Finnish spitz is a brave, energetic, balanced medium-sized red dog with a dense fur and a curled tail. It looks a bit like a fox. Faithful and devoted to the guide, but at the same time independent, therefore his upbringing requires iron consistency. He likes to bark!
The Finnish Spitz is the smallest breed bred in Finland. This dog with a fox-like coat and mouth is mainly used for hunting forest birds, e.g. black grouse, small predators – such as martens – and even moose.
From the point of view of usability, the Finnish Spitz belongs to the meadows, that is, Spikes surrounding and barking animals until the hunter’s arrival. This is a short, compact dog with a moderately strong build. Its head and color resemble a fox, where puppies are born dark, sometimes almost black or red with a black coating and gradually brighten.
Shades from honey to mahogany are allowed – it is important that the color is saturated. Fawn color and large white markings are undesirable. The coat on the underside of the body has a lighter shade than on the upper. The undercoat is also brighter. The nose, lips and rims of the eyes should be black.
Dogs of this breed are lively and energetic, brave, even bold, and persistent during hunting. They are characterized by loyalty to the guide. They are affectionate towards their family and the people they know. Cheerful and eager to play, they are suitable for the companions of children, towards whom they can be very gentle. In relation to strangers, they usually remain reserved, although in recent years the character of the breed has changed a little and more and more of its representatives are more open. They have a strong guarding instinct.
Some Finnish Spitzs are friendly to other dogs and treat them as play buddies, others do not want close contact and may show aggression. However, they usually get along well. They can live with other animals, such as cats or rabbits, if they are used to their presence.
As a hunting dog, the Spitz is characterized by good smell and hearing, the ability to react quickly, endurance, great hunting passion and good cooperation with the hunter. In his homeland, however, the breed is valued not only for hunting talents, but also because of its small size and pleasant character. These last features make these Spitz considered good companion dogs.
If they are given regular long walks, they can easily adapt to city life, although their barking can be a problem. The Finnish Spitz reacts with barking at anything it deems strange or disturbing, and the jaw is sharp and penetrating. Fortunately, proper upbringing reduces this trait.
Finnish spitz. Training and education
Due to the innate independence and independence of the Finnish Spitz is not easy to arrange. The best effects are achieved by using positive motivation, short and interesting training sessions and consistency.
Who is this race for?
The Finnish Spitz is a good helper of the hunter, but will also work as a companion dog for an active family.
Finnish spitz. Advantages and disadvantages
stubborn and quite independent
has a strong hunting instinct
friendly towards children
friendly towards the pets with whom he was raised
economical to maintain
resistant to weather conditions
Finnish spitz. Health
The breed is generally healthy. Occasionally epilepsy, dysplasia, patella prolapse and eye diseases occur.
The Finnish Spitz is not picky and uses food well. It can be fed with good quality ready food or food prepared by itself.
Spitz care is not complicated. It is only necessary to regularly brush: once every two weeks outside the molting periods and even every day during the hair change.
The Finnish Spitz molts profusely twice a year and then loses a lot of undercoats. They are pure by nature – neat, they do not emit a “dog smell”, even if they are not bathed.
Finnish spitz. History
The origins of the breed go back thousands of years, when Finno-Ugric peoples migrated towards Europe from today’s Central Russia. Already then they were accompanied by spitz. As they moved west, they mingled with Spitz living in European areas.
Some wanderers settled in forests and lakes of today’s Finland. The harsh climate and wasteland meant that contact with other peoples was limited. The dogs were also isolated, maintaining their genetic separateness. Hunting constituted the basis of existence in these areas, so selection based on functional characteristics was obligatory: dogs were to effectively help in hunting.
For the first time, ginger dogs met during a trip to Murmansk in the 1870s are mentioned by a French traveler and geographer de la Martiniere. In 1889, a Finnish cynological association was established, and soon the first exhibition was organized to gather information about these characteristic quadrupeds, initially called “Finnish dogs for birds” and about Finnish hounds. The first accurate description of the breed came from the pen of forester Hugo Richard Sandberg and contained details of hunting abilities, build and mental characteristics. It was used to develop a breed standard, which was created in 1892. A specialist exhibition was organized then, and in 1897 a new pattern was approved and the breed name changed to “Finnish Spitz”.
In 1979 – on the 90th anniversary of the establishment of the Finnish Kennel Club – the Finnish Spitz was declared the national dog of Finland. In 2006, he was combined into one breed with the Russian Karelo-Laika, because they really look and work the same.
The breed is most popular in its homeland and in Sweden. It is also bred in Norway, Russia (previously as Karelo-Laika), Great Britain, the United States, Canada and France. Interest in Australia and New Zealand is growing. Nowhere except for Finland and Sweden is not a popular breed. Outside Scandinavia, she is kept mainly as a companion dog.
Finnish spitz. Template
Finnish Spitz – group V FCI, section 2, reference number 49
Character: lively, brave hunting dog; he is distrustful of strangers; excellent watchman; sometimes barking
Size: ideal height for a dog 47 cm, for a bitch 42 cm (+/- 3 cm)
Weight: dogs 12-13 kg, bitches 7-10 kg
Coat: double-layered: straight, stiff and protruding top coat and short, thick, woolly undercoat; the head, ears, front of the limbs and paws are covered with short, thick hair, and the rest of the body – long, forming a mane, trousers and a feather on the tail
Color: red; inside the ears, on the mouth, throat, stomach, pants, the bottom of the tail and the inside of the limbs the shade is lighter; the small white arrow on the chest and white fingers allowed
Lifespan: 12-15 years
Vulnerability to training: average; quite independent and stubborn dog
Activity: high, but run out at home, behaves calmly
Immunity: very resistant to weathering and healthy, occasional epilepsy, falling out of the patella, dysplasia and eye diseases
Possibility of buying a puppy: only abroad
Every year in Finland, a competition for Finnish Spitz is organized for the “King of Barking”, which is not about choosing the loudest dog, but checking your hunting skills and abilities.