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Norwegian Lundehund

From Norway’s rocky island of Vaeroy, the uniquely constructed Norwegian Lundehund is the only dog breed created for the job of puffin hunting.

Overall Status

Height 12 to 15 inches
Temperament Loyal, Energetic, Alert
Weight 20 to 30 pounds
Life Expectancy 12 to 15 years
Coat Color Black, Gray, Red, Sable, White, Yellow
Barking Level When Necessery

Quick Factors

Dog Friendly
Exercise Need
Grooming Needs
Strangers Friendly
Family Affectionate
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Daily Care

Grooming Tips Exercise Tips Feeding Tips Health Tips Trainability

This is a Northern or Spitz breed with an undercoat that sheds heavily twice a year. He also sheds small amounts daily.

Brush the Lundehund’s double coat once a week to keep it clean and remove loose hair. During spring and fall shedding seasons, daily brushing will help keep hair under control.

The rest is basic care. The earsshould be regularly inspected and cleaned if needed. Thenailsshould be trimmed often if not worn down naturally, as overly long nails can cause the dog discomfort and problems walking and running.

This is an active and playful breed. He will enjoy a brisk, 30-minute walk or a couple of ball-chasing sessions with the owner every day. When playtime is over, he is happy to hang out by your side. This makes him a good fit for a condo or apartment, but a house with access to a yard is the ideal living situation for the Norwegian Lundehund.

The Norwegian Lundehund is prone to an intestinal syndrome called Lundehund Intestinal Syndrome, so you’ll need to feed your dog a special intestinal diet. Your Lundie may be allergic to grain, so a grain-free diet may help. Ask your vet or breeder for their recommendation. By keeping a close on your Lundie’s diet, you’ll be able to cut down on gastrointestinal issues.

Learn about whichhuman foodsare safe for dogs, and which are not. Check with your vet if you have any concerns about your dog’s weight or diet.Clean, fresh water should be available at all times.

All dogs have the potential to developgenetic health problems, just as all people have the potential to inherit a particular disease. Run, don’t walk, from any breeder who does not offer a health guarantee on her puppies, who tells you that the breed is 100 percent healthy and has no known problems, or who tells you that her puppies are isolated from the main part of the household for health reasons. A reputable breeder will be honest and open about health problems in the breed and the incidence with which they occur in her lines.

But the Lundehund is generally a healthy breed, andresponsible breederstest their stock for health conditions such as patellar luxation and eye disorders. Theteethshould be brushed often, using a toothpaste designed for dogs. Regular visits to the vet for checkups and parasite control help to ensure the dog a long, healthy life.

The Norwegian Lundehund is intelligent but can prove to be stubborn when it comes to training. For the best results, use positive training techniques. A common complaint with the Lundie is house training, so this is not a dog for the novice owner. You’ll find that introducing crate training early on will help curb this problem. In fact, crate training can prove to be easier with this breed, as it likes to be in cave-like spaces.

Earlysocializationandpuppy training classesare recommended and help to ensure that the dog grows into a well-adjusted, well-mannered companion. The breed is incredibly clever, affectionate, and fun-loving, and they are very smart and are problem-solvers of the first order.


Originally used by Norwegian farmers to hunt Puffin birds, the Norwegian Lundehund can be traced back to Norse and Danish writings as far back as the 1500s. As its chief role was to hunt Puffins for its meat, eggs and feathers, this dog had to be agile in order to scale and tunnel into the crevices of steep vertical cliffs. This would account for its unusual anatomical characteristic.

Around World War II, the breed nearly became extinct due to rampant canine distemper in the area. Now that Puffins are an endangered species, the Norwegian Lundehund is out of a job in its native country. And even though this is considered a rare breed, the Lundehund is still bred and kept by fanciers of the dog.

The first Lundehunds in North America arrived in Canada in 1960. Paul Ross imported the first Lundehund to the United States in 1987, and The Norwegian Lundehund Club of America was formed in 1988. The American Kennel Club recognized the breed as a member of the Non-Sporting Group in 2011.

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