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Tibetan Spaniel

Group: Toys (Group 1)
Club: Tibetan Spaniel Association Of Victoria Inc
Contact: Lisa Woolley
Phone: 0409 135745

Brief History
From the roof top of the world comes the Tibetan Spaniel, ordained with the duty of sentinel work in the remote and almost inaccessible monasteries of Tibet. Tibetan Spaniels have led an isolated existence for millennia. Tibetan Spaniels were used as watchdogs in the monasteries, where they sat atop the high walls scanning the horizon for friend or foe, ready to sound the alarm and give orders for the imposing and brawny Tibetan Mastiffs to stand guard. To keep warm in the bitter climate of Tibet, the monks would also use them as night-time bed warmers and day-time body warmers by stowing them inside their sleeves.

Average Life Span
When considering a dog, please realise that you are taking it on for its lifetime.
The average life span is 12 to 15 years

Intelligent, inquisitive, watchful, lively, alert, independent, stubborn, Tibetan Spaniels are aloof with strangers but loving and loyal to their families.

General Breed Description
The Tibetan Spaniel is a healthy, active little dog whose body shape is longer than most breeds his size. His headpiece is distinct, giving a haughty appearance that breed enthusiasts refer to as being ‘ape like’. His strong, blunt muzzle, oval eyes and the domed skull all contribute to this look. He is small but strong and hardy for his size. His coat and mane add to his exotic appeal and a plumed tail completes the picture. Folklore tells us he is part dog, part cat and part monkey - he has the faithfulness and watchfulness of the dog, the independence and curiosity of the cat and the cleverness and mischievousness of the monkey. Tibetan Spaniels come in a range of colours from white, cream, gold, red, through to black, all with or without patches of white.

Coat and Care Requirements
Tibetan Spaniels have a double coat, which means a fluffy insulating undercoat to keep them warm in the winter and cool in the summer and a longer outer coat. They do not have an offensive doggy odour; hence they may not need as regular a bath in comparison to many other breeds of dogs. The adult Tibetan Spaniel generally sheds coat once a year during summer. There should not really be the need for them to be trimmed. They are not renowned for unflagging obedience, so should always be kept on a lead in public and accommodated in an escape-proof yard.

Height: 25cms (10ins).
Weight: 4.1 to 6.8kgs.

All breeds have individual health issues. When speaking to breeders it is recommended you enquire about the breed’s health and what health testing the breeder does. The Tibetan Spaniel is generally a healthy breed, however health conditions do occur occasionally. These may include a condition called Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA) but responsible breeders test their breeding stock prior to breeding. Other things to be aware of are watery eyes, cherry eye and umbilical hernias.

Tibetan Spaniels make an ideal pet for most people, though perhaps not if you want unfaltering obedience, as they can be stubborn. As with all dogs, young children and pets should always be supervised when together. They are amiable with other dogs and cats, once properly acquainted.

In Conclusion
Now you know a little more about this breed. If you have decided this is the dog for you and wish to investigate further, please contact the Breed Club or Dogs Victoria. They will be able to give you information about available puppies and also suggest dog events where you can see the breed and speak to breeders. In this way you will gain a better perspective of the breed and its needs.  With any breed of dog, it is important to research and determine suitability for your lifestyle before committing to a puppy which will be a part of your family for many years to come.

Whilst many breeds are recommended for families, it is imperative that when children are with dogs they are supervised at all times. Basic obedience training is a vital part of dog ownership.

Dogs Victoria is about the responsible ownership of all dogs and in particular the preservation of pure breeds.

Link to ANKC Breed Standard:

Registered Breeders