The Leonberger dog is a large, well-built and burly dog that was bred for work. The leonberger dog originated from Leonberg, Germany and was the result of crossing breeding Newfoundland, Saint Bernard and Great Pyrenees dogs. Heinrich Essing, the German breeder responsible for the cross breeding, stated that he wanted to create a dog breed that would bear a resemblance to lions, making them exude a kind of regal and authoritative air about them. Because of this resemblance, most of these dogs have become companions to many royal families in Europe throughout the centuries. These include Napoleon II of France, the Prince of Wales, Empress Elizabeth of Austria, Bismark as well as the Italian King Umberto.
The Leonberger dog has a well-developed body and a very ominous and intimidating mane that most people have taken advantage. Thus the dogs are usually designated as guard dogs of livestock as well as their owners territories; the dogs in return did not disappoint, as they have been known to be tenacious and steadfast with the duty they have been trained for. But most of these dogs generally have a lively, pleasant nature about them. They are also very smart and show affection to their owners very prominently, almost always aiming to please and exude a sweet demeanor about them. These dogs are considered to be ideal house companions because these dogs have generally a high threshold for tomfoolery and high-jinks. Their patience has been well-documented: a well-trained leonberger will tolerate even the most hyper and obnoxious children. While most dogs become aggressive when confronted with a situation that renders them uncomfortable, leonbergers usually just avoid that said situation or confrontation altogether; these dogs take in bad and unwanted behavior with class and in stride, opting to turn the other cheek, as it were, rather than resolve matters with biting or excessive barking. Leonbergers are not suited for living in apartments; the best environment for these dogs is a house with a large yard because they have a tendency to be inactive in tight, cramp places. They also prefer to live in relatively cool places, because their manes are thick and living in hot climates would cause them to dehydration.
If one wants a dog that looks like a formidable, imposing and intimidating lion but in reality is a calm, temperate, pleasing and gentle giant, then the leonberger dog is the ideal dog to have!