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Tibetan Mastiff Dogs (Lion Dogs)

Does anyone have one? Or know someone who does? Can you take them on a walk without neighbors thinking you're walking a lion, or some idiot neighbor thinking there's a bear running around on your property? How hard is it to train them? I think it would have to start very early because by the time they were a year old they'd be too big to discipline without loosing an arm, so getting a rescue dog is probably out, right? My boyfriend has wanted one of these dogs for a long time but because we'd lived in a condo it just wasn't possible. We're about to move into a house outside of the city on several acres of land and after watching the Westminster dog show last night, I am thinking it might be the right time to revisit the idea of getting a Tibetan Mastiff puppy. I didn't grow up with dogs so I'm not 100% sure about this, especially a dog this size. Friends with big dogs say that if you have a big dog from puppyhood they aren't so intimidating. I don't know much about the breed, or how to train one, but my boyfriend's family has always had these dogs. He works from home so the puppy/dog wouldn't just be left alone all day to run wild on the property and then be disciplined at night. When we've visited his family I've had good impressions of the dogs, but again the size of these things is intimidating.  I've read a lot about them on websites, as well as a couple of books on the breed, and exchanges emails with people from the sites which have been very positive. I'd love to hear from anyone here who has personal experience with these giant dogs.


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