The Furry Critter Network

Smalandsstovare Breed Description

Back to Canine Breed Menu


Breed Organization

United Kennel Club (UKC)

Native Country

Other Names
Smalands Hound, Chien Courant Smaland, Smaland Laufhund, Sabueso de Smaland

Life Expectancy
Approximately 12-15 Years

Litter Size
No Litter Information Available

Breed Group

General Description

Smalandsstovare is a breed of dog that originated in Sweden in the 16th century. Thought to be the oldest scent hound breed native to Sweden, it was first recognized by the Swedish Kennel Club in 1921. They are the smallest of the Swedish hound breeds, and have black and tan markings similar to the rottweiler. Internationally, it is recognized by a number of kennel clubs and registries including the Federation Cynologique Internationale and United Kennel Club. It is considered rare, even in its native Sweden where only around sixty puppies are registered each year.

Often confused with the Rottweiler breed due to common coat coloring, the Smalandsstovare is the oldest scent hound breed native to Sweden. They have a medium length top coat with a shorter, dense undercoat; longer hair grows on the fringed tail and thighs. The most common coloring of the breed is a mostly black coat with tan markings, although the markings can range in color from shades of amber to a reddish brown.

They have a tough, robust body which is compact and almost square in shape. It is the smallest of the Swedish hounds, on average they measure between 16–21 inches (41–53 cm) at the withers with males being slightly larger than females. Average weight is around 33–44 pounds (15–20 kg) for both genders. The Smalandsstovare has a natural bobtail due to this being specifically bred into the breed.

The facial features include wide nostrils on a black nose, the jaw closes in a scissors bite and the eyes are typically dark brown. The skull itself is lean with a well defined stop. The ears have rounded tips, and are set fairly high on the skull, hanging flat down the sides.

Breed Standard

Head: Long, hanging to hocks or docked at birth. Carried high.
Ears: Set on high, fairly flat, hanging flat against the head.
Eyes: Dark.
Body: Compact. Neck of medium length, powerful. Deep chest. Powerful loin. Muscular abdomen with tuck-up. Slightly sunken, short back. Long, broad croup.
Tail: Long, hanging to hocks or docked at birth. Carried high.
Hair: Short, thick, smooth, and glossy.
Coat: Black with tan markings above the eyes, around the flews, and on the chest and lower legs.
Size: Dog: 45 to 54 cm. (17.5-21 in).Bitch: 42 to 50 cm. (16.5-19.5 in).
Weight: 15 to 20 kg (33-44 lb).


The breed has existed in Sweden since the 16th century. The name originated from the breed's links with Smaland in southern Sweden. During the time of the Swedish Empire a number of wars were fought, with soldiers returning to their native country bringing a variety of hound breeds with them. These hounds were bred with local spitz type dogs, and the offspring became the foundation stock of the modern Smalandsstovare.

Farmers in Sweden preferred an all around hunting dog as they could often only afford to feed a single hunting dog, and so the breed became adept at hunting a number of quarry including hares, squirrels and foxes as well as birds and larger game such as moose. During this initial period the Smalandsstovare came in a variety of colors, sizes and lengths of tail with selective breeding not being put into practice until the 19th century. At the first dog show held in Sweden, in 1889, 444 dogs were entered, of which 189 were hound type dogs, including a number of Smalandsstovares. In the early 20th century, breeders worked to restore the breed to the old type, with a naturally occurring short tail.


A popular Swedish hunting dog, members of the breed can form strong attachments to their master; but are also seen as household pets due to their gentle and protective nature. In hunting, they are used to drive the quarry for the hunter. They are a highly intelligent breed, and require a high level of exercise. They therefore are not best suited to living in a small apartment. Smalandsstovare are wary of strangers and can be territorial, but this can also make a Smalandsstovare a good watchdog. Participation in field trials for Smalandsstovares are becoming increasingly common. They remain active up until around twelve years old.

He needs space and lots of exercise, as well as regular brushing.


Hunting Dog, Companion Dog.


The Swedish breed club for the Smalandsstovare commissioned genetic tests on a number of dogs between 1994 and 2008. The tests showed that there were no specific health issues unique to the breed, nor any major generic issues. They recommended that where rare health issues present themselves, that the dog involved should not be bred in order to prevent that health issue from spreading through the breed.

Back to Canine Breed Menu

Featured Rescues

"Don't Shop ... Please Adopt"

laptop pro


The American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals® (ASPCA®) was the first humane society to be established in North America and is, today, one of the largest in the world.

Our organization was founded on the belief that animals are entitled to kind and respectful treatment at the hands of humans and must be protected under the law. Headquartered in New York City, the ASPCA maintains a strong local presence, and with programs that extend our anti-cruelty mission across the country, we are recognized as a national animal welfare organization. We are a privately funded 501(c)(3) not-for-profit corporation, and are proud to boast more than 2 million supporters across the country.

The ASPCA’s mission, as stated by founder Henry Bergh in 1866, is “to provide effective means for the prevention of cruelty to animals throughout the United States.”

laptop pro


If you can’t find the pet you’re looking for on Petfinder, don’t give up. Some shelters maintain waiting lists for specific breeds, so don’t be afraid to ask! There are also breed-specific rescues for just about every breed, and most of them post their pets on Petfinder. (Petfinder can even e-mail you when a pet that fits your criteria is posted — just click “Save this Search” at the top of your search results page.)

laptop pro

Rescue Me

Jeff Gold, Founder, Rescue Me! Animal Rescue Network

Jeff Gold lives in Watkinsville, Georgia on the same property as Rescue Me's Animal Rehabilitation Center, with 18 rescue animals. Shown with him in the photo to the left are Maggie, Izzie and Cortez. In 2003, after learning there was nobody doing boxer rescue work in Georgia, Gold founded Boxertown, an organization which helped find homes for over 500 boxers during its first two years. Based upon this success, Gold came up with the vision for Rescue Me! ― a network which helps all breeds of dogs, cats and other animals find good homes, anywhere in the world. is also a free service of Rescue Me! and provides the world's largest and most up-to-date directory of animal rescue organizations for all breeds of dogs, cats and other animals, including a comprehensive directory of wildlife rehabilitators in over 150 countries.