Lhasa Apso’s Buddhist Roots Influence His Happy Fate

Photo of Macho by Judi Weisbart.

Photo of Macho by Judi Weisbart.

Judi Weisbart, of Santa Barbara, spent a year seeking a dog from the Humane Society. Her family had many wishes.

Her husband: “a dog with a good personality who won’t annoy him with barking, chewing his shoes or getting in his way.”

Her 93 year old mother, who lives with Judi’s family: “a dog that didn’t disrupt her often cranky cat.”

A fundraising consultant who creates events for non-profits, Judi has learned patience. On her mom’s 92nd birthday Judi stopped by a shelter she’d visited monthly for the past year. She spotted a Lhasa Apso who, she says, “looked at me as if he knew me.”

It was May. To encourage adoptions, the Humane Society provided older dogs free to seniors in May. “I am a senior and he was a senior, so I got him for free. Plus he came with his shots, his one year license, and a locator chip. Gifts and savings galore!”

Judi read up on their new pet. She learned that the Lhasa Apso is a non-sporting dog originating in Tibet. It was bred as an interior sentinel in Buddhist monasteries to alert monks to intruders. Lhasa was the capital of Tibet; “apso” is a Tibetan word meaning bearded. Lhasa Apso means “long-haired Lhasa dog.”

In her research, Judi discovered the Buddhist belief that Lhasa Apsos may hold the souls of lamas or holy men. Because of this, they must never be sold. When she told this to the Humane Society, they insisted he had come as a gift.

She named her new pet Macho, not what you’d expect for a cute and cuddly bundle of white fur. “When I got married 40 years ago, I’d tell my handsome husband I thought he was cute. He’d reply, ‘But I want to be macho.’ So when we got this cute dog, I decided he, too, wanted to be macho.  And so he is.'”

Macho’s proud mama deems the Weisbarts’ latest family member “old, wise, stubborn and protective.” And, she adds, “By the way, my husband is still handsome, and he loves Macho, too.”

(Thanks to my sweet sister, Anne Towbes, for alerting me to this delightful story about her friend Judi. I love hearing readers’ stories!)

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11 thoughts on “Lhasa Apso’s Buddhist Roots Influence His Happy Fate

  1. Beryl

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    1. Suzy Farbman Post author

      Thanks for the heads up, Beryl. Will have my publisher look into it. Meantime, would love to hear your Godsigns stories. 🙂

  2. Sally Rose

    Macho seems to be incredible lucky and wise to have known his new family. I loved this story!

  3. Debra Darvick

    We had a Lhasa Apso when I was a child — Bristles. He was grey and we got him from a family that couldn’t keep him any longer. Probably b/c he was nearly impossible to house train. I loved him anyway. My mother, however, didn’t.

    1. Suzy Farbman Post author

      Sounds like a good old boy, though not so great in the housebroken dept. thanks, debra.

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