Norwegian Elkhounds are hardy, short-bodied dogs standing about 20 inches at the shoulder. They have a dense silver-grey coat and a tail curling tightly over the back. Overall, an Elkhound is the picture of an alert and steadfast dog of the north. Elkhounds are famously fine companions and intelligent watchdogs
The Elkhound has some health problems that can be a concern. They include hip dysplasia, progressive retinal atrophy, autoimmune hypothyroidism, a renal disease called Fanconi syndrome, and skin cysts
The Norwegian Elkhound is a fearless, reliable, energetic and extremely loyal companion. These dogs may be a little reserved around strangers, but they will greet family members and other people they know with gusto
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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.
However, the Norwegian elkhound's hunting skills are not limited to elk. These dogs can hunt badgers, lynx, mountain lions, bears, wolves, reindeer and rabbits. They also are prized flock guardians, watchdogs and sled dogs.
Their courage has earned them a special place in their native country's defence efforts; in times of war, the Norwegian Defense Minister has the authority to mobilize all privately owned Norwegian elkhounds.
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