The Norwegian Elkhound may be reserved toward strangers, but is enthusiastically friendly to those it knows. They are loyal and sensitive, and may become upset if they feel that they have been treated unfairly. They are fairly independent and have a mind of their own.
Originally bred to hunt moose and other large game, the Norwegian Elkhound is extremely smart and has a delightful sense of humor. They are exceptionally devoted to and protective of their family. They make great guard dogs, especially since they are barkers.
Early training is necessary as Norwegian Elkhounds are independent thinkers and will take over your home if given the chance. They are very adventurous and love to roam around outdoors. Adequate exercise is necessary, especially since Norwegian Elkhounds have incredible stamina – they can play for hours.
Because of their affectionate, loving nature, Norwegian Elkhounds make great family dogs. They do very well with children but they are wary of other dogs (especially of the same sex) and could be aggressive if not socialized properly.
Major Health Concerns: The Norwegian Elkhound is prone to hip dysplasia. They tend to gain weight rather quickly. They may also have Progressive Retinal Atrophy. (PRA). They may also have Fanconi Syndrome, a kidney disorder.
Interesting Fact: The Norwegian Elkhound is one of the ancient Northern Spitz-type breed of dog and is the National Dog of Norway.
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