The Norwegian Elkhound is a medium-size hound dog, weighing 48 to 55 pounds and standing 49 to 52 centimetres. It has a Spitz-type build with the typical northern appearance. It has a square-proportioned body, tightly curled tail, pricked ears, broad wedge-shaped head, and a clearly defined stop. Elkhounds have warm and friendly eyes that are dark brown. Its athletic build is suitable to endure arduous hunting in rough terrain and wet, cold weather.
The Norwegian's thick and smooth double coat offers excellent protection against extreme temperatures. The coat is comprised of a dense, soft, woolly undercoat and straight, short, thick outer coat. Accepted breed colours include shades of grey, grey and black, and wolf grey. Its coat often has black tips to each hair.
Norwegian Elkhounds moderately shed except during autumn and spring. Weekly brushing will control its low shedding, but during the period that it sheds heavily, daily brushing is required. Luckily, this type of dog does not emit any doggie odour so it can be bathed when necessary.
As always, basic grooming regimen should not stop at the coat. Norwegian Elkhounds' ears must be checked and cleaned on a regular basis to stop excess wax build-up which may lead to infection. Brush teeth at least twice a week to keep bad breath and gum disease at bay. Nail trimming is equally important since long nails can be painful or uncomfortable.