Temutai's early life remains unknown at most part, since his legend is renowned throughout the Valley of Peace. Temutai himself claimed that he had defeated Kung Fu masters across the land. His own Kung Fu was said to be so strong he could tear an opponent in half without even touching them, but for a while most people thought Temutai was just a myth. It is unknown as to when and how he got the position of king to the Qidan Clan, but another one of Temutai's remarks indicated that he has had at least one princess as a servant in the past. Each princess was replaced every few years because none of them lasted very long.
In exchange for peace between the Qidan Clan and her kingdom, Princess Mei Ling was sent to Temutai with Po, Tigress and Mantis to become his next lifelong servant. Temutai was eager to have her, but Po, who eventually learned of his actual plan, tried to deceive him by bluffing that Tigress was the princess. After nonchalantly requesting her to perform the "Ceremonial Princess Dancing Song", the head water buffalo grew impatient and stopped her, demanding for the real princess. Po refused and fought him and his warriors to protect. Luckily for Temutai, Mei Ling surrendered herself to him, and he ordered her to be put in chains even though he promised peace. In order to stop him, Po stepped in and made a deal with Temutai; if any of his strongest warriors defeated him in battle, then the panda would give up himself, the princess, Tigress and Mantis as his clan's servants. At first unimpressed until Po mentioned that he was the Dragon Warrior, Temutai agreed to take the challenge.
As a start, the warrior-king volunteered to fight Po himself and snapped at Mei Ling when she attempted to interfere. Using his brawn and horns, he seemed to be winning until the princess encouraged Po to climb on Temutai's shoulders, using the buffalo's ears to drive him into walls and rocks all around the Qidan Monastery. Temutai, unable to fight back, eventually collapsed with his face crushed by a stone pillar and admitted defeat to the victorious panda, thus ensuring peace between Mei Ling's people and the Qidan. As a last friendly act, he had rice-balls prepared for Po and the others when they left at their request.
Temutai eventually continued to cause more trouble for Po as he attempted many rematches to defeat him and his fellow Kung Fu warriors. At one point, he led his Qidan warriors in an attack on the Jade Palace and captured the Furious Five until Po showed up riding a new kite he bought while in town. The warrior-king at first denied being beaten fairly due to a head-cold, the panda was this time fast enough to evade his attacks. But much to everyone's horror, he then managed to use one of Seven Impossible Moves of Kung Fu, the Thundering Wind-hammer, to send Temutai flying out of the palace and into a mountainside, with the buffalo shouting that the fight was a draw.
Despite those few awkward moments between him and Po, Temutai was honor-bound for a no violence truce with the Jade Palace masters when he and his Qidan warriors were invited to the Peace Jubilee.