A favorite with royalty, the Leonberger first came to being in 1846 in Leonberg, Germany. Considered to be the oldest German breed, the Leonberger was almost declared extinct after World War I, but was brought back by a group of dedicated German breeders and continue to be used as a companion and working dog in Germany, Scandinavia, and France. They're fairly rare in other countries around the world.


The Leonberger requires daily exercise and is not recommended for people that live in apartments. The love to be out in the open and a large secured yard in a rural setting is the best possible place for them to be. They do well with tracking, water rescue, and therapy and love to go hiking, swimming, and any other family activities that may be outdoors in nature.


The Leonberger is a very high maintenance breed. They require almost daily brushing to minimize shedding and remove dead and loose hair. Bathing should be done when it is needed, but regular cleaning of the ears and good dental hygiene is very important to keep them healthy. This breed may be sensitive to certain drugs including tranquilizers, sulfa, and some anesthetics. They can suffer from a wide range of health issues and they do not have a long life span compared to other breeds, so keep this in mind.


The Leonberger breed is gentle yet impressive in its size and power. It holds itself as an elegant breed that is extremely reliable and affectionate. They are calm and get along well with children and other pets as well. They love attention and are very faithful and protective of their families.


The Leonberger has a double coat the outer coat is straight and long while the undercoat is dense and quite thick. This breed has a seasonal blowout of their coat and is an extremely heavy shedder, which is why you need to constantly keep them brushed.


This breed is known as being a gentle giant that is affectionate, trustworthy, and very loyal. The Leonberger requires a lot of attention and does not do well if left alone for very long. They will get bored and start to bark if left alone and they require a very dedicated owner to help keep them happy and healthy.


The Leonberger is very intelligent and will do anything to please its owner, but you have to be patient and show this breed the respect it deserves. Early obedience and socialization is required and consistency should be maintained throughout its life.