A male Tibetan Mastiff puppy has created a stir in the dog breeding world and gained the title of the world's most expensive dog after being sold in China for a record 10 million yuan ($1.5 million).
The 11-month-old Tibetan Mastiff male puppy named 'Big Splash' and 'Hong Dong' is red in color, a rarity in the breed. He was purchased by a Chinese coal baron who will reportedly use him for breeding, earning as much as $100,000 yuan in stud fees for each female bred to the pricey pooch.
Big Splash took the coveted title of most expensive dog from another Tibetan Mastiff pup that was sold last year for $600,000, as reported by Digital Journal.
"The Tibetan Mastiff, also known as Do-khyi , meaning 'home guard' has been used for centuries to guard herds of domesticated farm animals, villages, monasteries, palaces and private homes," according to Wikipedia. The males can grow to heights of 31 inches tall and can weigh as much as 275lbs.
The dog is considered a primitive breed with a temperament that can vary from one dog to another. They are considered to be both 'noble and impressive animals', said the AKC.
"According to legend, both Genghis Khan and Buddha had them, and they are known to be great guard dogs. They are rarely found outside Tibet and China, making them an especially exclusive breed. In China, they are considered a state protected animal, and there are reportedly just 15,000 in the country, most belonging to the wealthy," reports Yahoo's The Week.
"Tibetan mastiffs are status symbols in China and Tibetans believe they are the reincarnated souls of monks not good enough to be reincarnated as people or enter the heavenly realm," said an AOL blogger.
So what does a massive-sized Tibetan Mastiff eat, you might wonder?
"Big Splash enjoys a diet of chicken and beef, with occasional delicacies like sea cucumber and abalone. The breeder says he spends more than $5,000 a month maintaining his five prized beasts," according to The Week.