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Home > Dogs > Dog Breeds > Norwegian Buhund Dog Breed Guide: Info, Pictures, Care & More!

Norwegian Buhund Dog Breed Guide: Info, Pictures, Care & More!

Norwegian Buhund

Hailing from the cold fjords of Norway, the sturdy and energetic Norwegian Buhund is ready to show you the ways of the Vikings! These loyal yet independent medium-sized herding dogs are quite rare in America but they are confident you will love them!

Breed Overview


16-18.5 inches


26-40 pounds


12-15 years


Black, wheaten

Suitable for:

Active families and individuals, with patience for training and energy for exercising


Loyal, confident, smart, independent, vigilant

The truth is theyʻre confident about most things which is one of their most appealing traits. If you think you have the energy and patience to keep up with one of these dogs, keep reading to learn all about the Norwegian Buhund!

Norwegian Buhund Characteristics

High-energy dogs will need a lot of mental and physical stimulation to stay happy and healthy, while low-energy dogs require minimal physical activity. It’s important when choosing a dog to make sure their energy levels match your lifestyle or vice versa.
Easy-to-train dogs are more skilled at learning prompts and actions quickly with minimal training. Dogs that are harder to train will require a bit more patience and practice.
Some dog breeds are prone to certain genetic health problems, and some more than others. This doesn’t mean that every dog will have these issues, but they have an increased risk, so it’s important to understand and prepare for any additional needs they may require.
Some breeds, due to their size or their breeds potential genetic health issues, have shorter lifespans than others. Proper exercise, nutrition, and hygiene also play an important role in the lifespan of your pet.
Some dog breeds are more social than others, both towards humans and other dogs. More social dogs have a tendency to run up to strangers for pets and scratches, while less social dogs shy away and are more cautious, even potentially aggressive. No matter the breed, it’s important to socialize your dog and expose them to lots of different situations.


Norwegian Buhund Puppies

Norwegian Buhunds are rare in the United States. This means that if you go through a breeder, the price will likely be quite pricey. In addition to the cost of the dog, youʻll potentially need to pay additional fees to have your new pet shipped to you. This breed is generally healthy but you should still be certain to choose a breeder who performs all recommended health screenings on their dogs.

There are a few Norwegian Buhund rescue groups to be found and thereʻs always the chance you could find one at your local shelter. Some breeders will take back dogs previously sold if they donʻt work out in their first homes and find new owners for them. The cost of adopting a Norwegian Buhund will vary but is likely to be far less than the cost to purchase a new one.

before you adopt or purchase a Norwegian Buhund, be sure to consider that training is important, and you will need quite a fair amount of patience with this pup.

Norwegian Buhund
Image By: Wirestock Creators,Shutterstock

Temperament & Intelligence of the Norwegian Buhund

Bred to work closely with humans as farm dogs, Norwegian Buhunds are an extremely loyal and affectionate breed. They will always be happiest when spending time in the company of their family. Confident and smart, Norwegian Buhunds are also independent by nature, a trait that can make them a challenge to train.

Are These Dogs Good for Families? 👪

Norwegian Buhunds generally make excellent family pets. They are playful and energetic, making them fun and enthusiastic playmates for kids. Of course, all dogs should be supervised when they interact with children, especially those of a younger age. Buhunds arenʻt the biggest dogs but their energy could still overwhelm small children.

Due to their guarding and herding heritage, Norwegian Buhunds are always on the alert for any hint of danger. Families with an active social calendar should make sure their Norwegian Buhunds are socialized well to help them adapt to strangers in and out of the house.

These dogs are known to be quite vocal, a useful trait when serving as working farm dogs but one less desirable in a suburban neighborhood. Families will need to be aware of this and make sure their dogs are kept under control to avoid any neighborly disputes.

Does This Breed Get Along with Other Pets?

Norwegian Buhunds can get along well with other dogs with proper socialization. Their self-confidence could get them into trouble if they challenge larger dogs, however. Be sure to supervise greetings and interactions with new dogs carefully until you see how your Buhund feels about the other canine.

Spitz-type dogs like the Buhund can be a little hit or miss when it comes to living with cats. If they are raised with cats, Norwegian Buhunds usually do fine but do proceed with a little caution. Small exotic pets should generally be kept away from Norwegian Buhunds, as they should any dog, to avoid predator stress.


Things to Know When Owning a Norwegian Buhund:

Ready to start the hunt for a Norwegian Buhund breeder? Before you do, hereʻs a little more information about what it takes to keep these Viking dogs healthy and happy.

Food & Diet Requirements 🦴

Norwegian Buhunds donʻt have any special diet requirements and can eat any nutritionally balanced dog food. Some owners choose to feed a homemade diet rather than a commercially prepared one. This can be a healthy choice for your Norwegian Buhund as long as your veterinarian helps make sure the home-cooked food contains all the essential vitamins and minerals.

This breed really loves to eat and can easily become overweight. Donʻt offer your Norwegian Buhund too many treats and ask your vet to help you calculate the right amount of food to feed daily. Training a Buhund often involves more than its fair share of treats so you may need to adjust your dogʻs normal food intake.

Exercise 🐕

Norwegian Buhunds arenʻt the biggest dogs but their energy level is impressive! Bred to spend all day working and running on the farm, the breed needs hard exercise every day, preferably twice a day to keep them fit. Sedate walks or hanging out in the backyard wonʻt be enough for this breed.

Long hikes, jogs, or keeping pace with a bicycle are all activities that might just wear out a Buhund. Even better, try a canine sport such as agility or tracking. Your Norwegian Buhund can burn off energy while spending time with you too!

Mental stimulation and attention are needed to keep a Norwegian Buhund happy as well. They wonʻt enjoy being sent to the yard to spend time on their own and are smart enough to need some brain exercise regularly.

Because they hail from the cold weather country of Norway, the Norwegian Buhund tolerates freezing temperatures with ease. Be more careful exercising your pup in hot weather as their thick coat could lead to them overheating more easily.

Training 🎾

The Norwegian Buhund is more easily trained than some other closely related breeds. They are intelligent dogs who love to please their owners. However, theyʻre also very independent and it can sometimes be tough to convince them to do as they are asked.

Fortunately, Norwegian Buhunds are highly food motivated. Patient, persistent training with plenty of food rewards usually yields the best results. Try to perform training sessions in a quiet location. This breed is very sensitive to whatʻs going on around them and can be easily distracted and overwhelmed.

Grooming ✂️

Although they have a thick double coat, Norwegian Buhunds donʻt have complicated grooming needs. In fact, their fur stays naturally clean and free of doggy odor. They have a thick outer coat and a fluffy undercoat that they blow seasonally, usually once or twice a year.

When itʻs not shedding season, Norwegian Buhunds should be brushed 2-3 times a week. More frequent brushing will be needed when theyʻre blowing their coats. Besides brushing, regular nail trimming should be performed on the Norwegian Buhund. Check and clean their ears as needed and donʻt neglect their dental hygiene either.

Health and Conditions 🏥

Like other less common dog breeds, Norwegian Buhunds are generally healthy thanks to careful breeding practices. When choosing a breeder, look for one who has performed all the recommended health screenings on their dogs.

Minor Conditions
  • Cataracts
Serious Conditions
  • Hip dysplasia
  • Von Willenbrandʻs disease

Male vs. Female

Aside from size, there arenʻt many differences between male and female Norwegian Buhunds. The males tend to be just a little bigger, as is common with most dog breeds. Male dogs may also be more dominant and prone to behaviors like urine marking.

If you donʻt want to breed your Buhund, you should have them spayed or neutered for their health and to prevent accidental litters. Spaying is usually more expensive than neutering. Neutering male dogs usually makes them calmer and eliminates issues such as marking. If you donʻt spay your female Buhund, youʻll need to prepare for her to go into heat about twice a year.

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3 Little-Known Facts About the Norwegian Buhund

1. They sailed with the Vikings.

When the Vikings raided their way across Europe about 1,200 years ago, Norwegian Buhunds came along for the ride.

2. Norwegian Buhunds were the 160th breed recognized by the AKC

One of the newer breeds recognized by the organization, Norwegian Buhunds remain a somewhat unknown quantity among American dog lovers.

3. Norwegian Buhunds are sometimes known as the Norwegian Sheepdog or Norsk Buhund.

A Buhund by any other name is still just as smart and alert as ever!



You may have to put in some serious effort to find a Norwegian Buhund breeder so before you do, make sure you feel positive the breed is the right fit for you and your family. Remember that not every breed of dog is the perfect choice for all living situations. You owe it to the dog and yourself to do as much research as possible before you decide to bring a Norwegian Buhund home. That way you can both enjoy many years together, hopefully without too much barking!

Featured Image Credit: Lenka Molcanyiova, Shutterstock

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