Norwegian Elkhound


The Norwegian Elkhound’s history reaches back thousands of years to perhaps as long ago as 5000 BC. Since then, these hardy dogs have served their human companions as hunters of big game, including the elk from which the breed derives its name.


The Norwegian Elkhound is a medium-sized, hardy and squarely built dog designed to withstand cold weather and hunt for days at a time.

Grooming and Physical Needs

  • Grooming Needs: Although they require weekly brushing - possibly more when shedding, their coat is fairly easy to maintain.
  • Coat Type: Medium.
  • Moulting: Heavy seasonal shedding.
  • Exercise Needs: They are a high-energy breed that need a relatively high amount of strenuous exercise - at least an hour a day if they are to thrive.
  • Average Life Span: 10-12 years.


  • Family: The Norwegian Elkhound are generally very gentle and get along great with children. They are happiest when they feel that they are part of the family.
  • Temperament: The Norwegian Elkhound are bold, playful, independent, alert, extremely intelligent, and, at times can be a bit boisterous.
  • Trainability: The Norwegian Elkhound are a very intelligent breed, however their independence may cause obedience training to be quite challenging.
  • Sociability (Other Pets): They are compatible with other dogs and animals but they must be exposed to them early on in life.
  • Barking: High tendency.


They can be wonderful in agility and are particularly good tracking dogs.


The Norwegian Elkhound needs an owner who has the time, knowledge and dedication to bring out the dog’s intelligence, loyalty and talent. First-time dog owners might want to think twice before taking on this challenging animal.