Tibetan Spaniel

The Tibetan Spaniel is a small dog with a dome-shaped head and a long, thick glossy coat. It was only introduced to the UK from Tibet in 1900 and its popularity has grown significantly over recent years.

Tibetan Spaniel breed group


Size of the Tibetan Spaniel


Country of origin


The Tibetan Spaniel through history

The Tibetan Spaniel originates from Tibet where it was bred by Lamaist monks over many centuries.

Tibetan Spaniel introduction and overview

The Tibetan Spaniel is a small low-set dog with a luxurious long silky coat and a tail that curls gently over its back. The head of the Tibetan Spaniel is domed and small in size compared to the body. The eyes are dark and expressive. The face of the Tibetan Spaniel is fairly flat, creating an almost mournful expression.

Tibetan Spaniel temperament

The breed is alert, friendly and playful in the home. It is normally good with children and other dogs. It can be aloof with strangers, but rarely aggressive. It’s a lively and intelligent breed that thrives on family life. Care should be taken around introducing cats to the Tibetan Spaniel and contact with other smaller pets should be avoided. The Tibetan Spaniel makes a good guard dog around the home.

Colour varieties of the Tibetan Spaniel

This compact and energetic little  dog is available in a large variety of colours and markings:

  • Black
  • Black & Fawn
  • Black & Silver
  • Black & Tan
  • Black Tan & White
  • Black With White Markings
  • Cream
  • Fawn
  • Fawn Sable
  • Fawn Sable Black Mask
  • Fawn With Black Mask
  • Fawn With White Markings
  • Gold
  • Gold Sable
  • Gold Sable & Black Mask
  • Gold Sable With White Markings
  • Gold With Black Mask
  • Gold With White Markings
  • Pale Gold
  • Pale Gold & Black Mask
  • Pale Gold & White Black Mask
  • Particolour
  • Red
  • Red & Gold
  • Red & White & Black Mask
  • Red Sable
  • Red Sable Black Mask
  • Red Sable White Black Mask
  • Red Sable White Markings
  • Red With Black Mask
  • Red With White Markings
  • Silver Sable
  • Silver Sable & White
  • Silver Sable With Black Mask
  • White

Size and weight of the Tibetan Spaniel

Height bitch around 25cms

Height dog around 25cms

Weight (kilos) bitch 4-7kgs

Weight (kilos) dog 4-7kgs

Exercise requirements of the Tibetan Spaniel

The Tibetan Spaniel requires up to an hour of exercise each day, making it a suitable choice of dog for the older or less active dog owner.

Is the Tibetan Spaniel a good dog for a first time dog owner?

Yes. The Tibetan Spaniel is intelligent and easy to train. It is a small dog, making it a practical size for most family homes.

Tibetan Spaniel coat length

Medium to long. The straight coat with its fine silky featherings can grow quite long.

Grooming requirements of the Tibetan Spaniel

Medium. The Tibetan Spaniel requires daily brushing with a soft slicker brush to remove any tangles or matts from the long, silky feathers.

Ears should be cleaned with a specialist ear cleaner to keep clean and prevent hotness or infection.


No. The breed sheds quite prolifically throughout the year and therefore not suitable for allergy sufferers.

Health Issues in the Tibetan Spaniel

The breed is generally fairly healthy, but the following health issues have been noted in the breed, so consult your breeder:

  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy

Average lifespan of the Tibetan Spaniel

A healthy dog should enjoy a life expectancy of up to 15 years.

Approximate Tibetan Spaniel pedigree puppy price

Puppies are sometimes available and pedigree puppies cost in the region of £500-£600. Litters tend to be produce between 3-6 puppies. Just 169 puppies were registered with the Kennel Club in 2015.

Estimating how much a Tibetan Spaniel would need to be fed each day

A bitch or dog weighing 5kgs requires 123gms of complete dry food per day. A bitch or dog weighing 5kgs will cost around £3 per week to feed.

Our estimates are based on feeding a slightly above average quality complete food bought from a popular supermarket on the high street.

Other necessary costs and regular expenses to consider when owning any dog

Remember to budget for other necessary routine costs and procedures for your Tibetan Spaniel that are not covered by general pet insurance:

  • Worming preparations
  • Flea treatments
  • Annual vaccination boosters
  • Dental treatments
  • Neutering/spaying

Many veterinary practices now operate monthly budget schemes to allow you to spread the cost over the year.