(aka: Norsk Lundehund, Norwegian Puffin Dog, Lundehund)
The Norwegian Lundehund (Norsk Lundehund) is a small breed of dog of the Spitz type that originates from Norway. Its name is composed of the prefix Lunde, from the Norwegian lundefugl (puffin), and the suffix hund, meaning dog. The breed was originally developed for the hunting of puffins and their eggs.
The Norwegian Lundehund is a rectangular spitz dog, small, comparatively light with distinct secondary sex characters. The Norwegian Lundehund possesses some odd characteristics which other breeds do not. It has six toes on each foot including two dewclaws. It has joints in the nape of the neck, which other dogs do not have. It has extremely flexible shoulder joints.
The medium sized erect ears have more mobility then the average dog. The eyes are brown and fairly deep-set. The head is small and wedge shaped. It has moderately muscled hindquarters suitable for agility rather than speed. The legs are strong. The tail is carried ring-shaped or slightly rolled over the top line, or hanging.
It has a short, rough, stand-off coat. It's dense topcoat lies flat against the body. The coat can be reddish-brown to fallow with more or less black hair tips, or black, or grey, all with white markings, or white with dark markings. The full-grown dog usually has got more distinct black in the outer coat than the young dog.
Norwegian Lundehund Temperment
Norwegian Lundehunds are friendly and love people. They are not aggressive and will snuggle with people or other dogs for hours. They love to play and will enjoy long sessions of it. Curious, they are ready to explore the world. This breed is intelligent and can be trained for agility.
The Norwegian Lundehund is usually good with children. They don't mind having their ears or tails tugged, especially if it's by others in their pack. So long as they are introduced to each other in a positive environment, the Norwegian Lundehund will grow into a great family dog. They are friendly with other dogs. Most love to meet others of their species. This breed is usually good with other pets if raised with them.
Long time lunde-dog owners treasure the breeds intelligence, humor, and big personality. These dogs are free thinkers, and owners should keep this in mind when they train their lunde-dog.
The Norwegian Lundehund is easy to groom. Comb and brush regularly with a firm, bristle brush, paying attention to the undercoat. Bathe or dry shampoo only when necessary. This breed is a heavy shedder.
The Norwegian Lundehund is among the world's rarest of dogs. It is a member of the Spitz family. It originated in Vaerog and Rost in northern Norway. For centuries it was used to hunt puffins from nests on steep cliffs. Puffins, however, in the 1800's became a protected species and were no longer hunted. The dogs were no longer useful to the farmers and the breed numbers dwindled. However sometime after WWII the breed was saved from extinction through the friendship of two concerned Norwegians. The Norwegian Lundehund was not recognized as a distinct breed until 1943. The Norwegian Lundehund was first recognized by the AKC on July 1st 2008.
Training Lundehunds can be a challenge. Lundehunds are incredibly intelligent and can easily understand what you want them to do, but they prefer not to. A great deal of patience, a large supply of delicious treats, and a sense of humor are all required when training a Lundehund. Lundehunds are more like cats than dogs in their attitude towards their owners and they generally lack the famous canine eagerness to please, so training should emphasize positive reinforcement, as a lunde-dog is much more likely to obey a command when there is something in it for them. They don't respond well to punishment and negative reinforcement, and instead of altering their behavior you will just wind up with an irritated dog with a grudge - and they have long memories. Keep training sessions short and fun, be prepared to repeat the same lessons many times, and be realistic. While a patiently trained Lundehund will generally come when it is called, you may have to call several times and the path back to you may involve a few detours to investigate something really interesting along the way.
Housebreaking is an area where Lundehunds have proven to be particularly difficult to train reliably. This is a primitive breed, and they mark their territory, which is likely to include the inside of your house. A lunde-dog owner should anticipate that housebreaking will take longer than it does in other breeds and complete reliability is a rarity. The problems can be minimized if your lunde-dog is crate trained and crated when left in the house unsupervised. Most lunde-dogs take very well to a crate, if properly and positively introduced to it. Some find a doggy-door to be very helpful, allowing the dog the opportunity to quickly go outside to eliminate. Neutering can cut down significantly on marking behavior. Anyone considering adding a Lundehund to their life needs to be aware of this issue and consider whether they can live happily with a dog that may never be completely housebroken.
Prone to Leaky Gut Syndrome, Lymphagetasia, Lundehund Syndrome (a series of digestive problems). This unique syndrome renders the lifespan of a particular dog almost unpredictable if not fed properly. It is reported that it is not a disease but an inability to digest grains of any sort. Fed a diet with no grains the dogs do not get sick. They need only the same care that any dog should get and they live a long life. This syndrome or allergy is under research.