Siberian Huskies are admired for being beautiful dogs, but they're much more than a pretty face.
Ranked at number 12 on the American Kennel Club (AKC) list of most popular dog breeds, Huskies are showing up in more and more households across the country. TV shows like "Game of Thrones" are putting the breed in the spotlight, and their impressive-looking features are attracting dog lovers and hopeful pet owners. They're big, beautiful, and can make great companions and partners, but they're also not for everyone. Owning a Husky is a responsibility that shouldn't be taken lightly.
Think about these five Husky facts before bringing home your own:
1. Endless Energy
Bred as sled dogs, Huskies aren't the kind of pet that'll be happy snoozing all day on the couch. They have energy to burn, and if they're not given the right outlet, they'll find their own way to get the vigorous exercise and stimulation they need.
A bored Husky with pent-up energy will turn to destructive and troublesome behaviors. If you want to own a high-energy dog, you'll need to commit to daily walks, runs, and social outings. Leaving them to entertain themselves in the yard won't cut it. If you think about it though, the Husky breed may make you into a more active person, benefitting everyone involved...
2. Skills Like Houdini
High-energy paired with an impressive intellect means Huskies are skilled escape artists. They have a natural instinct to roam and explore, and an average fence won't be enough to stop them.
An athletic and determined Husky can easily leap over a six-foot fence, and if they can't go over, they'll look for other ways of escape. Your fenced yard will likely need to be reinforced if you plan on keeping a Husky confined while unsupervised. Many Huskies end up getting lost and hit by cars because they refuse to stay behind even a high fence.
3. Fur-Flavored Everything
Nearly all dog owners have to deal with shedding, but Huskies take it to another level. They're built for cold climates, and they have both an undercoat and topcoat. Huskies usually "blow" their coats in the spring and fall. This means the undercoat sheds excessively as the new topcoat grows in. It lasts for about three weeks, and the result is enough dog hair on the floor, furniture, your clothes, and mixed in with your food to make it look like you own an entire sled team.
If you don't want to drown in a fluffy mountain of your dog's fur, you'll need to commit to daily grooming and vacuuming.
4. Independent Spirit
There's no doubting that Huskies can be loyal and loving to their owners, but their independent nature holds them back from being the lovable lap-dogs many people want. They're notorious for being stubborn, and they'd much rather do things their way than obediently abide by house rules.
This can make training difficult, but not training a Husky is out of the question. Husky owners need to be patient, determined, and consistent.
5. Climate Concerns
Huskies do best in colder climates. They're originally from the Arctic, and their fluffy coats, paws, ears, and even eyes are all examples of physical adaptions that make them perfectly suited to cold temperatures. You don't need to live in the North Pole to own a Husky, but climate should still be a concern.
Huskies overheat easily, and they don't do well in hot, tropical areas. If you live somewhere where it's warm all year-round, be prepared to keep the AC running and provide your dog with suitable shade and water when outside.
The most important thing to remember when thinking about bringing a Husky into your home is that owning a dog is a lifetime commitment. There are no loopholes that relieve you of responsibility if your dog becomes too much to handle. From the moment you bring them home, they depend on you to provide a stable, loving home.
Huskies are beautiful working dogs with loving personalities, and for the right families, they make exceptional pets. Do your homework to ensure a Husky is right for your family and lifestyle.
If you're looking for a Husky puppy, think about adopting from a Siberian Husky rescue group or finding a reputable breeder through the Siberian Husky Club of America.
Do you own a Husky? Let us know in the comments.
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