Queen Elizabeth II and her Fondness for Lhasa Apsos

As we delve into the fascinating world of Queen Elizabeth II and her beloved Lhasa Apsos, we are transported to a world of regal charm and canine companionship. The Queen’s fondness for this particular breed has captivated the hearts of many, and it comes as no surprise given the breed’s unique history and charming personality. Join us as we explore the story of her majesty’s lifelong bond with these furry friends and discover the joys of owning a Lhasa Apso.

The Lhasa Apso Breed

The Lhasa Apso Breed
There is something truly captivating about the Lhasa Apso breed that has caught the attention and admiration of many throughout history. From renowned dignitaries like the Dalai Lama to famous artists and political leaders, Lhasa Apsos have found a place in the hearts of many. Their striking appearance and fascinating history make them a popular choice as companions for people across the globe. In this section, we will explore the origins and characteristics of the Lhasa Apso breed, as well as their temperament and personality. So let’s dive in and discover what makes these dogs so special. If you want to learn about historical Lhasa Apsos hunting, feel free to follow this link.

Origins and Characteristics

The Lhasa Apso breed has a fascinating and ancient history. This breed originated in Tibet and was highly valued by the people of the country. They were often kept as guard dogs in temples and monasteries. Lhasa Apsos also served as companions to Tibetan nobility and were considered sacred. The breed’s name is derived from the capital city of Tibet – Lhasa. According to Tibetan tradition, the Lhasa Apso was kept in the offices of the Dalai Lama as a sentinel.

Lhasa Apsos have distinctive physical characteristics that make them stand out from other breeds. They are a small breed, usually weighing between 12 and 18 pounds. They have long, thick hair that drapes over their small, compact bodies. Their fur comes in a variety of colors, including black, gold, and cream. The Lhasa Apso’s most unique characteristic is their beard and mustache, which gives them a distinguished appearance. These features were originally meant to shield the dog’s face from the harsh weather conditions in Tibet.

Despite their small size, Lhasa Apsos are sturdy and enduring dogs. They are known for their alert and watchful nature. Their small size makes them ideal pets for those who live in apartments or small homes. However, Lhasa Apsos are not recommended for families with small children, as they can be very protective of their owners. They are also not very active and prefer to spend the day lounging around the house.

The Lhasa Apso is a unique and ancient breed with a fascinating history. Their distinctive physical characteristics make them stand out from other breeds, and their loyalty and watchfulness make them excellent pets. If you’re looking for a small but sturdy companion, the Lhasa Apso might be the perfect choice for you. However, it’s important to note that they require a certain level of care and attention. As with any breed, it’s important to do research and make sure you’re equipped to care for a Lhasa Apso.

Temperament and Personality

The personality of Lhasa Apsos is a combination of affection and independence. These dogs are incredibly loyal to their owners and are known to form strong bonds with them. However, they are not overly needy and can be left alone for a few hours without becoming anxious or destructive. Despite their small size, Lhasa Apsos are known to be excellent watchdogs, thanks to their sharp senses and naturally protective instincts. They are also quite adaptable and can thrive in a variety of living situations, from small apartments to larger homes with yards.

One interesting thing to note about Lhasa Apsos is that they can be quite stubborn at times. This, coupled with their independent nature, means that training them can require a bit of patience, perseverance, and consistency. However, with the right approach and positive reinforcement techniques, they can learn to behave well and perform various tricks and commands.

Lhasa Apsos are also known for their playful and mischievous side. They enjoy playing with toys, chasing after balls or sticks, and engaging in other forms of physical activity. Additionally, they are very affectionate and will often seek out cuddles and belly rubs from their owners.

If you are considering getting a Lhasa Apso, it is important to keep in mind that they do have a relatively high maintenance coat. Regular grooming is necessary to keep their coat soft, silky, and tangle-free. However, as long as you are willing to put in the effort, Lhasa Apsos can make wonderful companions and pets.

If you want to see some examples of famous people who have fallen in love with Lhasa Apsos, check out our list of celebs who have adopted these adorable dogs (link). From renowned dignitaries and political leaders to famous artists, Lhasa Apsos have captured the hearts of many.

Queen Elizabeth II: A Royal Dog Lover

Queen Elizabeth Ii: A Royal Dog Lover
Astonishingly, one of the world’s most prestigious individuals, Queen Elizabeth II, shares her love for one of the most unique dog breeds, the Lhasa Apso. Her Majesty is known to be an avid dog lover, and her fondness for these small, spirited canines knows no bounds. Her Royal Highness has always held a deep admiration for the Lhasa Apso breed, and it is no surprise considering their distinct characteristics and temperament. This close bond between the Queen and her Lhasa Apsos has been a subject of interest for many years, and one that has captured the hearts of dog enthusiasts, including renowned artists, political leaders, and dignitaries around the world.

The Story Begins with Susan

The story of Queen Elizabeth II and her fondness for Lhasa Apsos begins with a little pup named Susan in 1944. Susan was presented to the queen on her 18th birthday by her father, King George VI. From that moment on, Susan became a beloved member of the royal household.

Susan was a purebred Lhasa Apso, known for their long, flowing coats and lion-like appearance. Her loyalty and affection towards the young queen sparked a love for the breed that has lasted throughout her long reign.

As the years went by, Susan was always by the queen’s side. She accompanied her on many official engagements and even followed her on her honeymoon. Susan was known for her sweet personality, and her presence brought joy to everyone who met her.

When Susan passed away in 1959, the queen was heartbroken. She commissioned a portrait of Susan to memorialize her beloved companion. The painting still hangs in her private sitting room in Buckingham Palace.

Despite the devastating loss of Susan, Queen Elizabeth II’s love for Lhasa Apsos continued. She has owned more than 30 of the breed over the years, and they have been a constant presence in her life. In fact, many members of the royal family have followed her lead and added Lhasa Apsos to their own households.

The queen’s love for these small, fluffy dogs has endured for over 75 years. It’s a testament to the special bond that developed between her and her first Lhasa Apso, Susan.

The Reign of Lhasa Apsos in the Palace

In the Buckingham Palace, the Lhasa Apso breed has reigned supreme as a favored dog breed of Queen Elizabeth II. These regal, long-haired beauties are known for their loyalty and devotion, traits that undoubtedly won over the heart of the Queen.

Throughout her reign, Queen Elizabeth II has had many Lhasa Apsos as companions, each one unique in their own way. One such Apso was named Choo Choo, who accompanied the Queen on many royal engagements, including a trip to Malaysia. Choo Choo was even included in official photographs with the Queen, solidifying his status as a beloved member of the royal family.

Another notable Lhasa Apso in the Palace was called Hapa, who was gifted to the Queen by the Dalai Lama. This gesture solidified the connection between the Tibetan people and the British monarchy. As the Queen’s loyal and loving companion, Hapa was often seen by her side during official events and engagements.

The most well-known Lhasa Apso in the palace, however, was undoubtedly named Dookie. This charming and friendly dog was cherished by the Queen and her family for many years. In fact, Dookie was so beloved that the Queen commissioned a portrait of him to be painted by artist Margaret Isabel Dicksee.

The table below provides a brief overview of some of the most notable Lhasa Apsos that have been part of the royal household:

NameGifted byNotable achievements
SusanQueen’s parentsFirst Lhasa Apso owned by the Queen
Choo ChooUnknownAccompanied Queen on many royal engagements
HapaDalai LamaGifted to the Queen, solidified connection between Tibet and the British Monarchy
DookieUnknownCherished by the Queen and family, commissioned portrait of him painted

As the table demonstrates, the Queen’s love for Lhasa Apsos has been consistent throughout her reign. These loyal and affectionate pups have won over the heart of the Queen and continue to be a beloved breed both in the royal household and throughout the world.

The Continuation of a Lifelong Bond

Despite losing her beloved Susan, Queen Elizabeth II’s love for Lhasa Apsos never waned. Over the course of her life, she has owned and cared for more than 30 dogs of this breed.

One of her most famous Lhasa Apsos was named Chatta, who became a constant companion to the Queen during the 1960s. Chatta was even known to accompany her on official royal visits.

Another notable Lhasa Apso in the Queen’s life was named Ming, who was gifted to her as a puppy in 2011. Ming quickly became a favorite of the family and even had a role in the 2012 Olympics opening ceremony.

The Queen’s current Lhasa Apso companions are Candy and Vulcan. Candy was given to the Queen as a present from her grandson, Prince William, in 2018. Vulcan, on the other hand, was a rescue dog who was adopted by the Queen in 2020.

It is clear that Queen Elizabeth II’s bond with Lhasa Apsos has endured through the years. She has even been known to breed and show them herself, with several of her dogs winning awards at dog shows.

The Queen’s love for Lhasa Apsos is a heartwarming testament to the special bond between humans and their pets. It is no surprise that this breed has captured the heart of such a beloved and respected figure.

Dog NameGifted/RescuedRole in the Queen’s Life
ChattaNot gifted – owned by the Queen in the 1960sConstant companion of the Queen, accompanied her on official royal visits.
MingGifted to the Queen as a puppy in 2011Became a favorite of the family, had a role in the 2012 Olympics opening ceremony.
CandyGifted to the Queen in 2018 by Prince WilliamCurrent companion of the Queen.
VulcanRescue dog adopted by the Queen in 2020Current companion of the Queen.

Lhasa Apsos as Pets: The Right Fit For You?

As you’ve learned so far, Lhasa Apsos have a unique history and personality that make them an ideal breed for royal companionship. But what about as pets for everyday life? Is a Lhasa Apso the right fit for you and your family? Let’s explore the considerations you should take into account before bringing one into your home. From caring for them to potential health concerns, we’ll take a closer look at what it takes to give a Lhasa Apso the life they deserve.

Caring for Lhasa Apsos

Taking care of Lhasa Apsos can be a fulfilling experience. They are loyal and loving creatures that require specific care to maintain their health and happiness. Here are some tips on how to best care for your Lhasa Apso:

Nutrition:Provide your Lhasa Apso with a balanced diet consisting of high-quality proteins, carbohydrates, and fats. Avoid giving them human food as it may cause digestive issues or obesity.
Exercise: Lhasa Apsos are small dogs that require moderate exercise. Regular walks and playtime will keep them active and prevent obesity.
Grooming: Keeping a Lhasa Apso’s coat clean and neat is a vital aspect of their care. Their long double-coat requires regular brushing to prevent mats and tangles. They also need occasional haircuts.
Dental Care: Oral hygiene is essential for a healthy Lhasa Apso. Brush their teeth regularly with dog-specific toothpaste and provide them with dental chews or toys.
Socialization: Lhasa Apsos are companion dogs that love human interaction. Ensure they receive the socialization they need by taking them on daily walks, introducing them to other dogs, and bringing them to public places.

By following these tips, you can ensure that your Lhasa Apso is healthy, happy, and well-cared for. Remember, proper care also includes regular visits to the veterinarian to ensure their health and well-being.

Health Concerns and Vaccinations

Ensuring the health of your Lhasa Apso is crucial to providing them with a long, happy life. Like any breed, Lhasa Apsos can be prone to certain health conditions. Regular visits to the veterinarian and staying up-to-date on vaccinations are essential for keeping your furry friend in top shape.

The most common health concerns for Lhasa Apsos are:

Patellar LuxationA knee joint problem that causes dislocation of the patella (kneecap).Surgery may be required to correct severe cases.
CataractsCloudiness in the eye that can lead to blindness.Surgery may be an option depending on severity.
Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA)A degenerative eye disease that leads to blindness.There is no cure for PRA, but early detection can slow down the progression of the disease.
Sebaceous AdenitisA skin condition that causes inflammation and hair loss.The use of special shampoos, supplements, and medications may help alleviate the symptoms.

In addition to being aware of these conditions, it is important to make sure your Lhasa Apso is up-to-date on their vaccinations. The following are core vaccinations recommended for all dogs:

  • Distemper – A contagious viral disease that can cause respiratory, gastrointestinal, and nervous system issues.
  • Hepatitis – A virus that can cause liver damage and other related health problems.
  • Parvovirus – A highly contagious virus that attacks the intestines and can cause severe dehydration and death.
  • Rabies – A deadly virus that attacks the brain and nervous system. It is also transmissible to humans.

Depending on your location and other factors, your veterinarian may also recommend non-core vaccinations such as leptospirosis and bordetella. It’s important to discuss your Lhasa Apso’s individual needs with your veterinarian and follow their recommended vaccination schedule.

By taking preventative measures such as staying up-to-date on vaccinations and regular vet checkups, you can help ensure the long-term health and happiness of your Lhasa Apso.


In conclusion, the relationship between Queen Elizabeth II and her beloved Lhasa Apsos is a heartwarming tale of royal companionship that has lasted for more than half a century. The Queen’s fondness for this breed of dog has not waned, and she continues to keep them as part of her furry family to this day.

For those considering the Lhasa Apso as a pet, it is essential to note that while they are loyal and loving companions, they require attentive care and a lot of time and effort from their owners. They are a breed that demands patience and consistency when it comes to training and socialization.

If you are a busy person who cannot commit to frequent grooming and exercise, a Lhasa Apso may not be the right fit for you. However, if you have the time and resources to dedicate to a loving and affectionate dog, a Lhasa Apso might be just the furry friend you need.

Remember to research thoroughly before deciding on any pet, but especially for a dog known for its unique and sometimes challenging personality.

Overall, the story of Queen Elizabeth II and her Lhasa Apsos is a testament to the bond that can exist between a person and their pet. As the Queen herself said, “They are so friendly and make such charming companions. They are also fiercely loyal, and we all enjoy their company.”

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the lifespan of a Lhasa Apso?

The average lifespan of a Lhasa Apso is 12-15 years.

Are Lhasa Apsos good with children?

Lhasa Apsos can be great with children if they are socialized properly from a young age.

Do Lhasa Apsos shed a lot?

Yes, Lhasa Apsos have a long, thick coat and shed moderately throughout the year.

Do Lhasa Apsos require a lot of exercise?

No, Lhasa Apsos only require moderate amounts of exercise, such as short walks and playtime indoors.

What is the proper way to groom a Lhasa Apso?

Regular grooming is important for Lhasa Apsos, including brushing their long coat daily and regular trimming of their hair.

Are Lhasa Apsos easy to train?

Lhasa Apsos can be stubborn at times, but with patience and consistent training, they can learn obedience commands and tricks.

Are Lhasa Apsos prone to any health conditions?

Lhasa Apsos can be prone to certain health conditions such as hip dysplasia, respiratory problems, and eye issues.

Do Lhasa Apsos make good apartment pets?

Yes, Lhasa Apsos can adapt well to apartment living as long as they get enough exercise and mental stimulation.

Do Lhasa Apsos get along with other dogs?

Lhasa Apsos can be territorial and may not get along with other dogs, but proper socialization and training can help prevent aggressive behavior.

What is the best way to find a reputable Lhasa Apso breeder?

The best way to find a reputable breeder is to do thorough research, ask for referrals from other dog owners, and visit the breeder in person to ensure they are following ethical breeding practices.


Britta Thygesen

Britta Thygesen

A passionate dog owner and a full-time certified dog trainer. Aspires to make DogCareHacks a go-to place for all the doggo info. Shares personal experience and professional knowledge.

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