Is a Siberian Husky the right dog for you and your family?
Too many Siberians end up lost, in shelters, a nuisance, or mistreated simply because the owner did not understand the breed before getting one. If the dog is very lucky, it may just make it to us in rescue. So, before making a commitment to a Siberian Husky or other northern breed dog, please take a minute and read this. You may be glad you did!
Siberians and Escaping
Most do, although everybody’s distant cousin knows of a Siberian who could be trusted off leash and would never run away. The urge to run is instinctive – the dog is not being bad, he’s just being a Siberian Husky!
Do you mind turning your yard into the doggie version of Alcatraz? Siberian Huskies are the world’s great canine escape artists. Harry Houdini could have taken lessons from a Husky. If bored, they will dig, chew, climb, jump or otherwise levitate themselves through or over most fences.
Can you handle purchasing a secure kennel with a roof and laying down a concrete slab to put it on? This is about the only guarantee that your Husky will stay where you put it.
Can you handle the fact that your Siberian Husky may never be trusted not to run away if let off leash in an open area? There are always exceptions to this rule too, but unfortunately, you might only have once chance to learn if your dog is it.
Are you proud of your landscaping?
If your answer is yes, see 1.b. When a Siberian Husky is not trying to figure out how to escape, he is probably digging a hole. They are magnificent landscapers, Huskies have been known to even dig up your sprinkler system. If you are lucky, he’ll be outdoors at the time. The urge to dig is instinctive - the dog isn’t being bad, he’s just being a Siberian Husky.
Do you have a problem with dog hair? Everywhere?
The Siberian Husky’s coat acts as insulation in both summer and winter – it should never be shaved down. Ever. Mother Nature does that for us – they blow coat at least twice a year – bags of it. This is part of the physiology of the Siberian Husky and there is nothing you can do about it except sweep it up and never wear black.
Do you have cranky neighbors?
While Siberian Huskies are not barkers, they are known to moan, howl or whine. And not just at the moon, quite often they sing with the police and ambulance sirens. Those of us who like the sound refer to it as singing. Those who don’t like it call Animal Control.
Do you have a cat? Do you like feeding the squirrels in your backyard?
Most Siberian Huskies are predatory. They will hunt, chase, catch and kill smaller animals. Although with patience and time, many huskies will see the family cat as a pack member, they may still chase any strange cat they happen to meet. This behavior is instinctive – the dog isn’t being evil, he’s just being true to his nature.
Would it really bother you if your dog totally ignores your commands?
In public? Especially when company comes? Certainly, your Siberian Husky will learn to sit for food (they were born able to do that it seems!) And there are folks who are tenacious enough and who understand their dog enough to actually do serious obedience training with them – this always done with positive motivation techniques. However, if you are looking for blind obedience, get a German Shepherd! Siberians are very smart but they have been bred to be independent in order to survive. Independent thinkers.
Are you looking for a dog to protect you and your home?
If you need a dog who will alert you when strangers come and maybe even guard your home – consider a Husky/German Shepherd mix. A Siberian Husky will be more likely to show a prowler where the family silver is hidden, make him a cup of coffee, and show him the best way to escape! This is just their nature – they are not guard dogs and cannot be trained to be one.
Do you want only one dog?
Siberian Huskies are social creatures and really do better with another dog in the home. This is especially true when an owner is away from the home working. It is much harder to keep one Siberian Husky happy than two. Trust us on this; we are not just saying it so you’ll adopt two huskies instead of one!
Are you a couch potato? Dislike the outdoors?
Well, Siberian Huskies love the outdoors and love exercise and whatever adventures they may encounter along the way. Your Husky is going to want to explore the world, ideally with you along for the experience.
Are you wondering, if huskies are like this, why do we love them?
Do you want a dog who can charm your socks off and make you laugh?
Well, the Siberian Husky may just be the right dog for you!
Do you want a dog who can make a bad day seem not so bad after all?
Then, the Siberian Husky may just be the right dog for you!
Do you want a dog who will steal your heart (and your socks, gloves, CDs…)?
Then the Siberian Husky may just be the right dog for you!