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Norwegian Elkhound

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Norwegian Elkhound (Gray & Black, Muzzle)
Gray & Black, Muzzle

Breed Information


2022: #100

2021: #100

2020: #91

2019: #93

2018: #97

2017: #91

2016: #94

2015: #88

Name Norwegian Elkhound
Other names Elkhound, Norsk Elghund, Grå Norsk Elghund, Gray Norwegian Elkhound, Small Grey Elk Dog, Norwegian Moose Dog, Harmaa Norjanhirvikoira
Origin Norway
Breed Group

Hound (AKC:1913)

Northern Breeds (UKC)

Size Medium
Type Purebred
Life span 10-12 years






Strong Willed



Male: 19-21 inches (48-53 cm)

Female: 18-20 inches (46-51 cm)


Male: 50-60 pounds (23-27 kg)

Female: 40-55 pounds (18-25 kg)


Black & Gray

Black & Silver

Black White & Silver

Gray & Black

Gray Black & Silver

Silver & Black

Silver Gray & Black

Litter Size 5-10 puppies
Puppy Prices

Average $700 - $1500 USD

In general, a Norwegian Elkhound puppy is going to cost range starting from $700 to $1,500. Besides, the costs depend upon the dog’s age, sex, quality of puppies, breeder, heritage, as well as geographical location.

Breed Characteristics


5 stars

Apartment Friendly

3 stars

The Norwegian Elkhound will be okay in an apartment if it is sufficiently exercised. It is fairly active indoors and does best with at least a large yard. Elkhounds prefer cool climates.

Barking Tendencies

5 stars


Cat Friendly

3 stars

Child Friendly

4 stars

Good with Kids: This is a suitable breed for kids and is known to be playful, energetic, and affectionate around them.

Dog Friendly

3 stars

Exercise Needs

4 stars

The Norwegian Elkhound is a very energetic dog that thrives on strenuous activity. They need to be taken on a daily, long, brisk walk or jog.


3 stars

Moderate Maintenance: Grooming should be performed regularly to keep its fur in good shape. Occasional trimming or stripping needed.

Health Issues

3 stars

Prone to hip dysplasia, pyotraumatic dermatitis and PRA. Occasionally seen is Fanconi syndrome. Gains weight easily, do not over feed.

Hypoallergenic: No

4 stars

Ranking: #36 Full Ranking List


3 stars

Shedding Level

4 stars

Moderate Shedding: Expect this dog to shed regularly. Be prepared to vacuum often. Brushing will reduce shedding as well as make the coat softer and cleaner.

Stranger Friendly

3 stars


3 stars

Moderately Easy Training: The Norwegian Elkhound, while very intelligent, is also very independent. This breed will learn commands with ease, however, they may not always follow them. It is necessary to be a very firm and consistent pack leader with this breed to ensure they know who's boss. Rules must be laid out for the Norwegian Elkhound and followed rigorously to ensure the dog does not develop bad behavior. It is necessary to make it clear to this dog that they do not out rank any member of the family.

Watchdog Ability

5 stars

Great Watchdog Ability: This dog will bark and alert its owners when an intruder is present. It exhibits very protective behavior, acts fearless toward any aggressor, and will do what it takes to guard and protect its family.

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Norwegian Elkhound Puppy (Gray & Black, Lie)
Gray & Black, Lie

Norwegian Elkhound Names

Rank Boy Names Girl Names
01 Max Lucy
02 Cooper Daisy
03 Lucky Molly
04 Oliver Lola
05 Moose Missie
06 Cody Ellie
07 Ollie Lulu
08 George Izzy
09 Buster Lady
10 Finn Penny
100 Cute Puppy Names ›


A typical Northern spitz-like breed, the Norwegian elkhound is square-proportioned, close coupled, with substantial bone, broad head, pricked ears and tightly curled tail. It is constructed for agility and endurance, rather than speed, enabling it to trail for hours and then hold big game at bay by barking and dodging attack. Its trot is effortless. It has a thick, smooth-lying coat consisting of straight outer hairs and a wooly undercoat. This combination presents the best protection against cold and snow.

The Norwegian Elkhound combines traits of hounds and spitz-like dogs, resulting in a breed that is bold, playful, independent, alert, boisterous and — unlike most hounds — even protective. This is a dog ready for adventure and happiest if that adventure takes place outdoors in cold weather. It needs daily exercise, lest it become frustrated or even destructive. It is friendly with strangers but may quarrel with strange dogs. It tends to pull when on leash unless trained, and it may bark a lot.


The Norwegian Elkhound is one of many breeds of the Spitz family, or, as they are often referred to, the Northern Breeds. Throughout its history this multi-talented breed has been used as a herding dog, sled dog, guardian and hunter. As its name implies, it is from Norway, and it was used (and still is) to hunt elk, as well as other game such as moose, bear and wolf. They are believed to be a very ancient breed, with ancestors known in Viking times. In Norway, only dogs that qualify in the Norwegian Hunting Trials may be awarded the title of breed champion. The gray coat color is usually darker in European members of the breed. Even when used as a hard hunter, they make a wonderful family pet.

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