This dog breed has its origin from the Scandinavian regions. It is a very old dog breed that dates back thousands of years. It was used for hunting animals large and small such as bear, moose, reindeer, rabbit and fox by either stationing the animal in one position or driving it towards the hunters. This dog is highly adapted to hunting in extreme conditions of cold and rugged terrain. It is very resilient and fearless as it would hunt animals much larger than itself. It has a very high sense of smell and will detect an animal miles away leading the hunter to the right location of his prey.
The Norwegian Elkhound stands at 18 – 21 inches tall and weighs around 45 – 60 pounds. It has square body frame with an athletic appearance. It medium size in height and has a straight back. They have dark oval shaped eyes, and their ears stand erect on top of their head. Their muzzle is fairly long and becomes thicker at its base. It has a black tipped nose, and the coat color around the muzzle is black. Their tail stands up on their back with a tight curl that almost looks like a knot
It is a very loyal and protective dog. It bonds well with its owner and provides good companionship. It is a courageous dog probably due to its background of tracking and hunting animals larger than itself. They are generally independent minded and are able to instinctively make decisions particularly when it comes to guarding a homestead. They are reserved towards strangers and will perform an intuitive screening before accepting them.
Due to their independent mindedness, they may not be easy to train. They will require firm leadership but gentle handling to allow them to learn on their own. They also bark a lot hence will need to be taught on their limits. Being a lively animal, they will require regular exercise to keep them both mentally and physically stimulated. It should not be separated from family for prolonged period otherwise they may become anxious
They are generally healthy dogs and will suffer what is common to other dogs such as hip dysplasia and obesity due to overfeeding. They have an average life expectancy of around 12 – 15 years
They should be fed on high-quality food loaded with all their nutrient requirements. Avoid haphazard kind of feeding and regulate their feeding pattern to twice a day. The Norwegian Elkhound enjoy food treats as rewards for obedience and owners should control amounts of treats given.
Coat, Color, and Grooming
They have a weather resistant coat with both an inner and outer layer. It has a smooth coat that should be regularly maintained especially when the dog sheds its hair. Ensure to brush its teeth regularly and nail trim it nails whenever they grow.
With family and other pets
This is a great family dog to keeps and will get along with children very well. They also generally get along with other animals however it should be remembered that they have a prey drive that could manifest unexpectedly if the dog is not well trained and socialized.