About the dog family (Canidae)
Both familiar species, such as the wolf, red fox and Arctic fox, and the lesser-known species such as raccoon dog and golden jackal are Norwegian animals that belong to the dog family.
The dog family
Number of species living wild in Norway: 5.
Number of species living wild in the world: 37.
Canid, members of the dog family, are usually adaptable and effective hunters. The red fox is the most common canid in Norway today, although both arctic foxes and wolves used to exist in much larger numbers than that of today. A fourth canid is the raccoon dog, which is blacklisted and not wanted in Norway. The fifth canid is the newly registered golden jackal.
The wolf is the largest member of the dog family that you can encounter in the Norwegian wild. It is very rare to encounter a wolf in the wild, and you can find out more about what to do if you do meet one on the page about wolves.
The red fox is the most numerous member of the dog family, and many of us have come across red foxes on forest walks. The red fox mainly eats small rodents, eggs and small birds.
There are not many Arctic foxes left in Norway, but numerous measures have been put in place to try to save the remaining population.
Not much is heard about the raccoon dog, which is not surprising perhaps. There is some uncertainty surrounding how many there are here in Norway, and the species is regarded as undesirable. Despite the name, it is neither a raccoon nor a dog, but it is a member of the dog family.
Golden jackal is an animal that very few Norwegians know of, which is natural since the first observation of the species was officially confirmed as late as February 2021!