Swedish Elkhound (Jämthund)
Dog Breeds

Swedish Elkhound (Jämthund)

Characteristics of Swedish Elkhound (Jämthund)

Country of originSweden
The sizeAverage
GrowthMales: 55–63 cm
Females: 52–60 cm
Weight25–30 kg
Age12–14 years old
FCI breed groupNot recognized
Swedish Elkhound (Jämthund) Characteristics

Brief information

  • Strong, hardy;
  • Stubborn, gambling;
  • Human-oriented.

Origin story

A fairly young breed, Helleforshund breeding was started only in the 30s of the last century. The dogs were bred to hunt moose. The huntsman Radberg from Hellefors, in central Sweden, worked on the creation of the breed. Helleforskhunds have relatives – Finnish Lapphund, Norwegian Gray Elkhund , Russian Laikas – and if you look even further back centuries – there are wolf genes. When the next generation of these golden-red dogs was grown and their outstanding working qualities became apparent, Helleforskhunds were introduced to the Swedish cynological community. In Sweden, the breed was recognized in 2000, in Norway and Finland a little later, but the IFF has not yet made a decision, although the dogs are admitted to field trials and show excellent results.


The dog is of medium-large size, rectangular format, dry constitution, with strong, but not heavy and not damp bones. Outwardly, it is very similar to its ancestors in the line of huskies – both in the muzzle and high-set ears, triangular, of medium size. And a ring tail. The color is only yellow-red, in various shades – from fawn to brown. The eyes are brown, the nose is black, and there is a black mask on the muzzle. Overflows of a shade of wool from brighter and darker to lighter are allowed. The coat is short, dense, with a thick undercoat, the outer hair is thick and coarse. There are small fringes on the paws, a plume on the tail, and a collar on the neck.


Calm, even phlegmatic, relating to the owner with great reverence, helleforshund is transformed on the hunt. This is a strong, muscular, surprisingly hardy dog, with excellent hunting qualities. He is not afraid of either cold or dampness, he can pursue potential prey for days, including in deep snow. Unlike representatives of many other breeds, it runs silently along the trail, furious barking begins only when the goal is reached.

However, the rage and anger of the moose husky is quite controllable. The dog perfectly assesses the situation, its strength and listens to the commands of the owner. In Sweden there is a club of fans of this breed, a competent thorough selection of moose huskies is being carried out, and these dogs are extremely highly valued.

Swedish Elkhound Care

Helleforskhunds are distinguished by enviable health. Eyes, ears , claws are processed only as needed. Wool should be combed out periodically with a stiff brush, during the molting period – more often. A separate problem is possible injuries, which sometimes occur due to the fact that the dog can get hurt while racing through forests and rough terrain or suffer in a fight with prey.

Conditions of detention

It is believed that the breed is absolutely not adapted for apartment maintenance. Such dogs should live in the countryside, in specially equipped enclosures. And, of course, they should go hunting – real or sporting. However, practice shows that in case of force majeure, helleforshunds, following their owners, adapt to city life.


There are no specialized nurseries in Russia. You can look for a puppy through hunting clubs, however, you need to understand that we have very few such dogs. But in Sweden, Finland, Norway, it is quite possible to buy a helleforshund, prices range from 400 to 1000 euros.

Swedish Elkhound – Video

Swedish Elkhound - Jämthund - Dog Breed Profile

Leave a Reply