Let's talk Swedish Lapphunds

Swedish Lapphunds rarely meet a human or fellow dog they don’t take to, and every walk you take them on is another opportunity for this incredibly sociable dog to make yet more acquaintances. Playful, lively and highly intelligent, this spitz breed enjoys nothing more than getting out and about, whether you take them for a ride in your car or bring them along on a camping trip. You can be sure they'd alert you if an animal approaches the campsite, scaring them away with their high-pitched bark.

Official name: Swedish Lapphund

Other names: Svensk Lapphund

Origins: Sweden

Close-up of Swedish Lapphund in black and white
Drooling tendencies Low Warm weather? Low
Shedding level High Suited to apartment living? Low
*Energy Level moderate *Friendly pet? High
Compatibility with other pets High *Can stay alone? Low

* We advise against leaving pets alone for long stretches. Companionship can prevent emotional distress and destructive behavior. Speak to your veterinarian for recommendations.

Every pet is different, even within a breed; this snapshot of this breed specifics should be taken as an indication.

For a happy healthy and well-behaved pet, we recommend educating and socializing your pet as well as covering their basic welfare needs (and their social and behavioral needs).

Pets should never be left unsupervised with a child.

Contact your breeder or veterinarian for further advice.

Inline Image 15
Illustration of Swedish Lapphund
45 - 51 cm translations.feature.breeds.height
13.5 - 20 kg translations.feature.breeds.weight
40 - 46 cm translations.feature.breeds.height
13.5 - 20 kg translations.feature.breeds.weight


 Baby age  Birth to 2 months
 Puppy age  2 to 12 months
 Adult age  1 to 7 years
 Mature age  7 to 10 years
 Senior age  From 10 years

Swedish Lapphund standing in field of grass and white flowers


Get to know the Swedish Lapphund

All you need to know about the breed

The Swedish Lapphund gets along well with pretty much anyone, whether two- or four-legged – including cats, if brought up with them. They are good with children, are tireless playmates and make wonderful family companions, though their herding instinct may make them be a bit too energetic for a family with small children. This breed does not require a huge home. However, in a city or suburb with more dense housing, your neighbours might not find their voice as endearing as you do.

These dogs are both active and intelligent, so they need to be challenged both physically and mentally to prevent them from getting noisy, or even a little destructive, which might happen as they attempt to entertain themselves. In addition to exercise, dedicate time to puzzle solving to keep their clever minds active and fulfilled. The Swedish Lapphund enjoys most dog sports, including agility, flyball, herding, mantrailing and obedience.

You should not leave any dog alone for long periods of time and, due to their sociable nature, this is very important when it comes to the Swedish Lapphund, as they will suffer from a kind of canine separation anxiety and become excessively barky. To prevent this, include them in any possible activity and they'll be more than content. All in all, this is a well-balanced breed with oodles of great traits.

Swedish Lapphund standing on grass with mouth open


2 facts about Swedish Lapphunds

1. Nordic brothers from another mother

The Swedish Lapphund and Finnish Lapphund are very similar in appearance. Long ago they were virtually the exact same dog, but over time the Finnish breed became slightly smaller and developed variations in coat colour.

2. No matter the weather, in it together

Thanks to their thick coats, these dogs thrive in the cold, and won't be put off exercising even in the worst weather. In the summer heat, however, it's best to exercise them early in the morning and later at night to avoid your Swedish Lapphund experiencing heat stroke. This is a dog that doesn't enjoy central heating or overly warm homes.


History of the breed

The Swedish Lapphund is the national dog of Sweden. They were originally developed by the nomadic Sami people of Lappland, in the north of Sweden, Finland and Norway, as a hunting partner and guard dog. When the Sami began to live a more settled lifestyle, keeping herds of reindeer, the breed developed herding skills.

The oldest of Sweden's nine native breeds, they are one of the oldest types of dogs in existence. Archaeological remains of dogs of this medium-sized spitz type have been found dating as far back as 7000 years ago. Though accustomed to working in extremely cold climates, these days this intrepid dog of the north is typically a companion and show dog, and relatively rare outside of Sweden.

The breed was first recognised by the Swedish Kennel Club in 1903, with a dog named Halli as the first dog registered. It’s also recognised by the Fédération Cynologique Internationale and the United Kennel Club. Swedish Lapphunds are recorded in the American Kennel Club's Foundation Stock Service, the first step toward eventual recognition.

Close-up of Swedish Lapphund in black and white


From head to tail

Physical characteristics of Swedish Lapphunds

1. Coat

Medium-length, straight, dense black or brown coat.

2. Body

Triangular prick ears, wedge-shaped head, strong muscular back.

3. Tail

Bushy tail carried curled over back when dog is in movement.

Side view of Swedish Lapphund with mouth open


Things to look out for

From specific breed traits to a general health overview, here are some interesting facts about your Swedish Lapphund
Swedish Lapphund running over dried grass and snow


Caring for your Swedish Lapphund

Grooming, training and exercise tips

The Swedish Lapphund is not difficult to groom but their beautiful double coat consists of a dense undercoat and a top coat that stands straight out from the body, requiring a bit more maintenance than that of short-haired breeds. A weekly session with a special brush or metal comb will do the trick. They do shed seasonally (in the spring and autumn), blowing out their coats so keep a broom or vacuum nearby. Check ears for debris daily and clean as recommended by your vet. Nails should be trimmed regularly and teeth brushed often to avoid dental problems.
Like most herding, spitz-type breeds, the Swedish Lapphund is an independent thinker and can be a bit barky, so teach your puppy early when it's okay to bark. They respond well to positive reinforcement techniques such as toys, praise and food rewards, which should always come out of their daily kibble rations. Keep training sessions short and fun so they don't get bored, and exercise time - one to three hours daily - interesting to keep their minds involved.


All about Swedish Lapphunds

According to the Swedish dog personality test Mentalbeskrivning, Swedish Lapphunds are curious, fearless and outgoing with a low level of aggression. They get along well with children, once trained, and other pets – in particular if they’re raised with them.

This breed does shed. For most of the year, weekly brushing is enough to maintain the Swedish Lapphund’s coat, but during shedding seasons, in spring and autumn, they shed excessively, so will need more frequent brushing - and vacuuming - to keep loose fur under control.



1 - Veterinary Centers of America https://vcahospitals.com/ 

2 - Royal Canin Dog Encyclopaedia. Ed 2010 and 2020

3 - Banfield Pet Hospital https://www.banfield.com/

4 - Royal Canin BHN Product Book

5 - American Kennel Club https://www.akc.org/