Tibetan Mastiff Price: Can Dogs Really Be That Expensive?


If you are not exactly a Tibetan Mastiff expert, then you have no clue how much these pups actually cost. But don’t worry, we are here to teach you all about this amazing dog breed and its price.

From our title, you can guess that they are one of the more expensive dog breeds in the world, but do you know which dog breed is considered to be the most expensive? No?

Well, to save you the trouble of googling, we’ll provide you with an answer right now. It’s none other than the Tibetan Mastiff himself. In 2014, a red Tibetan Mastiff puppy was sold for a staggering $1,95 million at a Chinese luxury dog show to a property developer.

This has easily placed these dogs at  the top of the list of the most expensive dogs ever sold. It is really mind-blowing that a dog can reach such a high price, but this actually was not the first time these pups have reached the million-dollar price tag.

Just a couple of years prior to that, in 2011 exactly, another Tibetan Mastiff puppy called “Big Splash” was sold for a whopping $1,5 million to a Chinese businessman.

It seems that buying a Tibetan Mastiff dog in China is really reserved for the wealthy and powerful, but what is the situation in the USA?

If you were thinking of purchasing this puppy for yourself, you must be thinking now – how in the world will you ever be able to afford it? Don’t worry, not all of these dogs actually cost millions of dollars. The Tibetan Mastiff price is actually influenced by a lot of factors.

There are many reasons why some dogs are so expensive, and others are not. Keep reading to find out how much these fluffy giants actually cost and whether you should get one.

All About The Tibetan Mastiff Price

tibetan mastiff with fluffy fur

Tibetan Mastiffs are large breed Mastiff-type dogs that originate from Tibet. For many years they were mighty guardians of the Himalayas and now are considered to be predecessors of all mastiff breed dogs that we have today.

These dogs do not only amaze everyone with their looks, but also with their temperament. Although they are definitely one of the largest dogs out there, they have an interestingly mellow and calm nature.

Tibetan Mastiffs are very devoted to their families and aloof with strangers, which is why they are wonderful family members, but also excellent guard dogs. All of this makes them a great choice for a family pet.

The first thing that almost every potential dog owner starts researching about any dog breed is its price because let’s be real, it is not easy to take care of pets. Especially nowadays when the economic situation in the world is not exactly great.

So, how much does a purebred Tibetan Mastiff cost in the USA?

Depending on the state and many other important factors, a Tibetan Mastiff puppy from a reputable breeder can cost anywhere between $1,700 to $7,000. The price of these guardian dogs can go even higher depending on the breed characteristics.

Take a look at our list of the 13 best Tibetan Mastiff breeders in the USA to find the perfect pooch for you and your family.

Adopt, Instead Of Shop

If the price of purchasing a Tibetan Mastiff puppy from a breeder seems too high for you, you can try adopting one. Adopting a Tibetan Mastiff dog from a rescue organization is a great way of saving some money, but it is also a very honorable deed.

You get the  chance to save a dog and provide it with a life that he or she truly deserves. You can start by looking in your local shelters and rescue organizations nearby, but there is no guarantee that you will find what you are looking for because they are quite rare.

However, there is one Tibetan Mastiff Rescue that is dedicated to saving, caring for, and protecting Tibetan Mastiff pups in the United States. It is the only non-profit organization in the USA of this kind.

The organization rescues these gentle giants from shelters and other situations all over the country and takes care of them, trains them, and helps place them in their new homes.

The adoption fees for this dog breed are less than $1,000. Usually, rescues charge between $300 and $500, but it all depends on the particular dog and the situation.

To start your adoption process, you will need to fill out an adoption application form. You can find more information about this organization on their social media platforms, Facebook and Instagram.

If you have any other inquiries, feel free to contact them via email ([email protected]) or phone (+1 908-237-1474).

Some other great rescues that might have Tibetan Mastiffs to adopt include:

· Rescue Me!

· Adopt A Pet


· AKC Rescue Network

RECOMMENDED: Free Puppies In Your Area For Adoption: 13 Ways To Find A Free Pet

Tibetan Mastiff Cost

tibetan mastiff at seashore

Purchasing a Tibetan Mastiff puppy is not the only expense you will encounter in your dog ownership life. Owning a dog is a full-time responsibility and you will have to be prepared for various other potential expenses throughout your dog’s lifetime.

A responsible owner is one that ensures that his or her puppy is perfectly healthy and happy, no matter what.

You will face a lot of one-time fees, initial costs and a lot of recurring expenses. One-time fees usually include the costs of dog training, spaying/neutering, registering your dog, and microchipping.

Microchipping your Tibetan Mastiff will cost you between $40 to $60 and spaying or neutering from $50 to $500. If you choose to register your dog with the AKC with basic registration only, it will cost you around $40.

The  average price of dog training for group classes is around $50 whereas individual classes go from $100 to $200.

Initial Cost Of Owning A Tibetan Mastiff

tibetan mastiff puppy

Before you even bring your new puppy home, you will have to prepare some things to ensure that he or she is comfortable in the new home. You also have to make sure that your puppy is healthy and that it receives proper medical care.

Item Cost (average)
Crate $100 – $300
Bed $50 – $200
Leash & Collar $15 – $50
Food & Water Bowls $50
Initial Vet Visit $100 – $300
Initial Vaccine Shots $100 – $230
Grooming Essentials $100
Deworming, Flea, Tick Medication $50 – $200
Other Supplies $15 – $30
Total $580 – $1460

The total initial cost can vary significantly depending on  the situation, the puppy you got, your location, and the quality of service or items you choose.

It is always better to invest in high-quality products immediately in the beginning because they will hopefully last you a long time and therefore help you save more money in the future.

Recurring Cost Of Owning A Tibetan Mastiff

According to the AKC, Tibetan Mastiffs have a life expectancy of 12 to 15 years, which means that if everything goes all right, you should be able to live happily with your pooch for more than a decade.

However, you also need to think of the recurring costs of owning a Tibetan Mastiff or the annual expenses throughout their lifespan. This includes dog food and treats, grooming, medication, regular vet checks, pet insurance, toys, and other supplies.

Tibetan Mastiffs are one of the largest dogs in the canine world, so you should expect to pay a little bit more for their food because they eat a lot.

Below you can find the chart with the most common recurring costs that you can expect when owning a Tibetan Mastiff dog. This can give you an idea of how much these dogs actually cost, but keep in mind that there are always some unpredictable expenses that can occur.

Item Annual Expense
Dog Food & Treats $1,500
Toys $200
Pet Insurance $1,000 – $1,500
Regular Vet Checks $600
Grooming $400 – $600
Medication $150 – $250
Other Supplies $50 – $100
Total $3,900 – $4,750

What Can Affect The Tibetan Mastiff Puppy Price?

three young tibetan mastiff dogs

There are a lot of factors that can affect the Tibetan Mastiff price. The location, gender, health conditions, age, and breeding practices are among the most common factors that influence the final price of the pup.

Health Problems

Tibetan Mastiffs are a relatively healthy breed of dog; however, they are not immune to some health problems. If your breeder does not offer you a health guarantee, you shouldn’t even consider buying a puppy from him.

Also, if you find an unusually cheap purebred puppy, there is a high chance that there is actually something wrong with him. Here are some of the most common health issues related to this giant fluffy breed:

· Hip Dysplasia and Elbow Dysplasia are common conditions that affect large dog breeds. The underlying problem in both conditions is the abnormal development of the respective  joints which  causes instability, pain, lameness, and osteoarthritis.

The treatment for these two conditions usually involves surgery to repair the joints, however, veterinarians that specialize in this field will determine what is the best for your dog and his health condition.

· Entropion is a condition (genetic or secondary to another issue) in which one or both eyelids roll inward and rub on the surface of the eye causing eye irritation. The most common sign of entropion in giant breeds is mucoid or purulent discharge from the outer corner of their eye.

The cornea of the eye may also appear cloudy, white, or blue, which is a  sign of corneal ulceration.

· Hypothyroidism is a condition common in large dog breeds where the thyroid gland does not produce enough hormones, which causes unusual weight gain, lethargy, dry and dull hair, excessive shedding, and inactivity.

The condition is treatable with oral administration of the thyroid replacement hormone, but it is not curable.

· Canine Inherited Hypertrophic Neuropathy is an inherited neurological condition that was discovered in Tibetan Mastiff puppies after the weaning stage. The most common symptoms include loss of bark, decreased reflexes, weakness, and possible inability to walk.

Unfortunately, there is no cure for this condition.

Breeding Ethics

The Tibetan Mastiff price is largely conditioned by the source of the puppy. If you want to get a puppy from a reputable breeder that has a lot of experience and knowledge about the breed, takes good care of dogs, and invests a lot in his breeding program, you will have to pay a lot more for the puppy.

Look for responsible breeders that make sure their pups have the best temperaments, appearance, and health conditions.

Less reputable breeders may cost you less, however, there is also a higher risk of your puppy developing some serious health issues.

Please, pay special attention to puppy mills, backyard breeders, and pet shops that don’t have good breeding ethics and produce pups only for  profit. Those are definitely not organizations and people that you should be supporting.

READ ALSO: The 25 Most Expensive Dog Breeds In The World

Why Is A Tibetan Mastiff So Expensive?

three tibetan mastiffs in nature

You must be wondering why these dogs are so expensive… I mean it is not every day that you hear that a dog was sold for nearly $2 million. So, let’s try to explain what exactly makes these pups so highly priced.

They are very rare

One of the reasons why these pooches are so expensive is because of how rare they are. As we have already mentioned, these dogs originated in  Tibet where they are called do-khyi and where they have been used as watchdogs and guardians of Tibetan monasteries for centuries.

They were one of the few animals that were able to adapt and survive the harsh climate of Tibet. However, since they were developed in a very inaccessible part of the world, it also meant that they were not very known to the rest of the world.

No one actually knows how they even came to the USA. In 1958, they were mentioned for the first time on a document of importation when a pair of Tibetan Mastiffs were  sent as a gift to President Eisenhower by the foreign ministry of Nepal.

It is said that the American Kennel Club has around 5,000 registered Tibetan Mastiffs with only between 1,000 and 2,000 being alive today, so this makes them a pretty rare breed in the USA.

Some Tibetan Mastiff colors are rarer  than others. They can come in a variety of colors including black, brown, cream, etc., but red gold is definitely the rarest of them all. These extremely beautiful dogs are also very expensive.

They Have Unique Appearance

tibetan mastiff in snow

Once you meet a Tibetan Mastiff dog, you will hardly forget it. These dogs have a very unique appearance that just adds to their high price tag.

Not only are they huge (according to the AKC they can grow up to 150 lbs and 27 inches tall) but they also feature a majestic-looking mane around the head that resembles that of a lion.

This is a unique breed characteristic that can be seen only on Tibetan Mastiffs —  fur that is longer around the neck and the head than anywhere else on the body. These dogs are also double coated, with a heavy undercoat and coarse top hair.

All of this gives them a truly unique look that just makes them a more desirable dog breed. With higher demand, of course, comes an even higher price.

If you want a large dog that kind of resembles a lion, prepare to pay way more than for some other dog breeds, such as Rottweilers or Great Pyrenees.

They Have Wonderful Temperaments

Unique dog breeds that have great temperaments are usually a massive hit on the market. Dog owners that also have a family and children are typically looking for breeds of dogs that are able to fit well into their lifestyle and get along with their children.

First of all, Tibetan Mastiffs are great guard dogs. The American Kennel Club (AKC) lists them as a  working breed group because they were originally bred to assist humans, and that is what they will do.

They are very imposing and intimidating, and due to their protective skills, they will guard their home and their people with all they have. The truth is that they are very independent, territorial, strong-willed, and aloof with strangers, but that also means that they are able to ward off any threat.

If you’re looking for a fierce protector, this fluffy giant is definitely a breed to go for.

But you know how they say: “Don’t judge a book by its cover”! They might be huge and intimidating, but deep down in their hearts, they are the most affectionate, loving, intelligent, and non-aggressive family members that any family could ask for.

Throughout their history, they were constantly in the presence of Tibetan women and children (men were usually away), so it is not uncommon for them to form a close bond with young kids and treat them as ones that need great protection.

With a little bit of proper dog training and early socialization, they can be one of the best new additions you can find. Just prepare to spend a little bit more because a dog with these kinds of characteristics is bound to come with a hefty price tag.

They Have A Pure Bloodline

The Tibetan Mastiff is an ancient dog breed that has been around for many centuries. In fact, these dogs are said to be ancestors of all other mastiff-type dogs that we have today, such as English Mastiffs, Saint Bernards, Bernese Mountain Dogs, and the Great Pyrenees.

Since they were initially bred in a very secluded and inhospitable part of the world, they did not crossbreed with other dog breeds and were able to maintain their pure bloodline.

Sure, nowadays there are some dog breeders that have been tampering with the bloodline and creating Tibetan Mastiff mixes that differentiate them from the original pedigree dogs.

Martha Feltenstein, president of the American Tibetan Mastiff Association, says for National Geographic that today Chinese people are breeding what they think a Mastiff should look like, not what the original Mastiff bred in Tibet actually looked like.

However, purebred dogs that are free from any genetic manipulation can still be found.

Those Tibetan Mastiffs whose blood lineage has not been tampered with are usually more expensive simply because it is more expensive to breed them in the first place.

They Are A Status Symbol

The main reason why some of these dogs have been sold for millions of dollars is the fact that the Chinese have adopted them as a status symbol of wealth and power.

They are kind of a big deal in China, and those wealthy businessmen are ready to pay a huge amount of money just to show off.

The wealthy and important people in some other countries choose to show off with jewelry, cars, and designer clothes, well, Chinese people do it with dogs, especially Tibetan Mastiffs.

Some think that all of this started because of the belief that these pooches are holy animals that bring blessing and security to homes. In most Chinese cities, the upkeep of dogs as pets is very expensive also, so not everyone can afford it.

Just a dog license in a city like Beijing costs over $100. A dog must have a valid ID just like a human, and usually, the process of registering a dog is also very expensive.

All of this has influenced the reputation that these dogs currently have in China.

RELATED: 20 Chinese Dog Breeds—The Good, The Bad, And The Pugly

To Conclude

tibetan mastiff in nature

Now that you know how much these fluffy giants cost, you can finally decide if you can afford them or not. Many people do not fully realize what goes into the Tibetan Mastiff price and blindly decide to make them their new pets.

However, when they see their actual price and all additional expenses, they are taken aback. This is why it is extremely important to do your research, learn everything there is about the breed, and find the best breeder possible before you make any big decision.

We hope that our article helped you at least a little bit in your research, or at least that it was interesting to read about these impressive dogs.

Until the next reading, we send you one big, fluffy Mastiff goodbye.

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