Lhasa Apso | PetFirst
Breed Spotlights

Lhasa Apso

by PetFirst Pet Insurance
5 years ago

Life Expectancy: 12 – 15 years
Dog Breed Group: Companion Dogs
Weight: 10- 18 lbs.
Height: 10 -12 inches

Where Does the Lhasa Apso Rank?

See where this beloved breed ranks in comparison to other breeds in 7 key categories.


8 out of 10 rankingThe Lhasa Apso is generally responsive to training using positive reinforcement.

Shedding Friendliness

10 out of 10 rankingThis breed does not shed that much. The Lhasa Apso is considered to be a breed that can be suitable for those with allergies.

Ease of Grooming

The Lhasa Apso’s coat is difficult to maintain and can prove to be extremely time-consuming. Daily brushing and combing is necessary. Your Lhasa must also be bathed once every two to four weeks. Many Lhasa Apso owners choose to clip their coat short to reduce the burden of coat maintenance.


4 out of 10 rankingThis breed suffers from a deformity in the legs and back. This can cause Lhasa Apso dogs to have respiratory, orthopedic, and eye problems.

Exercise Needs

The Lhasa Apso does not require a significant amount of exercise but should be walked daily to remain healthy.

Good with Children

4 out of 10 rankingThe Lhasa Apso is not recommended for homes with small children due to their ‘snappy’ behavior with young children. She is excellent in homes with children over the age of 10.

Barking Restraint

8 out of 10 rankingExcessive barking is not a problem in this breed.


What You Need to Know About Lhasa Apso Dogs


The Lhasa Apso has a mixed-type personality. He is happy and playful at times but is also independent and fierce. His puppy stage lasts into adult age, so be prepared for ‘puppyish’ behavior for a long period of time.

The Lhasa Apso is small not at all fragile like many small breeds. He’s sturdy, strong and extremely protective of his family. He does make friends with strangers once he understands they are not a threat to his family. This also makes him an excellent watchdog.

The Lhasa enjoys staying near her family and has no problem remaining indoors for the majority of the day. She also does not mind spending her time outdoors the majority of the day. She enjoys being near her pet parent but is also often content staying home alone for several hours. The Lhasa Apso does not often develop separation anxiety due to her independent nature.

Her temperament varies based on genetics, training, and socialization. If you have the opportunity to meet the parents of the puppy you are adopting, you can gage the temperaments of the parents to ensure this Lhasa is the one for you.


The Lhasa Apso is extremely easy to train and they learn quickly.


The Lhasa Apso has a long, beautiful coat.

Health Problems

Chondrodysplasia – This is also known as ‘canine dwarfism’. The Lhasa Apso breed has a deformation in the legs and back. This breed has short legs and a long back. This can cause orthopedic problems.

Brachycephalic – This is caused by the dog’s long back pushing into the face. It can cause the air passages to be flattened. This deformity can cause respiratory and eye problems.

Dry Eye – This is a condition where the Lhasa Apso has a deficiency in tear film over the surface of the eye and in the lining of the lids. Symptoms of this would be: excessive blinking, swollen blood vessels, discharge of mucus from the eye.

Cherry Eye – This occurs when the third eyelid swells in the inner corner of the dog’s eye.

Patellar Luxation – This is a health condition often found in small dogs. This is caused by the femur, patella and tibia not being aligned properly.

Sebaceous Adenitis (SA) – SA is a serious genetic skin condition which is difficult to diagnose. When a dog has this condition, the sebaceous glands in the skin become inflamed and are generally destroyed.

Top 10 Most Common Health Issues for Lhasa Apso

  1. Chondrodysplasia – short legs and a long back
  2. Brachycephalic- deformity
  3. Dry Eye
  4. Cherry Eye – swelling in the third eyelid
  5. Patellar Luxation
  6. Sebaceous Adenitis
  7. Lissencephaly – neurological disease
  8. Ear Infections – occurs from the mass amount of hair in ear canals
  9. Urinary Stones
  10. Luxating Patella – loose knees

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