Norwegian Elkhound dog


Norwegian Elkhound Dog: A Loyal and Intelligent Breed

The Norwegian Elkhound dog is one of the oldest known breeds of dogs and has been used for centuries as a versatile hunting dog. This breed commonly referred to as a “Norsk Elghund,” is native to Norway and has a history steeped in hunting and companionship. Today, they are still used for hunting along with being a beloved family pet. In this article, we will explore all aspects of the Norwegian Elkhound dog, including its history, breed characteristics, intelligence, health needs, grooming, trainability, exercise needs, average lifespan, and more.

Norwegian Elkhound Dog History

The Norwegian Elkhound dog is believed to have descended from Spitz-type dogs, which were originally used by the Vikings to hunt big game, like moose and bear. The breed was developed in the rural areas of Norway, where it was used primarily for hunting. The first reference to the breed was found on a Viking burial site, where a dog similar to the Norwegian Elkhound was buried. Norwegian authorities recognized the breed in 1877, and it was registered with the Norwegian Kennel Club in 1894.

Norwegian Elkhound Dog Breed Characteristics

Norwegian Elkhounds are medium-sized dogs weighing between 40 and 60 pounds. They have a double-layer coat that is dense and weather-resistant. The breed standard requires their coat to be gray with black tips, while others come in lighter tones. This breed is muscular and agile, making them an excellent hunting companion. They have a wedge-shaped head with erect ears and a curled-over tail, which is ideal for spotting and hunting big games.

Norwegian Elkhound Dog Intelligence

The Norwegian Elkhound dog is a highly intelligent breed with an eager-to-please personality. They are quick learners and are known to excel in obedience training and agility. Their high intelligence also makes them good problem solvers, and they can sometimes be too smart for their own good, often getting into mischief if not provided with enough stimulation and attention.

Norwegian Elkhound Dog Average Size

Norwegian Elkhounds stand between 19 and 21 inches tall at the shoulder and have a length of around 20-25 inches. They have a sturdy, muscular build which gives them excellent stamina needed for hunting.

Norwegian Elkhound Dog Child-Friendly

The Norwegian Elkhound dog is an incredibly loyal and affectionate breed, which makes them an ideal family pet. They get along well with older children as long as they are correctly socialized from a young age. In general, the Norwegian Elkhound dog breed is excellent with children, but they can be a little too exuberant with younger kids, so supervision is necessary.

Norwegian Elkhound Dog Health Needs

The Norwegian Elkhound dog has a lifespan of around 12 to 16 years. As a breed, they have a stable health record and are generally healthy dogs. Like all breeds, they are susceptible to certain medical conditions such as hip dysplasia and kidney stones. It is essential to maintain a healthy weight and provide them with regular exercise to keep them in top condition.

Norwegian Elkhound Dog Grooming Needs

The Norwegian Elkhound dog’s thick, double-layered coat needs brushing at least twice a week to avoid matting. They have a lot of fur around the ears, paws, and tail that need extra attention. Bathing must be done on an as-needed basis to avoid stripping their coat of its natural oils.

Norwegian Elkhound Dog Amount of Shedding

The Norwegian Elkhound dog does shed a lot, especially during shedding season (in the spring and fall). Daily brushing during this time can help reduce the amount of hair that ends up all over your home.

Norwegian Elkhound Dog Trainability

The Norwegian Elkhound dog is highly trainable but can be stubborn. Positive reinforcement techniques like rewards and treats work best with this breed. It is also vital to start training and socialization from a young age.

Norwegian Elkhound Dog Exercise Needs

The Norwegian Elkhound dog’s history as a hunting breed means they need a lot of exercise. They require at least one hour of physical activity every day. A walk, jog, or run is an excellent way to fulfill their exercise needs. A large, fenced yard is also ideal for Norwegian Elkhounds to run and play in.

Norwegian Elkhound Dog Average Lifespan

The Norwegian Elkhound dog has a lifespan of around 12 to 16 years.


The Norwegian Elkhound dog is a robust and loyal breed known for their ability to hunt game. They are loving and intelligent companions who enjoy being a part of the family. They are highly trainable but require regular exercise and grooming to stay happy and healthy. Choosing a Norwegian Elkhound as your family pet is an excellent choice for those who enjoy an active lifestyle and are looking to add a loyal and intelligent companion to their family.