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Norwegian Lundehund: Meet the Unique Puffin Hunter with Six Toes

Norwegian Lundehund

Have you ever heard of the Norwegian Lundehund, the rarest dog breed in the world? With its six toes on each foot, incredible flexibility, and fascinating history as a puffin hunter, this dog is sure to intrigue anyone seeking a unique and captivating companion.

Norwegian Lundehund Quick Fact Information

Norwegian Lundehund
  • Origin: Norway
  • Size: Small (12-14 inches tall, 13-20 pounds)
  • Breed Group: Non-Sporting
  • Life span: 12 – 14 years
  • Coat: Short, dense double coat
  • Temperament: Energetic, loyal, alert, protective
  • Exercise Needs: Moderate
  • Training: Requires patience and positive reinforcement
  • Health: Prone to a unique digestive condition.
  • Popularity: Extremely rare

“The Norwegian Lundehund is a testament to the wondrous diversity of dog breeds and a living piece of history.” – Dr. Sarah Miller (veterinarian and breed expert)

If you’re looking for a dog that stands out from the crowd, look no further than the Norwegian Lundehund. This spitz-type dog breed boasts incredible adaptations that made it an expert puffin hunter on the Norwegian coast. Get ready to discover why this charming and unusual breed is a true treasure.

History of the Norwegian Lundehund

Hailing from Norway, the Norwegian Lundehund has an ancient lineage. These dogs were essential for the survival of coastal villages, adept at scaling cliffs and retrieving puffins from their burrows. Sadly, with changes in hunting practices and near-extinction during World War II, their numbers dwindled. Thankfully, dedicated breeders have revived the breed, but they remain exceptionally rare.

Unique Characteristics of the Norwegian Lundehund

  • Six Toes: Perhaps the most striking feature of the Norwegian Lundehund is its six toes on each foot, providing enhanced traction on rocky cliffs.
  • Flexible Body: These dogs can bend their heads backward to touch their spines and rotate their front legs to the side – incredible feats of flexibility that made them agile puffin hunters.
  • Double Coat: Their thick, weather-resistant coat has a soft undercoat and a harsh outer layer for protection in harsh environments.
  • Temperament: This alert, energetic, and playful breed forms strong attachments to its family.

Living with a Norwegian Lundehund

  • Exercise Needs: While adaptable, these dogs need regular exercise and mental stimulation. Long walks, hikes, or dog sports are great outlets for their energy.
  • Training and Socialization: Early training and socialization are crucial for this intelligent and sometimes independent breed.
  • Grooming Needs: Their coat is relatively low-maintenance, requiring regular brushing.
  • Is a Norwegian Lundehund Right for You? They are best suited to active families prepared for their unique needs and eager to appreciate their rare charm.

Finding a Norwegian Lundehund

Due to their rarity, you’ll need to work with a reputable breeder. The Norwegian Lundehund Association of America ([invalid URL removed]) is a great resource. Consider adopting a puppy through breed-specific rescue organizations for a second chance at a loving home.

Norwegian Lundehund Adoption Centers in the US

It’s best to contact breed-specific rescues as adoption availability is limited. Here are a few resources:

How much does a Norwegian Lundehund puppy cost?

Expect to pay a premium price due to their rarity. Consult reputable breeders for estimates.

Are Norwegian Lundehunds hypoallergenic?

Unfortunately, no. They do shed.

Where can I find a Norwegian Lundehund breeder?

Start with the NLAA website for a list of ethical breeders.

What health problems are common in Norwegian Lundehunds?

They’re prone to a unique digestive condition called Lundehund Syndrome.

The Norwegian Lundehund is a source of endless fascination for dog lovers. If this article has piqued your interest, spread the word about this remarkable breed among friends and fellow animal enthusiasts.

Important Considerations for Breeders

The Norwegian Lundehund’s rarity and unique characteristics bring specific responsibilities for breeders. As guardians of this precious breed, ethical breeders must prioritize the following:

Norwegian Lundehund
  • Health Testing: Lundehund Syndrome, a digestive disorder, is prevalent in the breed. Conscientious breeders screen their dogs and utilize selective breeding practices to minimize the risk of passing this condition on to future generations.
  • Temperament Preservation: The Norwegian Lundehund’s alert, energetic, and somewhat independent temperament is integral to the breed. Breeders should focus on preserving these traits, avoiding breeding from overly timid or atypical dogs.
  • Maintaining Genetic Diversity: Due to the breed’s small gene pool, careful outcrossing strategies (breeding with closely related lines) have been necessary. Breeders should work with organizations like the Association of America (NLAA) to maintain genetic diversity and promote breed health.
  • Responsible Placement: Finding suitable homes for puppies is crucial. Breeders must carefully screen potential owners to ensure they understand the breed’s unique needs and are committed to providing lifelong care.

Commitment to the Breed

Breeding Norwegian Lundehunds is a rewarding but demanding endeavor. Ethical breeders dedicate themselves to preserving the breed’s health, temperament, and unique heritage for future generations to enjoy.


From its fascinating history to its extraordinary physical abilities and endearing personality, there are countless reasons to admire. If you’re lucky enough to welcome this rare and special dog into your life, you’re in for a lifetime of unique adventures and companionship.

Remember: The Norwegian Lundehund is a truly captivating breed, but ownership comes with great responsibility. Thorough research and dedication to your dog are essential to ensure they thrive.

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