Fun Tibetan Mastiff Facts For Kids

Anusuya Mukherjee
Jan 11, 2023 By Anusuya Mukherjee
Originally Published on Aug 05, 2021
Edited by Luca Demetriou
Read these Tibetan mastiff facts and know more about this dog breed.

Tibetan mastiff is a large Tibetan primitive breed of dog. However, the mastiff dogs are not true mastiff types. The term was used by the early Europeans who visited the high altitude Himalayan region as explorers.

A better name for the Tibetan mastiff would be Tibetan mountain dog or Mastin Tibetano. The Tibetan mastiffs are also found in the neighboring countries of Nepal, China, and Mongolia. The Tibetan mastiff is highly intelligent, independent, and fiercely protective.

Without socialization and assertive training, the mastiff type dog could become aggressive and territorial. The dog was raised as a livestock guardian and herd helper. Mastiff dog life span ranges between 12 -15 years with proper grooming, healthcare, and training.

The Tibetan dog needs a spacious, fenced yard as per its behavior. The Tibetan mastiff may not be comfortable in an apartment or small spaces.

The Tibetan mastiff could be stubborn and aloof most of the time. This breed may not be suitable for first-time pet owners or people staying in urban areas. This dog ranks 132 of 197 by the American Kennel Club as the American Tibetan Mastiff Association is a member of the club.

Tibetan mastiff Interesting Facts

What type of animal is a Tibetan mastiff?

The Tibetan mastiff is a guard dog. It was raised to protect the herds by the nomads of Tibet. The dog is mainly used during the night to keep the herds safe from predators.

It was also trained to guard the family of the herders from intruders. The Tibetan mastiffs are active during the night and sleep during the day. This may not be an ideal condition for families in general.

What class of animal does a Tibetan mastiff belong to?

The Tibetan mastiff belongs to the mammal class. Since it has been working with the humans for a long time and therefore the dog is known to understand humans better.

How many Tibetan mastiffs are there in the world?

It is difficult to put a number to the Tibetan mastiff in the world. But the breed has been a popular one for many years now. It is in fact one of the most popular dog breeds from Tibet amongst children and adults alike.

Where does a Tibetan mastiff live?

The Tibetan mastiffs were bred as guard dogs and were tied outside the house. The dog stayed in the yard and opened ground around the herd.

In the modern-day, too, the dog would be more comfortable in a house with a yard. The dogs of mastiff breeds would not be comfortable staying in a smaller house like an apartment or always tied indoors.

What is a Tibetan mastiff's habitat?

The habitat of Tibetan mastiffs is a high-altitude mountainous region. However, the dog may adjust to lower altitude and cooler climates. But the Tibetan mastiff may not adjust well to the temperate climate. They can thrive well in human households with children as they are extremely independent dogs but require regular grooming.

Who do Tibetan mastiffs live with?

The Tibetan mastiff is known to be man’s companion for the past two centuries now. They are trained to herd guards.

That proves that they can live with humans and other animals too. Due to its guard dog mentality, it may be challenging to keep them in line, especially when they are around strangers. Therefore it is advisable to train them into socialization from an early age.

How long does a Tibetan mastiff live?

The Tibetan mastiff will live for 10-16 years. A healthy diet and regular vigorous exercise with enough mental stimulation will help the Tibetan mastiff with a long and healthy life.

How do they reproduce?

The reproduction process can only take place, when both the male and female dogs are of right age and adequate size. The female must be going through her "heat cycle." The male will mount the female from behind and the entire process can last anywhere between 5-25 minutes.

After that, the pregnancy will last between 52-68 days, after which the female will give birth to the mastiff puppies. The litter size can vary between 5-12 puppies. The Tibetan mastiffs are a primitive breed, and their puppies are cute bears.

What is their conservation status?

The Tibetan mastiff comes under the least conservation status. This guard breed is slowly becoming popular in western countries too. They do not face any serious threats but are susceptible to certain health conditions like canine inherited demyelinative neuropathy which may affect their quality of life.

Tibetan Mastiff Fun Facts

What do Tibetan mastiffs look like?

The Tibetan mastiffs look fiercely protective, and are mature, aloof dogs but they are also caring, understanding and loveable too. With the thick fur and double coat, they look like mini bears. Some Tibetan mastiffs have a lion-like mane around their face too. They also have blue or white markings on their coat.

The fur around a Tibetan mastiff's neck and shoulders is thick.

How cute are they?

The baby Tibetan mastiffs resemble cute teddy bears. The Tibetan mastiffs have the serious look of protector on their faces, but they are as cute as any pets. They are loveable, cute, and playful creatures that love spending time outdoors more.

How do they communicate?

The Tibetan mastiffs are not known to bark a lot until and unless they smell entry of intruders or predators. But if left alone outside without any guidance, they may become aggressive and start barking a lot, especially at night. This breed prefers living by itself and demands attention from time to time.

How big is a Tibetan mastiff?

The Tibetan mastiff is a big dog with a height of almost two feet. This dog breed is bigger and more intimidating than the regular medium and big-sized dogs.

How fast can a Tibetan mastiff run?

The Tibetan mastiff can run up to a speed of 20 mph but only for a short distance. The dog is known to overheat faster in hot and humid weather. It is an ideal jogging or walking partner.

How much does a Tibetan mastiff weigh?

The Tibetan mastiff weighs 85-140 lb. The female Tibetan mastiff may weigh 75-125 lb. With the height and the weight, it gives it a sturdy body and tough image.

What are their male and female names of the species?

The male and female species are called Tibetan mastiffs. Like all other big fluffy dog breeds, the male pooch is known as the dog while the female pooch is known as a bitch.

What would you call a baby Tibetan mastiff?

Like any other dog’s baby, the offspring of a Tibetan mastiff is called a Tibetan mastiff puppy. By appearance, a Tibetan mastiff puppy looks absolutely adorable but is extremely strong willed.

What do they eat?

The Tibetan mastiff can eat all kinds of meats and poultry products. Due to their large size, they will need a balanced diet of good quality protein.

For overall good health and weight for the Tibetan mastiff, it is important to provide an adequate well-balanced diet. The pet parents should make sure not to overfeed or not take them for regular exercise time too.

Are they slobbery?

The Tibetan mastiff is a dry-mouthed breed, which means they don't have a wet mouth constantly. They may only drool after drinking water, if they are nervous and panting from the heat.

Showing meat or eating meat in front of them will make them drool too despite of them being extremely strong willed. Pet parents must make sure that they don't indulge in such activities

Would they make a good pet?

The Tibetan mastiff's high energy level makes it suitable as a guard dog. However, it may be challenging to get these dogs acclimatized to a different surrounding.  It is advisable to start training mastiff dogs from an early age only.

Did you know...

The Tibetan mastiffs are not true mastiffs but are mountain dogs. The Tibetan mastiff is a primitive breed that has been around for at least two centuries now. The Tibetan mastiff puppy is not born with white-colored fur. Some Tibetan mastiffs have heavy fur around their neck, which makes them look like lions.

The Tibetan mastiff doesn’t have the unpleasant odor normally associated with large dogs.

The Tibetan mastiff is known to be stubborn and intelligent and, therefore, should be trained for obedience and positive reinforcement from a very young age.

The Tibetan mastiff may get bored easily, which could cause destructive behavior. For this reason, the Tibetan mastiff requires a well-fenced yard since they have the tendency to roam around.

The Tibetan mastiff is a nocturnal animal. It can relax and sleep indoors during the day, and roam and guard the premises during the night.

The Tibetan mastiff is a slow maturing breed, as they grow almost two feet in height and have proportional weight too, which makes them big-sized.

The Tibetan mastiff has genetic health problems. They may also suffer from hypothyroidism. The Tibetan mastiff must always be walked with a leash to assert that they are not the masters. The Tibetan Mastiff is prone to obesity. The pet parents must be cautious about the food they give their dog.

It is said that two fully grown Tibetan mastiffs can take on lions. Despite their big muscular body, the Tibetan mastiffs are light-footed and fast when they are threatened.

The Tibetan mastiff may suffer from separation anxiety if separated from the pet parents for a longer duration.

Are Tibetan mastiffs good around birds?

The Tibetan mastiffs are herd dogs and are comfortable around livestock and small animals if they're pets and socialized, but in the wild have a tendency to kill birds. The dog must be introduced to the birds as part of their pack and someone they must protect.

Do Tibetan mastiffs prefer the daytime or night-time?

The Tibetan mastiff is trained to be alert and patrolling at night so that it can guard the herds against predators and the family from intruders. So we can say the dog is happier inside during the day, conserving energy to be alert and patrol at night. It has become a nocturnal animal and has a high energy level.

Here at Kidadl, we have carefully created lots of interesting family-friendly animal facts for everyone to discover! You can even occupy yourself at home by drawing one on our Tibetan mastiff coloring pages.

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Written by Anusuya Mukherjee

Bachelor of Arts and Law specializing in Political Science and Intellectual Property Rights

Anusuya Mukherjee picture

Anusuya MukherjeeBachelor of Arts and Law specializing in Political Science and Intellectual Property Rights

With a wealth of international experience spanning Europe, Africa, North America, and the Middle East, Anusuya brings a unique perspective to her work as a Content Assistant and Content Updating Coordinator. She holds a law degree from India and has practiced law in India and Kuwait. Anusuya is a fan of rap music and enjoys a good cup of coffee in her free time. Currently, she is working on her novel, "Mr. Ivory Merchant".

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