Tibetan Terrier

The hairy and fluffy Tibetan Terrier was bred for the purpose of being the best possible companion and family pet there is. They can easily adapt to any sort of living situations and they absolutely love being around people and having company.

Their name is a bit misleading as they are not true Terriers. Traditional Terrier breeds love to dig and are usually great in vermin control. These dogs are fluffy, kind, and sweet-natured so it shouldn’t surprise you that many of them are employed as therapy or support dogs.

They have a thick double coat that was a necessity for them as they were living in a cold Tibetan climate. Their coat is mostly unchanged to this day and they are best suited for households that are located in a colder climate. However, they can adapt well to any living conditions. They are affectionate and very loving with their families and are usually really friendly towards strangers so if you are looking for a guard or watchdog, maybe go with a breed that is not as friendly as this one.

Tibetan Terrier Height

Height:

14–17 in (35–43 cm)

Tibetan Terrier Weight

Weight:

18-30 lb (8-14 kg)

Tibetan Terrier Origin

Origin:

Tibet (China)

Tibetan Terrier Life Expectancy

Life Expectancy:

15-16 years

Breed History

These Tibetan dogs, much like Lhasa Apsos, were considered to bring good luck so they were never sold. You could only get one if you were gifted by someone who bred this breed. They were bred by Tibetan monks in the monasteries but were not exclusively owned by them. These dogs kept company to Tibetan shepherds while they were doing their daily tasks with and around their flock.

Dog Breed Characteristics

Energy Level
Grooming Needs
Exercise Needs
Trainability
Intelligence
Kid Friendly
Dog Friendly
General Health

FCI standard

The Tibetan Terriers became popular quite fast because of their great nature and character and they spread around the world rather quickly after first leaving Tibet. It shouldn’t come as a big surprise that this breed is registered and recognized by most of the major cynology associations in the world. The biggest cynology union in the world is the Federation Cynologique Internationale or the FCI. They have a standard in place for these dogs and the standard placed them in Group 9 (Companion and Toy Dogs) Section 5 (Tibetan breeds). Being a companion breed, it is not required of them to undergo a working trial.

This standard has a required size for the Tibetan Terrier and it is 14 - 16,3 in (36 - 41 cm) for the male dogs. It is only noted that females should be a bit smaller. This standard says nothing of their required weight.

This breed was registered by the FCI on the 18th of December 1957.

AKC standard

The national cynology association in the United States of America is called the American Kennel Club and it is a very old and prestigious institution. First specimens of the Tibetan Terriers were brought to the USA in the 1950s and a breeding club was formed soon after. This breed is accepted by the AKC and it has a standard in place. The AKC standard describes these dogs as being medium-sized dogs that are “profusely coated”.

The required size according to this standard for the male Tibetan Terriers is 14 - 17 in (35 - 43 cm) and females should be slightly smaller. Their average weight is between 18 and 30 lbs (8 - 14 kg).

This breed was registered by the American Kennel Club in 1973.

Grooming

Tibetan Terrier has a soft and wooly undercoat and an abundant outer coat. Their coat requires regular and daily brushing to keep the coat without tangles and mats.

Tibetan Terrier coat colors:

  • Any color combination of colors

The rest is basic care; trim their nails when needed (if they don't wear them down naturally), brush their teeth weekly to prevent tartar buildup and bacteria development. Regularly check their ears for any sign of redness or a bad odor that can indicate an infection. You can wipe their ears with the cotton ball dipped into an ear cleaner. The key for your dog to get used to all things mentioned above is to start early with them. Make a positive experience for the dog, full of praises and rewards, and you can be sure that your dog will enjoy all these things when they grow up.

Exercise

Tibetan Terrier dogs are medium active and they will need a proper amount of daily activities to be happy. Playing with his owner in the house, chasing the ball, or just long walks can all do the trick and keep this dog satisfied. If you provide him with enough daily activities you don’t have to worry that your dog will miss behaving.

Socialization

Like any other dog breed, the Tibetan Terrier should start the socialization process as soon as possible. Dogs that are not well socialized are prone to behavioral problems and might react badly to situations they are not familiar with. 

There are many ways you can socialize your Tibetan Terrier, and the most important thing to do is to get your dog familiar with different situations they can find themselves in. Take your dog to dog parks where they can meet other dogs and people. They can learn to react accordingly and understand that they don’t need to be scared of strangers and other dogs.

Kids

Early socialization and proper training can teach them to behave even when children are around.  These dogs can play for hours upon hours without getting tired or bored.

Children should never be left alone with any dog, no matter what breed it might be. You should make sure that your children understand how to approach dogs of this breed and understand how to interact and play with them properly.

Other animals

Tibetan Terrier gets along with other dogs and animals including cats and even smaller animals. 

Health problems

Tibetan Terriers are dogs with a life expectancy of 15-16 years. Like any other dog breed, they are prone to some health problems that every (future) owner should be aware of. To be sure that you'll get the healthiest possible dog, never buy a dog from a puppy mill breeder or a pet store. Tibetan Terriers can suffer from 

  • Hip dysplasia - Genetic problem affecting hips resulting from an improperly formed hip joint.
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy - Group of diseases that affect the retina and cause it to deteriorate over time.
  • Lens luxation

To be sure that your dog will be healthy always buy him from a responsible dog breeder who regularly tests their breeding dogs to secure that their puppies will be healthy as well.

Tibetan Terrier breeders

This is a lovely dog breed and it is no wonder many of us decided to get one of these dogs. One of the best characteristics about them is their lovely character. That can only be preserved and saved by reputable Tibetan Terrier breeders. If you want to buy a Tibetan Terrier, make sure you find a good breeder that is taking proper care of their dogs. Good breeders are knowledgeable of the breed they are breeding and will gladly answer any question you might ask them about their dogs.

Buying a dog from a responsible breeder will cost you more money, but you can be sure that you will get a healthy puppy. When you bring your new puppy home start with the training and socialization immediately. If you devote your time and energy to this dog, you can be sure that you will end up with a companion for life.

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World Dog Finder team

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Updated at07.07.2020.

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