Lowchen, also known as Little Lion because of lion trim look, is a lively, cheerful and inquisitive dog that is considered as a highly devoted companion dog. The breed is believed to have originated in Germany during 1500s. However, some believe that the breed originated in Belgium and France.
Earlier, these dogs were quite popular and were particularly favored by aristocracy around the 16th century but they became extremely rare and almost extinct during 1960s after the Second World War. In fact, the Guinness Book of World records named Lowchen as the “rarest breed” in early 1960s.
Efforts by breeders like Madam Bennart of Brussels and Dr. Rickert of Germany helped revive the breed to some extent. But, it is still rare. The breed is a member of the Bichon group and shares certain traits with Maltese, Havanese, Bolognese and Bichon Frise dog breeds.
These dogs are well balanced and strong in build. They are small and size and might appear somewhat fragile. But, they are tough and robust. The head is short with broad skull. The muzzle is relatively broad and tends to be of same length or slightly shorter than the back skull.
Eyes are round in shape and dark in color. Nose is dark, typically black. The pendant ears are medium in size and have feathering. The medium length tail is carried high and curved forward over the back.
Color: These dogs are available in various colors like black, white, lemon etc.
Height: The average height of Lowchen dog breed ranges between 10 to 13 inches.
Weight: Both male as well as female Lowchens generally weigh about 9 to 18 pounds.
These dogs are fairly healthy. Still, they may be susceptible to issues like Patellar Luxation, Progressive Retinal Atrophy, Cataract etc.
Life Expectancy: The average lifespan of these dogs is about 12 to 14 years.
Litter Size: 3 to 6 puppies
The long soft and silky hair coat of a Lowchen is typically clipped to make the dog look like a lion by clipping a part of front legs and the section of the tail that is closest to the body. You can also opt for a puppy clip.
The breed does not shed much and can be clipped every couple of months. When not clipped, the hair coat remains long, moderately soft and wavy but not curly. Besides, Lowchen grooming calls for regular brushing and combing of the hair coat to prevent mats and tangles.
Lowchen temperament is pleasant, lively, bold, intelligent, loving, outgoing, loyal and sensitive. These charming dogs are friendly and playful with kids. They can also get along well with other pets in the house, both canine as well as non canine pets. However, they can be suspicious of strangers.
These dogs can be strong willed and stubborn at times. Therefore, Lowchen puppies should be trained and socialized right from the beginning in order to avoid destructive behaviors like digging, barking and so on. As these devoted dogs tend to learn quickly and are always eager to please their owners, training should not be a tough task, especially when firm and consistent methods are used.
These alert and attentive dogs make good watchdogs. Both experienced and non experienced first time dog owners can opt for Lowchen breed dogs if they can establish leadership over the dog to keep him/her disciplined.
These dogs are active and energetic but not hyperactive. Thus, they do not require plenty of exercise. Nonetheless, negligence in providing adequate physical and mental stimulation can lead to problem behaviors.
So, they simply need to be taken for daily walks but not necessarily for several miles. These delightful little dogs would also enjoy a good run off the lead in a safe area. Lowchen dogs are adaptable and do well in country settings as well as apartment situation with or without a yard.