How to Train a  Kromfohrlander

The Kromfohrlander is a medium-sized companion breed that is sensitive, loving and loyal to its owners. He has a distinctive ‘smile’ and will sneeze to greet you. Pronunciation of the breed is “krome-for-lahn-dair.”

The Kromfohrlander is a very intelligent, funny, agile dog which loves to climb and jump and easily excels at agility and dog-trick training but can be fussy with food. They come in two coat types: wirehaired (with beard) and smooth haired (smooth face with no beard and beautiful, long, soft hair). The breed’s nickname in North America is “Kromi” (krome-ee). The Kromfohrlander was bred to be a companion only, retains very little hunting instinct (despite its terrier heritage), and is often long-lived (17-18 years old). He is good with children and family and tends to be a one-person dog. He is very attached to his owner, will not run away, and is first to alert to strangers.


Many troops in World War II had a mascot animal for comfort and as a reminder of home. This was often a stray dog or cat. “Original Peter” was a scruffy terrier mix that US Army troops found in northern France and he became their mascot, but the troops lost him when they crossed into Germany at war’s end. He was found by a local attorney’s wife, Ilse Schleifenbaum, and after an accidental mating with a Fox Terrier named Fifi that produced uniform puppies that all looked like their father, she decided to create the breed and name it after the beautiful, local ‘crooked furrows’ (krumme furche) of farmland. After 10 years of careful development, the Federation Cynologique Internationale accepted the breed in August, 1955. The Kromfohrlander is still quite rare and is primarily found in Germany and other European nations. They are so rare, even in Europe, that individuals to export have been very difficult to obtain, as most breeders there prefer to keep the healthy blood-stock in close proximity.

Quick Facts

Temperament: intelligent / active / sensitive

Height: 15 to 18 inches

Weight: 20 to 35 pounds 

Life expectancy: 13 to 15 years

Foundation Stock Service 


The Kromfohrlander is an extremely rare breed with a very small gene pool. DNA tests are available for hyperkeratosis and Von Willebrand’s disease, which means breeders can identify carriers and avoid producing affected dogs; autoimmune problems have been noted in the breed. Keeping an eye on your Kromi’s health throughout its life and sharing information will help everyone in the breed better understand the potential health of the breed.

Recommended Health Tests From the National Breed Club:
  • Canine Footpad Hyperkeratosis
  • Von Willebrand’s Disease


To maintain a tidy appearance, regular hand-stripping or grooming is required. Most Kromis grow a scruffy, wirehaired coat that sheds. It is not to be clipped or shaved. They have little to no doggy odor and dirt just falls off their coats; they are remarkably clean dogs. It is important to continue regular nail clipping as this can become very difficult due to the typical sensitivity of the breed.


Though Kromfohrlanders only wish to be at the side of their special person at all times, regular outside exercise is a requirement. They enjoy fetching a ball or other dog toy. At around age three, they can jump to get a disc, as their joints must be mature. Long walks in a natural setting is the Kromi’s favorite kind of exercise. This is NOT a dog-park breed, as they prefer only dogs they already know and do not care for new dogs, new people or new situations.


The Kromfohrlander is very intuitive and a very good guesser. Teaching the Kromi to learn is easy when young but advancing to activities that require more independence such as competitive agility can be a challenge due to the typical sensitivity of the breed. Patience is required.

The Kromi can be a picky eater, therefore, a high quality food is required to maintain the Kromi’s weight due to the high activity level of the breed. Free feeding is possible as the Kromi is typically not an overeater. What you feed your dog is an individual choice, but working with your veterinarian and/or breeder will be the best way to determine frequency of meals as a puppy and the best adult diet to increase his longevity. Clean, fresh water should be available at all times.