Activities For Leonbergers

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Introduction

True to their names, Leonbergers have all of the nobility of a lion distilled into the body of a dog. This gigantic breed hails from Germany and their names are derived from their city of origin, Leonberg.  Leonbergers are considered to be a physical representation of their hometown's crest, as their appearance evokes the lion that can be found on Leonberg's coat of arms. Leonbergers are very friendly and endearing dogs that love to hang out with humans and socialize with other dogs whenever possible. Leonbergers are very patient and will happily try out a wide assortment of activities with you in order to bond.

Swimming

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Any Day
Free
Easy
45 - 60 min
Items needed
Doggy waste bags
Leash
Life Vest
Activity description
Many people may not expect Leonbergers to be the adept swimmers that they are due to their large size, but these dogs are natural born swimmers through and through, who love playing in the water. Swimming is great exercise for both dogs and humans, and is one of the all-time best ways to beat the summer heat. Best of all, swimming has a relatively low barrier of entry compared to a number of the other activities dogs and dogs owners can engage in together. If you or your pup are still learning how to swim, or don't feel comfortable swimming over deep waters, then using a swimming pool is perfectly fine for this activity. Many pet parents will put a doggy life vest on a dog of any age when in deep water in case fatigue sets in or their pal becomes afraid for any reason.
Step
1
Shallow waters
Swimming pools and small lakes, these are the sort of places a dog owner should take a Leonberger who's just starting to swim for the first time. Leonbergers are, as we mentioned earlier, naturally adept at swimming in the water. Eventually, instinct will kick in and your Leonberger will learn how to swim like a pro.
Step
2
Deeper depths
After your Leonberger has become a canine Michael Phelps, you two will be ready to swim in places like river beds and beaches without a care in the world. Leonbergers' coats tend to help water glide right off of them, so don't be too surprised when you see your dog cutting through the water like a knife through butter. Never allow your dog to stray far from you and for safety's sake; it's best to have them wear a life vest when the situation warrants it.
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Carting

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Any Day
Moderate
Normal
45 - 60 min
Items needed
Dog Cart
Dog Harness
Activity description
Most folks are probably familiar with the activity of horse carting, but many don't know that there's a wide assortment of dog breeds that can get in on the action as well. Leonbergers are among those dog breeds that can participate in the canine equivalent to horse carting - dog carting. This activity is a rather fun and unique way to bond with your pet while also providing them with a challenging physical workout as well as a scenic view, depending on where the two of you plan to take the trip. Children and most adults can fit in a dog cart without causing too much stress to your pet.
Step
1
Start with the cart only
We tend to advocate that dog owners let their pets get used to new types of equipment by letting them pull it around without any added weight. When you first let your Leonberger attempt carting, try it out by letting your dog pull the cart around without anyone else on it.
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2
The more, the merrier
When you notice that your Leonberger has really gotten used to tugging the cart around, consider letting a small child on board in order to see how your dog copes with the added weight. If they seem like they're able to move the cart from point A to point B without trouble, they may be ready to attempt carting a full grown adult around for a set amount of time.
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Sledding

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Cold Day
Moderate
Hard
60 - 90 min
Items needed
Dog Sled
Dog Sledding Harness
Sledding Equipment
Activity description
This final activity will really require you and your Leonberger to have a strong bond in order to pull it off successfully. On top of that, your dog will need to be able to comprehend and execute the commands you give them without fail. Well, we suppose that came off a bit more grim and grave than we intended, so let's take a step back. Dog sledding is an activity that you and your Leonberger can try out in a snowy place like a ski resort or a snowy hillside. To get the most fun out of this activity, it will help if your dog can follow your directions but the two of you can also have plenty of fun simply playing around with your sled and then taking things more seriously over time.
Step
1
Better safe than sorry
The equipment you'll be using for this activity isn't exactly the kind of stuff you interact with on a daily basis, so it might help to dedicate some time to allow yourself and your Leonberger to simply get used to your dog sledding gear. Outfit your Leonberger with their harness, and let them just walk around with it to gain a feel for it.
Step
2
Obedience training
Next up, you'll want to go through the basics of obedience training to help your Leonberger get used to your commands and learn what to do in a given situation. Leonbergers, like all dogs, respond much better to patience, praise, and kindness. Keep those three things in mind when training your dog and they'll get the hang of your commands in no time.
Step
3
Oh how fun it is to ride
On a one dog open sleigh, if you catch our drift. Leonbergers were essentially bred for the sort of weather that you'll be sledding in, so they'll acclimate to the snow and the cold very quickly when you two of you attempt this activity for the first time. Our best advice is to just keep at it, and to praise your dog for the progress they'll gradually make over time.
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More Fun Ideas...

Backpacking

Many dogs can often be placed into one of two categories; those who prefer the familiarity and comfort of the home and those who enjoy the beauty and splendor of the great outdoors. Leonbergers definitely fit into that latter category and they'd certainly love an activity like backpacking - in which you and your dog take a trip through the wilderness with nothing but the supplies you can fit into your backpack.

Trick Training

Most of the other activities on this list focus on honing your Leonberger's physical attributes, but this is one of the few that emphasize training your dog's brain. Leonbergers can learn how to sit, stay, fetch, and roll over just the same as any other breed of dog can. Grab a hold of a few dog treats and begin training your dog how to complete tricks on demand.

Conclusion

Leonbergers are the quintessential gentle giants of the canine kingdom; despite their large sizes, these dogs are very friendly and sociable pets that enjoy spending time with their owners. Their strong builds will allow the two of you to engage in a number of unique, physically challenging activities while their winning personalities will endear your Leonberger to anyone lucky enough to cross paths with them. Leonbergers tend to make excellent guard dogs due to what's on their outsides, but they make great companions and family members due to what's inside of them. But we guess it shouldn't be a surprise that such a big dog would have such a big heart.