|Sensitivity to strangers
|Affection for family
|Suitable for first-time owners
|Ease of grooming
We start our journey in the Far North with the Greenland dog: this is one of the oldest “snow dogs” we know.
Prepare scarf, gloves, and warm hat: Today, MyDog.Pet takes you to the Great North to meet a truly Arctic breed. In this article we will talk about the Greenland dog, also known as Greenlandic or Grunlandshund. As its name indicates, it was born and widespread in Greenland.
As you can imagine, this dog is accustomed to a quiet life in the characteristic temperatures of the region. The history of this breed is related to two countries: Greenland and Denmark. Although the Greenland dog is native to the former, it also has a Danish “parentage”.
It is one of the oldest “snow dogs” known to us. If you thought that only the Husky existed at certain extreme latitudes, you are wrong. There are lesser known but equally fascinating breeds found at low temperatures, such as the Alaskan Malamute, or the breed covered in this article.
If we take a look at its “ID Card”, we can say that the Greenland Dog is part of the Spitz and primitive type dogs. This breed has not changed greatly over the centuries, in fact almost not at all. This is due to the remote place of birth that allowed no unwanted crossbreeding. Therefore, we are talking about an almost pure dog breed which has not gone through any type of crossbreeding, with a few exceptions.
Greenland Dog: Characteristics
First of all, we will try to explain its most obvious physical characteristics. The Greenland is a large dog. It has a rather massive, toned, and agile body. It has the build of a drag dog. The breed specializes in being a sled dog. It is very well suited for furrowing snow and transporting expensive loads.
In short, we are dealing with a real ice bear! Its body is square and, in general, it is very balanced and homogeneous.
How much can an adult Greenland dog weigh? This breed weighs approximately 71 lb (32 kg). The weight does not vary so much between males and females.
We can state the same for the height at the withers, which ranges from 22 to 24 inches (55 cm-60 cm). The proportion between height at withers and body length should be 10 to 11. The standstill of this breed is noticeable but generally not too sharp.
The ears have the classic beveled triangular shape. The black nose can vary slightly in color depending on the specimen’s coat. Therefore, it can range from shades of brown to light reddish. In these cases, we are talking about the so-called “winter nose” which is almost pinkish in color.
The jaw and teeth are very strong. The Greenland Dog has a scissor bite. The arched tail is voluminous and is the extension of the animal’s body.
The eyes are dark and quite small. They are neither sunken nor protruding. The detail is that they are almost always slightly oblique. The Greenland dog has a very strong coat and undercoat, which helps it withstand the harsh weather to which it is exposed. If it were not for the tail that looks like a feather duster, the dog has a uniform coat.
Greenland Dog: Grooming
Unless you want it to participate in dog shows, it does not need special grooming. In general, it is a very resistant dog with a firm and steady gait. Let’s not forget that these are dogs that are used to racing in snow!
Greenland Dog: Temperament
Although it has a “Nordic” temperament, which is not too affectionate and exhibitionist, the Greenland Dog is really an excellent companion dog. Faithful and loyal, this breed will rarely be intrusive or aggressive, but will not hesitate to be so to defend its family.
It is not aggressive or grumpy, but very independent and proud. You will have to be respectful to it if you want it to be respectful to you. While it is not a good idea to be directive, it is important that the dog understands who the leader of the home is.
The Greenland Dog is loyal to work and almost tireless: In addition to its role as a sled dog, in the past it was also used as a hunting dog, especially for seals and polar bears.
It is not particularly suitable to be used as a watchdog, as it is accustomed to changing the driver of its sled frequently. Obviously, such a dog is not suitable for apartment living. It can adapt to weather conditions that are a little less rigid but being forced to stay indoors is not ideal for this type of dog.
Greenland Dog: Breeders
Where to find a dog of this particular and “distant” breed? It is not an easy task. As mentioned above, a kind of “protectionism” has been applied to this breed over the years, which has led to the Greenland dog not being crossbred, remaining “pure”, and which has obviously limited its popularity in global terms.
There are countries such as England, Australia, and South Africa that do not have a single kennel that breeds this type of dog. The paradox is that we are talking about one of the oldest breeds in the world and one of the most resistant and long-lived dogs! We hope that the situation may evolve in the coming years, taking this “Eskimo dog” even a little further from the Arctic ice.
Greenland Dog: Health
Thanks to meticulous selection where the Greenland dog was not interbred with other breeds, it is one of the healthiest and most robust dogs in existence. In addition, in the event of disease, it could never survive in its native land. However, the owner of a Greenland dog should be aware that it can suffer from eye diseases and hip dysplasia, although these are not very common.
It is a very tough dog breed, which does not suffer from any particular health problems. The worst-case scenario would be that this breed could present aesthetic problems that would prevent it from competing in dog shows, for example: light bones, albinism, short legs, or different colored eyes.
Greenland Dog: Price, and Puppies For Sale
How much does a Greenland Dog puppy cost? This is one of those cases in which it is really difficult to estimate exact figures since the breed is not really popular, i.e., it does not have its own “market”. If you manage to get in touch with the right people and find certified dogs, get ready to spend a lot of money.
Anyway, you would be taking home a very special canine specimen, an ancient breed. If we make an analogy with the TV series Game of Thrones, this breed is the true “King of the North”.
Now that we have clarified all the most important aspects, you can go in search of your new 4-legged friend, who is surely waiting for you.
You may be interested in reading another article related to other dog breeds such as:
- Maremma-Abruzzese Sheepdog
- Greenland Dog
- White Swiss Shepherd Dog
- Labrador Retriever
- Alaskan Malamute
- Bavarian Mountain Hound
- Basset Hound