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Norwegian Elkhound

Personality:confident, dependable; dignified but friendly

Coat & Grooming:northern dogs bred to withstand the cold, Elkhounds have a very thick coat requiring regular brushing and combing

Energy Level:Somewhat Active; Elkhounds are robust, athletic dogs who thrive on exercise

Originally: Norway

Nicknames: Elkhound

Size: Medium

Meet the Norwegian Elkhound

​Elkhounds are solid, short-bodied dogs standing about 20 inches at the shoulder. They have a dense silver-gray coat and a tail that curls tightly over the back. Their deep chest, substantial legs, and muscular thighs were built to do a hard day’s work. Elkhound eyes are a very dark brown, and the facial expression is keen and alert.

What's Their Story?

​The Elkhound is among the oldest breeds. In fact, they go back several thousand years—maybe as far as 5000 b.c.! It’s said the Elkhound was a companion of the Vikings, fierce warriors from the north who invaded Europe in the Middle Ages. But the Elkhound’s main job in his native land was to be a courageous hunter of large animals: moose, wolves, and even bear. Elkhounds were also used as sled dogs to haul supplies over frozen terrain.

What are they Like?

​Today’s Norwegian Elkhound is a smart, even-tempered, all-around companion. They make excellent watchdogs: fearless but sensible. They might be reserved around strangers but always sweet and affectionate with friends. Elkhounds are strong and tough, but, typical of hound breeds, they are really sensitive souls with a streak of independence. Whoever first described dogs as “man’s (or woman’s) best friend” must have been thinking of an Elkhound.

See more Norwegian Elkhound photos here

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