The 'Lion of Buddha' or Foo Dogs are indeed lions and not dogs. They were the loyal and divine companions of Buddha and protectors of truth.
Foo Dogs most often come in pairs and are viewed as guardians. Extensively used in both Asian art and tattooing Foo Dogs were adopted by the royal family of China and used as a symbol of protection and imperial strength. Large Foo Dogs carved out of stone were placed at the entrances of palaces, temples and other buildings of importance, standing like guards with honor and pride. Many Foo Dog statues have a resemblance to a dog and it is because of this that people think Buddha's lions are dogs. While most paired Foo Dogs are male it is not uncommon to see a male and female Foo Dog together, the male is said to represent heaven and the female the earth.
Foo Dog tattoos are a popular oriental design and are frequently paired with other Asian symbols like flowers and dragons. Foo Dog tattoos are likewise a popular image in traditional Japanese tattooing and find a place in many Irezumi style bodysuits and sleeves. Foo Dogs just make a bright and colorful Asian style tattoo that standout and looks awesome!!