Does a Norwegian Elkhound shed a lot?

If you’re like me a few years ago, you probably don’t know much about the Norwegian Elkhound. Imagine a dog with the endurance of a husky, the loyalty of a German shepherd, and the courageous heart of a lion. This describes the amazing Norwegian Elkhound – a breed of dog whose history dates back over 6,000 years ago when it hunted moose (or called elk in Europe) with the early Norse settlers. This breed is as ancient as the Viking sagas!

But as interesting and remarkable as these dogs are, they do come with their own set of challenges. And for many potential Elkhound owners, one question seems to linger: “Does a Norwegian Elkhound shed a lot?” Well, you’re about to find out.

Norwegian Elkhounds are double-coated canines. This means they have a dense, soft undercoat that keeps them warm in winter, and a coarse outer coat to protect them from the elements. Now here’s the important part: these dogs shed – bystanders might think it’s snowing fur!

In the dog world, there is a special term for what happens when a Norwegian Elkhound sheds – it’s called “blowing their coat.” This isn’t just a sprinkling of hair, but a full-on fur-phenomenon, which occurs for several weeks, typically twice a year. You might walk into your living room one day to find it draped in a furry rug, and that rug was your dog’s former coat. It can be quite an experience, especially the first time it happens.

Yet, despite its initial shock, there’s no need to imagine fur-filled horror stories. The shedding of Norwegian Elkhounds, like many aspects of pet ownership, is manageable with the right knowledge and preparation. Let’s break that down a bit.

Firstly, it’s important to understand the Elkhound’s coat serves vital functions, including insulation from the cold, protection from the sun, and waterproofing. So, don’t be tempted to shave your breed’s coat during shedding season, you would be robbing these Arctic explorers of their built-in weather armor.

Instead, arm yourself with a sturdy brush and a steel comb. Frequent brushing of your Elkhound’s coat, especially during ‘coat-blowing’ season, can drastically reduce the amount of fur that finds its way onto every conceivable surface in your home. Brushing not only helps control shedding but also distributes the natural oils on their skin, promoting a healthier coat.

Diet can also play a crucial role in managing your Elkhound’s shedding. A balanced, high-quality diet keeps the coat shiny and healthy, and might reduce excessive shedding. The same goes for adequate hydration. Dry skin can lead to increased fur loss, so plenty of freshwater helps keep their skin in top shape.

Even the most diligent brushing regime won’t completely eliminate shedding, so invest in a good vacuum cleaner, one designed to pick up pet hair. “Roombas” (automated robotic vacuum cleaners) are a low effort solution. Alternatively, lint rollers and furniture covers will also become your new best friends.

So, yes, Norwegian Elkhounds do shed quite a bit. But bear this in mind: every tuft of fur you sweep up is a reminder of the ancient lineage and remarkable survival abilities of this breed. With every brush stroke, you are participating in the thousand-year-old tradition of caring for these ‘Moose Dogs’ from the Norwegian wilderness.

The Norwegian Elkhound is as impressive and majestic as the mountain ranges it originates from, and despite the reputation for shedding, these loyal dogs have won the hearts of many dog owners worldwide. Their charm, energy and loyalty far outweigh any concerns about their shedding habits.

So, if you are willing to adapt to the rhythm of the seasons and invest in a good dog brush, vacuum cleaner, and perhaps, a pet-designed laundry detergent, the answer to our question – does a Norwegian Elkhound shed a lot – shouldn’t dissuade you from inviting this wonderful breed into your home. Happy ‘fur-storm’ seasons!