Some background of the Siberian Husky
Siberian Huskies are of ancient lineage, dating back to more than 4000
years. Many experts believe that the breed evolved with the Chukchis, a
semi-nomadic, reindeer hunting people of extreme north-eastern Siberia. The
climate was once warmer in Siberia, but turned very cold about 3000 years
ago. This meant that the Chukchis had to travel farther and farther to find
food, so the hunters moved all of their possessions and families along with
The dogs became more and more important with the passing of time and became invaluable to the Chukchis for their survival. They bred their dogs for multipurpose work: hunting, herding, and hauling. Sleds were mostly used for hauling goods; the people walked. The animals were so highly prized that only babies, the very old and sick were allowed to ride.
The Chukchis developed an elaborate religion worshiping one god. They believed that the gates of heaven were guarded by two Chukchis dogs and that anyone who mistreated a dog would not go to "Chukchis Heaven".
The Chukchis eventually domesticated reindeer and used them for hauling heavy loads; therefore, a premium was placed on the speed, endurance, and agility of the dogs. Even today, no other breed can haul a light load as fast and as far, on so little food , as the Siberian Husky!
Characteristics of the Siberian Husky
The Siberian Husky is a package of energy, requiring at least an hour of supervised daily exercise. If not properly exercised, they can become very mischievous from their pent up energy including digging and chewing. They are lively, curious, love to run, and are independent-minded. Obviously, this is not your ideal apartment pet. However, I have had many apartment dwellers purchase a Husky from me and they are very happy with the arrangement.
Don't buy a Siberian Husky to serve primarily as a guard dog. Siberians are lovers! They want to become friends with everyone, including the burglar. Experts will tell you that they are good with children because of their wonderful temperament.
Siberians require almost constant attention from their masters. Remember that they are by nature "pack animals" and instinctively follow the rules of "the pack". Thus you, their master, are the "alpha male or female", the leader. This is why it is so important for new Siberian owners to go through obedience training with their new Siberian Husky pup.
The American Kennel Club, found on the web at www.akc.org has standards for the various breeds of dogs including the Siberian Husky. Siberians are classified as medium size working dogs. Adult males range from 45 to 60 pounds and females from 35 to 50 pounds. On the A.K.C. website, you will find specific standards for the body, neck, skull, teeth, feet, tail, coat texture, and color. A most interesting standard relates to the eyes. The general public is captivated by the piercing ice-blue eyes often seen in Siberians. This is understandable, however the standard recognizes all colors including brown and green. Even bi-eyed Siberians (each eye a different color) is not uncommon and is acceptable.
Siberians may be of any color. Typically, the undercoat is white and the guard coat can be black, grey, red, or sable, from dark to light, in various shades. They can even be solid white or solid black. Colors may change as the dog grows older. Another distinguishing characteristic of Siberians is their mask, which is unique for each dog.
It would not be appropriate if the personality of this breed were not mentioned. Each Siberian has a unique personality which begins to show up at an early age. They have been known to develop unique skills such as turning door knobs, climbing, and "talking". However, the most dominant trait that runs with the breed is their gregariousness toward people. They seem to love everyone