You can fall in love with them at first sight. In their movement and gaze, one can feel the charm of the wild, pristine nature, and the dazzling beauty of the endless snowy wastelands. The Siberian Husky breed originated, as the name suggests, in Siberia, and was widely used by the Chukchi tribes for various purposes.
These animals were reliable companions of the Chukchi. They lived, ate, and slept with them in the same bed. These dogs were especially often put to bed with children to provide warmth and comfort during cold Siberian nights. It is not known for certain, but DNA tests tell us that the Siberian Husky is a very ancient dog.
Researchers believe that the breed arose as a result of the natural domestication of wild wolves at least 1000 years ago. The Chukchi treated and still treat their huskies like full members of the family.
For many years, the Siberian Husky was used exclusively at home, however, in 1908 the first dog of this breed was transported to Alaska. Then the Alaskan Husky appeared – today it has some differences from the Siberian, but it has a lot of similarities. In Alaska, these dogs also gained great popularity due to the amazing qualities of their character, endurance, physical strength, and ability to withstand danger.
They began to be used especially widely during the gold rush when crowds of gold miners rushed to Alaska not only from America but from all over the world. In addition, many chose these dogs to compete in the 408-mile dog sled race. This is still true today, although to a lesser extent.
After the October Revolution of 1917, a new country appeared on the map – the Soviet Union. The power of workers and peasants in 1930 closed the borders and Siberian Huskies could no longer be exported legally. It is believed that the last dog of this breed left its home just in 1930. In the same year, the Siberian Husky was officially recognized by the American Kennel Club as an independent breed. In 1938 the American Siberian Husky Club was founded. The Canadian Kennel Club recognized this breed a year later, in 1939.
The Siberian Husky is a large dog with a muscular and proportionately built body. Their limbs are of medium length, and the tail is fluffy and saber-shaped, often bent upwards, not docked. Their coat is long. The muzzle resembles that of a wolf, but wider. Ears are erect, medium size, and they have blue eyes. Sometimes one eye is blue and the other has a different color.
The Siberian Husky has a difficult temperament and is generally not recommended for inexperienced owners or people who have a soft character. These animals have quite strong natural instincts, and therefore they subconsciously consider their family as something like a pack. From time to time they try to take a dominant position in their pack, naturally.
In other words, every wolf dreams of becoming the leader of the pack. Therefore, the owner needs to have a strong character and possess the qualities of a leader, otherwise, the dog may simply not obey you. Along with this, Siberian Huskies are very friendly and affectionate towards their family, and if you manage to build the right relationship with your pet, it will be a great friend and companion.
This breed has a very developed intellect, perfectly understands what you want from it, and also is clearly aware of what is happening around it. One issue that comes from this is that your dog can sometimes pretend to be a fool, or simply refuse to do what you want it to at the current moment. But that doesn’t mean he/she doesn’t understand you. Huskies can sometimes interfere in family quarrels, they generally like to take an active part in the life of the family, realizing themselves as a full-fledged member of it.
Other animals are perceived neutrally, without jealousy or territorial aggression. They have high energy levels, need to go for walks, and generally enjoy being outdoors, playing, and fooling around. They require training and a variety of activities, don’t forget – the Siberian Husky is a sled dog that has worked hard for many hundreds of years in very harsh conditions.
The best place to keep them, of course, is a house with its own yard. But many individuals do well in apartments, although if you live in a small apartment, it may be better to consider buying another dog. Strangers are treated neutrally, moreover, they usually do not attack people at all. They have long been famous for this quality in their homeland. There are many cases when these dogs did not even stop robbers if they didn’t show aggression towards the animal.
They really need early socialization. Sometimes, from an excess of energy (usually from a lack of activity and walks), when no one is at home, they turn into real destroyers and even chew up furniture. Consider this. They love to dig holes and will destroy your garden – it is better to train your dog to dig in a designated space. Siberian Huskies almost never bark.
Raising a Siberian Husky is not an easy task. This must be clearly understood before buying one. Moreover, even if you are an experienced owner, and were able to succeed in raising your dog, do not be surprised if from time to time he seems to test your strength.
Here is some advice on how to achieve that success:
- Do not feed your dog from the table;
- Use meals as a pressure method. To clearly indicate your position of you as a leader, from time to time make it wait for a meal;
- The same can be said about walks and toys – then in the eyes of your dog, you will be the keeper of all the most valuable things in its life.
Intimidation, beatings, constant screaming, and pressure will not bring success. But you will completely break your dog’s character and psyche.
During training, use treats as a rewarding method but from time to time delay giving treats until the dog repeats the desired command several times from several distances. There is one subtle point here – huskies can obey commands in training but on a walk or at home they seem to forget what you taught them. In this case, return to the rules set out at the beginning.
The Siberian Husky has a long coat and needs regular brushing once or twice a week. Nails should be trimmed every 10 days. Bathe your dog once or twice a week, and always make sure your pet’s ears and eyes are clean.
The Siberian Husky is distinguished by its endurance and good health but there are still some health problems. Among them:
- Hip dysplasia;
- Corneal dystrophy;
- Progressive retinal atrophy.