Much like children, and because of their high level of independent intelligence and ability to take the initiative in response, Tibetan Mastiffs can be somewhat strong-willed and testy in order to determine your resolve. Like children, Tibetan mastiffs require responsible parents and need encouragement and love. Tibetan mastiffs and children both thrive when raised together and included as much as possible in daily activities or else they will become bored, resentful, disobedient and destructive. Tibetan Mastiffs must be thoroughly socialized and trained in order to become the best that they can be—the very best of canine guardians and companions! Like children, Tibetan Mastiffs require loving patience, but firm consistency and corrective obedience training with adequate socialization. If you don’t have the time or desire to include children and/or TMs within your daily schedule, then do without. Tibetan Mastiffs will readily bond, early on as puppies, with any other pets and livestock. They smell the air astutely sensing tension levels and the surrounding aura which makes them ideal livestock guardians, and loyal home protection companions—if they are consistently trained and lovingly, but firmly, disciplined! Like children, once they sense your consistent resolve they will fall in line and quickly become your treasured friend and life long companion. After earning their love and respect, your Tibetan mastiff will naturally want to serve/protect and obey you. Your addition effort will pay off in the long run.
Helpful Suggestions: Use positive canine behavior modification training method which is similar to basic child psychology. Like children, the Tibetan Mastiff’s ability to learn is influenced by genetics, hormones, senses and all the external stimuli that the dog received from his mother, his litter mates, from us, from other dogs and animals and from his environment. Like all animals (and humans), the more stimulation the dog receives from early puppy hood the better he will learn as time goes on. Dogs learn best through patience and with suitable rewards, through positive reinforcement. Rewards must be given within less than a second of the desired response from the dog. It is essential that handlers understand that rewards and verbal corrections must also be given within this time frame to have the desired effect. Intermittent or random rewarding of a desired activity produces behavior that is more resistant to extinction. The value of the reward should be appropriate for the desired behavior. Dogs value rewards in different ways. Find out what is most valuable to your dog and use these rewards appropriately. Training should be enjoyable; dogs should look forward to it. Spend ten minutes, two to three times each day. These sessions should be separated by several hours. Training should take place in a quiet environment. Once consistent, correct responses have been made in that environment, you can move to more stimulating and distracting environments to continue the training process. This is called 'proofing'. Every dog should be trained to 'Come', 'Sit', 'Sit Stay', 'Down' and 'Down Stay'. If a dog fails an exercise, do not punish him, simply go back to the previous level and start again. Always finish every training session on a positive note. Usually with an exercise you know the dog can do well and one that he enjoys. Only use the dog's name to get his attention; do not use it in reprimands. Use one word commands in training for each exercise - one word = only one image in the dog's mind. Once the dog has learned the commands from one person have him learn the same commands from other members of the household. Consistency is the key. Physical or mental punishment or abuse should never be used. Harsh reprimands can be counterproductive. However, verbal corrections ("Uh Uh") in a tone of disappointment or disapproval can be very effective they indicate no reward and are "negative punishers" which mean, "Oh, no reward for doing that". These verbal corrections go hand in hand with Praise/Click and rewards.
Abuse, neglect, or agitation training does not work for TMs. Effective training requires good timing. This is the most difficult thing for most dog owners to learn. Language connects the present action with the past event. Dogs, for the most part, lack language skills. Good timing becomes critical to connect the action (your praise or correction) to the event!