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loves: you win if you guessed "pets" and "museums". Also books, art history, travel, British punk, Korean kimchi, bindis, martinis, and other things TBD. I will always make it very clear if a post is sponsored in any way. Drop me a line at thepetmuseum AT gmail.com !

Wednesday, February 04, 2009

the dogs of tibet, from 1908

Some very weird specimens of dogs came down from Tibet; there is one living
close by, which has the head, coat, etc., of the Mastiff but the body of a
Basset, crooked legs, low to the ground, long body-all complete. It has gone
through two hot weathers already, and still survives. It is a funny looking
animal; so also are many of the rest that were brought down.

I found this quote in a page full of info at the Tibetan Spaniel Network; it's a selection from the 1908 issue of The Kennel Encyclopedia. The Tibetan Mastiff, Lhasa Terrier, and Tibet Spaniel are all discussed. I always find the immediate feel of scholarship from this time to be appealing - for example:
The Lhasa Terrier has a love of locality as well as of the person. He likes to
guard not only his beloved master, but like his right royal countryman, the
Tibet Mastiff who guards the flocks and homes, this little busy body of the
mystic land delights in protecting his master's room, clothes, or any of his
possessions. He has a habit that appears to be hereditary, of sitting up on his
little short hind legs and moving his front paws up and down very quickly, in a
sort of begging attitude, that is very quaint and engaging.

Would we write that today? No. And it's a little twee around the edges, but still fun to read.

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