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Tibetan Spaniel Dog

tibetan spaniel

Tibetan Spaniel Dog

  • The Tibetan Spaniel is an ancient breed from Asia. Depictions of small dogs with pushed-in faces and lionlike coats date back centuries in China and Tibet.It’s believed that Buddhist monks, known as lamas, bred the little dogs to sound the alarm if anyone approached the lamasery. With the ruff of thick fur around their neck and the richly plumed tail, they were said to resemble little lions. In Buddhist symbology, lions represent Buddha’s triumph over violence and aggression, so dogs with a lionlike appearance were popular.

    The dogs were frequently given as gifts to ambassadors and other notables, with dogs from those countries being received in return. Thus the Tibetan dogs made their way to the courts of China and Japan, where they no doubt interbred with other small Asian dogs. Today’s Tibetan Spaniel probably shares a common ancestry with the Japanese Chin and the Pekingese.

    Often bred by Tibetan villagers as well as lamas, early dogs of this type came in a wide range of sizes. The smallest, most prized puppies were given to the lamaseries where they were probably bred with the more elegant dogs that arrived as gifts from China.

    During the late 19th century, the first Tibetan Spaniel was brought to England by Mrs. McLaren Morris. More arrived in the 1920s, courtesy of Dr. Agnes R. H. Greig, who sent some of the dogs to her mother. The breed gained some popularity, but its foothold in England was almost completely wiped out during World War II. In 1947, after several successful breedings and importations, the breed began to recover in England. In 1958, The Tibetan Spaniel Association was formed and in 1960 England’s Kennel Club recognized the breed.

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Tibetan Spaniel Dog

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