Originally called Suomenpystrykorva (the Finnish Cock-Eared Dog) and the Finnish Barking Birddogs, the Finnish Spitz was brought, about 2000 years ago, from the region of the Volga River of Central Russia which is now known as Finland.

This breed has reached its popularity in Scandinavian countries as a hunting dog so much so that it has been considered as the national dog of Finland. Its unique way of barking, yodel style, and pointing its head to the hunted animal is the dog’s way of guiding the hunters.

Finnish Spitz in snow

This characteristic is called “bark pointer” and due to this has made the dog valuable to the Finnish.

Traits and Behavior

Bred to be a hunting dog, the Finnish spitz shows a gentle and brave character who is highly active or energized. Since the maturity of this dog takes on a gradual process, training and communication on the dog have to be done with patience and firmness.

Finnish Spitz biting a stick

As a working dog, this breed is more effective as a watchdog than a guard dog. Like all watchdogs, the Finnish spitz is a good barker.

However, its unique, sounding bark distinguishes them from other watchdogs.

It can even bark 150 times in one minute. So, the noise it produces from its bark may be disturbing but is the dog’s way of communicating to the owner.

Part of the training of this type of dog is to limit the barking and that, at always, should not bark at the owner.

Sometimes, the long barking is a sign that the dog is left on its own without proper management or its daily exercise is not being attended to.

Pet Care and Diseases

With its double coat cover, the Finnish Spitz is more at home in cold temperatures. It is a heavy shedder but, otherwise, hair grooming is needed only to remove dead hair. Bathing is frequent and only when necessary.

Finnish Spitz covered with snow

This dog is an excellent jogging companion. Since it is innately active, it has to be given daily exercise of long walks and running.

While it’s true that a large space is conducive to this type of dog, apartment living can still serve well with it.

The owner should just make sure that the place is cool enough for the dog to live comfortably.

Standing at 15-20 inches and weighing 31-35 pounds, this dog must be given proper meal care as it is highly energized and a watchdog should be properly fed.

Regular vet visit should be given most especially since this breed is prone to hip dysplasia.


The general appearance and immediate impression, when one looks carefully at the Finnish spitz, is that the dog looks similar to the fox.

Finnish Spitz walking in shore

The head is slightly round at the forehead, the muzzle is narrow and attached to the skull in a tapering point, nose and lips are black, pair of eyes are in almond-shaped and black color, ears are high and erect, and teeth in a scissors bite.

The body is well-developed and muscular, the legs are straight, the chest is deep, and the feathered tails curled at the back.

This breed is covered with a double coat of hair. The undercoat is thick and short while the overcoat is also short but coarse.

Its color varies from black, brown, fawn or red depending on how it is bred.

Generally, the Finnish spitz when still a puppy looks like a red fox club but when it grows to an adult, the coat color could be golden red with a mix blend from pale honey to dark chestnut.

General Information

Its life expectancy reaches 12-15 years which is the life range of most dogs.  The average litter size is 5-8 puppies. Other names include Finnish Hunting Dog, Finnish Spets, Finsk Spets, Loulou Finois, Suomalainen pystykorva and Suomenpystykorva.

Breed Club

Visit this dog club website dedicated to Finnish Spitz. Click this link: http://www.finnishspitzclub.org/