Welcome to All About Huskies!
This site is for owners and admirers of Siberian Huskies, Alaskan Malamutes, and other sled dogs. You’ll find lots of advice on Huskies and sled dogs, including:
- Things to consider before you take on a Husky, Malamute, or other breed of sled dog
- The best ways to settle a new Husky puppy or dog to your home
- Diets and feeding plans for Huskies
- Husky and sled dog health issues
- Durable dog toys for Husky puppies and adult dogs
- Husky and sled dog breeders
- Suggested books to read
Are you thinking about getting a Husky? If you are, here are some things you might want to consider;
Is a Husky the right dog for you?
The decision to welcome a Husky into your life is a big one and will affect your life in many ways. Huskies, Malamutes and other sled dogs require a lot of attention, company, exercise and general physical and mental stimulation.
Compared to other breeds of dog, Huskies can be challenging for their owners, and many end up in rescue centers simply because people don’t realize how much hard work Huskies can be.
The main problems people tend to have with Huskies are that:
- Huskies are very unreliable off the lead, and cannot be allowed to run freely in open spaces.
- Huskies have a high prey drive and have a tendency to eat small animals (including cats and other pets) if given the chance.
- Huskies do not like being left alone, particularly as puppies, and need company for the majority of the day.
- Huskies are incredibly skilled escape artists. They need a secure garden with a fence AT LEAST 6 feet high (our fence is 8 feet).
- Huskies will DIG in your garden, and probably dig their way out of it if you don’t take steps to prevent this. You must sink your fence a couple of feet down or lay slabs around the edge.
- Huskies can be very destructive, particularly if left alone, and will literally eat your shoes/kids toys/furniture/walls of your house if not sufficiently entertained.
- Huskies instinctively pull on the lead when out and about. Training them to walk to heal is possible, but it takes A LOT OF TIME AND PATIENCE. Even when well-trained, Huskies and other breeds of sled dog will pull when they see a small furry animal or something else of interest up ahead.
- Huskies shed LOTS of hair. They ‘blow’ their undercoats once or twice a year when you will find great clumps of fluff around the house. They also shed lightly for the rest of the year.
Many of these traits are present due to the fact that Huskies were bred as WORKING SLED DOGS. They were selectively bred over many generations to RUN many miles a day PULLING sleds. Huskies were bred to THINK FAST to keep their owners safe on the trail, To SECOND GUESS and IGNORE their owner’s commands (for instance, if they were told to ‘go on’ when they knew the ice was too thin or there was other unseen danger). Huskies lived in harsh areas of the Arctic, where food was scarce, and at times would have been left to CATCH THEIR OWN PREY.
All of these traits are still present in the Husky and other sled dogs. If we want to keep them as pets, we have to accept that along with their stunning appearance and gentle nature, come all the inherent traits of the sled dog.
Are You the right Owner for a Husky?
In our experience, there are two main types of Husky owners:
- Those that accept the ‘Sled Dog’ in their Husky and find ways to turn these ‘difficult’ aspects of the breed into positive points
- Those who don’t accept it, and spend most of their time in ongoing battles with their Huskies, trying to turn them into ‘other dogs’
These second type of Husky owners will always find life with these dogs challenging, frustrating and hard work! We don’t mean to be harsh by saying this – just realistic.
If you are willing to accept the Sled Dog traits in a Husky, and:
- Have a good sense of humour
- Aren’t too house-proud
- Don’t mind fluff in your coffee (and all over your clothes/house/car…everything!)
Don’t mind holes in your garden
- Accept that you won’t be able to let your Husky off-lead
- Don’t have cats/rabbits etc (or if you do, can ensure that they will be kept separate)
- Work from home, or can provide company for you Husky for the majority of the day
- Have a love for high energy, goofball dogs that will always keep you on your toes…
…THEN maybe you’re the type of person who would be able to live a happy life with a Husky!