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Old 04-26-2010, 08:58 PM   #1
JessicaR
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siberian huskies

Ok I need the good the bad and the ugly on huskies

my son really wants a husky pup. I told him I would think about it, I want to do lots and lots of research before I commit to getting him a puppy.

I have read stuff on them from the internet. I am not concerend with shedding, I love to groom my dogs. I think my main concern would be I do have cats and a guinea pig. I know they have a high prey drive. So I dont know if she would be ok with cats as long as she is raised with them? Also the dog would be for my son to train in obedience. I am not sure how huskies do, but I have never seen one at any of our 4-h shows.
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Old 04-26-2010, 11:32 PM   #2
pennycantu
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my husky was wonderful at obedience. they are extremely smart and long for that challenge. she would also be great at agility. we trained ours for search and rescue (just for fun) and it was great. the worst thing with huskies is the shedding. it's nothing like you've ever seen. she also like to hide stuff from us. like pots and pans and dishes lol!

they are smart and highly trainable. i had one when i was in 4-h.
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Old 04-26-2010, 11:34 PM   #3
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Sometimes I think Junior might have some Husky because he has many of the qualities of one!lol. High prey drive, escape artist, overheated easily, etc. Only main difference is that Junior is wary of strangers while Sibes are more friendly towards strangers.

Alright here's what I've learned about Huskies, I looked into them at one point because I really wanted one.

I think it will be alright in your household if you raise a young Sibe with your cats, for the most part I don't think there will be a problem because of habituation...however this will be distinctly different from teaching a Sibe that it is unacceptable to chase other small critters that aren't in the house. Basically in the Huskies mind small animals in the house are off limits but anything outside is fair game. Lots of "Leave it" and a concrete recall is a must. Sometimes if a small animal is stationary it isn't too much of a problem to distract or deter from chasing the problem really lies when that animal starts running away or if anything small dashes.... at this point some may go into a "Zone" in which they don't usually listen and chase till they succeed in catching or fail, if the dog fails they'll usually still wander off sniffing but it is at this phase in which you can actually call back and the dog actually listening to you.....I know this because this is how Junior gets when he dashes out the door to chase rabbits. Of course every dog varies, your husky might not have a strong prey drive to begin with....lots of socialization and desensitization to anything outside of the home that might trigger his chase drive is essential.

Now as for the escape artist....ahhh what can I say, you'll probably find yourself at one time or another looking for your husky out in the streets....it happens even to the best of us. They dig under fences (fences that go a couple feet underground fixes this), they jump over fences (have high fences), they find open doors (keep a sharp eye for those carelessly left open doors)...pretty much you need to A. Puppy proof your house and then B. Husky proof your house, those two are completely different.lol. You'll learn by trial and error...thats the way it was with Junior when his previous owner got him. Microchipping and tags are a must.

I'm sure you know about Huskies coat and intolerance for heat and humidity... I'm not sure if thats a problem where you live, but its a consideration to take. Keep Husky indoors in AC in hot weather, no worries so much about cold/snow weather, thats what they were bred for

As a mentioned before, Huskies tend to be friendly to strangers or ignore them at worse. So no expecting guard dogs. Which reminds me, thats what so awesome about Huskies, not so much barking (as a posed to howling) and because its an arctic breed they don't smell so much!

Last thing, I'm sure you're biggest question is trainability.... I'd go as far as saying that its probably somewhere in the mid range....definitely not as high as your Shelties I don't think. But they are diligent workers so as long as you give them a job (preferably something that deals with pulling) they'll be good.....oh yeah on that aspect, I've seen many Huskies that walk wonderfully on leash, and others that pull like there is no tomorrow. Lead training when young is a good idea along with putting "Pull" on cue so that you can control that urge.

Thats all for now, hope it helps!
-Steven



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Old 04-27-2010, 02:20 AM   #4
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I had to look up and see if there was any OTCH Huskys and found there were quite a few...http://www.dogster.com/dogs/30339 this dog story/profile really shows how versitle the breed can be.

To me, training a Husky would be like training a cat, you have to make them think its their idea, and its a fun idea. The few Huskies I have been around were cat like in nature, very cautious of strangers, and they were in very social places (shop dogs).

I personally think they are drop dead gorgeous dogs, but training them for obedience will take lots of pacience and perhaps diffrent training approaches.

Another thing to think of is the size diffrence, having a bigger dog around your lil Shelties might be a contender for accidents. That is what I would be worried about, as Huskies weigh much more than a Sheltie, and wouldnt want your furbabies to get hurt.

Has he got a second choice other than a husky? A border collie or german shepard perhaps?
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Old 04-27-2010, 04:35 AM   #5
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kiska (my husky for 7 years) was only about 40lbs. they definately aren't as big as a german shep for sure. if you are worried about size difference, i'd go with the border collie but huskies aren't as big as people think they are. if they are larger than 60lbs, they have been bread with malamute somewhere down the line. kiska's mom was 50lbs and her dad was 75lbs and i swear he was the biggest husky i'd ever seen in my life. i had one as a kid (nikki) and she was very trainable. kiska learned hand signals better than verbal commands and my approach to her was the same as the k9 officers had for the sheps and mals. I worked for the sheriff's office at the time and had a friend who trained k9s come and help me train her. she was easy to house train too. both of them were.

i will say this, jr is right about having to husky proof your house. kiska ATE 3 living room sets, including the coffee tables AND she'd always find a way to get into the closed pantries. she only escaped three times and we didn't really do anything different to secure her. my lab is more cleaver at escaping than my husky was. she only got lose b/c we didn't lock the gate or secure the tie out when we lived in our other house.

she did have separation anxiety which was a hassle. as i understand though, it's not specific or a normal breed trait so i wouldn't worry about it. she was our child. my husband got her for me for our first christmas we were married. she stayed with us until my daughter was 2 and after fighting with the pediatrician about allergies we re homed her.

she is still very well behaved from what the owners tell me. i don't know if i lucked out with my 2 huskies or what. i know that what jr is saying is not true for MY huskies though. i will definately have another one when i can take the time to groom and care for it better. the shedding was mind blowing though. i brushed every day and vaccuumed twice a day. it's something

oh and the smell. they do smell. you can't bathe them often, we did about every 3 months which was more than you are supposed to but she'd smell like a bag of fritos if you didn't. she was inside more than outside too. a friend of mine who had one said hers did the same thing. she had to wash him after about 4 months that she could stand it. we'd call her frito and funnion lol! she had breath issues, and she wasn't a great guard dog. she'd hardly ever bark and if she did vocalize it was more of a yelp or yodel than a bark. i guess if it boiled down to it, she would have protected us. i have full confidence in that fact.

also check your home owner's policy. huskies made it to the top 10 list of dangerous dogs which i think is rediculous but some h.o. insurance will drop you if you have one.
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Old 04-27-2010, 04:39 AM   #6
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oh and about the prey drive too! this is just kiska though, i don't speak for all huskies. she did not get along with cats and would tree them in a heart beat. possum, armadillos they got chased out. she DID however get along famously with smaller dogs. she hated dogs that were her size or larger and would growl and fight with them. if a small dog wandered in my yard or someone came to my house with one, she was great with them.

i would assume you can raise one from a young pup maybe 6 weeks with a cat and it would be okay.

i do know that she never killed anything. she just chased it and played with it. this included mice and bugs if they found their way in my house which during winter where i live, it was quite frequent.
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Old 04-27-2010, 08:04 AM   #7
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My BF also want to give me a husky and I also want to have it...
But I have a cat...
Kero is my only cat that's why don't want my new pet to have a conflict with him...

My BF told me that husky is a smart and friendly dog...
So I guess I will not have a problem with it to my cat just like my other dogs...
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Old 04-27-2010, 12:23 PM   #8
JessicaR
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thanks for all the good info! I am not worried about the size difference, since half my shelties are over sized anyways. Plus they play with my sons friend's briard and he weighs about 100 pounds! I live in north west Ohio, so weather probably isnt too much of a problem. It can get hot in the summer, usually around 90 degrees, but i have central air conditioning.

Escaping could be a problem, our fence is only 4 foot high. And we do have lots of stray cats, rabbits, and squirrels. If I have to I can always buy a 6 foot high kennel and put a roof on it for when she has to go outside.

Shedding, what is a house without dog fur! I really dont mind shedding I love to brush my dogs, it is a great bonding time. That is so funny that yours smelled like fritos, So did my ferret!

I did tell my son it would not be the same as training the shelties, but I think he is looking forward to training a dog that is not so sensitive. With the shelties if you even say "no" to loud you hurt their feelings. Plus he is tired of kids saying he only wins because he has shelties.

I figure how bad can it be, after all we have raised dobermans, poodle, lab, and boxer before, and i think the poodle was the worst for chewing! She ate a hole in my wall and was a proffessional counter surfer Seriously though before i make my decision I am going to have him talk to some breeders before we do anything.
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Old 04-27-2010, 03:48 PM   #9
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you can also call rescue centers and ask for the back story on the huskies. most people can't devote the time to the upkeep of a husky or dont' realize that they will get into everything. you are bound to get the ugly on huskies if you ask why they were surrendered.
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