Dog sells for £1.2 million in China

A Tibetan mastiff puppy has been bought for over £1 million in China. Reports suggest this could be the highest amount ever paid for a single dog.

The one-year-old golden-haired mastiff sold at a luxury pet fair on Tuesday in the eastern province of Zhejiang. A property developer paid the gigantic sum of 12 million yuan (UK£1.2 million) for the coveted breed, according to the local paper Qianjiang Evening News.

Zhang Gengyun, the dog’s breeder said: “They have lion’s blood and are top-of-the-range mastiff studs,” adding that another canine, one with unique red-hair, has sold for 6 million yuan.

One reason for the interest in the these dogs could be their entrenchment in history and custom. Evidence suggests the nomadic cultures of Tibet, China, Nepal, Ladakh and Central Asia all made use of the Tibetan Mastiff.

They are sometimes called Do-Khyi, which can be taken to mean door guard, dog which may be tied, or dog which may be kept, and this reflects the animal's historical use as a guardian of herds, flocks, tents, villages, monasteries and palaces.

With great stature and a sometimes threatening demeanour, the proud mane of a lion and the hairy coat of a bear, a Tibetan mastiff is now a prized status symbol among China’s wealthy elite, causing prices to skyrocket.

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