Breed Group: Hound
Weight: Male: 55; Female: 48 lbs
Height: Male: 20.5; Female: 19.5 inches
Color(s): Gray outer coat, silver under coat, black muzzle
The National Dog of Norway, the Norwegian Elkhound is an ancient Spitz-type breed. Through the centuries they have been prized by hunters, herdsmen, and farmers for their versatility as watchdogs, trackers of big game: bear, elk, reindeer, and moose, and as flock guardians.
The Norwegian Elkhound is hardy, well-built, and possesses great strength and endurance. This is a breed of great dignity, adaptability, and dependability.
The Norwegian Elkhound breed is sensitive, affectionate, and loyal. They are friendly with those they know but are aloof and wary of strangers. They bark incessantly to alert their family to any type of danger or suspicious activity. The Norwegian Elkhound is reliable and good with children, although caution should be taken with small children as this breed will attempt to herd them. They have a tendency to be aggressive toward dogs of the same gender and are not recommended for homes with cats or other household pets.
Norwegian Elkhound's require weekly brushing with a comb or rake to minimize loose and dead hair. Special attention should be given to the coat during their seasonal heavy shedding. Bathing should only be done when absolutely necessary as their coat is naturally self-cleaning. The Norwegian Elkhound is prone to sebaceous cysts and hip dysplasia. It is important to not over-feed as they have a tendency to gain weight. This breed prefers cooler climates.
The Norwegian Elkhound is a double coat breed. The outer coat is weather-resistant, hard, thick, and smooth. The under coat is dense, soft, and woolly in texture. This breed is a seasonal heavy shedder.
The Norwegian Elkhound requires early socialization and basic obedience. They are intelligent and eager to please but require a dominant handler who will establish rules. They do not respond to harsh or heavy-handed methods. Training must be done with firmness, fairness, and consistency.
The Norwegian Elkhound breed is not recommended for apartment living. They require an inordinate amount of exercise. They do best in a large securely fenced yard or a rural setting with a job to do. They thrive on family interaction, biking, running, and hiking. The Norwegian Elkhound excels at agility, guarding, sledding, herding, and watchdogging.
Help reduce the number of dogs in shelters by doing your due diligence. Many puppies are often purchased with little or no knowledge of what goes into parenting one. Uneducated decisions often leave the puppy in need of adoption and in the care of rescue groups. Bringing home a puppy into your family has many benefits but we first implore you to educate yourself. An informed decision will take into account the characteristics of the breed, your lifestyle, expected veterinary care, the demands and limitations of owning one, their activity requirements and levels of companionship required.
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