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Mia and Takoda

Mia's 4th Litter of Elkhound Pups, March 13th, Just over 4 weeks old

In this video we have 3 Elkhound Pups, Jaegar, Tesla, and Shasta. 2 nice even males, and a great female. There is a dark male in this litter, and the female is not the darkest for the first time.

Mia normally has a dark female, a big Swedish Elkhound type, this time round she has a little fireball, Shasta, a lovely Silver /Grey female.

Mia is in great shape, she has been doing very well, this is the best condition she has been in nursing yet, and it is testament to her quality, her heritage that she can produce 24 of the best Elkhounds you can find anywhere and look like she has never had a litter yet.

It is a great honour for us to be selected by families to provide the Elkhound companion that will live with them and provide companionship, protection, and be truly loyal to the family for it's lifetime. Providing a quality Elkhound is not a role we take lightly, we know families spend sometimes years waiting for a good Norwegian Elkhound pup, and know what's it's like to have a good dog, we understand what the folks who request our pups are expecting. We think there is nothing better than to have the opportunity to provide people with a quality Elkhound. We feel there is no better dog.

This final group of pups from Mia are some of the best we have ever had, there has never been a poor pup from Mia, nor even a pup you would not call outstanding, yet here we are again looking at some truly exceptional young Elkhounds.

Tora's First Litter, 7 Elkhound Pups

In this video we are filming Tora's pups at 4 weeks of age, this is an amazing bunch of young Elkhounds, this is a Silver / Dark Grey, black faced group of Norwegian Elkhounds. Tough as nails, stable, calm, growing fast, and even as can be.

Tora is no slouch, she is nursing and staying in condition just as good as Mia, her mother across the room, and let's face it she has a much heavier load this round. Tora is old world Elkhound, you don't mess with her pups, she tolerates me, but you can tell she has her father's genetics, that is passed down genetically, it's not taught, it's instinctive genetic makeup.

These pups will be a great group of dogs, they are going to be clearly some of the best Norwegian Elkhounds in North America, you would go on a long plane ride to find better dogs than these will be. Tora herself is about as good as you can get, and she has truly got an outstanding litter. Bram, the male, is a very good dog, he has put in the combination genetics that is stamping these boys with the black masks. Those black masks extend up past the ears, highly prized in Norway, those big silver black faced Males are the most sought after Norwegian Elkhounds.

This will be a fearless group, genetically they are one of the most ancient breeds, with this group of pups taking the genetic instruction from Centuries old lineage, true hunting and guarding dogs, loyal hiking companions, and matching every quality that has been sought in this breed for thousands of years.

Nanook - Norwegian Elkhound Male Just About 1 Year

Nanook is just about a year old, he is out of Mia and Takoda, and was the only Male from the last litter. He has turned out to be one of the most impressive Elkhounds you'll see. Nanook is a dominant young fella, he does not forget his heritage. He pays attention to his surroundings, his stance and posture is true Northern Elkhound through and through.

He has a picture perfect stance, you couldn't get a show dog with tons of training to stand better, and he does this just naturally. A Judge couldn't find a fault with Nanook, his tail is up tight and high, his legs are placed square and even. He runs a flat belly, with his big chest extending down past the Elbow, and this will only get better, he has Takoda to thank for that deep chest, Mia for that terrific stance.

His muzzle, black as can be, with Takoda putting that dot on, the eyes are sharp, clear and dark brown, gaze is intent. Ears are just great, well shaped, placed correct, not too big, sharp as can be. And look at that coat, that boy is a well marked dog. I will be getting a full update up shortly for Nanook as Joanna and Kosmas have provided some great photos and write-ups on the life big Nanook is having out on the West Coast. A huge thank you to Joanna and Kosmas for taking such great care of Nanook and providing such a good home for him.

Kari and Nika, Swedish Elkhound Females - Sisters from different litters, both from Mia and Takoda

Kari on the left is a full sister to Nanook above, from the same litter, her sister from the previous litter of Mia and Takoda, Nika is on the right. Here they are pulling Brett on his skijorning ski's in the Yukon, northern Canada, outside Whitehorse.

Brett and Shelly have two of the best females in Canada, and Kari is a large black female, Swedish type that is one of the best pulling dogs you'll ever come across. Shelly and Brett say she loves to pull, and has the strength and stature to do just that. Nika was the largest pup from her litter, and Kari likewise, was the largest pup from her litter. Both these girls were black females, identical and hard to tell apart. They are getting some variation now as they mature, but still remain closely matched.

Takoda contributed tons to these two, the Swedish Elkhounds go back thousands of years, they were bred for the deep snow regions, doing exactly what these two are doing here, working dogs through and through, and excellent companions to be around, play with, have fun with and have on a trip to where ever you travel. Nika came to visit us when Brett and Shelly came down to get Kari, and Nika has terrific manners. She is so pleasant to be around, and Brett and Shelly are outstanding handlers, they know how to raise a great set of dogs.

I'll be putting some more information up on Kari soon as well, Shelly has sent me some updates, some great photos and I will have them all online soon, you can read about Nika and her return under previous litters.

Bosco - Male Elkhound, Brother To Tora and Nika

Bosco is a superb young Male Elkhound, full of energy and vigor, and as luck would have it, one of the most social dogs you will ever meet. Bosco and his owner Lindsay, are outdoors all the time, they go on extended hikes, sometimes up to 20 miles and ole Bosco is required to pack his own supplies. Lindsay has a good backpack for him and he has no trouble carrying anything she delegates to him.

Of all the males we have seen, Bosco resembles Takoda the most, he is a long lean energetic boy, and he Loves Snow. His brother Nanook above goes ballistic for snow, and the same goes for Bosco. These dogs can't function to capacity without snow it seems, they instinctively know that their ancestors fought through blizzards and snow storms to prevail, they realize, they have it made, and just enjoy the snow these days. But make no mistake, a big fella like Bosco loves to work, he can go for hours, and won't shirk his tasks.

Just because he is the most good natured dog Mia has had doesn't mean he isn't an Elkhound through and through, give him a riverbank to explore, a trail to hike down, and Moose to bay, all in a days work for Bosco. Really nice people with great personalities usually always have great dogs with the same personality, and it sure applies here, Lindsay is great influence for Bosco. We want to thank her for doing such a wonderful job raising Bosco and providing the perfect home and lifestyle for him. Elkhounds make a terrific companion dog, Bosco is a shining example of that.

Bosco is from the same litter as Tora, Bosco is one of 11 Males that Mia has produced.

Takoda and Merv - Blizzard City Alberta

Blizzards, heavy snowfall, and long stretches of cold weather this winter gave Takoda and I some great days of exploring and fun, cold as it was. I had to keep getting up throughout the night to keep the fire going in the kennel it stayed cold so long for so many days, and the snowfall, go figure. Takoda's back feet in this picture barely touch the ground, the snow is right up to the arms of my Muskoga chair behind me.

We spent the winter basically together Takoda and I, both Tora and Mia were busy so it was up to us to keep exploring, and Takoda is up to any challenge, no doubt about that, he would go much longer and much further than I can go make no mistake. He is a loyal dog, and waits for any time he gets with me, and enjoys every minute, as do I. It's fun having a good dog. Everybody should have the opportunity to have a good dog at least once in their life.

Takoda is the father of Nanook, Bosco, Kari and Nika, pictured above, as well as the father of Tora, and he is also the father of Jaeger, Tesla, and Shasta, the three young pups with Mia in the video at the top.

Wolf Passes Through

A large Timber Wolf passed through our turf a couple nights ago, Takoda and I went out for a hike and he was immediately checking out the tracks. Takoda's paw print is the little dark brown one in front of the Wolf Print, just to the upper left of his paw, look at the difference in size. The Wolf tracks were way deeper, he would have been in the 200 lb range, sinking in twice to three times what Takoda sinks in.

At an easy lope his stride was over 12 feet long, Takoda was/is roughly half of that. This was a big boy. He came up from the Provincial Park, heading up the old trail behind our place, its secluded, no one on it, and it's shielded from both sides with virtually nothing on it. The Timber Wolf loped along basically without a pause for almost a mile, he decided to head off into the bush and travel into the valley using the cover and we stopped tracking him at that point.

I wouldn't want to run into a big Male Timber Wolf, the big wolves that run from Banff up the Ice Fields Parkway, through to Jasper and North are big wolves, not to be taken lightly. I have seen these bad boys, they are easy 6' long, stand taller than the hood of any car, with tail and head they almost are long enough to cover a road from one side to the other. If Takoda ran into one of those boys, in less than a couple of minutes you would think a Semi Tractor trailer ran over him, he would be a memory. As fearless as he is, he would be lucky to survive a minute or two.

Wolf, not a big dog

A week ago I encountered some tracks with Takoda, it had snowed though so I never got a good look, this time though, I did, same ole boy I saw a week ago. Somebody is about to lose some calves. There are a lot of Mule deer in the big valley near us, and in the Provincial Park, so the deep snow and cold will have made it really tough on the Mule deer, this big wolf is most likely finding very easy prey, so the calves should be okay for a while, however, you sure wouldn't want to have a dog outside at night now around this part, heck even the Coyotes are quiet on a kill these days, they don't want that lethal machine coming up on their hard earned meal.

When we first came upon this, I immediately thought it was some big dog, giant breed perhaps, although I know of very few if any of this size in this area, and there were no return tracks, only 1 way, and it was at night he came through. Also, there were no human tracks of any kind, and the trail lead to no pick up zone, but continued on into bush, I knew then, it couldn't be just a big dog. No one let's a big dog loose at night, besides, a big dog stops at every yard, doesn't miss any, this big fella never stopped once.

The dogs weighing into the 200lb range are not running loose by any stretch of the imagination, no, we have a big Rocky Mountain Timber Wolf cruising through. Interesting for the pups, they would have smelled him, they would have gotten his scent as he passed by the kennel. It's a Good Omen for them, the big Wolf never paused, never stopped, he knew, it's best to let sleeping Elkhounds lie.

Elkhound Feeding Program Success

This feeding program I have been using for this litter, both leading up to it, and throughout the whelping and still ongoing is the best one we have used. Both Mia and Tora are doing terrific. The condition of both females is quite remarkable to say the least. Rarely does a female gain any weight while nursing a litter, Tora has 7 pups, growing like crazy, yet she is maintaining and coming into shape, actually putting on condition. Mia is also putting on weight, no loss or fatigue or stress apparent of any kind.

This feed program consist of all raw ingredients, we have used our big grinder, it's a hand grinder I purchased at Peavey Mart a while back, and I have been using a combination of fresh fish, this batch here is 3 Steelhead Trout, unfrozen, fresh, combined with 1 Turkey, which was frozen, but Grade A, Medium Ground Hamburger (Beef), and 1 whole Mackerel. The last batch was Chicken backs with the leg attached, 4 Salmon, frozen, cleaned, 1 Mackerel, and 1 Turkey, which was frozen but Grade A, and Medium Ground Hamburger, along with some beef trimmings.

Norwegian Elkhound Puppies

Elkhound Female Fourth Litter

I have been alternating the rations trying to get the percentage of fish quite high, but staying with Turkey so as to keep the protein a bit higher than the beef or the Chicken alone. I also made sure they had plenty of Tripe, I was using canned Tripe this round, my supply of frozen was out and hard to find, I am pleased with this canned Tripe, and they really like it, eating it first over everything else, even the Smelts. I always have Smelts, cleaned and frozen available and they get a few of those each day as treats. Smelts are fed frozen all the time.

Both Mia and Tora would eat 2 of these balls each day easy, sometimes another half, and Smelts and Tripe and some trimmings to chew. These balls have all the bones everything ground together, I do believe having the fresh bone ground in has made an impact for nutrient level as well, but I really couldn't find much more to add.

This feeding program has led to Mia having a very nice time with this litter, she looks and acts, and appears to be in better condition than practically any time. Her coat has remained supple, soft and sometimes nursing females coats get dry, they look tough, not this round. Also she has no fatigue, she is bright, cheery, moving around with great ease and totally content. It's been due to the increased Essential fatty acids in the fish I am pretty sure, the high bone content in the feed, along with all the nutrient levels in this Mix.

Norwegian Elkhound Pups

Elkhound Female First Litter

I need to add that we also have some of the Puppy Orijen available to the females before they came in about a week, and throughout this process. Now, I ended up with two different types, the bag size was different and therefore for some reason the contents were changed. I was sure I purchased both Regional Red, Puppy both times, but for some reason got a different version in the larger bag, I like the smaller bag version and will try to find that exact ration again, it is a brand new ration for them over the old Regional Red. It is a smaller piece, and they seem moister. I do believe both females preferred it as well. Although they don't eat much of that with the other homemade ration, we have it available for them. I can leave that sit out, although we change it out each day if they have not finished it, and give them free access to new.

Takoda cleans up any of the rations they don't finish, we don't have too worry about anything going bad.