Norrbotten Spitz - Origin, Characteristics and Behavior

Norrbotten Spitz: find out what this animal is like, its physical characteristics, character, behavior, etc. The Spitz Norrbotten are a breed originating from Sweden that was...

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The Spitz Norrbotten are a breed originating in Sweden that was primarily used for hunting hunting. It is a medium-sized breed that needs plenty of daily physical activity, a trait that makes it ideal for rural environments. They have a very good character, although their upbringing can be difficult without professional help.

Continue reading this dog breed from PlanèteAnimal to discover all the characteristics of the Norrbotten Spitz, its origin, character and much more.


  • Europe
  • Sweden

FCI Nomenclature

  • Group V

Physical Characteristics

  • Muscular
  • Proportional
  • Long ears


  • Average


  • 35-45

Adult Weight

  • 10-25

Life expectancy

  • 15-20

Recommended physical activity

  • High


  • Very loyal
  • Smart
  • Active

Ideal for

  • House
  • Walking
  • The guard
  • Sports

Recommended climate

  • Cold

Hair type

  • Short
  • Hard

Origin of the Norrbotten Spitz

The Norrbotten Spitz is a breed originating from northern Bothnia, Sweden, more precisely from the county of Norbotten, from which it takes its name. Its origin dates back to the 17th century. This breed was designed primarily for hunting, herding livestock, pulling sleds and carts, as a guard dog for farms and even as a pet.

The breed nearly died out during World War I, but since some of these dogs had been bred on Swedish farms, the breed was able to persist and breeding programs for the breed began in the 1950s and 1960.In 1966 the Fédération Cynologique Internationale accepted the Norrbotten Spitz as a breed and in 1967 the Swedish Kennel Club registered the breed and its new standard. Currently, about 100 dogs of this breed are registered each year in Sweden.

Characteristics of the Norrbotten Spitz

The Spitz Norrbotten are small dogs and the males measure up to 45 cm and the females 42 cm. The males weigh between 11 and 15 kg and the females between 8 and 12. They are dogs that have a square body, quite thin, but their front limbs are strong and powerful. Their chest is deep, long and their belly is retracted. Their back is short, muscular and strong and their rump is long and wide.

The head of the Norrbotten Spitz is strong and wedge-shaped and its skull is flattened, a well-marked nasofrontal depression and a slightly arched forehead. Their muzzle is pointed and their ears are straight and high set.Their eyes are almond shaped, large and slanted.

The tail of these dogs is very hairy and curves over the back.

Colors of the Norrbotten Spitz

Their coat is short, longer at the back of the thighs, the nape of the neck and under the tail. It is double-layered, with the outer layer being rigid or semi-rigid and the inner layer soft and dense. The coat color should be white with large wheat-colored patches on both sides of the head and ears. Other colors and patterns are not accepted.

Character of the Norrbotten Spitz

Norrbotten Spitz are very loyal, dedicated, hardworking and sensitive dogs. As it is a very energetic dog, its ideal place to live is rural areas.

They like to run, play, exercise and be constantly on the move. They are happy dogs who protect their home and loved ones well.They are very intelligent and lively, as well as obedient, affectionate, docile and tolerant of people of all ages. However, excessive loneliness or quietness will cause them anxiety and cause them to become destructive.

Training and education of the Norrbotten Spitz

Norrbotten Spitz can be difficult to train as they are very independent and tend to do as they please. For this reason, if you do not have experience in dog training, it is better that you call on a professional.

Whether or not you go to a professional to train the Norrbotten spitz, the most appropriate for this dog, and for any animal, is to opt for a positive training, which is based on the reinforcement of good behavior. We do not recommend that you punish or scold your dog as you will only make the situation worse.

Caring for a Norrbotten Spitz

As it was a hunting dog and although today it lives with us in our homes, it is a dog that needs to do a lot of daily activity in order to release all its accumulated energy . They need rural environments or long walks, lots of play, outdoor activities and outings.

For a Norrbotten Spitz to be happy and he althy, he absolutely must be able to exert himself. Here is a small list of tips to apply:

  • Good dental hygiene to prevent tartar and periodontal disease, as well as other dental problems.
  • Good ear canal hygiene to prevent painful ear infections.
  • Frequent brushing of the coat to remove dead hair and accumulated dirt.
  • Bath him when he's really dirty.
  • Routine deworming to prevent internal and external parasites which, in turn, can carry other infectious agents that cause other illnesses.
  • Routine vaccination to prevent the development of common infectious diseases in dogs.
  • Balanced food intended for the canine species and in sufficient quantity to cover their daily energy needs according to their particular conditions (age, metabolism, environmental conditions, physiological state, etc.).
  • Enrichment of the home environment to prevent boredom or stress.

Norrbotten Spitz he alth

The Norrbotten Spitz are very strong dogs that enjoy a very good state of he alth and have a life expectancy of up to 16 years. However, even if they are he althy, they can contract any disease that affects the canine species, whether transmitted by vectors, organic diseases or tumoral processes.

Although they do not particularly suffer from specific hereditary diseases or birth defects, in recent years specimens with progressive cerebellar ataxia have been found.This disease consists of a degeneration of the nervous system, more precisely of the cerebellum, which controls and coordinates movements. Dogs are born normal, but after 6 weeks of life, cerebellar neurons begin to die. This results in cerebellar symptoms in the first years of life, such as head tremors, ataxia, falls, muscle twitching, hypermetry and, in later stages, inability to move. Therefore, before breeding two Norrbotten spitz, the DNA of the parents must be analyzed in order to detect the presence of this disease.

Where to adopt a Norrbotten Spitz?

If you think you are suitable for having a dog of this breed because you think its needs adapt to your lifestyle, the next step is to get closer to the SPAs near you in order to see if they have any of these dogs up for adoption. If this is not the case, you can search the Internet for associations responsible for rescuing dogs of this breed or cross-breed.

Depending on the location, the probability of finding such a dog will be reduced or increased. These dogs are more common in Nordic countries and they are almost non-existent in America. In any case, we recommend not to exclude the possibility of adopting a mixed breed dog. When choosing a canine companion, the most important thing is not his breed, but that you can take good care of him.

Pictures of Norrbotten Spitz

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