The Siberian Husky
If you are interested in owning a husky, there are a few things you should know first! Huskies are amazing dogs but they can be tricky to own. If you still think you could own a husky after you've read this page, get in touch!
No Off Lead
Some people may say "I have had my husky for years off the leash and I've never had a problem" - The sad thing is one day that prey drive will just take over. Many people do let their huskies off and it rarely ends well...
One of the most important things you should consider when you think about getting this breed is how you are going to exercise them. Siberian Huskies should NEVER be let off their lead in an unenclosed area such as a park or a field. They have a very high prey drive which means that if they see a squirrel or a bird they are going to run off and chase it. If they do it’s highly unlikely that you’ll get them back as they will chase it until it’s gone and then think ‘where on earth am I?’ and yes they may come back with recall training, but one day a squirrel or a cat comes along, darts across the road and your husky will end up injured or worse. If they get into a field and worry sheep, your dog will be shot for doing so.
So are you willing to risk it? We aren't, this is why we send out all our dogs with a contract that states this is not permitted. You can find areas like Tennis courts to let your dog off lead. There are also special dog parks in some areas of the country which are good for letting your husky have a good run. You can also get 100ft leashes to give your dogs a run around while out on a walk.
Our gorgeous Blue having safe fun on his long line!
Boredom = Destruction!
Huskies are easily bored, if not properly stimulated (both physically and mentally) they can become destructive and frustrated. A bored husky can cause surprising amounts of damage (see image!). Food puzzle toys are a great way to keep your husky busy for a while and offer good mental stimulation! The most important thing to remember is a tired husky is a happy husky!
Huskies are amazing escape artists! You must have a secure garden with a 6ft fence (minimum) to even begin to keep them safe. Some will climb, dig and ram fences to escape so it's best to watch them at all times when in the garden. A lot of huskies will also be able to slip out of harnesses and collars when walking, an easy solution to this is to invest in a link line and a walking belt. A link line is just a short piece of lead with a clip on both ends, one goes to the collar and the other to a harness, if the dogs manages to get out of their harness, you still have hold of them on their collar. A walking belt is pictured to the left, these are a life saver! Your husky won't be able to pull the lead out of your hands and it's much easier to walk them.
A walking belt
Oh the fur!! Get used to having a new condiment! It'll get in your food, float on your coffee, you'll find it on every single piece of clothing you own, on the FURniture, in corners you never knew existed...Everywhere really! Huskies shed constantly but twice (or more) a year, they will 'blow' their coats and it'll come out in clumps! Be warned, plucking their little tufts is very addictive and threaputic, you won't be able to see a tuft without pulling it! During their blow, you will have enough hair to make at least 3 new huskies! We find an undercoat rake and a slicker brush work best to get their undercoat out (pictured left). If you take your husky to a groomer, they will usually use a blaster on them. This is like a high power hair dryer and will literally 'blast' the undercoat out! Please NEVER shave a husky (unless for medical reasons)! This can destroy their coat forever and it may not grow back the same. Their double coat helps them keep warm in the winter AND cool in the summer so they need to keep it!
Huskies are like no other dog. They're stubborn, independent and have a very 'what's in it for me?' attitude. Basically, cross a teenager with a toddler and you have a husky! Many husky owners will tell you that their huskies have 'selective hearing' and that they'll suddenly become deaf when you're trying to call them inside or off the sofa but the sound of a food packet and they will come running! Make sure you do a lot of research before you get a husky, they aren't for everyone and you need to make sure your home is suitable for a husky. On facebook, we have a forum with lots of experienced husky owners who'll be more than happy to give you advice and teach you about the breed (click to go there now!)
If you've made it this far and you still think you'd be able to own a husky, have a look at our fostering and adopting information pages to see how we work and how to apply for ahomecheck!
Be prepared to get this look if your husky doesn't want to do as they're told!
The most important thing...
Huskies are extremely addictive! You'll get your first and before you know it...You'll have a whole pack! You'll reason with yourself and say 'will another really be much more difficult?' and make excuses for why you NEED another! Most huskies do better with other dogs to play with, they tire each other out and most people find it much easier with 2 or more huskies. There are some that do like to be only dogs though so if you do only want one, I'm sure we can find a husky that needs you!