If you can’t find a partner for those cold winter runs, I’m ready for duty. After all, I’m an ancient breed that can corner moose and elk in Scandinavia—although I’m not a true hound. I’m happy, playful, and devoted to family, especially children. I’ll use my big voice to protect loved ones, or for many other reasons!
I see myself as an equal, not really as a pet—which can make obedience training tricky. I respond better to treats than lectures and without a firm, consistent approach, I will run the house. A long walk, run, or vigorous game every day will burn off excess energy. New dog owners do well with me, and I can tolerate apartment life but not being left alone: I want to be where the action is!
My frame is solid at 48 to 55 pounds and 19 to 20 inches tall. My thick coat resists dirt and the elements, and—since I have no dog odor—frequent baths aren’t necessary. I normally don’t shed much, but will do so profusely 2 or 3 times a year. Weekly brushing, and more when shedding, will keep me looking great. My coloring is medium gray accented with silver and a dark gray saddle—a very wintry look.
With good care and training, I’ll be clowning around and sharing adventures with the family for 10 to 12 years. One major health issue to watch for is hip dysplasia, with a lower risk for dermatitis and retinal atrophy. Fanconi syndrome (kidney problems) can occasionally occur.