• Norwegian Lundehund
  • Norwegian Lundehund Dogs
  • Norwegian Lundehund Dog Breed
  • Norwegian Lundehund Dog
  • Norwegian Lundehund in the UK
  • Norwegian Lundehunds
  • Norwegian Lundehund Breed
  • Norwegian Lundehunds in Great Britain
  • Norwegian Lundehunds in the UK
  • Norwegian Lundehund in Great Britain
Exercise Level:
Barking Level:
Good with Children:
Good with other pets:
Height: 33 - 38cm M | 30 - 35cm F
Weight: 9 - 13kg M | 9 - 13kg F
Life Expectancy: 10 - 12 Years

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The Norwegian Lundehund originated as a puffin hunting dog on the Island of Vaeroy. He was intentionally developed to have quirky traits, such as sporting six toes on each paw to make him adept at hunting. Today, only a few thousand Lundehund dogs exist around the world.

The Lundehund is one of the Norwegian breeds of dogs that is more reserved rather than openly affectionate towards his human companions. When around new faces, he becomes instinctually cautious and alert. To prevent him from developing extreme shyness, the Lundehund needs to have early socialisation.

Grooming the Norwegian Lundehund is not a tedious task since his short coat only needs weekly brushing. The rare breed is predisposed to a few serious health issues, such as gastrointestinal problems. Its average life expectancy is 10-12 years.

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What is a Norwegian Lundehund? Hailing from the rugged and rocky Island of Vaeroy, Norway, the Norwegian Lundehund is a spitz-type breed originally bred to hunt puffins, earning him the name Norwegian puffin dog. He also goes by the nicknames puffin hunting dog, Norsk Lundehund, Lundehund, and Lundie.

Norwegian Lundehunds have a flexible body that allows them to sneak into cramped, tiny passages and snag birds. Being the adept hunting dogs they are, Lundehund dogs bring the puffins back to their owners unscathed.

There are several speculations about the beginnings of the Norwegian Lundehund dog breed. Some believe that its existence can be traced back to the Ice Age. However, others think the hunting dog served as the canine companions of Vikings, who trained him to track down and catch puffin birds.

Another theory experts propose is the possible lineage connection of the Norwegian Lundehund to the ancient Varanger dog, which existed around 5,000 to 7,000 years ago but is now extinct. Both canines have fewer teeth on each side of their jaw, a trait other known dog breeds do not possess.

Why are Norwegian Lundehund so rare? In the early 20th century, the Norwegian Lundehund population began to decrease rapidly. The breed lost its purpose as people discovered new hunting methods, preferring the use of nets instead of hunting dogs. The numbers continued to dwindle after the government-imposed taxes on owning Lundehunds, which led residents to give up keeping them.

Are Norwegian Lundehund extinct? The Norwegian Lundehund did not become completely obsolete despite the unfortunate events. However, he almost faced extinction around the time of World War II when a wave of deadly canine distemper swept through his homeland. According to reports, less than 10 Lundehunds managed to survive the outbreak.

The preservation of the Norwegian Lundehund breed is largely credited to a breeder named Eleanor Christie, who worked with her husband to establish a breeding programme and a kennel named Luxor, which eventually produced more than 60 Lundehund dogs. Many years later, a Swedish geneticist came up with a strict breeding plan that Norwegian breeders followed as guidelines up to this day.

How many Norwegian Lundehunds are left? Today, an estimated 1,500-2,000 Norwegian Lundehunds exist around the world. Dedicated breeders continue to strive to preserve the nearly extinct breed.

The Norwegian Lundehund is yet to be acknowledged by the Kennel Club in the UK. On the other hand, in 2011, the American Kennel Club (AKC) officially recognised him as an official dog breed.

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Appearance and Grooming

The Norwegian Lundehund is a small to medium-sized dog breed with a compact body. Males stand approximately 33-38 cm (13-15 inches) tall and weigh around 9-13 kgs (20-30 pounds). Females possess a shorter stature, measuring 30-35 cm (12-14 inches) in height and 9-13 kgs (20-30 pounds.)

What does the Norwegian Lundehund look like? Many of the Norwegian Lundehund’s physical characteristics take after spitz traits, such as having fox-like ears, a wedged-shaped head, and a curled tail. His eyes are almond-shaped with a yellowish brown to brown color. Both his nose and lips are black.

What makes a Norwegian Lundehund unique? The Norwegian Lundehund has several traits that set him apart from other breeds. He is a six-toed dog, meaning he possesses 6 toes on each foot. The extra toes made it easy for him to scale rocky cliffs while hunting.

The Lundehund can fold his ears shut to prevent debris from going inside. His flexible shoulders allow him to spread his forelegs out to the sides. He also has a pliant neck that can bend until his head touches his spine.

Lundehund dogs have a weather-resistant double coat with a harsh outer coat and a thick, soft undercoat. The fur tends to be shorter on their head and front legs, but it becomes denser around the neck and at the back of the thighs.

Norwegian Lundehund colors range from pale brown to tan. Some Lundehunds have black tips with white markings, while others sport white tips with red or dark colored markings.

The coat of Norwegian Lundehunds undergoes heavy shedding twice a year, but it also sheds in small amounts every day. Remove loose hair by brushing your Lundehund once a week. Frequent baths are not necessary as they can dry out his skin. Only wash him monthly or when he gets too dirty.

The Norwegian Lundehund’s grooming routine includes weekly nail trimming and ear cleaning. Brushing his teeth should be done daily, but if it is impossible to do it regularly, aim for 2-3 times a week.

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Temperament and Intelligence

Are Norwegian Lundehunds good pets? Yes, Norwegian Lundehunds are good pets. Although these dogs are a bit reserved in showing their affection, they enjoy spending time with their human companions. Lundehunds may not be social butterflies, but they do not react well when left alone for extended periods.

Are Norwegian Lundehunds good with kids? Yes, Norwegian Lundehunds are wonderful family dogs that can hit it off with children when properly introduced. Always supervise when he interacts with them, especially if toddlers are around, to ensure his safety as well as the children’s.

Are Norwegian Lundehunds aggressive? No, Norwegian Lundehunds are not aggressive, but they can be wary of strangers. These alert dogs are quick to raise an alarm if someone trespasses their owner's home. Providing them with early socialisation and training helps them distinguish which individuals do not pose a threat to their loved ones.

Do Norwegian Lundehund bark a lot? Yes, the Lundehund dog is prone to incessant barking when strangers are around. Consistent training aids in minimizing his barking frequency and prevents him from developing a nuisance habit.

Are Norwegian Lundehunds easy to train? No. Norwegian Lundehunds are intelligent yet crafty and headstrong. If you are too lenient, they will do things their way. Potty training these dogs can be quite difficult too, which is why some Lundehunds are not fully housebroken.

For this reason, the Norwegian Lundehund is not the best choice for novice dog owners. He needs an owner with years of experience in handling dogs since training him requires plenty of firmness and patience.

Punishment should never be incorporated into the training as it will only lead the Lundehund dog to become more stubborn. Use positive reinforcement instead to make him more interested in achieving better results during training.

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Nutrition and Feeding

There is a lack of information available about the Norwegian Lundehund's ideal diet and nutrition because of the breed's rarity. However, it is recommended to feed him a high-protein, low-fat diet that can either be in the form of homemade or commercial dog food. It allows for better nutrient absorption, which the Lundehund's body has trouble doing.

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Health and Exercise

The average lifespan of the Norwegian Lundehund is 10 to 12 years. The breed has notable hereditary diseases that can affect their quality of life and longevity, such as:

Gastrointestinal Issues

Norwegian Lundehunds are highly vulnerable to numerous severe gastric disorders, including chronic intestinal disease and intestinal lymphangiectasia. Even with the availability of medical treatments, the prognosis of these illnesses is guarded. Every Lundehund is required to have blood work and a fecal test every 6-12 months to check if they have developed any stomach issues.

The Norwegian Kennel Club also took steps to diminish the incidence of gastrointestinal diseases in the breed by establishing the “Outcross Programme.” It involves breeding the Norwegian Lundehund with 3 similar dog breeds, namely the Norwegian Buhund, Norrbottenspets, and the Icelandic Sheepdog.

Low Fertility

Some breeders have observed that several Norwegian Lundehunds have a problem in producing litters due to issues like poor sperm quality. This can lead to issues down the road concerning increasing the breed's population.

Acquiring a Norwegian Lundehund from a reputable breeder is crucial since they are knowledgeable about the breed’s health issues and more than willing to share precautionary measures you can take to protect your dog from the ailments mentioned above. Also, remember to ask for the dog’s health certificate as proof that he has been health tested.

The Norwegian Lundehund has high levels of energy that should be expended through 1-2 hours of exercise daily. If you have a back garden, let him run and frolic around freely. Just be sure the fences are high enough or else he might find crafty ways to escape. With this in mind, never leave him unsupervised as he plays in the back garden.

The Lundehund dog is a great companion for long walks, jogging, and hiking but keep him on a lead to prevent him from chasing down animals. Enrolling him in dog sports like flyball, rally, and agility will help engage and satisfy his hunting dog instinct.

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Cost of Ownership

How much does a Norwegian Lundehund cost? We cannot provide an estimation of the Norwegian Lundehund price because the breed is difficult to find. However, we can say for certain that Norwegian Lundehund puppies come with a hefty price due to their rarity and scarcity.

Take caution when in search of a Norwegian Lundehund for sale, as there are scammers and shady breeders that will attempt to deceive you. Ask referrals from trusted people you know like the vet or close friends to find a reputable Lundehund breeder. You can also try inquiring about local dog shows or local breeding clubs.

Consider checking with rescue groups if any Norwegian Lundehund needs a forever home. However, don't get your hopes up because this rare dog is unlikely to be found in dog shelters or rescue organisations.

As a small to medium-sized dog, the Norwegian Lundehund does not require large meals. Thus, his total monthly food cost is around £25. Basic dog supplies such as leads, collars, and toys are an essential part of your home if you have a new pooch as they help him adjust and feel comfortable. All of these items can cost anywhere from £100 to £400.

Young Norwegian Lundehunds are very vulnerable to severe canine diseases. Vaccinations will build up their immunity against these ailments. Spare around £100–£150 for the initial vaccine shots and £50–£60 for annual boosters. Lundehund dogs need to visit the vet regularly, particularly because of their predisposition to gastrointestinal issues. Prepare approximately £30-£60 for each session.

Emergencies may arise when caring for a Norwegian Lundehund. Investing in pet insurance prevents expensive vet bills. A time-limited coverage has a monthly fee ranging from £15-20. If you opt for a lifetime package, expect to pay around £18-£80 each month.

Norwegian Lundehund Breed Highlights

  • The Norwegian Lundehund is a loving yet reserved canine companion.
  • The Norwegian Lundehund tends to be suspicious of strangers and requires early socialisation.
  • The Norwegian Lundehund can be challenging to train, making him more suited for experienced pet owners.
  • The Norwegian Lundehund is prone to certain health conditions, such as gastrointestinal issues and low fertility.
  • The Norwegian Lundehund requires ample amounts of exercise.
Norwegian Lundehund

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The information, including measurements, prices and other estimates, on this page is provided for general reference purposes only.