Tibetan Spaniel

9-15 lbs
Highly independent and sweet, the Tibetan Spaniel was originally bred by Buddhist monks in Tibet. The breed resembles a lion which was considered an important symbol in Buddhism. While its appearance resembles a Pekingese, the Tibetan Spaniel has a slightly longer face without the extra skin. Its body is longer than it is tall in height and the domed head is small when in proportion to its body. The muzzle of this breed is of medium length and without wrinkles. The eyes are dark and set well apart and this attractive dog has a double-coat that is silky and flat. With a feathered tail that is set high and carried over its back, the Tibetan Spaniel has a neck that is covered with a longish mane. The original purpose of this loyal dog was to serve as a watchdog and as a companion. Due to the nature of its bark, it made for an effective watchdog and alerted its owners to any dangers. Regular grooming is recommended for coat upkeep, such as daily brushing and combing to remove mats. This breed is considered to have moderate energy and it is important to maintain its mental and physical stimulation to prevent boredom.
purpose Purpose
watchdog, companion
history Date of Origin
ancient times
ancestry Ancestry
pekingese, pug, japanese chin

Tibetan Spaniel Health

Sketch of Tibetan Spaniel
Average Size
Male Tibetan Spaniel size stats
Height: 8-11 inches Weight: 9-15 lbs
Female Tibetan Spaniel size stats
Height: 8-11 inches Weight: 9-15 lbs
Major Concerns
  • Entropion
Minor Concerns
  • Usually A Very Healthy Breed
Occasional Diagnoses
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy
  • Patellar Luxation
Occasional Tests
  • Eye
  • Knee
  • X-Rays
  • Eye Examination
  • Physical Examination

Tibetan Spaniel Breed History

The Tibetan Spaniel originated from Tibet, hence the breed name. The exact time of origin for the Tibetan Spaniel is unknown but there is some documentation to indicate that the breed has been around since 1100 BC. It is often believed that the Tibetan Spaniels were given as gifts to houses of royalty and because of this, the dog gained a following. The Tibetan Spaniel was regarded as the ‚Äúlittle lion‚ÄĚ which placed great value on the breed. Its ancestors are said to have been developed from the Pekingese, the Pug, and the Japanese Chin. It is also said that the Tibetan and Chinese dogs were interbred at some point. The original purpose of this brave and alert canine was to guard the monasteries and prevent intruders from invading the land. The breed would sit on high walls and would bark at strangers or wolves on the outside. Their ability to see great distances made them excellent watchdogs. The Tibetan Spaniel was also known as the prayer dog since it would run on a treadmill to turn a prayer wheel. In the 1890s, the Tibetan Spaniel appeared in England but was not bred until the 1920s. Dr. Agnes R. H. Greig is credited with obtaining several dogs in order to promote what would become known as the modern-day Tibetan Spaniel. In the 1960s, the Tibetan Spaniel arrived in the United States. The first Tibetan Spaniel born in the U.S. was parented by two previously imported dogs from a Tibetan monastery. In 1971, the Tibetan Spaniel Club of America was founded with 14 charter members. In 1984, the Tibetan Spaniel was officially recognized by the AKC.¬†

Tibetan Spaniel Breed Appearance

The Tibetan Spaniel is longer than it is tall. It has a small head and a short muzzle with ears containing long tufts of hair. The eyes of this spunky breed are set apart which may create for an odd look, but to some this is an endearing feature. Its tail is long and feathery. Its paws contain hair growing between the toes. Adorned with a double coat with a silky texture of thin density, it is not considered water repellent but can be beautiful, coming in a combination of black, black and tan, cream, gold, red, sable, silver-sable, and white with parti-color or white markings. The head of the Tibetan Spaniel is small in proportion to its body. Its eyes are dark brown in color and oval-shaped giving this dog expressions that are impressionable. This affectionate dog has ears that are medium-sized and pendant, with a skull that is slightly domed and of moderate length and width. Its teeth are evenly placed. This Spaniel is built with a moderately short neck, strong, and well-set. The shoulders are well-placed and firm; the hindquarters are strong and well-developed. These features allow for an agile gait that is quick-moving and positive.

Appearance of Tibetan Spaniel
Eye Color Possibilities
brown Tibetan Spaniel eyes
Nose Color Possibilities
black Tibetan Spaniel nose
Coat Color Possibilities
black Tibetan Spaniel coat
white Tibetan Spaniel coat
cream Tibetan Spaniel coat
red Tibetan Spaniel coat
sable Tibetan Spaniel coat
Coat Length
Short Medium Long
Coat Density
coat density
Sparse Normal Dense
Coat Texture
coat texture
Tibetan Spaniel straight coat texture
Straight Wiry Wavy Curly Corded

Tibetan Spaniel Breed Maintenance

The Tibetan Spaniel is not hypoallergenic and does shed moderately. In order to help with shedding upkeep, it is important to brush your dog daily as well as comb through the coat. This will help prevent knots and mats. Bathing your dog should be limited to every 6 to 8 weeks as necessary, as more frequent baths will lead to overproduction of oils in the skin. Ears should be wiped and cleaned weekly to prevent buildup of earwax. The Tibetan Spaniel does not have any significant smells. Its activity level is considered of moderate energy so it is important to provide proper exercise such as walks or playtime in a yard. Apartment living is suitable as long as it is accompanied by enough mental and physical stimulation to keep this energetic canine happy. The Tibetan Spaniel is known for barking frequently if training is not introduced. The Tibetan Spaniel would be able to live in either an urban or rural environment and can thrive in both hot and cold climates due to its double coat. There is no specific diet for the Tibetan Spaniel.

Brushes for Tibetan Spaniel
Pin Brush
Pin Brush
Nail Clipper
Nail Clipper
Brushing Frequency
fur daily fur weekly fur monthly
Tibetan Spaniel requires daily brushing
Daily Weekly Monthly

Tibetan Spaniel Temperament

The Tibetan Spaniel is considered a friendly and affectionate companion. This spirited dog is also fiercely independent in the field and loves to be able to watch over its family while also running around its environment. The Tibetan Spaniel will welcome family members and enjoy the presence of children. The Tibetan Spaniel may need to be trained to accept friendly strangers as it may bark at intruders it deems a danger. Very charming and trusting with familiar people, this breed also makes an effective watchdog and will inform its family of any incoming strangers. The Tibetan Spaniel would need training to be able to accept other animals and to tolerate unfamiliar pets. The Tibetan Spaniel is considered to be of medium energy and might be stubborn for training. An intelligent animal, this Spaniel requires patience and time in order to excel at obedience. 

Activity Level
low activity medium activity high activity
Low Medium High
Rec. Walk Mileage Per Week
6 miles
walk mileage
Minutes of Activity Per Day
30 minutes
activity minutes

Tibetan Spaniel Food Consumption

Cups Per Day
0.7 cups
Daily Cost
$0.85 - $1.00
food bowls daily cost
Monthly Cost
$25.00 - $30.00
food bag monthly cost

Tibetan Spaniel Height & Weight

6 Months
Sketch of Tibetan Spaniel at six months
Male Tibetan Spaniel size stats at six months
Height: 5.5 inches Weight: 8.0 lbs
Female Tibetan Spaniel size stats at six months
Height: 5.5 inches Weight: 8.0 lbs
12 Months
Sketch of Tibetan Spaniel at 12 months
Male Tibetan Spaniel size stats at 12 months
Height: 9.5 inches Weight: 10.5 lbs
Female Tibetan Spaniel size stats at 12 months
Height: 9.5 inches Weight: 10.5 lbs
18 Months
Sketch of Tibetan Spaniel at 18 months
Male Tibetan Spaniel size stats at 18 months
Height: 9.5 inches Weight: 12.0 lbs
Female Tibetan Spaniel size stats at 18 months
Height: 9.5 inches Weight: 12.0 lbs

Tibetan Spaniel Owner Experiences

8 Years
6 People
House & Yard
He just loves dogs cats and children and I knew it he also loves watching television and swimming as well well he just loves it and I love it to
2 years, 4 months ago
8 Years
2 People
House & Yard
Had two Tibbies originally but lost one last year. Courtney is the only one left. She sleeps with me at night. Have morning routine with her (usually a walk). She is enjoyed by everyone in the neighborhood. She visits and is always invited in their homes. She is laid back, friendly and social with everyone. When we travel, she has a babysitter that adores her. She can be hard to get her to take her flea/tick pill so I crush it and put it into a bowl of baby food (all gone). She loves her treats. Good passenger when going for a ride. Loves to ride while looking out the passenger window. Love to lay on the couch or on the top seat cushion of the couch. Each afternoon ‚Äúwe‚ÄĚ have nap time.
6 years, 1 month ago
1 Year
5 People
Lenny was a rescue from a Korean meat market..we got him straight from Korea (picked him up from the airport) he is very protective and a very good guard dog . He is very very sweet with only a few people. He will growl and bite anyone else. Luckily he is small and can do little damage. He loves our 2 other dogs and will tolerate the cat
6 years, 1 month ago
6 Years
1 People
House & Yard
I got him as a rescue when he was two years old. I am 80 years old and he is a perfect companion. He is crate trained for sleeping at night but loves to nap with me on the bed during the day. His favorite places are in my lap, on the back of the couch and lying next to me when I'm on the computer, reading or watching TV. He does not like strange dogs when he is on a leash and will bark aggressively but at the dog park off leash he is comfortable with all dogs but seldom plays with them.
3 years, 2 months ago
Book me a walkiee?
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