine companions than tent guards. Some also work as therapy dogs.
Originally from Tibet, this medium-sized and medium-energy breed can grow to between 20-24 pounds and lives an average of 15-16 years. The breed is recognized by the American Kennel Club and classified as a member of the Non-Sporting group.
|Breed's original pastime||Companion|
|Average lifespan||15-16 years|
|Date of origin||Ancient times|
|Original function||Herder, good luck, companion|
|Average size of male||Height: 15-16 Weight: 20-24|
|Average size of female||Height: 15-16 Weight: 20-24|
|Energy level||Medium energy|
|Affection level||Very affectionate|
|Friendliness toward other dogs||Friendly|
|Friendliness toward other pets||Friendly|
|Friendliness toward strangers||Shy|
|Ease of training||Moderately easy to train|
|Protection ability||Moderately protective|
|Grooming needs||High maintenance|
|Cold tolerance||Medium tolerance|
|Heat tolerance||Medium tolerance|
BEHAVIOR & TRAINING
WHAT IS A TIBETAN TERRIER'S PERSONALITY LIKE?
Affectionate Tibetan Terriers bond closely with their chosen people. They get along well with supervised children and will play well with other supervised dogs. This dog is very curious and occasionally mischievous; keep an eye out for her canine comedic stylings. This sensitive soul will be sympathetic toward her owners, but might be shy around strangers.
WHAT IS TIBETAN TERRIER BEHAVIOR LIKE?
This is a very active breed. Tibetan Terriers are agile and — as you might expect from a dog bred for guard work — very alert. Plan for brisk daily walks, energetic romps, and exploratory missions along local park paths. This breed will also joyfully keep you company on hikes or jogs.
Tibetan Terriers are often especially vocal; they'll be sure to let you know when they have something on their minds.
HOW EASY IS IT TO TRAIN A TIBETAN TERRIER?
Tibetan Terriers are clever and somewhat stubborn dogs. Be patient and consistent while training this furry friend. Reward good behaviors with treats, play, and praise. This smarty-paws is easily bored, so keep training sessions short and fun; avoid repetition. Her wanderlust is real, though; be sure to restrict off-leash play to well-fenced, traffic-free areas.
If properly motivated, Tibetan Terriers excel in obedience, agility, and rally dog sports.
CARE & HEALTH
HOW MUCH DO TIBETAN TERRIERS SHED AND WHAT ARE THEIR GROOMING NEEDS?
Tibetan Terriers' distinctive, thick double coats are long and fine on the outside and woolly underneath. They are seasonal (though very infrequent) shedders who require weekly grooming. Plan to brush them regularly to prevent mats and tangles.
WHAT HEALTH PROBLEMS DO TIBETAN TERRIERS HAVE?
As a breed, Tibetan Terriers are generally healthy. Some are prone to cancer, eye disease, deafness, slipping kneecaps, hip dysplasia, thyroid issues, and neurodegenerative disorders (that is, conditions caused by a progressive atrophy or death of the brain's nerve cells).