Norwegian Buhund (Norsk Buhund)

Country of origin:
Height (cm):
Weight (kg):
Life span (years):
wheaten (biscuit); black
Hair length:
Recognized by:
FCI code:
Good with kids:
The Norwegian Buhund (the Norsk Buhund or the Norwegian Sheepdog) is a spitz-type medium-sized versatile dog. This is a very energetic, cheerful, intelligent, hard-working and talkative working breed. This dog will be an excellent and devoted companion especially for active owners.

The Norwegian Buhund is one of the oldest Nordic breeds. In 1880 six dog skeletons of different sizes were found in an opened Viking grave (dating back to 900 A.D.) in Gokstad, Norway. These dogs are considered to be the representatives of modern Norwegian Buhunds.

The name «buhund” comes from norwegian “bu” (farm, homestead or mountain hut) and “hund” (hound or dog). The breed was used by the Vikings for herding, protecting farms and hunting bear and wolf. The dogs travelled with their masters both on sea and on land. This way they were brought to Scotland, the Shetland Islands, the Isle of Man, Greenland, and Ireland. It's very likely that the Norwegian Buhund descended from the Icelandic Sheepdog and the Shetland Sheepdog.

In the beginning of the XX century in Norway the number of breed members began decline rapidly. But the fact that the Norsk (Norewegian) Kennel Klub (NKK) started to control the breed and participation in dog shows increased the breeds popularity of the Norwegian Buhund.

In the 1920's, thanks to the Norway's state-counsel, John Saeland, the first Buhund show was held at Jaeren, and few years later (1939) the Norsk Buhundklubb (Norwegian Buhund Club) was established. The firsts breed memebers were imported to the United States in the 1980s. The United Kennel Club (UKC) recognized the breed in 1996, and the American Kennel Club (AKC) - in 2009.

Today the Norwegian Buhund is used as a working, guardian or hunting dog in the western Norway. It also serves as a police dog or an assistant for hearing-impaired people.

The Norwegian Buhund is a cheerful, friendly, confident, intelligent, active and alert breed. It tends to be very affectionate, loves kissing people and will make an excellent companion. However, this breed is a great watchdog and even tends to back at every noise.

The Norwegian Buhund forms very strong bonds with its owners and needs the constant company of its family. This is a playful breed and can remain so its entire life. It tends to be good with children but never leave your dog alone with a very young child as the Norwegian Buhund can accidently bowl over it. Males are more loyal and affectionate than females. Male breed members also prefer to spend time with the owner rather than wandering or lying on their own like female members.

The Norwegian Buhund is a dominant breed that is possessive and has a strong guardian instinct. In general, it won't be aggressive with other dogs, but may dislike some of them and tends to herd them. The male Buhunds are more peaceful and less aggressive than females. This breed tends to chase other animals and some will even hunt small animals like squirrels. You still can socialize your dog to tolerate the household pets.

Health Problems

The most common health problems for the breed include:

• canine hip dysplasia;
• epilepsy;
• eye problems;
• ear infections.

The Norwegian Buhund is a low-maintenance dog. Brush your dog weekly and during shedding seasons more often (better daily) as this breed is a heavy shedder. This dog it naturally clean and you don't need to wash it often. It is recommended to bathe the dog at the peak of a shedding season. Brush the teeth frequently, trim the nails as needed, and check and clean the ears on a regular basis.

The Norwegian Buhund is a very intelligent breed that loves to please and learns quickly. It is one of the most trainable Spitz-type dogs. However, this breed is stubborn and can be independent (especially males). Obedience training and agility classes would be the best choice for your dog.

The Norwegian Buhund requires consistent training from the very young age. You need to be firm but fair and be sure that your dog trusts you and sees you as a leader. Training should be short, avoid a lot of repetitions, as this breed gets bored quickly.

Socialize your puppy properly from the very beginning otherwise it can become suspicious and extremely vocal. Introduce your Norwegian Buhund to different places, people and animals.

The Norwegian Buhund is a working dog and therefore requires a lot of daily exercise (at least one hour two times per day). This breed loves different kind of sports and to go for long walks. Exercises must also include mental stimulation. The Norwegian Buhund loves to run, but it is also important to incorporate games and tricks into the exercise routine. Off leash dog parks are an excellent place to allow the dog to socialize with other animals and get rid of some energy.

The Norwegian Buhund is an athletic breed with a great stamina. It is definitely a breed for an active family, but it can leave even in an apartment if plenty of exercise is provided. If you are not ready to spend a lot of time with your dog this breed is not for you.