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Three Lhasa Apso of different colors
Photo: Callalloo Candcy
Tibetan and Himalayan Dog Breeds
(Dog breeds from Tibet, Nepal and Bhutan)
Shakhi (Tibet): also known as the Tibetan Guard dog, the Shakhi dog is intermediate in height between the larger Tibetan Mastiff and the smaller Black Hill dog. Like the Black Hill Dog it is primarely a property guard, but it is occasionally also used as flock guard or hunting dog.

Tibetan Hound (Tibet): a short-coated Tibetan hunting dog used to hunt wild sheep and goat, as well as musk deer.

Tibetan Mastiff (Tibet): a very ancient working dog resembling a Newfoundland used as herding dog and caravan guardian and considered the ancestor of all molossers. See Tibetan Mastiff.

Tibetan Spaniel (Tibet): also known as Jemtse Apso (Jemtse means 'cut'), roughly translated as 'shaved Apso'.

Tibetan Terrier (Tibet) or Dhokhi Apso: a breed with a long coat resembling that of the Hungarian Puli.


Himalayan Sheep dog (Nepal): a dog breed of the Himalayas used as flock or property guardian that looks like a long-haired Labrador. It is closely related to the Tibetan Mastiff. In its natural working and living conditions it is described as being relatively ferocious and savage, but when kept as a family pet is much more civilized.

Black Hill Dog (Nepal): a medium to large-sized, strong, black guard dog, closely related to the Tibetan Shakhi, but with the bushy tail carried low instead of curled up over the back.


Bhutia Sheepdog (Bhutan): a dog similar to the Himalayan Sheep dog and the Tibetan mastiff, but larger in size and with lss tightly curled tail. It is used by shepherds to defend large flocks against predators. Most common colors are black-and-tan or red.

Damchi (Bhutan): a dog breed named after the Himalayan village of Damchi. According to another explanation, Damchi ("tied dog") is the term for a guard dog. The Damchi is similar to the Tibetan Spaniel, but slightly larger and stockier with a longer muzzle. A black body with tan-and-white markings at the extremities is the most common color pattern.
Tibetan Dog Breeds

Goh-Khi (Tibet): a very small dog, also known as 'sleevedog', because it can be kept within one's long sleeves.

Kyi Apso (Tibet): a tall, long-haired dog used as a property guard and flock guard dog.

Lhasa Apso (Tibet): one of the most ancient companion dog breeds kept by Tibetan monks, surprisingly robust and long-lived. They are also excellent watchdogs. Their long, heavy coat may be golden, sandy, brown, grizzle or black. They have been sometimes confused with or mistakingly bred to Shih Tzus. The term 'pure Hamilton lines' is sometimes used to distinguish lines with no infusion of Shih Tzu blood from those with Shih Tzu ancestry, although some authors observe that "no dog in the USA can lay claim to 'Pure Tibetan Blood' " and that "they are all mixtures of Lhasa Apso and Shih-Tzu".

For the native dog breeds of Japan, see also:
Japanese dog breeds.

For the other Asian dog breeds, see also:
Asian dog breeds.
Asian dog breeds
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Chinese crested
Tibetan dog breeds
Russian dog breeds
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