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Lhasa Apso – Ancient Dog Breeds

By Paige
Lhasa Apso

Image from Dzoker

The first small ancient dog we have explored, the Lhasa Apso of today is a popular lap (& show) dog worldwide. Meet another member of the ancient dog breeds of the world.

The History

This squat little breed originated in the Himalayan Mountains of Tibet centuries ago & they are named for the city of Lhasa. Initially their breeding was limited to holy men & nobles and they were used as watchdogs in temples & religious centers.

These small animals were considered sacred by the Tibetan people as it was believed that when their master died his soul entered the Lhasa Apso’s earthly body.

Global Popularity

For many years the dogs were held in such high regard that their breed was kept closely guarded making them difficult to purchase. In 1933 C. Suydam Cutting brought the first Lhasas to the US after receiving them as gifts from the Dali Lama. They caught on in popularity quickly and were recognized by the AKC in 1935.

Lhasa Apso

Image from Dzoker

About the Breed

This is a small, tough little animal (much tougher than the combed show dogs would have you believe). They are loyal to their masters & quite affectionate, but intelligent enough to have an assertive alpha attitude. This attitude can become problematic should they be indulged (which they often are due to their size). Traditionally they were used primarily as a guard dog for religious centers & pets for the wealthy.

These dogs not only carried the souls of their dead masters, but they were also thought to bring them good luck in life.

Lhasa Apso

Image from deanna_

Interesting Fact

Lhasa Apsa animals are incredibly stealth movers and are known to sneak up even on their owners. That combined with their keen sense of hearing & protective attitude makes them exceptional watch dogs.

Other Names

Tibetan Apso

Old Guys of the Dog World

We hope you enjoyed this quick look at one of the ancient dog breeds of the world. Stay tuned, because we’ll be getting to know more of the in the coming weeks.

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