Finnish Spitz

The Finnish Spitz, or “Finkie” for short, is a unique bird hunter from Finland. They use their bark to alert their hunting companions to where their prey is. This propensity for yipping has led to their nickname, the “Barking Bird Dog.” But along with their love of talking, these friendly and loyal dogs make beautiful and fearless companions. Read on to learn more about the Finnish Spitz.

Description of the Finnish Spitz

To highlight how much these dogs love to be vocal, in their native land of Finland competitions, where they crown a “King Barker.” But true lovers of this breed will tell you how endearing their dog’s yodeling is.

Although members of the non-sporting group, these dogs are very athletic and great hunters. Their square and muscular bodies are adept at traveling over all types of terrain.

In Finland this breed is known as “Suomenpystykorva,” meaning Finnish Pricked Ear Dog. Thankfully we call him the Finnish Spitz in English-speaking countries. They have keen foxlike faces, and get their name from their long and tapered spitz muzzle and pointed ears.

The Finkie has a striking coat that protects him well from harsh weather. A Long, harsh outer hairs protect their soft undercoat. Their color is a beautiful golden-red and is never just one color.

Life Expectancy and Size

These dogs are quite healthy thanks to good breeding practices and often live a full life of 13 – 15 years. Always work with a reputable breeder to get the healthiest puppy possible.

One of the smaller hunting breeds, the Finnish Spitz is compact but sturdy. Males stand 17.5 – 20 inches tall and weigh 25 – 33 pounds; and females stand 15.5 – 18 inches tall and weigh 20 – 28 pounds.

Protective Ability

The Finnish Spitz is an excellent watchdog and their natural instinct to vocalize comes in handy when strangers are approaching. They are wary but not timid around new people and will open up when properly introduced. This dog makes a loyal companion and great alert dog, but perhaps not the best guard dog.


The Finnish Spitz is an intelligent breed. This can be a double-edged sword in training, as they will learn quickly but want there to be a benefit for their good behavior. Thus, using treats and various positive rewards-based methods is the best way to get your dog’s attention and keep it.

Keeping training session short and interesting is also important for their success. They will learn more efficiently and quickly if you maximize every second of training.

Early socialization is also important for the Finnish Spitz. It will help them grow into well-mannered and open dogs.

Energy Level

As with many hunting dogs, the Finnish Spitz is very active and needs plenty of daily exercise. They love playtime and are always up for a game with their humans. Be sure you can provide them with plenty of stimulation, both mentally and physically, and companionship.

They are also very sensitive and enjoy snuggling with their people. Just be sure to get them enough exercise every day and they will be your affectionate and happy companions.

What Living with a Finnish Spitz is Like

This is an all-around kind breed.

The Finnish Spitz is incredibly loving of his family and does well with kids and other dogs. He is a thoughtful friend and is always looking out for his people. They tend to be wary of strangers and make good watchdogs, as they are quick to yodel out a warning.

But the Finnish Spitz will often warm up quickly to people when proper introductions have been made. As long as you give your dog plenty of exercise and companionship he will, in return, give you an endless supply of affection and loyalty.

Care of the Finnish Spitz

The Finnish Spitz is adaptable to many different type of homes and families. Just give him lots of physical activity and love and he will be happy.

Environmental Needs

As would make sense for a cold place like Finland, the Finnish Spitz does well in wintry weather thanks to their thick coats. But they can also adapt to warmer weather. Just keep an eye on them to make sure they don’t overheat when the temperatures soar.

Exercise Needs

The Finnish Spitz is as active breed that needs plenty of daily exercise to stay happy and healthy. Long walks, backyard playtime, and hunting are all great ways to get your dog moving.

Shedding and Grooming

Between shedding seasons the Finnish Spitz only needs a light spritz of water and a comb through with a pin brush. Daily brushing will be a must during shedding season. Baths with a cool air blow-dry can help remove excess hair.

This breed sheds frequently.

Be sure to keep your dog’s nails trimmed and regularly check and clean his ears so he doesn’t get an infection.

Ideal Home Environment

A loving and active family is a great choice for this breed. But because the Finnish Spitz is so adaptable, they can do well with anyone who will provide him with enough exercise and love. An appreciation of his yodeling is a must as these dogs want nothing more than to talk, whether to you, or just to the world.

Health Concerns

The Finnish Spitz is a very healthy breed. Thanks to responsible breeding practices these dogs don’t often experience any genetic health issues. Talk with your breeder about the best way to ensure the health of your dog. Limiting exercise in puppies can help prevent potential orthopedic problems down the road. Other issues may include ear infections and oral problems.

Behavior Problems

These sensitive dogs can experience serious separation anxiety if left alone for too long. Be sure to provide them plenty of company so they don’t become miserable or destructive.

The Finnish Spitz loves to bark. While this is their nature and those that are really fond of the breed take delight in their howling, you can start training your dog early on when it is or is not appropriate to bark. But don’t try to change the nature of this breed, instead embrace them for their unique and melodic talents.