Despite their ferocious look and huge demeanour, Tibetan Mastiffs are in fact friendly and highly affectionate to the people they know. He is a hard worker and a great protector of the family who can even topple multiple threats.
Tibetan Mastiffs, who can weigh over a whopping 70 kg, and was once a traditional guardian of Tibetan monasteries. The ancestors of these dogs has a history that dates back to over 5000 years back. Some experts consider this breed to be the oldest ancestor of all large mountain breeds and Mastiff breeds. Over time, he became an excellent family companion and spent more time indoors. They are absolutely loyal to the humans they know and also do well with children.
The Tibetan Mastiff has a double coat consisting of long, thick fur and a heavy, soft, woolly undercoat. Interestingly, their undercoat becomes thinner in the warmer months. Yet, people should not own this dog if they are living in hot climates as the weather can really take a toll on this breed. Another peculiarity regarding its “coat” is that it can never get curly, wavy or silky. Tibetan Mastiff's heavy mane on their shoulders commands respect even for those who see them from afar. Colors can be black, brown, gold and blue, with or without tan marks above and around the eyes. The hair doesn't fall out too much, but it's good to brush it at least twice a week to remove the excess. You can use a wide-toothed comb to brush these dogs as it will glide through their thick hairs quite easily. Regular combing is essential to prevent tangling and matting of their hair.
As Tibetan Mastiffs are big dogs, you need to feed them a lot of food ranging from 4 to 6 cups. The portion size of the food will depend on how active your dog is and also their life stage as well. Also, you may have to divide their meals to avoid the problem of bloating, as it is a common problem in most large breed dogs. Talking about nutrition, Tibetan Mastiff puppies require up to 25% protein content to support their overall growth and development. Adult Tibetan Mastiffs on the other hand needs 100% all natural diet with no fillers, in order to keep them free of allergic reactions. Their diet should consists of read-meat as it will provide them the necessary protein and other essential vitamins and minerals. When it comes to senior dogs, it is suggested to give them a low-calorie diet as they won't be much active in their mature years. Pay attention to their weight as they can get obese quickly mainly due to their inactivity.
Tibetan Mastiffs need to be groomed regularly in order to keep them healthy and hygienic. Also, these are dogs who will shed their hair depending on the climate for staying cool. If you see them shedding their hair, you may have to do extra brushing for keeping their coat from looking messy. For brushing their hair, you can use a wire slicker brush to prevent matting and tangling of the hair. You can also use a wide-toothed comb that would easily glide down through your dog's skin. Regarding bathing, you can bathe these dogs twice a month. While you are washing these dogs, make sure you apply the shampoo also as it is essential to keep their double coat clean. Shampoos also go a long way in repelling the external parasites which often causes itching and scratching in the dogs. You may also use a light conditioner to nourish and hydrate each stands of their hair so that the coat remains healthy and shiny.
The heavy and bulky coat makes the animal uncomfortable in very hot and humid climates. When the temperature rises, make sure he always has shade and fresh water to withstand the heat.
As the name itself suggests, Tibetan Mastiffs originated in Tibet though there is little documented history about their past beyond 1800. Yet, this breed is believed to have been around for many centuries. There has been DNA evidence of several mastiff type dogs that originated in Tibet and there is a high possibility that Tibetan Mastiffs too evolved from these dogs. In 1847, the first dog from Tibet was imported to England and given to Queen Victoria as a gift from Lord Hardinge, the then Viceroy of India. In 1873, England's Kennel Club was formed and the Tibetan Mastiff got this name, leaving its earlier title as "large dog from Tibet" behind.