Breeding group : Working
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GENERALBreed group: Working Type: Pure Breed
Talent: Carting, Sledding, Watchdog, Weight pulling
PHYSICALSize: Large Weight: 100-170 lbs Fur length: Ears: Flappy Fur type: Straight
Fur Color: 3 Colors, Black, Black & Brown, Dark Brown / Chocolate, Light Brown / Golden, White / Cream
ATTRIBUTESLife Expectancy: About 8-9 years Rarity: Common Availability: Hard to find
Climate: Good for every climate
The Leonberger is a purely bred large dog. They are also called Leo or Gentle Lion. Their name was derived from the city of Leonberg in Baden-Württemberg, Germany. The Leonbergers were presumably bred as a symbolic dog that would imitate the lion in the town crest. It was originally created by crossing a female Landseer Newfoundland with a 'barry' male from the Great St. Bernard Hospice and Monastery, a predecessor of the Saint Bernard breed. Then later, a Pyrenean Mountain Dog was added which resulted in a very large dog with the long white coats. These dogs make wonderful family pets as they get along very well with children with their tremendous patience and tolerance to pain. They are brave, lively, affectionate and very intelligent. Being alert, they make excellent watch dogs. Keep these dogs well-balanced and they will be a delight to have in your household.
Their coat color usually comes in a variety of colors along with their striking black mask. This includes combinations of Lion/Yellow, Red, Red/Brown and Sand. The coat can sometimes be highlighted with black tipping.
This dog's double coat is water resistant which protects them from extreme weather conditions. It is complemented by the shorter fine hair on their muzzle and limbs. It is long, profuse, durable outer coat, straight, flat and fits close. If the weather permits it, their undercoat is dense and soft.
This dog is naturally lively, brave, steady, affectionate and very intelligent. They are stable and calm, loving and steadfast. They are very loyal and affectionate to their family. This dog has a friendly personality. A well-balanced Leon are highly trustworthy and patient enough even with the most unbearable children. They will most likely walk away if the situation becomes too extreme instead of becoming aggressive. Most of them can take bad behavior on their stride.
The Leonberger's double coat insulates them against extreme weather and shaving can greatly affect the dog's natural body temperature regulation. Regrowth of their hair will tend to be be curly and can become more susceptible to matting. Brushing every week should suffice to keep their coat in good shape as this breed sheds fur very heavily. Daily combing or brushing is required if the undercoat is being shed. These dogs are prone to hip dysplasia and other skeletal issues as with any large breed dogs. Eyelid defects and bone diseases could also be a problem.
This dog requires patience and it does not respond well to harsh training methods. The human handler needs to be firm, confident, calm and consistent during the training. They require a special training to become an excellent watchdog. Also called the gentle giant, they respond very well to training, serious, eager and willing to please their masters. They get along very well with other dogs. Socialize them and train as early as possible since they will become a very large adult dog. They need to learn obedience like training them not to jump, heel to the handler during walks, enter and exit doors after their human lead. This dogs are more active but coordinated than other giant breeds.
These dogs do not need too much exercise but they need to be taken on their daily walks. Make sure that the walk will emphasize that they are not pack leaders by making the dog heel beside or behind the human. This dog loves to swim, hike and be trained to pull carts or sleds. Although the dog needs to be grown up to 18 months old before they can be trained to pull carts or hike. They enjoy being a part of the family and can live in almost any environment. The Leos are not recommended for apartment or small living. They are inactive indoors and are recommended that you have at least a large yard they could run and play in. They like the cool climate and they can live inside or outside.