The Norwegian Elkhound – A Hardy, Versatile Breed with Viking Roots

A supporter of animal rights, Steubenville, Ohio, resident Cody Saltsman condemns the practice of inhumane laboratory testing of animals for product development. He and his family have rescued a number of abused cats and dogs over the years. Cody Saltsman currently has a Great Dane and Norwegian elkhound as family pets. The latter breed is unique in that it has strong ties with the Spitz, from which it was bred for specific elk and moose hunting purposes.

Categorized as a hound for its hunting ability, the Norwegian elkhound has skills that extend to guarding and defending the home and herding. The hardy breed came about during the Viking era. The hound had to survive freezing temperatures while navigating a rugged terrain of thickly forested mountains. While elkhounds have been bred for many centuries, Norwegian elkhound pedigrees stretch back only to the late 19th century with the breed first gaining American Kennel Club recognition in 1930.


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