Elkhounds are a hunting breed. They were originally bred to hunt Elk (Moose) in Norway
and are used for that to this day. The hunting instinct can be very strong. They
do not attack the Elk themselves, but hold it at bay by barking and dancing
around it avoiding the vicious hooves. They can bark at home as well so you must
They are a very intelligent breed and will look for ways to outsmart you.
They can also be quite stubborn.
Never give a dog attention for doing wrong; only for doing right. If the dog has
done something you don't want, telling it off is giving attention. It is far
better to ignore the misdeed where possible and instead praise and treat for
doing the right thing.
An elkhound will not train in the same way as say a labrador or
border collie. Most will not be utterly attentive to you as a person during
training and please you just for the sake of it. They are very intelligent and
need to see a reason for doing what you want them to do.
They are VERY food
orientated and will train easily if there's a treat to be had. Do remember to
take treats out of the normal food allowance for the day or you will quickly end
up with an overweight dog.
I hold by the premise that here are very few bad dogs but a huge
number of bad owners who have not trained their dog properly and do not
Sending a dog away to be trained is not helpful. The owner needs to know how to
train their own dog. It can be a wonderful learning experience for both owner
and dog. Dogs should always be trained with kindness, not punishment. Show them
what to do, not what they shouldn't do.
On the plus side, they have virtually no "doggie" odor and I
have found that many children who are allergic to other breeds have no
problems with Elkhounds despite the hair. It's not usually hair that causes
allergies but dander from the skin.
If you are not going to be showing your dog then a bath once a year is
adequate. Their coats are weather resistant and dirt easily brushes out. Combing
them out right down to the skin about once a fortnight is enough but when they
are shedding they will need daily grooming. Be prepared for a bag full of hair
|Getting a puppy.
If a puppy wets in the house it's not the pup's fault. Puppies have small
bladders and need to go often. They also need to learn how to ask you. If your
pup has an accident it's your fault for not letting it out often enough or for
not reading the signs it gives. You need to pay constant attention to your pup's
needs. It needs to go out immediately after feeding with with lots of coaxing to
"go potty" or some such phrase and then profuse praise when it
performs in the right spot and then to go out at least every two hours. If you have to leave a young pup
for several hours while you are at work, maybe you should think about having an
older dog; perhaps wait until you can spend more time with it or arrange for
someone to come in regularly to attend to the puppy.
Some Elkhounds are very energetic and need to have consistent exercise daily
(at least 20 to 30 minutes twice a day) , others are very laid back couch
potatoes. They do need stimulation. Toys are usually popular and most dogs enjoy
learning obedience or agility or even doggy dancing.
Elkhounds actually need less pound for pound than pet food manufacturers
recommend. If you feed the recommended amount you could find that your dog gets
fat. Use common sense and if your dog is putting on weight, reduce the food. You
will extend your dog's life by keeping it trim. Excess weight leads to
arthritis, heart and breathing trouble and other health problems.
I should write this in RED ! Elkhounds
hair of the dog!
They are a double-coated breed and males shed once and females shed
profusely twice a year. If you want an immaculate house, DON'T GET AN
You will always find some dog hair around, especially in rugs, furniture and
on your clothes and even in unimaginable places! Elkhound owners joke about where
that hair gets to. But then , mix it with a little sheep's wool and it spins
beautifully. The birds love it too.
Norwegian Elkhounds are excellent watch dogs. They are very alert and will
bark at noises they hear. They are not guard dogs. Once someone enters the home
they could very well make friends with the intruder rather that attack them. But
each dog is different.
Elkhounds are very devoted to their owners. They need to be with, around and
near humans because they thrive on love and attention.