Altogether, the Nordic countries have 29 native dog breeds. The Samoiedskaïa Sabaka, also known as the Samoyed, is shared by all five countries. Here you can learn more about the Nordic dog breeds, their history and place in society today.
Although some of these breeds have only recently been recognized internationally, many of them have a long history. For example, The Vikings kept dogs for hunting, herding cattle and guarding their farms. Some of the Nordic breeds, such as the Norsk buhund (Norwegian buhund) and the Västgötaspets (Swedish vallhund) are descendants of these dogs.
The hunting dog – a Nordic tradition
The Nordic countries have seen the development of different types of breeds, all adapted to the climate, the lifestyles and the needs of the local people.
Historically, hunting has been an important part of Nordic culture and it still remains so today. For most hunters, the hunting dog is essential. So it comes as no surprise that 19 out of the 29 Nordic dog breeds are hunting breeds.
Most of the Nordic breeds are recognised by the FCI (Fédération Cynologique Internationale). However, the Nordic Kennel Club recognises all of the Nordic breeds. Therefore each Nordic country recognises the native breeds of the other countries.
The Samoyed, Samoiedskaïa Sabaka
In 1969, the responsibility for the breed standard of the Samoyed was entrusted to the Nordic Kennel Union. Today the Nordic countries share responsibility for the breed which originated in Siberia, northern Russia.
Important NKU decisions regarding the Nordic dog breeds
Decisions about single breeds can be found under each breed's presentation.
1-2012, item 26
The NKU discussed the principles for a long-term and a sustainable breeding of the Nordic breeds. What measures should be taken for the breeds to survive on a long-term basis.