Finkie Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
The Finnish Spitz, also known as a Finkie, is a medium-sized dog with a pointed muzzle, erect ears, and a golden-red color that makes it look like a furry fox. The Finkie is lively, alert, quick, and quite smart. They are a wonderful watchdog.
Is the Finnish Spitz good in a family setting?
For the most part, yes, Finkies are absolutely wonderful family dogs. They adore children, and will almost always go to a child in the room first. In addition, they are not the type of breed that needs to attach to just one person. So they can be great with the kids all evening, and then provide great companionship for mom and dad after the kids go to bed. They are, however, a pack-style dog. They will tend to establish themselves in your family and can create a dominance issue with little children. This can be overcome by having the child give the Finkie his food. It is along the same thought process as "don't bite the hand that feeds you". We have two young children and the dogs are some of their best friends.
Is the Finkie good with other animals?
Yes, they are good with other animals. Lots of Finnish Spitz dogs live in households that include cats. Our Finkies live with several cats.
I hear that the Finnish Spitz barks a lot, is this true?
Yes, they are barkers. You can work with them on a "quiet" command which works sometimes, but will not work if they have a squirrel treed, for example. At the same time, they rarely bark in the house except for play, so when they're driving you (and probably also the neighbors) nuts, the solution is to bring them in the house. Some owners have used a Supersoaker and we have found good results using citronella collars.
We have a large flower bed in the backyard, are they much at digging?
They LOVE digging! Most spitz do. Take the puppy to a groomer and have nails cut at least once per month. Dogs with short nails have a hard time digging. Many people don't realize this. Also provide lots of toys and also provide a kiddie wading pool with water and toys in it. My dogs love digging in those and try to scoop out the toys. They will even try to take bones off the bottom of the pool.
One website that I went to stated that the "Finnish Spitz shed a LOT". Is this true?
It depends on your definition of "A LOT". They do not shed profusely and the coat takes little care. Rather than say that there are mountains of hair it is more accurate to say you may not want to wear black sweaters. Compared to one breeder's Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retrievers (Tollers), the Finnish Spitz hardly shed at all. You do not bath the dogs unless it is really necessary as bathing removes their natural oils which helps to create a shining coat. They should be brushed weekly on a regular basis as their constant self-cleaning will otherwise allow them to ingest a significant amount of hair. During spring and fall when they begin their normal shedding, brushing two to three times a week is recommended. The sooner you get the old coat out through brushing the faster the shedding process will end!
Are Finnish Spitz difficult to train?
Finnish Spitz are an intelligent and sensitive breed with a streak of independence. They require training without harsh methods but with praise and rewards when they do what you want them to, much like "positive parenting". A Finkie that is treated harshly will never forget it and will never mature into the loving faithful companion that he or she should be. While some Finnish Spitz do very well in obedience, others become bored easily due to their intelligence and are not the best obedience dogs. Their sensitivity does not mean that normal, raised voices in a household will cause them distress. But directing a high degree of anger at your Finnish Spitz will destroy his spirit.
Can I run with my Finnish Spitz?
Once your dog has matured they are great athletes and running or hiking companions. They are a slow maturing breed, however, and do not reach full emotional and physical maturity until they are four years old. A puppy should not engage in hard exercise until he is a year old when most of his structural growth has been completed.
The Finnish Spitz breed is very independent. They are active and need stimulation. They will dig and they do "boredom bark". They should not be left in the backyard unless the barking can be supervised. The breed is active. However, some play time and a good long walk usually is sufficient and many, many people actually want a pet so they can do just that. It is not recommend that they be walked off-leash because of their propensity to go hunting.
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