Do you like to play “guess that breed” when you see dogs on the street? I always thought I was pretty knowledgeable about different breeds of dog. But I bought a new book
Smithsonian Handbook– Dogs, and flipped through the pages only to discover name after name of dogs I didn’t recognize! Before this, I had a 1970’s version of AKC’s The Complete Dog Book. A great reference. But now I find my education lacking! Most of the breeds I didn’t recognize were foreign sounding names. Many of the dogs are from other parts of the world. So, in an effort to broaden my horizons, I’ve been looking into some of these less common dog breeds.

Today, we have the Kyi Leo (Image from
size: 9-11 inches tall
13-15 pounds

Cute, shaggy, short legs. If I saw this dog out on the streets, I’d think it looked like a Lahso Apso. Upon reading the description in my book, I see that indeed, it is a cross between a Lhasa Apso and a Maltese. The dog originated in the United States in 1972.

A small Companion Dog, the Kyi Leo is usually black and white, although can also be seen in colors such as all black, cream, or reddish.

The book describes teh Kyi Leo as “easy care” with a gentle, loyal temperament. Upon further research, Dog Breed Info Center describes Kyi Leo as being known for their “liveliness and catlike quickness.”