breeds of hunting dogs of the northern forest zones of Europe and Asia. Laikas are raised in the USSR, Scandinavian countries, and a number of other European countries. They are hardy and agile dogs, with a strongly developed hunting instinct, and measure from 38 to 63 cm high. The head is wedge-shaped, and the ears are erect and pointed. The tail is curled over the back. The coat is straight with a dense undercoat; the coloration is varied.
Laikas are used to hunt bears, fur-bearing animals (squirrel, sable, marten), ungulates (such as elk), and forest and water birds. Having sighted the animal or bird, the laika attracts its attention with barking and detains it until the hunter arrives. It pursues a fleeing animal or bird silently. Four closely related breeds are common in the USSR—the Russian-European, the West Siberian, the East Siberian, and the Karelian-Finnish laikas. The laika breeds primarily distributed in the Scandinavian countries are the Finnish spitz and the Norwegian elkhound. The Russian-European and West Siberian laikas are raised in a number of European countries.
REFERENCESShereshevskii, E. I. Laiki i okhota s nimi. Sverdlovsk, 1965.
Geits, A. V. Vostochnosibirskaia laika. Irkutsk, 1968.
E. I. SHERESHEVSKII