All About the Breed Dunker

Have you recently fallen for the Dunker or do you simply love rare breeds? Learn all about the breed here, including: breed history, personality traits, train-ability, benefits and disadvantages of the breed, and common health concerns.

Also known as the Norwegian Hound, the Dunker is an affectionate and intelligent breed. But how do you know whether you are ready to purchase a pet and if this breed is right for you? This information is absolutely necessary in making the decision to purchase a pet.


The exact origin of the Dunker has been widely disputed for over 100 years. While some say the breed originated in the 1820's, most believe that the Dunker was created and bred by William Dunker, a self-proclaimed canine expert and breeder extraordinaire, though neither theory was been proven scientifically or otherwise.

Throughout its history, the Dunker has been most commonly used for hunting, tracking, scenting, and retrieving small game such as rabbit, proving its superior abilities to work endlessly while providing companionship.

Today, while the Dunker has attained a regional popularity as both a hunting and companion dog, the breed remains very rare outside of its native Norway.

Personality Traits

Best known for its friendly and lively nature, the Dunker is full of character. These dogs thrive on strong and dependable relationships with humans, and love spending time with their owner and receiving attention. This breed is highly intelligent, obedient by nature, and generally easy to train. As a pet, the Dunker is loyal, loving, and affectionate. This energetic breed is not suited for full-time indoor or apartment living, as it enjoys spending time outdoors and having plenty of room to roam, run, and play.


Due to its need for human attention and willingness to learn, the Dunker generally responds well to basic training and commands. These bright dogs have the ability to learn to perform most any task their trainer is willing to take the time to teach.

Establishing immediate trust and respect is key to successfully training the Dunker. This breed requires a confident, patient, and caring handler with a stern yet serious approach to repetitive exercises and tasks.

Benefits and Disadvantages of the Breed

There are many benefits to owning a Dunker, such as its no hassle, low maintenance coat. These intelligent dogs are easy to train, obedient, by nature, and capable of learning to perform many impressive tricks and tasks. When properly socialized from a young age, the Dunker gets along well with children and other pets, known for its sweet and gentle approach to small children. This breed is loyal, loving, and affectionate, making an excellent hunting dog, family pet, and companion alike.

Unfortunately, there are also disadvantages to owning a Dunker. This energetic and athletic breed requires large amounts of daily exercise and room to run and play outdoors. Anyone wishing to purchase this breed lacking the adequate amount of time and space to dedicate to the dog is strongly advised against doing so. A Dunker not receiving the proper amount of exercise and space will often act out by destroying property, chewing, digging, barking, whining, and ignoring basic training such as housebreaking.

The Dunker has a strong instinct to hunt and will occasionally indulge in a good chase. When on the run, these dogs are very quick, and may pose a threat to other animals, neighborhood pets, and small woodland creatures. These dogs must be leashed or properly secured at all times when outdoors.

Perhaps due to its instinct to hunt rabbit, the Dunker enjoys digging, and is quite good at doing so. It is not unusual for this breed to dig a hole under a fence within the matter of only a few minutes. The Dunker must be properly secured or supervised when outdoors.

As previously mentioned, the Dunker remains rather rare outside of its native Norway and can prove difficult to obtain. Individuals seeking to purchase this breed often encounter such challenges as inability to locate a breeder, high prices, and being placed on long waiting lists.

Common Health Concerns

While the Dunker is typically known as a healthy and hearty breed, they do suffer from a few health problems, including: hip dysplasia, patellar luxation - dislocation of the knee, degenerative disk disease and other spinal conditions, various dental problems, sensitivity to anesthesia, and food allergies.

Now that you know all about the breed, do you think you are ready to own a Dunker? Remember, purchasing a pet is a big decision and should be discussed thoroughly and seriously with your entire family.