Less energetic than other mountain dog breeds, Leonbergers have long been popular in Europe and became more known in the United States in the 1970s, according to the Leonberger Club of America.
Usually good with kids, this breed is friendly, gentle and laid back, says Andrew Patterson, co-vice president of Leonberger Rescue Pals. They need to be part of a family and are often good therapy dogs, he says.
If you have your heart set on a Leonberger, be prepared for heavy shedding in the spring and fall, and large vet bills if things like medication or X-rays are needed because of their large size. Potential owners should also know about the Leonbergers love of water, Patterson says.
“They love water, which includes playing in their water bowl/bucket and often splashing it all over,” he says. “They will play in water or mud, and track that in the house. If you are the type that likes a spotless home, a Leo is probably not the right dog for you.”
Learn more about the Leonberger.