There is something about the Lhasa Apso. Perhaps one of the most iconic looking dog breeds, bearing some resemblance to the Shih Tzu and Maltese. It is no real surprise you are considering one. But how big does the typical Lhasa get? And what does their size mean for owners? Here is what you should know.
So, how big do Lhasa Apsos get? Lhasa Apsos typically reach between 10-11 inches (25-27 cm) in height and weigh between 12-18 pounds (5-8kg), on average. As small dogs, they generally reach their full adult size by 12 months of age. Males are often a few pounds heavier than the females of the breed.
While they may not be particularly large; they can certainly wear a long, luscious coat.
Can being the important word here.
Not all dogs of the breed do.
But they are common for it, and many owners do decide to grow the coat out.
And it grows to great lengths. Flat-hanging and parting in the middle.
But do not let this almost comical appearance fool you.
They’re hardy dogs with an interesting heritage. Serving as a royal watchdog.
And this still shows today.
They’re still assertive, obedient and alert, and devoted.
Terrific qualities for any owner, even if they are not the most placid of lapdogs!
So while a small dog in structure, they are not a small dog in personality!
Let us now take a closer look at the respective growth rates of both the males and females of the breed.
We’ll then be looking at what their size means for an owner.
So, if you are serious about taking one of these dogs on, you should keep reading.
At What Age Is A Lhasa Apso Full Grown?
The average Lhasa Apso will reach their full adult size by 12 months of age. This is commonly seen in both the males and females of the breed, but males tend to carry more weight and thus grow at a faster rate.
Here is what this looks like, broken down by month of age:
Growth Of A Male Lhasa Apso
- The weight of a male Lhasa Apso at 3 months should be between 5.5 and 7.5 pounds.
- At 6 months, they will likely weigh between 10.5 and 14 lbs (pounds).
- At 1 year, a male Lhasa Apso should weigh between 53 and 62 lbs (pounds).
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Growth Of A Female Lhasa Apso
- The weight of a female Lhasa Apso at 3 months should be between 5 and 7 lbs (pounds).
- At 6 months, they will likely weigh between 8.5 and 12.5 lbs (pounds).
- At 1 year, a female Lhasa Apso should weigh between 39 and 52 lbs (pounds).
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As the data in the table shows, the Lhasa Apsos does not typically gain too much weight from puppy to adult.
They’re not even considered to be particularly heavy dogs.
So, there are only 7 pounds in between the average smaller female and the largest heavier average male.
Not a lot.
And while they only take around 12 months to reach their size, mental maturity is another matter altogether.
It’s not until the age of three years old that your typical Lhasa will start behaving like an adult.
And that’s even with consistent training and sufficient socialization from the time that they are a young pup.
So, if you do decide to take this breed on, consider that you’ll be looking after a puppy for quite some time.
And you’ll need to commit to the process.
You must remain patient, consistent, and be willing to get to the other side.
It is worth it, after all.
Spatial Requirements Of Lhasa Apsos
Lhasa Apsos are an excellent breed for those who have a limited amount of space, particularly those who live in a smaller apartment or a condo.
It is probably not much of a surprise and what you would have been expecting from a dog that only stands at 10-11 inches!
While outdoor space is not necessarily a requirement for the breed, it is appreciated, and they will enjoy spending time playing in a yard if given the opportunity.
Nevertheless, this is a breed that can adapt to almost any home or context.
They are suitable for rural family living and also suit single individuals who reside in urban areas.
They’re even a good choice for first-time dog owners.
But they do need firm leadership, and they are not the best around young children.
They can get impatient with the antics of younger kids and appreciate it when handled appropriately.
Exercise And Dietary Needs Of Lhasa Apsos
Just as is the case with any small dog, its only natural to have questions about their exercise and dietary needs.
Especially for a breed that sits in the ‘non-sporting’ group.
Here is what you need to be mindful of with the Lhasa:
A high-quality diet should be given to any dog, but for the Lhasa, it is particularly important.
They do best on natural foods, with minimal consumption of processed and grain-heavy feeds.
They simply need a nutrient-dense diet of sufficient protein and fat to support the growth and maintenance of their heavy and continually growing coat.
Many vets will often recommend food that consists of at least 14% fat for this reason, which is much higher than in other breeds.
Meat and fish can be provided to this dog, too, and will come down to individual circumstances, costs, and dog preference.
It’s important not to overfeed a Lhasa, and they should be fed in accordance with their age, weight, and other factors such as their level of activity.
Ensuring they do not gain too much excess weight is vital for health; feeling without seeing their ribs without the need to push too hard is a good general estimation.
A puppy should therefore be fed very differently from an aging adult dog.
Lhasa puppies tend to do best with being fed 3-4x per day.
Although by 6 months of age, this can be tapered down to 2-3 meals, and by 12 months of age, down to 1-2 meals.
Most owners will end up feeding their adult Lhasa 2x per day – both morning and night.
What’s most important with a feeding schedule is consistency, so sticking to a schedule is highly advised.
The Lhasa is not a particularly high-energy breed and, as such, does not require as much exercise as some of the larger, sporting breeds.
They are quite happy with a couple of shorter walks per day. 10-15 minutes at a time is usually enough.
Outside of those, they’re generally happy to sit in their owner’s lap, play with toys, and keep guard.
They tend to move as and when required, not lazing around for too long, showing bursts of energy at different times of the day.
Being small, they’re quite agile and tend to thrive in this activity.
The Lhasa Apso is one of the smallest breeds of dog that you could look to own.
In size and frame, rather than in personality!
They’re a confident, independent breed who is more than willing to protect should the need arise. Couple this with intelligence and playfulness, and they’re quite the well-rounded dog.
And while they are suitable for first-time owners, or even families, they’re quite the challenge to raise.
Training requires commitment and a firm but fair approach.
And they do love to bark.
So this needs to be addressed while they are young, or it will only become more of an issue later in life.
And it can be hard.
A Lhasa Apso puppy is, without doubt, one of the cutest.
So you’ll need to overcome that tendency to appease them.
But if you can, and if you put in the time to care for these little dogs, you’ll be rewarded.
They make a fantastic companion, do not need too much space or exercise, and are very devoted to their owners.
Is A Lhasa Apso A Small Or Medium Dog?
The Lhasa Apso is classified as a small dog breed due to the fact that they do not typically weigh more than 18 pounds. Medium dogs are those breeds that weigh between 23-38 lbs.
I am a practiced pet owner with decades of experience owning a number of different pets. I am also the main writer and chief editor here at Pet Educate; a site I created to share everything I’ve learned about pet ownership over the years and my extensive research along the way.