Notes on the origin of The Lhasa Apso Club in England
by the Honourable Mrs Irma Bayley


In 1928 when I brought our Apsos to England, there were only a few Tibetan dogs of this breed in this country, descendants of dogs brought from Tibet by members of the Young-husband Expedition of 1904. They were known at that time as Lhasa Terriers. Owing to the difficulty of importing fresh blood these had deteriorated from typical Tibetan specimens and had probably been crossed with other dogs in England to maintain the breed. In fact the whole question of Tibetan dogs was in a muddle, and the Kennel Club asked me and my husband Col. F.M. Bailey, to form an association to control the matter of Tibetan breeds in England. This we did, and the Tibetan Breeds Association was formed in 1934.

Our first chairman was Colonel Colenso, then Vise-Chairman of the Kennel Club. He retired all too soon through pressure of work and persuaded me to take on the chairmanship which I held until I retire in 1973.

At the Kennel Club’s request I wrote two articles for the Kennel Gazette of April and May 1934 on the various Tibetan breeds of dogs both in this country and Tibet. These can be found in the Kennel Club library. A resume of these articles was later published in the American Kennel Gazette of March 1st 1937.

Our original Tibetan Breeds Association dealt with four breeds: Lhasa Apsos (as they were then, renamed from Lhasa Terriers, in order to differentiate them from Tibetan Terriers - a larger dogs) Mastiffs, Spaniels and Terriers

Owing to the unweildness of the Association of four different breeds, all with verying interests, the owners of the Lhasa Apsos (as thry were called at that time), broke away from the Association and formed their own club in January 1957

In 1958 at the request of some of our breeders the Kennel Club allowed us to change the name of our breed from Lhasa Apso to Tibetan Apso. Many of the public did not realise that the Apso were of Tibetan origine, and, as the other Tibetan breeds in this country (Spaniels and Terriers) had the prefix ‘Tibetan’ it was thought better to change the name

In 1960, on the advice of the Kennel Club, we revised our Standard of Points to conform the Kennel Club requirements.

In 1970 the Kennel Club; I am glad to say, allowed us to change back again to Lhasa Apso.

It was really quite absurd ever to have changed it as they have been known all over the world as Lhasa Apsos ever since I brought my original ones from Tibet in 1928.

In 1971 the Standard was again amplified and classified.


Previous Page Menu Next Page