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Norwegian Elkhound

The Canine Chronicles Directory

Norwegian Elkhound

The Norwegian Elkhound is a medium-sized dog similar to the Spitz. This hardy breed was built to withstand the all-day hunts. The double coat has a gray color with a lighter undercoat. The muzzle, ears and tip of the tail are black. The broad head has a strong jaw and is wedge-shaped with a defined stop. The ears are pointed forward and are very mobile. The friendly eyes are dark brown. The teeth should meet in a scissor-like bite. The chest is deep and wide. The legs are straight and the paws are small with thick pads. The thick tail is tightly curled and is carried over the back. Norwegian Elkhound puppies are born black, but turn gray in about a week as their fur develops.

Temperament Norwegian Elkhounds are friendly and fearless. They can be reserved with strangers, but will greet family and friends with a lot of enthusiasm. This docile breed makes excellent companions for children and is an outstanding guard dog. This breed can tend to have a mind of its own and can be fairly independent. It may be resistant to obedience training, so it is important to be firm with this breed. They have excellent memories, so do not punish this breed unfairly. They love to bark. They can be dog aggressive with the same-sex dog.
Height, Weight Male Height: 19-21" ; Weight: 50-60 lbs.
Female Height: 18-20" ; Weight: 40-55 lbs.
Health Problems Prone to hip dysplasia, dermatitis and PRA. Tend to gain weight easily so do not overfeed.
Living Conditions The Elkhound will do okay living in an apartment if it is sufficiently exercised. It does best with a large yard. This breed prefers colder temperatures.
Exercise This breed is very energetic and loves lots of strenuous activities. They need about an hour a day. They make great bicycling or hiking companions. This dog likes to roam and may ignore you when you call them.
Life Expectancy About 12-15 years
Grooming The coat of this breed is easy to groom with regular brushing. Remove dead hair with a rubber brush or a double-tooth comb. Bathe only when necessary. This breed's coat is water and dirt resistant and has no doggie odor. They are seasonal heavy shedders.
Origin The classic Elkhound is probably very similar to the northern dog that first appeared at the side of humans during the Stone Age. Skeletons dating back to that era were found in Norway and are nearly identical to today's canine. These types have been selected for their hunting abilities, although at one time they probably were both herding and sledding dogs. In fact, the Norwegian Defense Minister was given the power to mobilize all privately owned Elkhounds for sledding hitches to carry military supplies over the snow in case of war. These breeds have remained remarkably the same through the millennia to the present. The Norwegian Elkhound is recognized by the AKC and the UKC.
Group AKC Hound, UKC Northern Breed