Leonberger Adopt a Leonberger Today!
The Dog Search is temporarily unavailable.

Please take me to Adopt a Pet.
Ads by Google

Country/Date of Origin: Leonberg, Germany/1850s

Arguably one of the oldest German pure breeds the Leonberger was created by Mayor Heinrich Essig of Leonberg in the mid 19th Century. An excellent water dog renown for its life saving capabilities the Leonberger is also a superb family dog. The breed nearly became extinct after the first and second World Wars if it were not for the devotion of a handful of people who kept the breed alive.

Other Names Body Type Personality Coat Health Concerns

Back to Top

Leos, which literally means lion

AKC Group: Working/ Rare Breed

Breed Club: The Leonberger Club of America

Rescue Club: Leonberger Rescue Inc

Back to Top

Body Type:

  • Powerful and fairly massive yet elegant
  • Height: 26-31 inches
  • Weight: 100-150 lbs (most weigh around 120 lbs)
  • Tail: a hanging tail that is bushy and slightly curled
  • Round-tipped pendant ears that are feathered


  • Gentle and calm yet powerful, Leonbergers are great with children
  • Even tempered dogs that make excellent watch dogs
  • Has an instinctive love of the water
  • Displays a great desire to be part of the family


  • Has a dual coat that is weatherproof
  • Should have a black mask and muzzle while the rest of its body ranges in color from a golden yellow to a rich mahogany producing what some people have termed a lion coat

Health Concerns:

  • The very strict breeding guidelines and the diligent oversight of the national Leonberger Clubs have been successful to date in preserving the general health of the breed, but like most large dogs the Leonberger does have special medical problems
  • Hip and elbow dysplasia has been reported in at least 11% of Leonbergers
  • Other diseases known to plague the Leonbergers are Eosinophilic Panosteitis ('Pano'), Addison's Disease, Entropion and Ectropion Eyes and Osteosarcoma (bone cancer)
Back to Top
Tasty Tidbits:
  • Needs extensive daily brushing especially when it is sheddin
  • To become excellent family and watchdogs, Leonbergers must be well socialized as young puppies and extremely well-trained and under the control of their people at all times
  • It is difficult to train a dog that has been improperly socialized

Dog Breed Groups

By Continuing to use our site, you consent to our use of cookies to improve your experience. Learn more