Norwegian Elkhound

Norwegian Elkhound

Norwegian Elkhound


The Norwegian Elkhound is the National Dog of Norway and is an ancient breed of the Spitz variety. Over centuries, they've been treasured by hunters, farmers, and herdsmen because of their usefulness as watch dogs, and big game trackers. These dogs successfully track bear, moose, reindeer and elk. They also make excellent flock guards.


Norwegian Elkhounds shouldn't live in apartments or condos. They need an extraordinary amount of exercise, which means they're happier living in a rural setting with access to a very large fenced in yard. They also like to have jobs. These dogs love interacting with their family, running, biking and hiking. They excel at guarding, agility, herding, sledding and as watch dogs.


Norwegian Elkhounds must be brushed weekly using a comb or rake to remove dead or loose hair. Their coat should have special attention when in seasonal heavy shedding. Only bathe when totally necessary because they have a naturally self-cleaning coat. As these dogs tend to gain weight, take care not to over feed them. Norwegian Elkhounds prefer living in cooler climates. Health concerns are hip dysplasia and sebaceous cysts.


Norwegian Elkhounds are well-built, sturdy and have great endurance and strength. This breed is one of dependability, adaptability and great dignity.


Norwegian Elkhounds have double coats. Their top coat is hard, smooth, thick and weather resistant. They have an under coat that's soft, woolly and dense. They're seasonal heavy shedders.


Norwegian Elkhound dogs are loyal, sensitive and affectionate. They're friendly with people they know but cautious and withdrawn around strangers. They bark continuously to let their family know that danger or suspicious activity is afoot. These dogs are reliable and get along well with children. However, be careful of them around smaller children because these dogs will try to herd them. They're rather aggressive with dogs of the same gender and shouldn't live in homes where there are cats and other household pets.


The Norwegian Elkhound must have basic obedience and socialization very early in life. These dogs are intelligent and eager to please. However, they need a dominant trainer that can establish rules. They don't respond to heavy handed or harsh techniques. Fairness, consistency and firmness must be used in training these dogs.