region Germany
cut 72-80cm (M), 65-75cm (F).
weight 50 to 70 kg (M); 45 to 60 kg (F).
hair  hair close to the body rough, smooth and long light yellow dress, different shades between gold and reddish brown. Highly Wanted Black Mask
head black mask
eyes From light brown to as dark brown as possible
behaviour With a very gentle and affectionate temperament, he is the innate and vigilant protector of children. He loves water
federation Nomenclature FCI roup 2, section 2, no 145
The Leonberg is a breed of dogs created in Leonberg (Germany). It would come from the cross between the Saint Bernard, the Newfoundland, the Pyrenean Mountain Dog and the Landseer. This dog enjoys growing popularity. The exact origin of the breed cannot be proven with certainty, and genetic studies have shown that the different crosses from which it would have been derived are pure legend. The Leonberger is indeed a great mountain and water dog, but above all he is a superb companion dog with a gentle and intuitive character. Care and Hygiene He needs regular brushing and plenty of space to exercise.
Its exact origin remains uncertain. Heinrich Essig (1808-1889) was one of the municipal councilors in Leonberg, the town where he settled, about fifteen kilometers from Stuttgart, in what was then the kingdom of Württemberg. He presented himself as Baron de Leonberg when he was abroad. While at the base he wanted an entirely white dog, he would have created the Leonberger breed from the Landseer and the Saint-Bernard, a cross which he would then have enriched with Montagne des Pyrénées. Another hypothesis, quite likely and more generally accepted, is that the Leonberger is descended from the old Alpine Dog, a breed mentioned by several authors, such as Delabarre-Blaine (1803), Gayot (1867), Pertus (1893 ) and which was widespread from the Rhaetian Alps (Graubünden) to Austria. This breed would have gradually been abandoned in these regions due to the disappearance of large predators, bears, wolves, lynx. But, for many centuries, its main center of dissemination for Germany would have been the town of Leonberg, whose dog market has been known since the 13th century. Although Heinrich Essig may not be the real creator of the Leonberger, he sold large dogs of various origins, many of which, no doubt, were produced by him but were not the subject of any real directed selection. He created more a Leonberger label or brand than a Leonberger breed. Essig was also at the head of an important breeding, which would have produced between two and three hundred dogs annually, and that for forty years! Essig was above all a very shrewd businessman, endowed with a keen sense of public relations, an expert in publicity stunts. He made the Leonberger known throughout the world, notably offering a specimen to all the celebrities of the moment (such as the Emperor Napoleon III). Several elements confirm the Austrian location of an Alpine Dog, ancestor of the Leonberger: Professor von Schulmuth, from Vienna, was able to find, in the archives of the princes of Metternich, the mention of kennels for mountain dogs similar to the Leonberger from 1625 ; as for Doctor Luquet, he indicates in an important study devoted to the race that Marie-Antoinette (of Austrian origin) would have possessed a specimen, of very large size. From the Essig period, two dates will be remembered: in 1846, a Leonberg specimen was presented for the first time; in 1863, in a class created for the breed, several subjects won prizes at the Hamburg exhibition. The first standard of the breed was defined by Albert Kull in 1895. The breed almost disappeared during the Great War, but it found in Stadelmann and Josenhans the architects of its revival, from 1922. A new association, the Groupement d'éleveurs de Leonberg then selects five well-typed subjects and manages, in four years, to control a herd of three hundred and fifty subjects. At this time, Stadelmann opened the first Stud Book. The Leonberger has not yet finished with the difficulties: at the end of the Second World War, its amateurs can see how much its population has been decimated. The International Cynological Federation (FCI) recognized the breed in 1949, but it was not until 1958 that its numbers became as large as during the interwar period. The Leonberger has been present in France since 1896. For several years, dogs from a kennel in the Paris region were presented at the Paris exhibition and won all the first prizes there. Doctor Pierre Mégnin, who closely studied these subjects and translated the standard written in 1895 by Kull, made the breed known in France.