The love for dogs among the Scandinavians

You will without a doubt spot Scandinavians strolling their pedigree dogs along the streets of cities with so much ease. If you come from countries where dogs are meant to stay outside when people live inside the house, Scandinavia is yet to hand you a shock of your life. Here in Scandinavia, dogs, whether Chihuahua, Norwegian Buhund or any other, are treated more like humans. It may be disgusting if you are not used to seeing this but after some time, it begins to appeal. You can’t feel so bad if a Scandinavian prepares a dog bed, keeps a cage in the car and doesn’t mind coming to work with the pet dog. It is just that way, they have had it as part of their culture and you better get used to it early. 

To the Scandinavians, pets have been important from very long time. The Norse of the Viking age kept dogs and cats as pets as featured in the Norse religious literature and iconography. So, you see, evidentially the love for dogs for the Scandinavians is not just something that started today. This love and connection towards dogs have been here since forever.

Dogs have a special place in the life of Scanviavians

The love for pets, especially dogs, is far from just being fanatical. What makes dogs remarkably amazing for Scandinavians is their capacity to form a very affectionate relationship with other species. Dogs are very smart but when it comes to love, they give it out freely and truly. This is what attaches most Scandinavians to dogs.

Moving across the streets in any of the Scandinavian cities, you cannot fail to spot someone walking alongside a dog. A dog is a darling to any Scandinavian and they treat them like humans. But honestly, a dog is love, a dog gives a true definition of loyalty and true affection. Could this be the key reason behind the Scandinavians’ love for dogs? Find this out with me.

A look into the History of Love for Dogs in Scandinavia 

To the Norse of the Viking age, pets especially dogs were very important like they would’ve been in any other existing cultures. Whether presently or in the past, dogs meant a lot to the Vikings. History indicates how the Viking chief brought his precious dog along on a raid. 

As a matter of fact, it is greatly thought that the Vikings transported their dogs on raids in the foreign shores. In as much as most of them were considered as working animals, they were pets in the Norse households. 

The best dog from Norse mythology was called Garm. Garm is depicted as a dog who survived the purpose of guarding the gates of the afterlife realm of Hel. Whether a guardian of Hel or not, dogs in the history of Scandinavia were closely associated with the afterlife and the gods. To them, the dog is a representation of a psychopomp. It guided the soul from life realm of life to the land of the dead and beyond.

From a long time ago, a dog was considered a form of nature and culture and may come as good or evil. For them, a dog stood in between this world and another. But that said, the dogs were not only considered conductors of the afterlife realm, they were also guards of the underworld entrance.

More dog remains have been discovered in the Scandinavian burial sites than in any other culture. Reason being, dogs played a significant purpose as a sacrificial role in funeral rites. But most importantly are how often dogs are depicted in a more detailed manner through rock carvings. Mostly this would be seen to appear in hunting and ritual ceremony scenes. 

Dog Pets in the Present Scandinavia 

Pets are very important in human life and for this reason, it is common to find a dog pet in every Scandinavian home. Just as they are pet friendly, many of their homes are pet friendly too. However, in one out of ten cases you may find a case where pets are not allowed into an apartment. 

Most Scandinavian dogs are believed to be tough and resilient. The dogs have been bred to be able to survive the extreme terrain and harsh weather conditions. In almost every place in Scandinavia, pets are allowed not excluding trains and parks. When using a train, one is also allowed to preserve a seat for their dog.

What makes them so amazingly loved is their ability to express bravery, loyalty, and being nimble. Basically, they play a role of guiding, protecting, herding, and some remain very useful in the police detective departments. Many dogs have been honoured and respected as police dog detectives bringing in law offenders into custody and detecting drugs. 

Apart from all these amazing features and roles, dogs are naturally playful.  I believe this is what secures the heart of a Scandinavian to want to keep one as a pet. For instance, the common dog breeds, the Norwegian Buhund and Norwegian elkhound. These breeds are among the most loved and playful dogs in Scandinavia. The dogs also love adventure, very protective and devoted. 

The Love that Scandinavians Have for Dogs

As history partakes its part, the love and association with dogs as pets and accomplices in Scandinavia comes a long way. It is something implicit and natural from the affection that radiates from the Scandinavian dogs. But the ultimate truth as to why there is a bond between Scandinavians and their dogs is a combination of both affection and love. 

The overwhelming evidence from the scenario displayed in the streets of the Scandinavian cities is an irresistible picture. It is quite very normal that a dog would always be in need of food and shelter. However, on many occasions, I am pretty convinced that the whole picture is associated with the great bond between a dog and the owner. 

The connection between the Scandinavian dog pets and their owners is a strong bond. As a matter of fact, it is as strong like any other connection another individual in their owner’s life would have towards them. But dogs have a different form of love that is undeniably natural and neutral. 

For Scandinavians, dogs fall in love much more easily than people would. They are also able to move on very more easily than fellow humans. I believe this also makes part of the reasons why Scandinavians love their dogs. Forming a relationship with a dog is the easiest among all. You could easily converse with a dog and tell them how you feel and they will understand and give you comfort.

How Protective are the Scandinavians of Their Dogs?

Pets are little beings offering real love. A dog would always want to ensure that their loved ones are fine. For this reason, any Scandinavian would not want anything bad happening to their dog. Just like a human, when a dog gets sick, he/she must be taken to see a doctor who is their vet. 

It doesn’t matter the cost, but the bond that exists between a Scandinavian and their dog, speaks volumes of affection. A Scandinavian would go to any extent to make sure that their dog is fine and well taken care of. 

On most occasions if they lack enough resources, then they opt for a pet insurance. Who is willing to get insurance for their pet? Well, a Scandinavian does. It helps them secure a piece of mind and to get to pick the most qualified vet for their dog.

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An avid storyteller and passionate writer with a penchant for letting people know that which they don't know while at the same time telling people more about what they may already have known. At the end, you stay informed, be curious, and get cosy.