Breed standard: FCI | Size: Medium | Life expectancy: 12+ years | Temperament: Friendly and gentle | Coat: Medium-long | Origin: United States.
The Siberian Husky is easily recognizable with an elegant and powerful wolf-like appearance.
The origins of the Siberian Husky
An ancient breed
We do not know precisely the origins of the Siberian Husky. It seems that it was created by the Chukchi Indians in Eastern Siberia a long time ago. It is said that this breed dates back to 2000 BC. The breed was created to pull heavy sleds on the icy territories of the Great North. Legend says that the Siberian Husky was created from a wolf and the moon.
We can find traces of the Siberian Husky in records from the beginning of the 20th century. During this time, explorers and gold seekers discovered these dogs and quickly fell in love with them. Nine dogs were brought to Alaska to participate in a famous dog-sled race, the All Alaska Sweepstakes. They were mocked for their small size and several participants even compared them to rats.
History of the Siberian Husky
However, the dogs made a very strong impression, with the team placing third. One participant imported 61 dogs that participated in the race the following year. These groups placed first, second and fourth. One man took charge of this breed, Leonhard Seppala, a fisherman who was very interested in these dogs. In 1914, he participated in the famous race and was caught in a terrible snowstorm. He was heading inexorably towards the Bering Sea and it was his dogs that saved him by stopping in time. He tried again a year later and this time he won with his Siberian Huskies.
The Siberian Husky also had its moment of glory during the diphtheria epidemic that hit Alaska in 1925. With a team led by two Siberian Husky dogs (Balto and Togo) and the musher Leonhard Seppala, antibiotics were brought to the villages to treat the population.
Several races were held in the United States in the following years and Leonhard Seppala, again, won several of them.
The fame of these dogs grew and in 1930, the American Kennel Club recognized the breed. Eight years later, the Siberian Husky Club of America was founded.
Conquering the world
The first Huskies arrived in France in the 1970s. They obtained their registration in the LOF in 1973. At that time, only three registrations were made.
In 1992, the Siberian Husky was considered a breed there were more than 4,500 births that same year. The Siberian Husky became very popular.
In the 2000s, the number of puppies drops considerably. Nevertheless, there was a revival of interest with the creation of the Grande Odyssée in 2003, a sled race where these dogs were able to show their qualities.
The Siberian Husky’s personality
Despite its wolf-like appearance, the Siberian Husky is a very affectionate dog.
A wild appearance that does not match this dog breed’s personality
When most people think of Siberian Huskies, they imagine dogs howling at the moon and attacking everything that moves! It is, however, a very pleasant dog with a personality unlike that of a wolf.
This dog is very friendly and loves everyone. For this reason, it does not make a good a guard dog. The Siberian Husky is gentle and loves to cuddle. It is also a very docile animal that likes to please its owner.
As this dog breed is used to living in a pack, it has difficulty staying alone.
The Siberian Husky is an intelligent dog that likes to spend time with its owner and play.
A free-spirited soul
The Siberian Husky likes wide open spaces and needs to spend a lot of time outside to be happy. If this dog does not spend enough time outside with its owner, it might run away. Siberian Huskies love to explore their surroundings.
If you want to be a good owner, you need to plan very long daily walks. Siberian Huskies love to accompany their owners while they are jogging or on biking trips. They would much rather roam around in nature rather than in the city.
If the Siberian Husky doesn’t get enough exercise, it can become destructive, even aggressive.
The physical characteristics of the Siberian Husky
The Husky is a medium-sized dog with balanced proportions. It is known for its beautiful eyes and thick coat.
The Siberian Husky’s head is rather round with a long muzzle. The dog has medium, triangular ears. They are set high on the skull and point upwards.
The eyes of this breed are slightly almond-shaped and oblique. Several colors are accepted for this breed. For example, we can find Siberian Huskies with brown or blue eyes. Heterochromia iridum is also accepted.
The breed has well-developed muscles. The tail of the Siberian Husky is typical of Nordic dog breeds. It is long and slightly curved, like a crescent moon. It is also very full of hair.
Coat, color, and grooming
The coat of the Siberian Husky is dense and thick. It is of medium length.
The coat of the Siberian Husky can be different colors. For example, we can find black, white or brown dogs. The dog can also present sandy or gray colors.
The Siberian Husky’s fur protects it from the cold and the heat. During moulting periods, the dog’s coat will change completely. It will then be necessary to brush it every day to prevent knots and remove excess fur. Outside these periods, brushing every two weeks is sufficient.
Keep an eye on their claw and trim them from time to time if they are too long. Some dogs do not wear their claws down enough and when they grow significantly, it can hurt their paws.
If your dog participates in sled races or if you live in a region where it snows, also remember to keep their paws in good shape and check their condition regularly. The same is true if you live in a hot area, where the ground can burn their paws.
Did you know?
Many mushers have found that the Siberian Husky is a very resistant dog! One day, two week old puppies were left alone by their mother for a whole night. In the morning, the puppies seemed totally frozen and lost. Once they were saved and brought into the warmth of a house, they seemed to do very well.
The Siberian Husky at a glance
Size: 50 cm to 56 cm (19 in to 22 in) for females and 53 cm to 60 cm (20 in to 24 in) for males.
Weight: a female weighs from 16 kg to 23 kg (35 lbs to 51 lbs) and a male weighs from 20 kg to 30 kg (44 lbs to 66 lbs).
Health: The Husky is a resistant dog. It can nevertheless suffer from certain diseases. Its eyes are its main weak point. This breed may suffer from cataract, corneal dystrophy, glaucoma or progressive retinal atrophy. It is, therefore, important to regularly monitor your dog’s eyes and to consult a vet if your dog shows any redness or irritation.
Siberian Huskies can also have hip dysplasia or pyoderma, a skin disease that causes small pimples and pus.
Life expectancy: 12 to 14 years.
Is the Siberian Husky good with the children? The Siberian Husky is an excellent playmate for children. It is calm and gentle with them and will be happy to spend hours with them in a garden. However, when this breed wants to rest, it needs quiet time and will not like to be disturbed by a child. It will be gentle but may be less patient if the child insists. Your child should be taught to respect the independence of his dog.
Is the Siberian Husky easy to train? The Siberian Husky is a dog that has a strong personality and likes to be free. It will be necessary to train it while it is still young so that it obeys orders. They are highly intelligent and understand well. It is necessary to start its training before its 6 months. This one requires patience and clarity. This dog breed can refuse to obey if it does not respect its owner!
Positive education is a good solution to show the Siberian Husky that you are happy with its actions. Always stay calm and happy. This dog will then understand the things you want more easily. Regular but short training sessions are preferred.
The Siberian Husky is easily distracted. They need to be trained to be wise, balanced and sociable. Punishment and shouting are unnecessary with the Siberian Husky.