Tibetan Spaniel
Photo courtesy of: Ravi Bhullar,
Mississauga, on, Canada 2003
Rocky from: Marshmere Kennel

Breed Registries:

Note: The breed registries indicated above are the most recognized all-breed registries. The breed may also be recognized by other registries not indicated here. For further details about dog registries, please see the document: Dog Breed Registries in North America.

* — The Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI) is the World Canine Organisation, which includes members (one member per country) that each issue their own pedigrees and train their own judges. The FCI recognizes 332 breeds, with each being the "property" of a specific country. The FCI is not a breed registry nor does it issue pedigrees.




Approximately 10 inches at the shoulder


Between 9 and 15 lbs.

Breed Profile:

Originating in the Himalayan mountains of Tibet, the Tibetan Spaniel has been known for over 2,000 years. Bred and owned by Buddhist monks and lamas, "Tibbies" were never sold. They left the monasteries of Tibet only as treasured gifts to esteemed friends.

Legend has it that the Tibetan Spaniels were used to turn the prayer wheels in the monasteries. Although this legend is doubted, they did serve the monks as companions and bed warmers. With their keen sight and hearing, the Tibbies acted as lookouts, lying on the high monestary walls and barking, warning the monks and larger Tibetan Mastiffs whenever anything approached.

Tibetan Spaniels are small, well-balanced dogs measuring about 10 inches at the shoulder. They are alert, intelligent, and do not bark excessively or unnecessarily. Although small, they are quite sturdy, good with other pets and children. However, because of their size, care should be taken when being handled by smaller children.

Like all Tibetan breeds, Tibbies have a double coat — a soft undercoat for warmth and a moderately long, silky outercoat which lies flat.

Health Issues

Like all breeds of dogs, the Tibetan Spaniel may be prone to certain illnesses, the Health Issues document outlines some of the health concerns found in this breed.

If you are considering the adoption of a Tibetan Spaniel puppy, or any breed, it is very important to be selective in choosing a responsible and reputable breeder. Ensure that the prospective puppy's parents have all health clearances. Breeding of any dog should not be done until after they have been proven to be free of evidence of significant hereditary diseases. (For more information on selecting a breeder, see the articles on the main Breed Listing and Breeders page.)

Additional Health Resources:

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Breed Standards

Grooming Information

  • Grooming — This section of the Canada's Guide to Dogs website includes tips, articles and information covering all aspects of dog grooming along with a listing of Groomers from across Canada.

Training Resources

  • Training — For training information, see this growing section of the Canada's Guide to Dogs website for tips, articles, as well as listings of training centres across Canada.

Training Tools & Equipment
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Additional Information

  • The Dog for Cat People — Looking for a low-maintenance apartment dog? The Tibetan Spaniel may be for you, says this breeder.
  • Tibetan Spaniel Network — The source for Tibetan Spaniel breed history and breed-related information — The number one Internet resource for Tibbie owners around the world.
  • Clubs, Sports & Activities — For information on the many sports and activities you can get involved in with your dog.
  • Working Dogs — The Working Dogs section of the Canada's Guide to Dogs website provides information and listings of organizations that are involved in various dog jobs, such as Guide Dogs, Therapy Dogs, Police Dogs, Protection Dogs, and much more.

Select from the following links to view Breeder listings; Breed Clubs; Rescue Organizations; as well as Books and other Merchandise specific to the breed:

Breeders  /  Breed Clubs  /  Rescues  /  Books & More