A Leonberger is a German purebred dog that was very popular in the royal family. It is the oldest surviving German breed. They are friendly, balanced and loyal companions as well as excellent and controlled watchmen and working dogs. They are now especially popular in France and the Scandinavian countries. This confident dog is by no means a quarrelsome. He gets along well with other dogs and with both small and large children. Leonbergers have little to no hunting instinct and can therefore be perfectly raised together with cats.
The Leonberger is a powerful, large but elegant animal with a soft expression and an impressive, regal appearance. It is well-proportioned and muscular, which can make it intimidating to uninvited intruders. This gentle giant has a double coat: a profuse, long, straight outer coat and a thick, dense undercoat. It has some feathering on the front legs and extra thick hair around the pants. He also has a lot of hair on the chest and around the neck. He was originally bred to resemble a lion so his coat colors are usually ‘lion-like’. They range from golden yellow to reddish brown with a black or dark mask. The shoulder height of the males ranges from 72 to 80 cm and that of the females from 65 to 75 cm. The standard weight is between 34 and 50 kg.
Leonbergers are not loud barkers. They are intelligent, enthusiastic and love to please. That makes them ideal dogs for training. They require a lot of daily exercise, mental stimulation and interaction with their family members to become happy. They also need a lot of space. They are delighted in a large enclosed garden or rural setting. Leonbergers are excellent swimmers who enjoy walking, running and fun family activities. They excel at flexibility and tracking and are excellent therapy and rescue dogs. Their average life expectancy is between 9 and 11 years.