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Hygen Hound

Other names: Hygenhund, Hygen Dog

Hygen Hound

The fact is that you’ve probably never heard of the Hygenhund. Even so, you will probably recognise his stance and his look, as he is an active, muscular and lithe dog, certainly very hound-like. Even though this breed of Hygenhund was developed for hunting purposes, he is also an amazing family pet too. If you are searching for a breed that will be obedient, loyal and also a good watchdog, perhaps the Hygenhund is the dog for you.

Key facts about the Hygen Hound

Life expectancy :





Temperament :

Intelligent Hunter

Size :

Origins and history

This Norwegian hound was developed during the 19th century. A Norwegian breeder, Mr. Hygen, was responsible for breeding the first dogs of this variety; a hunting dog with great determination and stamina to pursue prey through the harsh Arctic regions. His first scent hounds, the Holsteiner Hounds, were bred with Scandinavian Hounds, to produce the resulting Hygenhunds who were more compact and lighter. Even today, the breed is very rare outside of Norway. 

FCI breed nomenclature

FCI Group

Group 6 - Scent hounds and related breeds


Section 1 : Scent hounds

Physical characteristics of the Hygen Hound

Adult size

Female : Between 19 and 22 in

Male : Between 20 and 23 in


Female : Between 44 and 55 lb

Male : Between 44 and 55 lb

Coat colour

Type of coat

Eye colour



This medium-sized scent hound is solidly built, yet compact. His head is triangular-shaped with a broad skull. The Hygenhund’s tail is carried high, and it should not curl over his back. His wide ears hang down, framing his face. This dog has a calm and keen expression with dark brown eyes. 

Good to know

Outside of his native Norway, the Hygenhund dog isn’t very well known. In recent years his popularity has declined rapidly. This hard-working scent hound, and great family companion dog, has been given a hard rap, probably because of his tendency to be possessive.


  • 66%


    As the Hygenhund was initially developed as a hunting dog, he will probably have a totally different temperament when hunting to when he is at home. They are very obedient and loyal dogs, energetic too, but affectionate in the home. 

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    When associating with children, the Hygenhund can be protective, playful and loving, especially if he is socialised with the children from a young age. 

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    When trained and socialised, the Hygenhund is a calm, stoic dog.

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    Because of his hunting capabilities, the Hygenhund is an intelligent hound, who will respond well to training routines. 

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    A scent hound used to hunt hares and foxes.

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    Fearful / wary of strangers

    The Hygenhund will be loving and loyal towards those he lives with, but can be quite wary of strangers. He may become aggressive to any stranger who approaches him.

  • 66%


    This happy, energetic lively dog likes to stay busy. He is independent too and can become very possessive about his toys and food bowl. 

    Behaviour of the Hygen Hound

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      Tolerates solitude

      This dog only moderately tolerates solitude, preferring interaction and guidance from his owner. 

    • 66%

      Easy to train / obedience

      Usually very obedient, the Hygenhund will be loyal and respond to your training techniques, providing you use positive training methods. Once this dog understands a command, he will remember it. 

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      This breed needs lots of attention from his owner, otherwise he will become very vocal. In normal circumstances though, there is some barking, but not constantly.

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