The Norwegian Elk Hound of dogs has been developed in Scandinavian countries, and although referred to as hounds, properly speaking are all-purpose dogs used for elk and bear hunting, as well as for black cock shooting. They are remarkable for their scenting powers, and it is said that under favorable conditions they will catch the scent of an elk or a bear three miles away.
The breed is very old, dating back to Viking times, and among their notable characteristics are intelligence, courage, and great endurance. In appearance they are rather short in stature, with an average height of about 20 inches. The head, which is carried high, is large and square, broad between the ears; muzzle of good length; stop well defined; eyes dark and full of expression; the ears sharply pointed, erect, and very mobile; the neck short and thick; chest broad and deep; the back straight and not too long. The tail is thick and heavy, and carried over the back. As in most northern dogs, the coat is long and deep on the body, with a dense, woolly undercoat. About the head it is short and smooth. In color it is all shades of grizzly brown, black and brown, or black. Tan is rare. A white patch on the chest is frequent, as are white feet.