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Husky - A Strong Working Dog For All Extremes

Aug 17, 2007
The Chukchi people of Siberia are credited with the origin of the Husky, also called the Siberian Husky. These dogs are strong with compact bodies that are made for working, even in the harsh northern extremes. One reason the Husky is so well known today stems from a diphtheria epidemic that occurred in Alaska in the early 1900s. Transportation options were limited and many Husky teams were used to transport the medicines needed to combat the disease. As the media covered the unfolding drama of the illness and its long-term effects, the Huskys' role in the dramatic attempts to save lives became international news.

Unlike some breeds, the Husky comes in a wide array of colors. You'll find some that have very dark coats while others are completely white. Some are mottled or a mixture of colors, including darker hairs over a light-colored undercoat. That means that there are some features common to all Huskies, but the color isn't necessarily one of them.

All Huskies seem to have an alert stance with ears that are almost always perked in an effort to hear everything that goes on in the world. That attentiveness probably dates back to the early Huskies and their need to stay alert in order to survive the harsh conditions of their homeland.

The breeding of the Husky makes them an excellent choice when groups of dogs are used. They were trained to work in teams to pull sleds, and that training has become part of their nature. That's not to say that they don't also bond with their family. In fact, Huskies are often chosen for companion dogs because of their intense loyalty.

One thing to remember about the Husky is that the coat on this dog is very heavy - a fact that allowed it to survive in the cold Northern regions. But that coat also makes it less-than-ideal for hot climates. If you do have a Husky in a hot region, you'll need to be careful that it has the opportunity to stay cool, especially when temperatures become overly warm. These dogs are highly susceptible to extreme heat.

There's no doubt that it takes an intelligent dog to work as a member of a team pulling a sled. There's extensive training involved, even though a natural tendency to do this type of work is required. That the dog can be trained is a fact. That it takes some effort is also a fact. Often, a Husky needs to see some reward before he'll willingly learn new commands, and sometimes even before he'll perform commands that are second nature. That intelligence often makes him need to see a positive end result before he's a willing participant. It takes a firm hand and plenty of patience to deal with these dogs that are not only smart, but also naturally mischievous.

The Husky is usually a very easygoing companion and many families have welcomed these dogs into their homes with great reward. Remember that these are fairly large dogs - often weighing in at more than 50 pounds. But if you have room in your living room and room in your heart, this could easily be just the dog for you.
About the Author
For more information on Husky and other Popular, and not-so-popular breeds of dogs, visit The Working Dog Directory
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