A white, fluffy dog with a square shaped head, long, grey, floppy ears, big, dark circular eyes and a dark nose, sits on a grassy bank.

Tibetan Terrier

Need some good luck? The Tibetan Terrier may be the charm you need (more on that below...). These medium sized doggies love being around people, don’t shed their long locks and will always try to cheer you up.

These pups have been around for thousands of years and continue to be a well loved pet. To find out more about this adorable breed and see cute pictures and quotes from the BorrowMyDoggy community, read on.

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Doggy member, Misty the Tibetan Terrier

What is a Tibetan Terrier dog?

Tibetan Terriers are long haired medium-sized companion dogs. They usually stand at about 35 - 40 cm and weigh around 10 kg. Their size and colouring is very varied so they might be confused for other breeds. Their lifespan is usually more than 12 years.

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Can you see the similarity between doggy members, Dougie (above) and Ozzie and Pip (below)?

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Strangely enough, the Tibetan Terrier is not actually a Terrier. This misnomer came about when European travellers came across the breed and thought it looked like the Terriers they’d seen back at home.

The first part of their name is more accurate - the breed originates from the Tibetan plateau where they remained pure-bred for thousands of years. In fact, Tibetan Terriers were seen as a good luck charm for families and villages and were known as “little people” due to their fondness of humans. Selling or mistreating a Tibetan Terrier was seen as bad luck. Perhaps due to this charmed history in Tibet, these pups didn’t make it to the UK until 1922 when they were imported by an English doctor.

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Doggy member, Benji the Tibetan Terrier

In terms of use, Tibetan Terriers are a jack of all trades (maybe due to their long history in isolated Tibet). They were (and still are) cherished companion dogs but also traditionally helped guard their owners’ homes, herd livestock and retrieve items when they fell down mountainsides.

Other Tibetan dog breeds include the Tibetan Spaniel, the Lhasa Apso and the Tibetan Mastiff. The Shih Tzu, although developed in China, is likely to have originally come from Tibet.

What about all that hair?

Dog grooming may become a new hobby if you own or borrow a Tibetan Terrier. This is a very shaggy dog breed! The Tibetan Terrier’s double coat is designed to withstand very cold temperatures. But, despite appearances, Tibetan Terriers do not shed like other dogs but rather lose hair in a similar way to humans as the hair has a longer life cycle.

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Dougie, showing off his beautiful coat

Tibetan Terriers will need daily grooming to avoid tangles in their thick, long coat. Of course, some owners will choose to trim their coats shorter which can make it easier to keep knots at bay.

Can they see through their long hair? Yes! Tibetan Terriers have very good eyesight and long eyelashes which help to keep the hair out of their eyes (although note that eye problems can be common in the breed, so breeders should be asked about this if you’re looking to buy a Tibetan Terrier puppy).

How much exercise does a Tibetan Terrier need?

Tibetan Terriers don’t need much exercise to keep them happy - up to one hour of dog walks and playtime per day should suit them fine. Each dog is different, so some may require more while others will be happy with less - many of our members say their Tibetan Terriers enjoy quick bursts of running or more leisurely dog walks.

Bodhi, owned by Sophie, says:

“Bodhi is a very handsome, fun loving, intelligent fellow. He loves to play with other dogs, walks, catching a ball, has a certain prowess at football...He’s very good with children...got tonnes of character and is very loving and loyal to anyone who loves him (and gives him a walk, food etc etc )!”

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Woodie the Tibetan Terrier

What is the Tibetan Terrier’s temperament?

Tibetan Terriers are, by all accounts, lovely dogs to be around. They are amiable, affectionate and sensitive to their owner’s needs. Our members tell it best:

Milo, owned by Vanessa: “He is a very loving dog. He shares home life with cats, a hamster and young children.”

Ozzie and Pip, owned by Natalia: “Ozzie and Pip are beautiful family members. They love to play & cuddle & run (when they are outside). What they need the most is company - they will happily lie next to you on the sofa or in bed and keep you company. They are both excellent with children of all ages and are particularly responsive and sweet with young children. Both Oz and Pip like being stroked and Pip loves to be cuddled and fussed over.”

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Poppy and Puddles, Tibetan Terriers

Tibetan Terrier training: are Tibetan Terriers easy to train?

Due to their history of mixed activities, each Tibetan Terrier is likely to be different in terms of trainability.

As with all dogs, consistent training from a young age will help teach Tibetan Terrier puppies what’s right and wrong. Socialising a Tibetan Terrier regularly will also help them get used to new people and other animals, as sometimes they can be a bit clingy to their owner. Check out our dedicated dog training page for some fun training videos to try out.

Tibetan Terriers are sturdy dogs (remember their origins in Tibet) and might enjoy dog agility, obedience training classes or specialist activities like tracking and herding. Their favourite thing seems to be spending time with people and going on leisurely walks.

Misty, owned by Chris:

“In short, she is very calm, happy to go with the flow and will fit in with you... not the other way round! She is better off the lead than on it and will always stay by your side when told, does not run off and is not aggressive to other dogs or cats.”

Thanks to the pawsome Tibetan Terriers from the BorrowMyDoggy community for being such gorgeous bundles of love.

  • Owners - dog walker wanted? Or do you need a dog sitter? If you’re looking to give your Tibetan Terrier some extra attention (clearly, they love it), why not get in touch with borrowers from the community, who join for love (not money) to share the love of dogs?
  • Borrowers - if you’re looking to learn more about Tibetan Terriers (or any other breed of dog) why not reach out to local owners in the community who are looking for a helping hand and to share the love of their dog? Love dog walks but don’t have a furry friend to share them with

Looking for dog walking companies? Why not join the BorrowMyDoggy community today instead.

More terriers!

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