The history of the Svensk vit älghund (which means Swedish white elkhound) is said to have begun in 1942 in the County of Jämtland. That year a very light coloured puppy was born in a litter of Jämthund.
Occasionally a very pale puppy is born in purebred Jämthund or Norwegian Elkhound litters. This puppy came from very well renowned stock. White dogs were not unusual in the Southern parts of North Bothnia in the area around Piteå and Roknäs during the 1960s. It was said about them that they had a special ability to make the elk stand steady, as if struck by lightning. The colour in itself could be the reason as it might startle the elk.
In 1987 work began to investigate how many whites there actually were and what their capacity as hunting dogs was. They were mainly represented in the counties of Jämtland, Dalarna and Värmland but also up in the West Bothnia region.
At an evaluation in the early 1990s it was found that well over 300 specimens were homogenous in type and proved to be suitable for hunting elk, therefore the breed was considered to have a good foundation. The Swedish Kennel Club recognized the Svensk vit älghund in 1993.
Appearance and size
As mentioned, the breed derives from the Jämthund and the Norwegian Elkhound but is more similar to the Jämthund in both size and proportions. The body is rectangular and harmonious, lithe and with good reach of the neck. The head is strong and wedge shaped. The tail should be high set and carried in a loose curve well over the back.
The coat is dense, standing off and pure white in colour. Slight lemon nuances are permissible. Ideal height at the withers for males is 56 cm, and for females 53 cm.
Breed registration statistics
Below you can find the registration statistics for the Svensk vit älghund in the Nordic countries from 1990 onwards.