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Characteristics, History, and Health


The Lowchen, also known as the ""Little Lion Dog,"" is a small breed with a long history that dates back to the Renaissance period. Its exact origins are uncertain, but it is believed to have originated in Europe, specifically in Germany or Belgium. Löwchen descend from the same ancient line that produced companion breeds such as the Bichon Frise and Maltese. Throughout history, the Lowchen was a favored companion of nobility and depicted in many paintings and artworks. The breed faced decline at one point but experienced a revival in the mid-20th century, becoming more popular as a family pet and show dog.

Main Info
Mediterranean or Germany
Alternate Names
Little Lion Dog, Petit Chien Lion (French), Löwchen (German)
Life Expectancy
13-15 years
Average Male Height
12-14 inches
Average Female Height
12-14 inches
Average Male Weight
15 pounds
Average Female Weight
15 pounds
Coat Length
Coat Type
Coat Colors
Black, Black & Silver, Black & Tan, Blue, Blue Brindle, Chocolate, Cream, Fawn, Fawn Brindle, Gold, Red, Red Brindle, Red Sable, Silver, White, Black Brindle, Silver Sable, Silver Brindle, Fawn Sable, Chocolate Brindle, Chocolate Sable, Gold Brindle, Gold Sable, Black & Tan Brindle
Coat Pattern
White Markings, Tan Points, Cream Markings, Parti-color, Silver Markings, Irish Pied, Silver Points, Parti Belton

Genetic Predispositions and Health

Lowchen can suffer from hyperuricosuria, degenerative myelopathy, hip dysplasia, and patellar luxation. They are also prone to eye disorders including progressive rod-cone degeneration, cataracts, and progressive retinal atrophy. As for all breeds, genetic screening for hereditary conditions is recommended to assist veterinarians with diagnosis and proactive care, as well as help breeders identify affected and carrier dogs.

Personality and Behavior

Lowchens are known for their affectionate and lively nature. They are intelligent dogs, eager to please their owners, which makes training relatively easy. Despite their small size, they are brave and confident, making them good watchdogs. Lowchens are generally sociable and get along well with other pets and children. However, early socialization is essential to ensure they develop into well-rounded and well-behaved companions.

Fun Facts

Rare Breed: The Lowchen is considered one of the rarest dog breeds in the world. Its scarcity means that finding a reputable breeder may require some effort and patience.

Agility and Obedience: Despite their luxurious coat and regal appearance, Lowchens excel in dog sports such as agility and obedience competitions, showcasing their intelligence and athleticism.