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Current Replies for Tibetan Mastiff recognition raising questions of pet welfare
8/9/2010 10:49:13 PM
Posts: 3

Some people are very concerned about the rise in reputation of Tibetan Mastiff canines in China. For centuries, the Tibetan Mastiff was deemed the protector of Tibet. With price tags as high as $ 600,000 for a purebred animal, Tibetan Mastiffs are concerning some animal welfare activists.

<p><strong>Why Tibetan Mastiffs are popular</strong></p>

<p>Tibetan Mastiff dogs were, at one point, considered a holy animal. A Tibetan Mastiff is considered a sign of both home and security. The dog breed is huge, with some animals easily approaching 180 pounds. Many Tibetan Mastiff dogs are cross-bred, and finding true purebreds is difficult. A purebred Tibetan Mastiff is usually at risk of being "poached" by breeders.</p>

<p><strong>China's Tibetan Mastiff costs</strong></p>

<p>Owning a dog in China used to be banned. Having a dog is often considered a pure and simple status symbol. Though dog ownership is not banned anymore, it does take at least $ 100 and various months to get them licensed and registered. Before the owner can register or keep a dog, it must be approved both by the neighborhood and local police. The yearly registration renewal must consist of passport photos, registration documents, even proof of home ownership. These regulations and costs, on top of the a number of hundred thousand dollar cost of purchasing a Tibetan Mastiff, makes owning the pet an costly proposition.</p>

<p><strong>Pets as a status symbol at risk?</strong></p>

<p>Though the Tibetan Mastiff is typically regarded as a very kind and friendly animal, numerous of the wealthy owners and breeders that deal in Tibetan Mastiffs view them as more than pets. For example, the couple that purchased Yangtze River Number Two, a Tibetan Mastiff, for $ 600,000 generally keep him in a cage. In Beijing, the International Center for Veterinary Services calls the obsession "dangerous". It's noted that many of these so-called "pets" are put on display more than treated like pets. The response from numerous owners and breeders are the pets take extensive amounts of time and money to care for.</p>