The small Swedish hunting spitz is mainly used for hunting forest birds. It is closely related to the Finnish Spitz, which is also thought to originate from small reddish Laikas. Both breeds are used for the same type of work. By the 1940s the Norrbottenspets was believed to be extinct and it was withdrawn from the Registry. Some twenty years later this proved to have been a hasty decision because the breed was found still to exist on small outlying farms in the far north of Sweden.


Also known as the Norrbottenspets or the Norhottensskollandehund, and in Finland as the Pohjanpystykorva, this almost unpronounceable little dog was developed as a general hunting and farm dog and is also encountered today as a popular household pet.

The Norrbottenspets was once a common dog, but then in the early part of the 20th century importing foreign breeds became fashionable, and as a native dog it fell out of favour. By the middle of the 20th century it was becoming extremely rare and there were fears that it would soon be facing extinction.

The Swedish Kennel Club removed its name from their lists in 1948. Luckily, after that, local breeders began to take more pride in it as an indigenous dog and started to protect its numbers. Today its popularity has risen again, although now its main occupation is not in the field, but to act as a companion in the comfort of the home. Some Nordic Spitzes are still employed to hunt game birds and in bird-hunting trials, but the breed's role as a working dog has been greatly reduced.

Following the Nordic Spitz’s return to favour, it was reinstated by the Swedish Kennel Club in 1967. It is a calm, relaxed and friendly dog in the home, and good with children, but it is always ready to be a businesslike and briskly alert hunting dog when the occasion calls for it. The coat is basically white, but with patches of cream, tan, brown or black.


This small spitz breed is unusual in that it lacks the long, thick coat commonly associated with life in the frozen north. Also, its curled-over tail is less tightly twisted than the more typical spitz tail.

The height of the Norrbottenspets at the withers should be about 16 1/2-18 inches/42-45 cm. Its body should be square and rather slender without any weakness. The neck should have a good reach and the wedge-shaped head should be carried high. Its pointed ears should be carried erect and the tail carried in a loose curl over the back. The coat is quite short, lying close with longer hair on the chest, buttocks and tail. All colors are permitted but white with sparse, big red patches is preferred.

Gallery of Norrbottenspets