Lapponian Shepherds are extinct dogs from southern Finland. Cockhill’s Finnish Lapphound, although not from Lappland, is the other name.

Lapponian Shepherd is a breed of herding dogs that was popular in Finland’s southern regions until the mid-20th century.

Origin & History

Lapponian Shepherd was born in 1930s southern Finland. Moreover, this breed is a result of a mix between Lapponian Reindeer Herding Dogs (or simply Finnish Lapphunds) and long-haired Karelian bear dogs.

Lapponian Sheperd originated in south Finland in the 1930s - A Comprehensive Guide to the Lapponian Shepherd Dog Breed
Lapponian Sheperds originated in South Finland during the 1930s.

Karelian Bear dogs and Finnish Lapphunds are crossed in the South. In 1945, the mix became officially recognized as Lapponian Shepherd and was named Cockhill’s Finnish Lapphund. Later, however, both the Lapponian Herder (also known as the Finnish Lapphund) and the Lapponian Shepherd were kept together under one breed. This led to people crossing them.

In 1967 the Finnish Kennel Club divided the Lapponian Shepherd breed into Lapponian Herder, and Finnish Lapphund. The kennel club didn’t count the Cockhill’s  Finnish Lapphound.

What caused the Lapponian Shepherd to become extinct?

In the 1980s, the Lapponian Shepherd was extinct due to its popularity with the Finnish Lapphund. The Lapponian shepherds were no longer wanted by the public as the Finnish Lapphund became popular. As a result, this breed is no longer in existence. It only exists today as the Finnish Lapphund.

Temperament, Behavior, & Personality

Lapponian shepherds have a gentle, calm and docile temperament. The dogs were energetic and active, so they had to be kept busy. They were also friendly with animals and other dogs.

The Lapponian Sheepdog is a sweet, bold and independent dog. Although they can be reserved around strangers, once they have gotten to know you they will get along with anyone.

Is Lapponian Sheep a Breed that is Child Friendly?

Lapponian Shepherds are a child-friendly dog breed. They are friendly, affectionate and would be a great companion for kids and toddlers of any age.

There was only one thing that mattered: their instinct to herd. Due to their high herding instinct, the dogs would often bark, nip and drag kids. It was therefore very important to supervise the children and dog.

The Facts

  • It was not born in Lappland, despite being called the Lapponian Shepherd.
  • Lapponian Sheep is sometimes confused with this breed.
  • Also known as Cockhill’s Finnish Lapphund.
Lapponian Shepherd werent actually from Lappland - A Comprehensive Guide to the Lapponian Shepherd Dog Breed
Lapponian Shepherd were actually not from Lappland.
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Lapponian Shepherds are found in these colors:

  • Dark Brown
  • Black
  • Dark Grey
  • Black & White
  • Liver

The Size

Lapponian sheeps are usually between 17-20″ (43-51cm) tall. They weighed between 23 and 32 kg (50 to 70 pounds).


In average, Lapponian Shepherd mothers give birth to three to eight puppies each time.

Similar Dog Breeds

  • Lapponian Herder
  • Finnish Lapphund
  • Swedish Lapphund