A Red Tibetan Mastiff has reportedly become the world's most expensive dog, after a coal baron from China bought the canine for one million pounds.
According to breeder Lu Liang, Big Splash is a perfect specimen and the extravagant price for the dog is "completely justified".
He said "We have spent a lot of money raising this dog, and we have the salaries of plenty of staff to pay" – adding that the new owner could charge 10,000 pounds a time for Big Splash to breed with a female.
Adult Tibetan mastiffs have been known to weigh as much as 286 pounds -- the same as a sizeable rugby player.
Tibetan mastiffs are thought to be holy animals, blessing their owners' health and security. Tibetans believe the dogs have the souls of monks and nuns who were not good enough to be reincarnated as humans or into heavenly realm.