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Nicole Cosgrove

June 18, 2021
The La-Pom is a small mixed breed dog the result of breeding a Pomeranian with a Lhasa Apso. She has a life span of 12 to 16 years and has talents in guarding, watchdog, agility and tricks. She is a lively little dog who is smart too. She is great for people living in apartments or families with older children.
Here is the La-Pom at a Glance
Average height 7 to 12 inches
Average weight 7 to 15 pounds
Coat type Double coat, short and long, coarse and silky, straight to wavy
Hypoallergenic? Yes
Grooming Needs Moderate
Shedding Low (seasonal)
Brushing Daily as long coat can mat easily
Touchiness Quite sensitive
Tolerant to Solitude? Low to moderate
Barking Rare to occasional
Tolerance to Heat Low to moderate
Tolerance to Cold Good to very good
Good Family Pet? Good to very good
Good with Children? Better with older children and needs socialization
Good with other Dogs? Good with socialization
Good with other Pets? Good to very good with socialization
A roamer or Wanderer? Low
A Good Apartment Dweller? Excellent
Good Pet for new Owner? Very good
Trainability Easy to train
Exercise Needs Slightly active
Tendency to get Fat Above average
Major Health Concerns Eye problems, patellar luxation, skin problems, kidney problems, epilepsy, Legg-Perthes Disease, Collapsed Trachea
Other Health Concerns Allergies, hip dysplasia, dental problems
Life Span 12 to 16 years
Average new Puppy Price $250 to $650
Average Annual Medical Expense $435 to $550
Average Annual Non-Medical Expense $525 to $600

Where does the La-Pom come from?

We do not have much if any information about her origins or why she was bred. Also known as a hybrid or designer dog she is part of a trend to create new mixed breeds. Often they are given names that blend the parents names. Mixed breeds are not new, even some deliberate mixing is not new, but this constant mixing in the last 20 years has really taken off. Some of the so called designer dogs were created with thought and reason even if we do not yet know it. But a lot of them are created by disreputable breeders and puppy mills just jumping on the designer dog bandwagon to make money. For this reason when looking at designer dogs like the La-Pom take the time to find a good breeder. With no history to look at we can turn to the parent dogs to get a feel for temperament and looks.

The Pomeranian

In the northern countries there were Spitz breeds and it is thought the Pomeranian was bred from these dogs in Pomerania. Back then Pomeranians could weigh up to 30 pounds. They were a popular dog breed, you can find many famous people throughout history who were fans. They came to England in 1761 and at that time were over 20 pounds. While popular in the royal family and with nobility they were not so with the public. In the Victorian era things changed though, Queen Victoria loved them after she saw one weighing 12 pounds. It is believed this inspired the breeding of small Pomeranians amongst English breeders. During the early 20th century the breed was stabilized at the present normal weight of 7 to 15 pounds.

The Pomeranian today is a very extroverted dog who is smart, lively and outgoing. He loves social get togethers, meeting people, family events and expects to be central to it all. He does have that small dog tendency of challenging bigger dogs so does need watching around them. He is alert, curious and a great watchdog. He does tend to bark a lot so early socialization and training are key to controlling this.

The Lhasa Apso

The Lhasa Apso gets his name from Lhasa the holy city in Tibet. For thousands of years this dog was bred by monks in monasteries and by nobility and his purpose was to protect and guard. He was viewed as a holy dog but he was not a dog that people could buy. They could also not leave the country unless being gifted by the Dalai Lama. They were thought to bring with them prosperity and good luck. They came to America when the Dalai Lama in 1933 gifted a pair to naturalist and world traveler C Cutting. He then created a kennel from them.

Today this dog is a very interesting mix of almost contrasting traits. He is mischievous but noble, loyal and devoted but independent, happy and playful but fierce. He still acts as protector and guard to his owner and family. He also actually takes longer to mature than many other dogs. While he is a small dog he is still sturdy and he is wary of strangers and will only relax if he has decided there is no threat. He trains well but he needs very firm and strong owners because of that stubborn side he has. He is not especially active and is happy in apartments along with short walks and some play. He is fine being left alone and it is rare for him to suffer from separation anxiety.


The La-Pom is a typical small dog thinking she is actually bigger than she is so needs watching around bigger dogs. She has a calm nature but can be playful. She is smart and friendly and affectionate. She likes to be close to her owner and would not like being separated for long periods of time. She thrives when there is company around and loves to get lots of attention. She can be protective and is alert. Early socialization and training to make her a better well rounded dog are important to help her with children, other dogs and other pets.

What does a La-Pom look like

She is a small dog weighing 7 to 15 pounds and measures 7 to 12 inches tall. She has a double coat with a short and soft hair on the undercoat and course long hair on the outer coat. If the outer coat is left to grow long it can become wispy at and wavy. Common colors for a La-Pom are cream, red, white, golden, black, brown and tan. She has a round head with a short length muzzle, eyes that are almond shaped and floppy ears.

Training and Exercise Needs

How active does the La-Pom need to be?

She is only a slightly active dog, she does not need a lot of exercise to keep her happy and healthy. One medium length walk a day plus some play time, or two short ones plus play time will be about right. She can live in an apartment fine and as long as she gets those walks and some indoor play she does not have to have access to a yard. She would still enjoy the odd trip to the dog park too.

Does she train quickly?

She is a fairly easy dog to train as she tends to listen and obey and is a clever dog. Some dogs of this breed will even learn quicker than others needing less repetition. Sometimes she has an independent nature and she will try to exert that if you are not firm enough with her. You need to establish clearly you are are pack leader, use a firm tone, be consistent when training and use positive techniques not negative. Keep training sessions short and interesting if you find she is being more difficult.

Living with a La-Pom

How much grooming is needed?

She is a low shedding dog so grooming and maintenance in general is fairly easy with her. You may decide to have her fur professionally trimmed when it gets too long. A couple of times a year during shedding seasons her shedding may go up a little. In general brushing should happen daily to prevent mats and snarls in that long hair. When it comes to bathing as with most dogs just give her a bath when she really needs one. Use a dog shampoo only. Her teeth should be brushed using dog toothpaste and brush at least twice a week. Her ears need checking and wiping clean once a week and her nails need to be clipped when they get too long.

What is she like with children and other animals?

She is good with kids when she has been socialized and trained early on. She does better with older children than younger. If raised with children, other dogs and pets she is also more tolerant and even affectionate. Sometimes she is not good meeting new dogs and may try to challenge them. After she gets to know then though she is friendly. She is better with dogs of the same gender.

General information

She is alert and makes a good watchdog. She will need to be fed ½ cup to 1 cup of high quality dry dog food each day divided into two meals. She is best in cooler climates than hot ones. She is a rare to occasional barker.

Health Concerns

The La-Pom is in general a healthy dog but you should see health clearances when you buy a puppy and take the time to find a good breeder. Any health issues that might occur are ones that she could inherit from her parents such as eye problems, patellar luxation, skin problems, kidney problems, epilepsy, Legg-Perthes Disease, Collapsed Trachea, allergies, hip dysplasia and dental problems.

Costs involved in owning a La-Pom

The La-Pom puppy will set you back about $250 to $650. These can change depending on where you live, who you buy from and how popular the mixed breed is at the time. There are several initial costs to be ready for, some medical and some not. She will need a collar and leash, crate, carrier bag and some other bits. She may also need deworming, blood tests, shots, spaying and a micro chip put in. These will come to $360 to $420. Medical annual costs for check ups, flea prevention, insurance and vaccinations will be between $435 to $550. Annual costs for everything else such as food, training, toys, long hair grooming, treats and license come to between $525 to $600.


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The La-Pom is a great dog for most people, but is especially a good option if you are senior or less active and living in a small space as she needs less exercise than many dogs. She will be affectionate and loyal and easy to love. She does come with long hair that will need professional maintaining now and then though.

Featured Image Credit: Left – Purplehorse, Pixabay; Right – SubertT, Shutterstock

Nicole Cosgrove

Nicole is the proud mom of Baby, a Burmese cat and Rosa, a New Zealand Huntaway. A Canadian expat, Nicole now lives on a lush forest property with her Kiwi husband in New Zealand. She has a strong love for all animals of all shapes and sizes (and particularly loves a good interspecies friendship) and wants to share her animal knowledge and other experts' knowledge with pet lovers across the globe.