Norsk lundehund – a dog with a unique structure

Hunting in the frigid fjords is challenging. So it is no wonder that the norsk lundehund stands out from other breeds because of its anatomy. These unique dogs excel as hunters in very difficult conditions. Check to see if they are also suitable house pets.
norsk lundehund

Norsk lundehund are not very large, limber dogs that seemingly do not attract much attention to themselves. Their unusual build, however, makes these dogs have a wide circle of fans in Norway. Will they prove themselves as a companion in Polish climatic conditions? Learn more about this breed to choose the perfect dog for you. Find out what they suffer from, how much they cost and what exactly distinguishes them from other pets.

Norsk lundehund – why is it unique?

The terrain and weather conditions in Norway do not make hunting easy at all. The steep slopes of the fjords make it difficult to move around and the freezing temperatures mean that only the hardiest of dogs are able to support a human in the hunt. The Norsk lundehund is a breed ideally suited to such conditions. These dogs have at least 6 toes on each foot, which makes it much easier for them to maintain proper balance. They are also able to close their ears so that the inner ear canal is inaccessible to the blowing wind and dirt. Their joints in their shoulders allow them to extend their legs completely out to the sides, making them more limber than other dog breeds.

The overall appearance of a dog of this breed – how to recognize it?

TheNorsk lundehund reaches 32-38 cm at the withers and weighs about 6-7 kg, so it is really a small, agile dog. He is a spitz-type animal with a rectangular body structure. Its head is wedge-shaped and the back of the nose should be slightly convex. The neck should be of medium length, with a bushy collar to protect the dog from frost. The tail should be set high and luxuriantly covered with hair. Dense and hard hair should have a large amount of undercoat. Its colour must always be combined with white. It can be fawn, black, grey or white with dark patches.

What is the character of the norsk lundehund?

They are a balanced but smart and energetic dog. However, like most Spitzes, it can feel reserved around strangers. It is also relatively independent, but it does become really attached to its owner. It is an alert animal that will do well as a small watchdog. It is very affectionate towards its loved ones and likes to play. In combination with its low weight, these features make the Norsk lundehund a great playmate for children, provided that their guardians are in the immediate vicinity. A representative of this breed does not tolerate loneliness well, but learns quickly. He often likes to run away, so the area where he stays must be well secured.

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Is the Norsk Lundehund a healthy breed?

Dogs of this breed live about 12 years and are not likely to be overweight, but sometimes digestive problems occur. Some individuals suffer from Lundehund Syndrome, also known as LS – hereditary gastroenteropathy syndrome. It causes problems with the proper absorption of protein and with too much of it being excreted from the body. The condition can lead to other diseases. Among them is lymphocytic-plasmocytic enteritis, which can manifest as vomiting and diarrhea. Treatment, on the other hand, focuses on developing an appropriate diet for the individual and matching medications.

How to properly care for this dog?

The Norsk lundehund does not require special grooming. It has a stiff, dense coat that is unlikely to form tangles. For this reason, these animals should be combed primarily during the moulting period to prevent the accumulation of large amounts of hair in the house or apartment. Dogs should be bathed only if they absolutely need it, i.e. in case of skin diseases or bad odor. On a daily basis, however, they don’t require this type of treatment. It’s worth checking the condition of the ears of these dogs (the clap should be light pink and cool) and regularly trim the claws if the dog doesn’t rub them off on its own. In summer, because of the heat, movement with such a dog should be limited.

Breeding – where to buy a norsk lundehund?

In the 90s, there were about 500 dogs of this breed in Norway and about 50 in Sweden. Unfortunately, for a long time it was not possible to export them, which prevented the breed from growing in popularity. When the ban was finally lifted, breeders appeared also in other European countries. In Poland this breed is still almost unknown. If you want to buy this dog, you should consider importing it from abroad

Price – how much will you have to pay for a dog of this breed?

In 2020, the prices of breed dogs have skyrocketed, not only in Poland. In the country, wanting to buy an animal with a ZKwP certificate, you will have to pay from 3 to 4 thousand zlotys. However, since the Norsk lundehund is practically not found in Poland, you have to prepare yourself for the fact that the expense will be much higher. In the end you will also have to pay for documents allowing its import and transport. Do not forget about the need to buy a layette for your new pet. This should include, among other things, bowls, a bed and a leash. Also take into account any costs associated with visits to the veterinarian.

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Where did the Norsk lundehund come from?

It is likely that this dog originated near the town of Maastad in Norway. Its original purpose was to hunt for puffins: small birds that are popular in northern countries. This is where the name of the breed comes from, as lunde in Norwegian means this particular species. The first sources confirming that this type of breed was already present many years ago date back to the sixteenth century, and in the eighteenth began to appear studies on it. Interestingly, in those days, a dog of this breed could catch up to 130 birds in a single night, so he is truly an outstanding hunter!

Is the norsk lundehund the dog for you?

They are relatively independent, yet lively and very limber dogs. For this reason, the norsk lundehund requires an experienced guardian who can handle its temperament well For this reason, the dog should go to an owner who understands its needs well. He is also quite noisy, so an apartment in a block of apartments is not the best place for him. Thanks to its quite thick undercoat this dog can cope in a pen, but it will feel much better inside the house.

How many such dogs were kept by hunters?

In the region where the Norsk lundehund originated, hunters could keep packs of up to 20 dogs! Bishop Erik Pontoppidan wrote about this. They were mainly kept by peasants, for whom bird meat was often the main source of income. Unlike greyhounds, for example, these Norwegian dogs have no noble origin.

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