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11:17 Nov 19 2009

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Raising Tibetan mastiffs new way to increase Tibetans' incomes
10:49, November 18, 2009  
Raising Tibetan mastiffs new way to increase Tibetans' incomes

Raising Tibetan mastiffs has become a new way for the Tibetans in Shangri-la County, Diqing Tibetan Autonomous Prefecture, Yunnan Province, to increase their incomes.

In the Tibetan language, the Tibetan mastiff means "a dog which has to be chained."

Kazhuo Qilin Wangdui, chairman of the Shangri-la- based non-governmental Tibetan Mastiff Protection Association, said, "The Tibetan mastiff, a primitive breed, is a kind of tall and fierce sheep dog and guardian dog."

A visitor poses for a photo with a Tibetan mastiff at the forth China Tibetan Mastiff Exhibition held in Xi'an, capital of Shaanxi Province, on March 2, 2008. (Xinhua Photo)

It can be as big as a donkey, run as fast as a tiger, and bark as loudly as a lion. As a guardian of horses, cows and sheep, the Tibetan mastiff is popular among the Tibetan people.

He added that Tibetans began 1,000 years ago to raise the Tibetan mastiff as a companion. The "Tibetan mastiff corps" of Genghis Khan, the founder of the Yuan Dynasty (1271-1368), in the ninth century even made such dogs world-famous.

Now, Shangri-la has five to six formal Tibetan mastiff breeding bases, with the Kazhuo Base being the largest. With 50 Tibetan breeder mastiffs, the base sells 200 puppies every year to the tune of ten million yuan RMB.

Kazhuo said that in the Tibetan-inhabited areas the Tibetan people can breed Tibetan mastiffs in their own home yards. Usually, the income from raising a Tibetan mastiff equals that from raising dozens of yaks.

Source: Xinhuanet

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