Norwegian Elkhound

The Norwegian Elkhound is a large, squarish-shaped dog with prick ears and a curly tail. The Norwegian Elkhound belongs to the hound group.

Norwegian Elkhound Breed Group


Size of the Norwegian Elkhound


Colour Varieties of the Norwegian Elkhound

The Norwegian Elkhound comes in 3 colours which include:

  • Grey
  • Grey & Black
  • Wolf Grey

Country of Origin


Time of original development

The Elkhound is a very old dog breed with skeletal evidence of similar dogs existing during the Stone Age.

The Norwegian Elkhound’s uses through History

The Elkhound was used to hunt small game as well as larger game such as elks.

Norwegian Elkhound Breed introduction and overview

The Norwegian Elkhound is a large, compact and sturdy dog with a boxy shape. It has a medium length coat, often grey with darker tips, alert and prick ears, and a tail that curls over the back of the body. It has a thick double-coat with a soft undercoat and hard outer coat that offered good protection from the harsh elements in its native Norway. The Elkhound prefers cooler weather conditions and may suffer in hot weather.

Size and weight of the Norwegian Elkhound

Height bitch ideal size 49cms

Height dog ideal size 52cms

Weight (kilos) bitch 20-23kgs

Weight (kilos) dog 23-27kgs

Exercise requirements of the Norwegian Elkhound

An energetic and athletic breed that requires at least an hour of good vigorous exercise daily off the lead.

Norwegian Elkhound temperament

The Norwegian Elkhound is a bold, friendly, intelligent dog with an independent streak. It is normally good with other dogs, but may not be compatible with families owning cats. Smaller pets may be at risk with the Elkhound. The Elkhound is a fairly vocal dog around the home, making it a good guard dog.

Is the Norwegian Elkhound a good dog for a first time dog owner?

No. The Elkhound can be difficult to train and lack obedience at times.

Norwegian Elkhound coat length

Medium. The Elkhound has a soft undercoat and a harsh outer coat. The ends of the fur are darker in colour.

Grooming requirements of the Norwegian Elkhound

Medium. The thick double-coat requires weekly brushing with a soft slicker brush to keep the coat in tip-top condition. It is a breed of dog that tends to keep clean even after walks in bad weather.

Ears need to be cleaned and checked regularly for any sign of infections.


No. The Elkhound sheds hair steadily throughout the year, making it an unsuitable choice of dog for allergy sufferers.

Health Issues in the Norwegian Elkhound

The Elkhound is generally a healthy dog, but owners should talk to their breeder about the following health issues that have been recorded in the breed:

  • Hypothroidism
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy
  • Cysts
  • Renal problems

As with all pedigree dogs, it is very important to obtain a puppy from a reputable source where you can be guaranteed that it has been bred with a view to avoiding the inherent physical and psychological diseases of the breed.

Average lifespan of the Norwegian Elkhound

A healthy Norwegian Elkhound should expect to enjoy a life expectancy of between 12-15 years.

Approximate Norwegian Elkhound pedigree puppy price

No current information is available as this breed is rare in the UK and litters are rarely available. In fact there were only 51 puppies registered with the Kennel Club in 2015.  There are generally 7-14 puppies in a litter.

Estimating how much a Norwegian Elkhound would need to be fed each day

A bitch weighing 20kgs requires 283gms of complete dry food daily.

A dog weighing 25kgs requires 329gms of complete dry food daily.

The weekly cost of feeding a 20kgs bitch is around £7.00

The weekly cost of feeding a 25kgs dog is around £8.00

Our figures are based on feeding an ‘above average quality’ and popular complete dry food bought from a leading supermarket. A good quality feed is suggested for the energetic dogs in the hound group.

Other financial costs to consider when owning any dog breed

Remember to budget for essential pet treatments and procedures that are not covered by pet insurance policies including:

  • Worming and fleas preparations
  • Annual Vaccination boosters
  • Neutering or spaying
  • Microchipping
  • Dental treatment