Finnish Lapphund

Thinking about purchasing an Finnish Lapphund? Then read our breed profile including a brief description, information on height, weight, color, coat, temperament, grooming, activity and history. Purchasing a new puppy is a commitment that may last ten or more years so please educate yourself on the Finnish Lapphund breed, including all stages of their life from puppy hood to older dog.

Ask yourself will I be a good owner? Do I have the time it takes to train a new puppy? Do I have the resources to give my new dog a rewarding life. Do I have a local veterinarian that I can take my new dog to? Do I have a groomer or can I do the grooming myself on a regular basis. Fundamental requirements for a being a good Finnish Lapphund owner;

Before making a purchase talk to the breeder, ask them many questions about their dogs and the breed in general. A good breeder will teach you about the Finnish Lapphund and they will have many questions for you about your home and life style and if this breed is suited for you and your family.

Questions you may want to ask an Finnish Lapphund Breeder:

It is recommended that you sign a contract with the breeder so that there will be no misunderstandings on the arrangements made. Then bring home your new Finnish Lapphund and enjoy as "there is no greater love then a dog's devotion."

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Finnish Lapphund Profile

Bearing high resemblance to the Samoyed and Keeshond, the Finnish Lapphund is one of two versions of the same breed. The general breed, the Lapphund, originally existed in in Scandinavia, then trickled down to both Sweden and Finland. To avoid confusion with the name, both countries simply named the same dog after their own country. Thus exists the Finnish Lapphund and the Swedish Lapphund, varying only slightly in size. The Finnish Lapphund is a medium sized dog that is compact and well built. They are covered with a bushy double coat that can protect against the most severe Finnish weather. Their tails come up over the back and curl, and they can be of any color. Finnish Lapphunds are known to have a distinct marking sometimes appearing around the eyes known as "spectacles". A small circle of fur around the eyes is colored lighter than the rest of the fur, creating the appearance of glasses. They have a foxy-type muzzle, profuse fur and short triangular ears. Finnish Lapphunds are very friendly, weather-resistant and naturally good at alarming their masters, as they bark at unusual occurrences. They have more recently become family pets due to their friendly nature, but were once used for reindeer herding. They have a natural instinct to herd, although this trait has diminished with lack of use. Finnish Lapphunds are intelligent, trainable and enjoy a cool climate. Pleasant and obedient, the Finnish Lapphund makes an excellent companion or herding dog.

Other Names: Lapinkoira, Suomenlapinkoira, Lapland Dog

Type: Herding

Height: 16 - 20.5 inches.
Weight: 44 - 47 lbs.

Colors: 20.5 Finnish Lapphunds come in any color, usually with one color predominating. Any white markings are small and symmetrical. It may have markings on the face, neck, stomach and tail. Some wear "spectacles", lighter colored fur around the eys.
Coat: Finnish Lapphunds have long, thick, stand-off fur. It is heavy and underwool, with fringing on the back of legs, belly and tail. The coat is very insulating, used for extreme cold climates.

Temperament: Finnish Lapphunds are friendly, intelligent and vocal. They like to bark at unusual things, making them an ideal watch dog. They have an instinct to herd, although it may be more diminished than it used to be. They are said to "think before they act", taking time to think before they obey. They are quiet obedient, however, and highly trainable. They can sometimes be stubborn, and highly enjoy the cold outdoors. Finnish Lapphunds are courageous, brave and affectionate. They are lively, agile, wary of strangers, and energetic. They love the affection of their owners, and often have a sense of humor in their exuberance. They can be independent, and should be trained from the moment they are brought home.
With Children: Yes, good with children.
With Pets: Yes, good with other pets and dogs.

Watch-dog: High. Finnish Lapphunds are alert and will bark at anything unusual.
Guard-dog: Medium. They will bark at strangers, but are generally friendly dogs.

Finnish Lapphund Care and Exercise: Regular brushing is required for their bushy coat, but for such a large coat the care is only moderate. For a long haired dog, they are generally low-maintenance. They should receive plenty of exercise, however, as they are an active breed. They will often receive adequate exercise simply from running around the house as a puppy.
Finnish Lapphunds are very trainable. They obey, but may be stubborn at times. They should be socialized from an early age, and firm training should be initiated as they will do what they want if not instructed. Training must remain interesting for this breed or else it will lose interest and disobey.
Learning Rate: High. Obedience - Medium. Problem Solving - High.

Activity: Medium to high.
Special Needs: Exercise, grooming, socialization and training.
Living Environment: Finnish Lapphunds are active dogs that like a cool climate. They are vocal as well, and need their space. A yard is essential, but be aware, they have a tendency to dig. Training can resolve this problem. The best owner for this breed would be an active owner living in a colder rural or suburban setting.

Finnish Lapphund Health Issues: Although a relatively healthy breed, the Finnish Lapphund may suffer from GPRA (Generalized Progressive Retinal Atrophy), as well as cataracts.

Life Span: 12 - 15 years, though it is not uncommon to see Finnish Lapphunds live up to 16 or 17.
Litter Size:
Average litter size is 5.

Country of Origin: Finland/Scandinavia
Finnish Lapphund History: Believed to be a breed more than 9000 years old, the Finnish Lapphund is thought to have come with humans to Scandinavia to live with the Sami people, also called Laplanders. They are an ancient group native to the Arctic Circle. The region in which they lived was known as Lapland, although it reached into northern Norway, Sweden, Finland and northwest Russia. These people developed the breed into what it is today, save the separation of Finnish and Swedish Lapphunds. The breed may have also come from the Samoyed, which resided in central Siberia. For centuries they existed as reindeer herders used by the native people. They adapted to herd cattle and sheep when the livestock changed, but were eventually replaced by snowmobiles to herd. When Sweden and Finland formed boundaries and chose their own herding dogs, both countries chose the same breed. To avoid confusion and tension, they simply separated the breed by country. This is why there is a Swedish Lapphund and a Finnish Lapphund. The original Lapphunds, or Lapponian Herders, were first brought to Finland in the 1930s. They were later bred with the Karelian Bear Dog, and later the Finnish Kennel Club decided to separate the breeds. In 1945 a breed standard was set for the Finnish Lapphund, and in the 1950s the Finnish Kennel Association created a breed standard for the Lapponian Herder, which had a shorter coat and was larger than the Finnish Lapphund. When the Finnish Kennel Association and Club combined in the 1960s, a formal definition of both of the breeds was assessed in 1966. Today the breed is not hugely popular outside of its native country, but permeates Australia, the U.S., Canada, Denmark, and the United Kingdom.

First Registered by the AKC: FSS (Foundation Stock Service - not yet eligible for AKC)
Registries: FCI (Group 5), FSS, ANKC (Group 5), CKC (Miscellaneous), KC (UK), NZKC, UKC

Finnish Lapphunds

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Monday, August 19, 2013