The Finnish Hound: All You Need to Know

Are you a fan of hounds but looking for a breed that is unique and rare? The Finnish Hound might just be the breed for you! This versatile breed is the perfect combination of determination, intelligence, and loyalty.

In this article, we will explore the history, physical characteristics, temperament, and health of the Finnish Hound. Read on to learn all you need to know about this fascinating breed.

History of the Finnish Hound

The Finnish Hound is a relatively young breed, and its origins can be traced back to Finland in the early 1800s when it bred was bred for hunting purposes.

Initially, it was used for tracking elk, bears, and foxes. In recent years, the Finnish Hound has become a popular choice for hunting hares and other smaller game.

Origins in Finland

Finland is a country located in northern Europe and is known for its beautiful scenery, including vast forests and numerous lakes. Hunting has been an important part of Finnish culture for centuries, and the Finnish Hound was developed to aid in this activity.

The breed’s ability to track game in harsh conditions made it an ideal hunting companion for Finnish hunters. The Finnish Hound was created by crossing various hound breeds, including the English Foxhound and the German Hound. 

Development of the Breed

The Finnish Kennel Club was established in 1889, and in the early 1900s, a breed standard for the Finnish Hound was created. Breeders continued to refine the breed, and it became recognised by the Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI) in 1954.

Today, the Finnish Hound is known for its keen sense of smell and its ability to track game over long distances. The breed is also valued for its friendly and sociable nature, making it a popular choice for families in Finland. 

Physical Characteristics

The Finnish Hound is a beautiful and fascinating breed with a muscular build. It is very agile, with a lean and athletic physique that allows it to move quickly and easily through rough terrain.

Size and Weight

Finnish Hounds are medium-sized dogs that are slightly longer than they are tall. Males are typically larger than females, but both genders’ height ranges between 20 and 24 inches, and weight is around 45 to 55 pounds.  

Despite their relatively small size, Finnish Hounds are incredibly strong and athletic, with a muscular build that allows them to excel in a variety of physical activities.

Coat and Colors

The Finnish Hound’s coat is short and dense, with a glossy sheen. The hallmark coat pattern is tricolor with tan, pronounced black saddle, and small white markings on the head, feet, chest, and tip of the tail.

The thick fur helps insulate the Finnish Hound from the cold, while the short hair makes it easy for the dog to dry off quickly after swimming or playing in the snow.

Distinctive Features

The Finnish Hound has a square-shaped head, which is both elegant and imposing. The ears are medium-sized and sit high on their head, giving a regal and alert appearance.

The breed’s long, slender tail is another distinctive feature that adds to its overall grace and agility. The tail is held high when the dog is moving, radiating a proud and confident gait.

Temperament and Personality

The Finnish Hound is a friendly and sociable breed that is also highly intelligent and independent. The breed thrives on human companionship and is known for its loyalty to its family members.

General Disposition

The Finnish Hound is an active and lively breed that loves to spend time with its family. It has a calm and even-tempered nature, which makes it a great companion for people of all ages.

This breed is highly intelligent and independent, which means it is capable of making its own decisions. Despite their independent nature, Finnish Hounds are also highly social dogs that thrive on human companionship. 

Interaction with Children and Other Pets

The Finnish Hound is an excellent choice for families with children. They have a patient and gentle nature that makes them great with kids of all ages. They are also good with other pets, although they may have a strong hunting instinct around smaller pets.

If you have other pets in the house, it’s important to introduce them to your Finnish Hound slowly and carefully. This will help to ensure that everyone gets along and that there are no conflicts or misunderstandings.

Trainability and Intelligence

The Finnish Hound is an intelligent and independent breed that can sometimes be stubborn. However, with consistent training and positive reinforcement, they can learn to follow commands and be obedient and well-behaved pets.

When training your Finnish Hound, it’s important to be patient and consistent. You should also consider enrolling your dog in obedience classes, which help socialize the dog and teach it basic commands.

Health and Lifespan

The Finnish Hound is a generally healthy breed with a lengthy lifespan. However, as with all breeds, there are some health concerns that owners should be aware of.

Common Health Issues

One of the main health problems in the Finnish Hound is cerebellar ataxia. Cerebellar ataxia is a genetic condition in the breed developing due to a single gene mutation.

The condition is neurologic and manifests in an inability to control the gait’s range and rate. Finnish Hound puppies born with the disease are euthanized due to poor prognosis and quality of life. 

Average Lifespan

The average lifespan of a Finnish Hound is around 12 years, but with proper care and preventative measures, the breed can live a happy, healthy life for many years.


The Finnish Hound is a versatile and loyal dog. With its friendly temperament, easy-to-maintain coat, and ability to adapt to various situations, the Finnish Hound makes a great pet.

So, if you’re looking for a dog that is just as comfortable tracking on the hunt as it is cuddling on the couch, the Finnish Hound could be the perfect choice for you.

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