White Shepherd vs Black Norwegian Elkhound - Breed Comparison

White Shepherd vs Black Norwegian ElkhoundWhite Shepherd is originated from United States but Black Norwegian Elkhound is originated from Norway. White Shepherd may grow 16 cm / 7 inches higher than Black Norwegian Elkhound. White Shepherd may weigh 20 kg / 45 pounds more than Black Norwegian Elkhound. Both White Shepherd and Black Norwegian Elkhound has almost same life span. White Shepherd may have more litter size than Black Norwegian Elkhound. White Shepherd requires Moderate maintenance. But Black Norwegian Elkhound requires Low maintenance

Basic Information

Herding dogs
Herding dogs
United States
Height Male:
55 - 65 cm
21 - 26 inches
44 - 49 cm
17 - 20 inches
Height Female:
55 - 65 cm
21 - 26 inches
43 - 46 cm
16 - 19 inches
Weight Male:
35 - 40 kg
77 - 89 pounds
16 - 20 kg
35 - 45 pounds
Weight Female:
35 - 40 kg
77 - 89 pounds
16 - 19 kg
35 - 42 pounds
Life Span:
12 - 14 Years
12 - 15 Years
Litter Size:
2 - 10
4 - 6
Medium dog
Medium dog
Other Names:
American White Shepherd
Norsk Elghund Svart Norsk Elghund Black Black Elkhound Norwegian Moose Dog (black)
Colors Available:
Medium length, dense, straight
Dense, short double coat
Affectionate, Alert, Cheerful, Courageous, Curious, Docile, Energetic, Friendly, Gentle, Independent, Intelligent, Lively, Loving, Loyal, Outgoing, Playful, Protective, Quiet, Responsive, Social, Stubborn
Alert, Curious, Intelligent, Loyal, Stubborn
Moderate maintenance
Low maintenance
Kids Friendly:
New Owners Friendly:


white shepherdThe German Shepherd and the white German Shepherd are the same dog - the only thing is that their coat colors vary.

The White Shepherd evolved because people were looking for a working companion dog with a high degree of intelligence and a white coat.

The development of the White Shepherd began at the time of the 19th and 20th centuries. A breeding program was started but in 1933, the white coat color was made a disqualification in the German Shepherd Dog breed standard.

Not to be deterred, it was in 1969 that the U.S. and Canada formed White German Shepherd breed clubs and the breed was actually recognized by the UKC in 1999.

black norwegian elkhoundThe Black Norwegian Elkhound was first bred in Norway in the early part of the 19th century as a smaller version of the Grey Norwegian Elkhound. The Black version is a Spitz and is very seldom seen anywhere in world but Norway. He is designed for the same job that the Grey Norwegian Elkhound performed. The difference is that the Black Norwegian is smaller, easier to see in the snow and ice of Norway and smaller than the Grey. It is a hunter, a herder, a guard dog and a watch dog. Because of the temperatures in Norway it was very important to have a hunting dog that was able to deal with the cold, the snow and the heavy fall rains in Norway and Scandinavia. The Black Norwegian Elkhound is a powerful and prideful dog. Much more so than the grey, he is independent and strongminded. It is highly intelligent and is one of the most ancient of breeds. He is more durable and more quarrelsome than his cousin the Grey Norwegian Elkhound or the more familiar Swedish Elkhound.

Ancestors of the Black date back to the first days human kind went hunting around 4000-5000BC. There have been skeletons of dogs very much like the Black Norwegian Elkhound found that dated back to that time period. They hunted and guarded for the Vikings and pulled sleds as well. They hunted deer, moose, badger, elk, mountain lions, bears, wolves, lynx, rabbit and reindeer. They are trackers who hold their quarry at bay by barking until the hunter can find them. Today they serve as loved family pets and guard dogs. In a National Emergency the leader of Norway can call up all the privately-owned elkhounds of any kind and assign them to work in a variety of sledding duties. Within the FCI, the Black Norwegian Elkhound is classified as a primitive Nordic hunting dog.


white shepherd puppyThe White Shepherd is a true beauty and is a medium to large-sized dog that is muscular and strong. He stands at between 55 and 65cm in height and weighs between 35 and 40kg.

He is somewhat longer than tall. The double coat is medium length, dense, straight and white. He is a fairly heavy shedder. He has an intelligent face, a long muzzle and erect ears. The long tail is low-set.


This beautiful dog’s face tells you that he is highly intelligent. He can be easily trained. The bright eyes are eager and alert and he is ready to be an excellent guard dog and take his role as protector and guardian seriously.

The White Shepherd loves his human family and isn't overly enthusiastic around strangers. They’re playful dogs and will make great playmates for children. They also aren’t aggressive with other dogs and will get on well with other pets in the house.

black norwegian elkhound puppyThe Black Norwegian Elkhound is a short compact Spitz with dark eyes and a curly tail. It is the coat that sets this dog apart. It is an all-weather coat suitable for the cold, the snow and the rain of Norway. Ears are pointed and erect while the head is wedged and broad. His head is almost like that of a wolf. Its body is strong and compact. Its coat is coarse, short and double. He has a broad black nose with a straight bridge and with black lips and dark brown oval eyes. His legs and withers are strong boned and powerful with well padded feet to protect it from the freezing temperatures of Scandinavia.

Health Problems

white shepherd dogThe White Shepherd shares health problems much the same as the German Shepherd, and one of these is hip dysplasia.

These dogs are at risk of getting hip dysplasia. It’s a congenital disorder with dogs inheriting the disease from their parents. Some young dogs can get the disease too. Because they are such active dogs, the White Shepherd is at risk of dysplasia. There are a number of signs you can look for in your dog and some of these are -

trouble standing up


favoring the use of one particular leg

reduced activity

weight gain

Your vet may want x-rays to examine your dog's hips. Your vet will want to slow the development of the disease and also ease the pain in your pet. There are other steps the vet will suggest to you that can make it as comfortable as possible for your pet.

black norwegian elkhound dogThe Black Norwegian Elkhound is a strong and hardy dog, though he is susceptible to some of the problems many breeds face. These include issues with luxating patella, optical entropion, hip dysplasia, hypothyroidism, and Fanconi syndrome. The most serious of these is the Fanconi Syndrome which is an abnormal functioning in the tubules of the kidneys. This can be a life-threatening situation.

Caring The Pet


white shepherd puppiesThe White Shepherd's weather-resistant double coat will need to be brushed regularly as he is quite a heavy shedder. When brushing him, check for ticks and fleas as well as any unusual lumps.


This beautiful dog was developed from a herding breed so he is very active. He will love a walk every day but that won’t be sufficient. He just loves ball games, and if you take him to the park, he’ll love you throwing sticks for him or the frisbee.

Because of his intelligence, he will require mental and physical stimulation. You get some toys for dogs where you can put some kibble in the toy and he has to figure out a way to get the food out.


The White Shepherd is an active dog, so to keep him that way, ensure he gets good food which has the right balance of vitamins.

There are good commercially manufactured dog foods on the market, but the idea is to know how to choose the high-quality ones and to avoid the ones that can actually jeopardize your dog’s health.

Always read the write-up on the packaging and choose according to your pet’s age and his activity levels.

It is always a good idea to give such a dog some home-made food too. Not any kind of home-made food either because you have to be careful with dogs to avoid them suffering from abdominal pain. They like their food plain and simple – boiled chicken, brown rice and vegetables.

Some raw meat occasionally is also good. Don’t forget to ensure a constant supply of cool, fresh water.

black norwegian elkhound puppiesThis is an energetic active dog, or she should be. Feed her high nutritious food twice a day. Do not overfeed.

The most potentially troublesome health issue is Fanconi Syndrome. This kidney disorder can impact the of the body’s absorption of electrolytes, water and nutrients. These nutrients include Sodium, Potassium, Glucose, Phosphate, Amino Acids and Phosphate

The Black Norwegian Elkhound loves to play, and they love to work. Exercise is vital, but it must be one of those two things – play or work. Don’t leave him alone to figure it out for himself or you wont like what this intelligent dog decides to do. She needs a large yard, a long walk daily but jogging with you is even better. Make him heel when on leash or he will think he oversees you. These are roaming dogs who will follow a scent anywhere and ignore your commands for her to come to you. They are better off on a leash unless you are in a dog park or a fenced yard.

The Black Norwegian Elkhound is great at all dog athletics, games and sports such as agility, rally obedience, flyball, tracking, herding.


white shepherd dogsThe White Shepherd is such a beautiful dog and he has some great characteristics to match his good looks.

He is friendly and amicable with his human family and is a great protector as well. He isn’t aggressive yet he makes a great watchdog.

He is loving and loyal and forms strong bonds with his human family. Bringing him into your home and heart is guaranteed to confirm the opinion held that dogs are man's best friend.

black norwegian elkhound dogsThis dog was made for families. He loves children and is not a one person dogs. He gets attached to everyone in the family. However, he is smart and stubborn. He loves to join in with whatever the family is doing but he does it to please himself not his owner. He loves, loves, loves to play and has the stamina to do so all day long. He is agile, bold, independent, strong, curious and loyal. His loyalty can be territorial, and he can become protective of his home and his family. This makes him an excellent watchdog until your friends come to visit and he won’t let them in the house. You need a high fence to keep him safe in your own yard and away from strangers and even guests till he gets to know them.He tends to be dominant and aggressive with other dogs. They also have strong hunting instincts.

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