Leonberger Dog Breed

Leonberger At-a-Glance

The Leonberger is a large dog breed that originated in Germany in the mid-1800s, where they were used as working dogs for the farm. Over the years, they have become popular as companion and family dogs due to their loyalty and gentle nature. They are known for their lush double coat and striking black masks.

Weight (pounds)
Male: 110-170
Female: 90-140
Height (inches)
Male: 28-32
Female: 25-29
Lifespan (years)

Dog Breed Group

Characteristics Ratings

We rate 19 characteristics for each breed, divided into three categories:
Highest Rated – Characteristics for which this breed is rated 4 or 5 stars (on a 5 star scale).
Neutral Rated – Characteristics that rated 3 stars.
Lowest Rated – Characteristics that rated only 1 or 2 stars.

Highest Rated

  • Good Family Dog
  • Kid Friendly
  • Friendly to Strangers
  • Protective Nature
  • Handles Change Easily
  • Easy to Train
  • Tolerates Cold Climate

Neutral Rated

  • Good With Other Dogs
  • Low Drooling
  • Likes to Play
  • High Energy Level
  • Low Amount of Barking
  • High Intelligence

Lowest Rated

  • Low Shedding
  • Suitable for Small Yards/Apartments
  • Good for Novice Owners
  • Tolerates Being Left Alone
  • Tolerates Hot Climate
  • Good General Health

General Overview

Although they are massive and powerful dogs, Leonbergers are known for their gentle and affectionate nature, which makes them great family dogs. Their calm and patient personality makes them a good fit for families with kids. However, due to their great size, it’s important to supervise interactions with small children to avoid accidental injuries.

Leonbergers are generally good with strangers. That said, they are also protective of their family and territory if they sense a threat, which means they may be a bit reserved or aloof with strangers. They are not typically aggressive without reason, but being good watchdogs means they will bark to alert their owners of any potential danger.

Seeing as how a male can weigh up to 170 pounds, it’s likely that their appearance and bark alone will discourage any potential intruders!

Leonbergers are generally good with other dogs, but their behavior can depend on their socialization and training. They can be more dominant or territorial than others, so it’s important to introduce them to a variety of dogs and situations. They will often be the largest dog in town, so socialization is pretty much a necessity.

Leonbergers do require some maintenance, as their thick double coat sheds heavily and requires regular grooming. Like many large breeds, Leonbergers do drool, although not as excessively as some.

Being social dogs, Leonbergers typically don’t tolerate being left alone for extended periods. If left alone for too long, their separation anxiety can result in destructive behavior. This can be minimized with proper training and care.

Since Leonbergers are a large dog breed and require plenty of space to move around and exercise, they are not typically suitable for small yards or apartments.

Even though they are not typically considered high-energy dogs, they do require regular exercise to stay healthy and prevent boredom. Leisurely walks, playtime in the yard, and other low-impact activities are ideal.

Leonbergers are generally intelligent and trainable given their calm and gentle natures. They are eager to please their owners and respond well to positive reinforcement training methods. However, some patience is needed as they can be stubborn at times

Leonbergers are a fairly healthy dog breed but can be prone to certain health issues. These include hip and elbow dysplasia, bloat, heart issues, and some eye problems. As with any purebred dog, it’s important to work with a reputable breeder and maintain a healthy diet and regular exercise routine.

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