Black Norwegian Elkhound - Dog Breed Info, Temperament & Facts

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According to fossil records, the Norwegian Elkhound is an ancient breed that may have existed between 400 and 5000 BC. During ancient times, the exact ratio of grey to black dogs is uncertain. However, in the late 1800s, the breed standard for Norwegian Elkhounds required only grey dogs. Despite this, some breeders continued to produce all-black dogs because they preferred them, even though the main kennel associations did not recognize them.

Over time, breeders aimed to create a smaller and more agile dog with a sharper sense of scent and a greater hunting drive. To achieve this, they crossbred the Black Norwegian Elkhound with other dogs. However, it is rare to find these dogs outside of Scandinavia.

In summary, the Norwegian Elkhound is an ancient breed with a long history. While the breed standard once favored only grey dogs, some breeders continued to produce all-black dogs. Outside of Scandinavia, sightings of the Black Norwegian Elkhound are uncommon.

Ahead, we look at Black Norwegian Elkhound dog breed, its history, personality, pros and cons of owning an Black Norwegian Elkhound, characteristics, and must-know facts. We will also examine how to care for this breed and much more. Prepare for a tail-wagging adventure into the world of Black Norwegian Elkhounds!

Dog Breed Black Norwegian Elkhound
Size Medium
Weight 35-45 lbs (average)
Height 17-18″ (average)
Location Norway
Ancestry Norwegian Elkhound
Date of Origin 1900s
Group Hunting
Life Expectancy 11-15 years
Price $500 – $700
Family Canidae
Scientific Name Canis Lupus Familiaris

📖 Breed History

The Norwegian Elkhound is a medium-sized dog that was developed in Norway as a hunting companion for tracking and hunting moose and bear. They have been around since 4000-5000 BC and were highly skilled at stalking and hunting different types of game. In the early 1800s, solid black dogs started to appear, often crossed with the traditional grey Norwegian Elkhound. In 1877, the Norwegian Hunters Association held its first dog show and in 1901, the first Norwegian Elkhound standard was established, excluding all but the grey dogs.

While the black variety of Norwegian Elkhounds were no longer allowed in dog shows, they continued to be developed as hunting dogs with a focus on scent tracking. However, their popularity declined compared to the grey dogs. The black variety almost went extinct, but in the mid-1950s, dedicated breeders started working to preserve the breed, successfully establishing a stable population in Norway. Although the black Norwegian Elkhound is not commonly seen outside of Scandinavia, its popularity is growing in Norway and neighboring countries. It has been recognized as a separate breed by some national breed clubs and the Federation Cynologique Internationale (FCI), but it is not yet recognized by the United Kennel Club (UKC) and the American Kennel Club (AKC).

🐕 Black Norwegian Elkhound Appearance

The Black Norwegian Elkhound is a slim, muscular dog that is somewhat smaller than the Grey Norwegian Elkhound. It weighs between 35 and 50 pounds and typically measures between 17 and 19 inches at the withers. With a wedge-shaped head, a straight, somewhat tapering nose, a very powerful, straight back, and a high set tail that wraps firmly up over their back, they have a square build. They normally have erect, triangular ears that are high up on their heads and frequently tilt and swivel to listen for sounds. They also typically have dark brown, oval-shaped eyes. They have tiny, oval-shaped paws with thick pads and strong, straight legs. Although some BlackNorwegian Elkhounds may have a few minor white markings on the regions of the paws and chest, their double-layered coat is composed of a dense woolly undercoat and a longer, courser coat laying flat over it.

👀 Eye Color Brown
🐽 Nose Color Black
🐕 Coat Color Black

Fun Fact: Black Norwegian Elkhound dogs need for social interaction is average. This breed likes being around people or other animals, but they don’t mind being left alone for a few hours either.

🐶 Traits & Temperament of Black Norwegian Elkhound

The Black Norwegian Elkhound is an active dog who loves being outside, especially in colder climates. Although all interactions between dogs and children should be strictly supervised, this dog breed is typically extremely tolerant of kids as well. This dog has a tendency to get quite loyal to their family. Even more so than the grey Norwegian Elkhound, they have a tendency to be possessive and vocal about it, which makes them bad roommates in compact places and frequently aggressive with canines. Some Black Norwegian Elkhounds may regard a fence more as a suggestion, and their strong hunting instincts may urge them to leave the yard in search of moving items. If you wish to prevent your dog from straying, a tall, robust fence and constant supervision may be necessary. The majority of the time, this breed responds well to positive training methods; yet, harsh training methods may cause these dogs to become more aggressive.

🤝 Are Black Norwegian Elkhounds Friendly or Aggressive?

Black Norwegian Elkhound dogs tend to have difficulties getting along with other pets and may not be very friendly towards strangers. However, they are known to be good with children, making them a suitable choice for families with kids. When it comes to cats, Black Norwegian Elkhounds may not be the most compatible and may not exhibit a high level of friendliness. While they are average in their friendliness towards other dogs, they are often recommended as companions for elderly individuals.

This breed is known for being:

  • Alert
  • Intelligent
  • Strong
  • Willed
  • Proud
  • Robust

🐩 Black Norwegian Elkhound Care & Maintenance

The Black Norwegian Elkhound has a dense, thick coat that is usually simple to maintain. Their coats are wet and dirt resistant, and this dog also has a little odor, so bathing is only sometimes needed. Most of the year, a thorough combing or brushing every two to four days should be enough to maintain the coat clean and shiny, while daily brushing may be necessary when the dog sheds more heavily as the seasons change. Due to its propensity for obesity, it is crucial to keep an eye on the quantity and caliber of the food this dog is given.

Black Norwegian Elkhound dogs have a minimal shedding tendency, meaning they do not lose a lot of hair. This shedding is a normal part of their hair growth cycle. The amount and frequency of hair loss can vary depending on the dog’s health and the specific breed. When it comes to bathing, it is generally recommended to give them a bath every 3-4 weeks.

🍖 Food: We recommend 1 cups daily, costing you about $0.90 – $1.00 daily, or approximately $25.00 – $30.00 a month.

🐾 Exercise: Black Norwegian Elkhound dogs need a lot of exercises. Long walks should be on a daily schedule. If you live an active life, this breed can be a good choice for you.

This dog breed requires to be walked for roughly 10 miles per week, which equates to about 60 minutes of physical activity daily. This consistent moderate exercise regimen will help maintain their physical wellness and significantly contribute to their mental stimulation. Consciously setting aside this time for your furry friend can dramatically enhance their life quality, helping them stay energetic, healthy, and mentally alert.

Did you know: Black Norwegian Elkhound dogs are high-energy dogs. An active lifestyle makes them happy.

❤️‍🩹 Black Norwegian Elkhound Health & Issues

Some of the major concerns for Black Norwegian Elkhound Dog Breed can be:

  • Hip And Elbow Dysplasia
  • Obesity

While minor concerns include:

  • Fanconi Syndrome
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA)

🤧 Important: Is Black Norwegian Elkhound hypoallergenic? No.

Bonus: Check out cool, creative, and funny names for Black Norwegian Elkhound.

⚡ Black Norwegian Elkhound Dog Breed Facts

What makes the Black Norwegian Elkhound a great choice for families with young children?
The Black Norwegian Elkhound is a great choice for families with young children because they are usually quite tolerant of children. Although all interactions between canines and children should be closely supervised, this breed tends to become very attached to their families and is known for being good with kids.

Is the Black Norwegian Elkhound breed considered a suitable breed for apartment living?
The Black Norwegian Elkhound breed is not considered suitable for apartment living. They tend to be territorial and loud, making them less than ideal roommates in smaller spaces. Additionally, their strong hunting instincts may tempt them to try and escape the yard, so a tall and sturdy fence is necessary to keep them from wandering.

How much exercise does a Black Norwegian Elkhound require compared to other breeds?
The Black Norwegian Elkhound requires a moderate amount of exercise compared to other breeds. They are energetic dogs that enjoy the outdoors, especially in colder environments. Daily walks, playtime, and mental stimulation are important to keep them physically and mentally satisfied.

Is the Black Norwegian Elkhound breed known for being good with other pets?
The Black Norwegian Elkhound breed is not known for being particularly good with other pets. They can be rather combative with other canines and may not coexist well with other animals. Proper socialization and supervision are crucial when introducing them to other pets.

What are other low-maintenance dog breeds similar to the Black Norwegian Elkhound?
Some low-maintenance dog breeds similar to the Black Norwegian Elkhound include the Shiba Inu, Basenji, and Finnish Spitz. These breeds are known for their independent nature and require less grooming and exercise compared to some other breeds.

What are the common health issues that Black Norwegian Elkhounds are prone to?
Common health issues that Black Norwegian Elkhounds are prone to include hip dysplasia, progressive retinal atrophy, and renal disease. Regular vet check-ups, a balanced diet, and appropriate exercise can help minimize these risks.

Are Black Norwegian Elkhounds known to be easy to train compared to other breeds?
Black Norwegian Elkhounds are generally easy to train if positive training methods are used. However, heavy-handed training can prompt more aggressive behavior from these canines. Consistency, patience, and positive reinforcement are key to successful training.

Are Black Norwegian Elkhounds more prone to separation anxiety compared to other breeds?
Black Norwegian Elkhounds are not necessarily more prone to separation anxiety compared to other breeds. However, like any dog, they can develop separation anxiety if not properly trained and socialized from an early age. Providing them with mental stimulation, exercise, and a routine can help prevent separation anxiety.

Are there any dog breeds similar to the Black Norwegian Elkhound that are suitable for people with allergies?
Some dog breeds similar to the Black Norwegian Elkhound that are suitable for people with allergies include the Portuguese Water Dog, Bichon Frise, and Soft-Coated Wheaten Terrier. These breeds are known for their hypoallergenic qualities, which means they produce fewer allergens.

What sizes of dogs similar to the Black Norwegian Elkhound are best for individuals or families with limited space?
For individuals or families with limited space, smaller-sized dogs similar to the Black Norwegian Elkhound may be more suitable. Breeds like the Shiba Inu, Finnish Spitz, and Basenji are medium-sized dogs that require less space compared to larger breeds.

Is the Black Norwegian Elkhound breed known to be good with children with special needs?
The Black Norwegian Elkhound breed is generally good with children, including those with special needs. However, as with any dog, close supervision is important to ensure the safety of both the child and the dog. Proper socialization and training from an early age can help foster a positive relationship between the dog and children with special needs.

How does the grooming and shedding needs of the Black Norwegian Elkhound?
The grooming and shedding needs of the Black Norwegian Elkhound are moderate. They have a thick double coat that requires regular brushing to prevent matting and to control shedding. They shed moderately throughout the year and have a heavier shedding period twice a year during seasonal coat changes.


We use reliable and publicly available data and resources such as AKC and American Canine Registry to ensure that Black Norwegian Elkhound dog breed information is accurate and up to date. If you spot an error, please don’t hesitate to bring it to our attention.

Max Kozinskiy
Max Kozinskiy
Max Kozinskiy is a seasoned writer and an enthusiast of dog breed expertise. Having dedicated over 5 years to studying the intricacies of different dog breeds and their unique characteristics. His profound insights and love for our four-legged friends have made him an invaluable part of our DogsInsights.com team.

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