The Finnish Lapphund is a medium-sized, sturdy, Spitz-like dog with a thick, double coat. Its broad, wedge-shaped head has prick ears, a straight muzzle and dark, oval-shaped eyes. It has a strong neck, straight back and a well-plumed tail that sometimes curls over the back or hangs low.
The Finnish Lapphund has a calm, well-balanced temperament, combining a watchful alertness, a tireless energy and a friendly demeanor. Quick and athletic, it loves to play outdoors. The Finnish Lapphund is also clever enough to master agility and obedience training.
Used to herding reindeer in the snow, it has a strong work ethic. It also makes an excellent, restrained watchdog. With the proper training and introduction, it will get along with other animals and strangers.
With a strong herding and working background, the Finnish Lapphund needs room to run and roam. It is probably not a good dog to keep in an apartment. The Finnish Lapphund appreciates tasks and togetherness with the family.
The Finnish Lapphund can live as long as 17 years with relatively few health issues; however, a small percentage may develop hip dysplasia or eye problems. Grooming the thick double coat is fairly easy: Just brush and bathe occasionally.
The Finnish Lapphund is an ancient Scandinavian breed, dating back to 7,000 B.C. by some accounts. Originally used to herd reindeer, the Finnish Laphund was also a formidable hunter, protector and friend. They are still popular companions in Finland, and their reputation is slowly growing in North America.