The Leonberger - the dog’s origin
The Leonberger is a dog whose beginnings date back to the 1840s. It originates from the Leonberg regions - hence the name. It was created in imitation of the town’s coat of arms. The breed was created by crossing the Newfoundland, the St. Bernard, and the Great Pyrenees. Because of the Leonberger’s characteristic appearance, the breed quickly became popular.
The breed disappeared almost completely during World War I. It was caused by lack of food needed for feeding such a big animal. The breed was successfully restored thanks to the dogs that managed to survive that difficult time. But World War II posed yet another threat, and the Leonberger was close to extinction once again.
Because of these events, the Leonberger is still a relatively rare breed. Fortunately, the number of its members is on the rise, which gives hope for the full restoration.
What does the Leonberger dog look like?
The Leonberger is a large dog of a mighty build and great strength. They have characteristic webbed feet. Thanks to them, the breed is known from its great swimming abilities.
The breed standard distinguishes several acceptable colors:
An adult Leonberger dog measures about 72-80 cm (2.36-2.62 ft) at withers and can weigh from 34 to 50 kg (75-110 lb). Females are slightly smaller and grow up to 65-75 cm (2.13-2.46 ft) tall. They aren’t much lighter than males - they weigh 30-50 kg (66-110 lb).
The Leonberger - temperament
Most large dog breeds have a common trait of keeping people at distance. But the Leonberger is quite different. It’s exceptionally friendly - for this reason, it’s a popular dog among families with small children.
A strong attachment and willingness to follow their caregiver everywhere is the characteristic trait of Leonbergers. But one has to keep in mind that genes play a significant role, so proper socialization and taking care of the animal’s surroundings are crucial. They greatly affect the animal’s personality.
While intimidating to many people by its looks, in fact, it’s a friendly big dog. If needed, the Leonberger can protect the property and the owners. Note that because of the dog’s strong attachment to its caregivers, it doesn’t cope well with separation, and therefore, it can’t be left alone for a long time.
Is the Leonberger a good dog for everyone?
The Leonberger is not a dog everyone should have, despite its temperament. These dogs live much shorter than smaller breeds. In addition, the animal requires special care during its elderly years. Also, regular costs of having the dog aren’t the lowest. Not only feeding, but also veterinary check-ups and any possibly needed medicines are expensive. The animal cannot be kept in small spaces. A house with a large yard is the best option for such a big dog. One can understand, then, that there are certain limitations about this breed.
Do Leonberger dogs need training?
The Leonberger requires proper training. Because of its size, one has to make sure it’s obedient to avoid unwanted situations during walks. Before the dog is taught commands, it also needs socializing.
Leonberger dogs are very obedient. They are eager to obey commands, and training them should cause no major problems. Regardless, we recommend seeking assistance from a professional who knows best how to handle animals.
Does the Leonberger dog need a special diet?
The Leonberger is a large animal, and it needs much more food compared with other breeds. An adequate dose of minerals and vitamins required for proper development and maintaining good health is also essential. In practice, it means the animal needs special food designed for large dogs.
Grooming a Leonberger dog
The Leonberger is a big dog, and it needs proper care. The breed has characteristic thick fur that requires regular grooming. Because of the high amount of dense hair, the shedding season might become very troublesome without brushing. You should also make sure to remove any dirt that might accumulate during walks.
In addition, one should control the dog’s ears. Don’t forget about eyes, either. If dirt accumulates for a long time in these places, it might become difficult to remove. Without proper care, the fur might have to be cut around these spots.
The Leonberger - the most common diseases
The Leonberger doesn’t have any serious genetic problems. But because of its size and body build, the dog is threatened by ailments typical for their size. Hip dysplasia is the most common issue. Gastric volvulus is another standard problem.
Dogs of this breed often suffer from bone inflammation and osteochondrosis. They appear in an early stage of the dog’s life and are related to the great growth of the animal.
What is the typical lifespan of the Leonberger?
The Leonberger is not a long-living breed. These dogs live relatively short, 8-9 years on average. Of course, it’s not a rule, and some animals live even over 10 years. Keep in mind that everything depends on the dog’s health, as well as the conditions it lives in.
What is the typical price for a Leonberger puppy?
Leonberger dogs aren’t considered expensive in comparison with other large breeds. Most Leonberger puppies from professional breeders can be purchased for about $1,700. But note that the price might get higher, depending on the dog’s pedigree. In some cases, a puppy for sale might cost over $2,000.
📍 The Leonberger - how long does the dog live?
The Leonberger is a medium-living dog. This large animals lives from 8 to 9 years. It's not a rule - everything depends on the conditions the dog is kept in, as well as its health. Some Leonberger dogs live much longer than the average lifespan.
📍 How much do Leonbergers eat?
As a puppy, the Leoonberger requires special food - adequate for the breed. An adult dog is not cheap to keep, either. It needs two meals per day. The amount of calories should match the animal's activity levels. The dog can be fed alternately with wet and dry food.
📍 What's the best food for a Leonberger dog?
The Leonberger requires special food. Mixes designed for large dogs are the best option. Make sure not to overfeed the dog. The animal cannot be stressed during meals, otherwise it might suffer from gastric dilatation volvulus.
📍 How much do Leonberger puppies cost?
The Leonberger is not the most expensive dog. A puppy costs $1,700 on average. The price depends mostly on the breeder and the dog's pedigree. Some Leonberger puppies cost over $2,500.