The Norwegian Elkhound
Club of Canada

Official Breed Standard for the Elkhound


General Appearance: The Norwegian Elkhound is a typical northern dog, of medium size, with a compact, proportionately short body, with a thick and rich, but not bristling, grey coat, with prick ears, and with a tail that is curled and carried over the back.

Temperament: His temperament is bold and energetic.

Size: Dogs, about 20" (52cm.) at the shoulder; bitches 19" (50cm.)

Coat and Colour: Coat thick, rich and hard, but rather smooth lying. On head and front of legs, short and even; longest on neck and chest, on buttocks, on hindside of forelegs and on underside of tail. It is made of longer and harder covering hairs, dark at the tips, and of a light, soft, woolly undercoat. Colour grey, with black tips to the long covering hairs; somewhat lighter on chest, stomach, legs, underside of tail and around anus. The colour may be lighter or darker, with a slight shading towards cream; but a pronounced variation from the grey colour disqualifies. Too dark or too light individuals should be avoided; also, yellow markings or uneven colouring. There should be no pronounced white markings.

Head: "Dry" (without any loose skin), broad at the ears; the forehead and back of the head only slightly arched; the stop not large, yet clearly defined. The muzzle is of medium length, thickest at the base and seen from above or from the side tapers evenly without being pointed. The bridge of the nose is straight; the lips are tightly closed and the teeth meet in a scissors bite. Eyes not protruding, brown in colour, preferably dark, lively, with fearless energetic expression. Ears set high, firm and erect, are higher than they are wide at the base, pointed (not rounded) and very mobile. When the dog is listening, the orifices are turned forward.
Neck: Of medium length, "dry" (without any loose skin), strong, and well set up.

Forequarters: Legs firm, straight and strong; elbows closely set on.

Body: Powerful, compact and short, with broad deep chest, well-sprung ribs, straight back, well-developed loins, and stomach very little drawn up.

Hindquarters: Hind legs with little angulation at knees and hocks. Seen from behind, they are straight. Feet comparatively small, somewhat oblong, with tightly closed toes, not turned out. There should be no dewclaws on hind legs.

Tail: Set high, short, thickly and closely haired, but without brush; tightly curled, not carried too much to one side.

Disqualification: Pronounced variation from the grey colour.
(February 1992)


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Revised: January 27, 2010
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