Swedish Lapphund

42-46 lbs
Svensk Lapphund

The Swedish Lapphund was originally bred to herd reindeer and is the oldest native Swedish breed. He is also Sweden’s national breed. He loves all people and usually never meets a stranger. He makes an ideal family companion, but should be watched when playing with children as he has a high herding instinct and may nip at them to herd them. The Swedish Lapphund is a very social dog and will need to live in the house with his family. He should never be put out in the backyard alone for long periods of time or he will become very unhappy and can become destructive and a nuisance barker. 

purpose Purpose
Herding Reindeer
history Date of Origin
Ancient Times
ancestry Ancestry

Swedish Lapphund Health

Average Size
Male Swedish Lapphund size stats
Height: 18-20 inches Weight: 42-46 lbs
Female Swedish Lapphund size stats
Height: 16-18 inches Weight: 42-46 lbs
Major Concerns
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA)
Minor Concerns
  • Diabetes
Occasional Diagnoses
  • Hip Dysplasia
Occasional Tests
  • OFA
  • Blood
  • CERF

Swedish Lapphund Breed History

The Swedish Lapphund, or Lappie as he is nicknamed by breed enthusiasts, is one of the oldest breeds still in existence. He is a spitz breed with an abundant coat and signature curled tail. His origins can be traced back to the Sami people of Lappland, or the northern region of Norway. The Sami were a nomadic tribe that migrated through Sweden, Finland and the northwestern regions of Russia. The Swedish Lapphund was part hunting partner, part guard dog and part herding dog. Once the Sami people began settling into permanent villages, the Swedish Lapphund was required to help keep their herds of reindeer contained and protected. The Swedish Lapphund and the Finnish Lapphund are mistakenly thought to be the same breed. Originally, they did begin as the same breed but over time they evolved into separate breeds with specific characteristics. The Swedish Kennel Club recognized the Swedish Lapphund in 1903 as its own distinct breed. The official breed standard was also adopted at this time. The very first Swedish Lapphund to be registered with the Swedish Kennel Club was named Halli. Today, he holds the distinct honor of being Sweden’s national dog. It was not until 1944 that the Federation Cynologique Internationale recognized the Swedish Lapphund. The FCI adopted the original breed standard in 1944. The United Kennel Club adopted the FCI official breed standard and made minor adjustments prior to fully recognizing the Swedish Lapphund in 2006. He was then able to compete in all UKC sanctioned events. The American Kennel Club has not fully recognized him because there are not enough registerable Swedish Lapphunds within the United States. He is able to be registered within AKC’s Foundation Stock Service and compete in companion events. 

Swedish Lapphund Breed Appearance

The Swedish Lapphund is a medium sized dog with a big personality. He is an inquisitive looking dog with dark brown eyes that are round and set well apart. His eyes should be big but never protruding. His eye rims are black or a dark brown depending on his coat color. His nose should be a dark charcoal black or a dark chocolate brown depending on his coat color. He has triangular ears that stand up straight and have slightly rounded tips. His ears should be set well apart with a broad base. He has a typical spitz tail that is set very high on the rump and reaches to the hock when it is uncurled and extended. When he is moving, his tail will be carried high and curled over his back forming a fan of hair over his back. The Swedish Lapphund has a dense coat that can only be called profuse. His undercoat is dense and fine. He is usually found in solid black but a liver color is also acceptable. He can have some white on his feet and the very tip of his tail. 

Eye Color Possibilities
brown Swedish Lapphund eyes
Nose Color Possibilities
black Swedish Lapphund nose
brown Swedish Lapphund nose
Coat Color Possibilities
black Swedish Lapphund coat
brown Swedish Lapphund coat
Coat Length
Short Medium Long
Coat Density
coat density
Sparse Normal Dense
Coat Texture
coat texture
Swedish Lapphund straight coat texture
Straight Wiry Wavy Curly Corded

Swedish Lapphund Breed Maintenance

The Swedish Lapphund has a very dense double coat that does shed heavily seasonally. His coat will require weekly brushing to keep his coat and skin clean and healthy. He should be groomed using a quality pin brush and a metal comb. In some instances a de-shedder and de-matter may be required if his coat care gets out of control. During times of heavy shedding, be sure to brush him daily or there will be hair everywhere in your home. Basic weekly care for the Swedish Lapphund will include checking his nails and then trimming them when needed, cleaning his ears to keep them free of dirt, brushing his teeth and then checking his paw pads for knots or debris. His nails will probably only need to be trimmed every few weeks and the hair between his pads may need trimmed to keep his feet healthy. He will need bathed only a few times each year, especially during times of heavy shedding. 

Brushes for Swedish Lapphund
Pin Brush
Pin Brush
Brushing Frequency
fur daily fur weekly fur monthly
Swedish Lapphund requires weekly brushing
Daily Weekly Monthly

Swedish Lapphund Temperament

 The Swedish Lapphund is a fun loving dog who is always alert and ready to play a game or do a job. He loves people, especially children. Since he is a typical herding breed, he will be very vocal and can easily annoy neighbors. The Swedish Lapphund is not recommended for apartment living unless he has a stay-at-home parent who can devote a lot of time and energy into keeping him happy and well exercised. He is an intelligent dog and needs mental stimulation as well as physical activity.  Expect to spend at least an hour a day playing with him and exercising. Training should involve a lot of praise and positive reinforcement as well as treats and playfulness or he will not cooperate with you. Do not leave him alone in the backyard for long periods of time. He will become very unhappy and could become destructive or a pest with his barking. 

Activity Level
low activity medium activity high activity
Low Medium High
Rec. Walk Mileage Per Week
10 miles
walk mileage
Minutes of Activity Per Day
60 minutes
activity minutes

Swedish Lapphund Food Consumption

Cups Per Day
2.3 cups
cup per day cost cup per day cost
Daily Cost
$12.00 - $1.40
food bowls daily cost
Monthly Cost
$34.00 - $45.00
food bag monthly cost

Swedish Lapphund Height & Weight

6 Months
Male Swedish Lapphund size stats at six months
Height: 15.5 inches Weight: 21.0 lbs
Female Swedish Lapphund size stats at six months
Height: 14.5 inches Weight: 21.0 lbs
12 Months
Male Swedish Lapphund size stats at 12 months
Height: 17.0 inches Weight: 37.0 lbs
Female Swedish Lapphund size stats at 12 months
Height: 16.0 inches Weight: 37.0 lbs
18 Months
Male Swedish Lapphund size stats at 18 months
Height: 19.0 inches Weight: 44.0 lbs
Female Swedish Lapphund size stats at 18 months
Height: 17.0 inches Weight: 44.0 lbs

Swedish Lapphund Owner Experiences

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