The lavishly coated Lhasa Apso is a thousand-year-old breed who served as sentinels at palaces and monasteries isolated high in the Himalayas. Intelligent, confident, and complex, Lhasas are family comedians but regally aloof with strangers, according to AKC.
Standing less than 12 inches at the shoulder, Lhasas are small but hardy dogs of aristocratic bearing. They’re famous for a floor-length, flat-hanging coat, parted in the middle and draping each side of the body. A feathery tail curls over the back in the distinct manner of Tibetan breeds. The breed’s fans say the dark, oval-shaped eyes—peeping through lavish facial hair—are the windows of a Lhasa’s merry soul. The complete picture is unmistakably Asian: exotic, elegant, and serenely well balanced, according to AKC.