The Norwegian Lundehund is a small rectangular and agile Spitz breed with unique characteristics not found in any other breed. Originating on remote islands of arctic Norway, the dog was used to wrestle and retrieve live puffin birds from the crevices of steep vertical cliffs. To enable the dog to climb, descend, and brake on these cliffs, unique structural characteristics have evolved and must be present as they define this breed: a minimum of six toes on each foot and elongated rear foot pads; an elastic neck that allows the head to bend backward to touch the spine, letting the dog turn around in narrow puffin bird caves; and shoulders flexible enough to allow the front legs to extend flat to the side in order to hug the cliffs. This shoulder structure produces a peculiar rotary movement. Finally, the ears close and fold forward or backward to protect from debris. The temperament is alert but not expected to be outgoing toward strangers.
The head is wedge-shaped, of medium width and clean. Eyes - almond-shaped, yellow-brown to brown with a brown ring around the pupil. Light eyes are preferred. Eye rims are dark and complete. Ears - medium-size, triangular, broad at the base, carried erect and very mobile. The ear leather can be folded and turned up, backward or at right angles so that the ear openings are clamped shut.
Level back, short loin and slightly sloping croup, slight tuck up. Ribs are carried well back, well-sprung but not barrel-shaped.
Moderate angulation with very elastic shoulders so that the front legs can extend out to the side. The legs are straight with slightly outward-turned feet. The feet are oval with at least six fully developed toes, five of which should reach the ground. Eight pads on each foot. The additional toes consist of one three jointed toe, like a thumb, and one two-jointed toe along with corresponding tendons and muscles that give the foot a strong appearance.
Double coat with a harsh outer coat and a dense, soft undercoat. The coat is short on the head and front of the legs, longer and thicker around the neck and back of thighs. It is dense on the tail with little feathering. The male typically has a thicker ruff around the neck. The Lundehund is presented naturally with no trimming.
Moderate angulation in balance with the forequarters. Strong muscular upper and lower thighs. Feet: Oval, slightly outward turned with a minimum of six toes, of which four support the dog's weight. There are seven pads with the center pad elongated. When viewed from behind, the rear legs are close but parallel.