Siberian Husky

  • Overview

    Huskies are majestic, athletic dogs who thrive on companionship and crave activity. Their wolf-like looks and intelligence makes them a popular breed for owners who love alert, engaged companions.

    The Siberian Husky thrives on exercise and companionship. He will need lots of outlets for his seemingly boundless energy, but he is also an intelligent, thoughtful companion who will treat your family like part of his pack.

  • Personality

    Siberian Huskies are powerful, determined dogs who display a confident, elegant dignity in their appearance and carriage. They are sturdy dogs built to withstand extremely cold temperatures, but they usually only weigh between 35 and 60 pounds. Huskies are lithe and fast-moving. They were bred for speed and agility, so they are often seen in sled races. Huskies still work as sled dogs in parts of North America and Siberia, and these athletic, working instincts are present even in dogs who live as pets. Their piercing, intelligent expressions give Huskies an alert, human-like appearance. They are smart and as a result, they can have a mind of their own. They are extremely fast runners who have a strong escape instinct if they are let off their leashes, and they can be stubborn during training if they have little incentive to do as they're told. Huskies flourish with dominant owners who will incorporate training and obedient behavior into all aspects of their lives. Otherwise, they are smart enough to mimic good habits when necessary and resort to naughty behavior when it suits their playful natures.

    They are comfortable with a pack mentality, so they appreciate living and playing with other dogs and children. These outgoing dogs know they are impressive. Huskies love to insert themselves into family life and will resort to destructive behaviors if neglected. Despite their occasionally willful personalities, they are often reserved and gentle with strangers and have very little aggression toward other dogs.

  • Coat Care

    The Husky's coat comes in a variety of colors, from pure black to pure white. Most Huskies have distinct markings around their face and body in shades of white, black and gray. The coat is not overly long, but it is a thick double coat with guard hairs to help the Husky stay warm. The coat is not particularly harsh.

Brushing

In order to avoid excess hair around the house, brush your Husky at least once a week with a pin brush. Huskies shed up to twice a year, and they will need to be brushed more consistently while they are shedding.

Bathing

Wash around the Huskies' feet and face, especially after energetic playtimes.

Hair Clipping

Huskies often need trimming around the whiskers and between the toes.

Nails

Many dog owners are apprehensive about trimming their dog’s nails because they are nervous about cutting into the quick. But with the right conditioning and careful cutting, nail clipping can be a simple, stress-free activity for you and your dog.

Provide your dog with plenty of positive reinforcement and even treats to help associate nail clipping with a positive experience.  As you start to clip, gently press on your dog’s paws to help him become accustomed to the feeling of having his nails clipped. Then, work gradually, shaving down just a thin portion of the nail at first to make sure you don’t reach the quick. Clip one nail, reward your dog with a treat, and stop to give him some positive reinforcement before moving on. Gradually increase the number of nails you clip in one sitting to help your dog get used to the process. Never trim extremely long nails down to a short nail in one sitting, because this is an excellent way to accidently quick the dog’s nail. Instead, work gradually, shaving small portions of your dog’s nails off each time.

You can tell if you’re getting close to the quick by the texture of your dog’s nail. The nail is hard closer to the surface and becomes softer as you get closer to the quick. If your dog’s nail starts to feel softer, that’s a good indication that you’re getting close to the quick.

Eyes / Ears

Not all breeds and coat styles require routine trimming in and around the eyes and ears but all should undergo regular inspection and cleaning around these sensitive areas. Doing so will help prevent the development of infections that could seriously damage these amazing organs.

It is always important to routinely clean your dog's eyes and ears, and examine for potential infections. Corgis, Alaskan Malamutes, Akitas and Collies have sensitive ears that  need to be checked weekly for infection and cleaned with a cotton ball. Gently wipe a cotton ball moistened with mineral oil, olive oil or witch hazel in your dog's ear, being careful to avoid the ear canal. Never use a Q-Tip, which could cause damage to the inner ear if your dog suddenly shakes or jerks his head. Bushy hair growth within the ear can be thinned with tweezers or blunt scissors. Use a small trimmer to trim excess hair around the eyes, ears and face. If your dog is prone to developing tear stains around the eyes, clean around their eyes with a cotton ball or soft cloth and use a small trimmer to trim excess hair around their eyes.

Teeth

Many owners do not realize how important it is to brush your pet’s teeth on a regular basis. Some dogs are prone to dental problems and sensitive teeth, especially small dogs with tiny teeth and dogs with special diets. These problems can be easily combatted with frequent brushing.

Cavities are rare with dogs but gum disease caused by tartar buildup is not, which is why they require regular brushing with toothpaste and a toothbrush formulated specifically for dogs. While daily brushing is ideal, doing so on a weekly basis will be a big help in avoiding the need to bring your dog to a veterinarian for a cleaning, which usually has to be done under sedation.