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Different Types of Huskies

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Published on
Monday 21 June 2021
Last updated on
Tuesday 9 May 2023
what are huskies
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Many adore Huskies, they are actually one of the most purchased breeds in the world. So if you are considering buying a Husky, it is important that you know all the different types of Huskies so you can choose the right dog for you. The appearance of the varying Husky types is not all that is different between them. From varying grooming needs to personalities, these dogs each have their own perfect home and most suitable owner. Therefore, this list can help you to identify which type of Husky is best-suited for you and your lifestyle.

We will be outlining the two main Husky types and those that many will confuse with or are similar to Huskies. Their pros, cons, and appearances will be explained so you can differentiate them easily after finishing this article. So let’s take a look!

Two Types of Huskies

There are actually only two breeds of Huskies. Many find this surprising because of the number of similar-looking breeds or breeds that are sled dogs. Take a look at those that truly are Huskies.

Siberian Husky

The Siberian Husky is arguably the most well-known Husky breed. Originally this breed was used as both a companion breed and a sled dog by the Chukchi people in northeast Asia. Due to the cold temperatures there, selective breeding led to this breed having a thick double coat with water-repelling abilities. Furthermore, this breed was raised and worked and worked alongside many of its siblings for its life, hence why many believe this is a very social dog that enjoys the company of others as well as humans.

This medium-sized dog can reach up to 30 inches in height and possess powerful muscle and strength. This tied to their occasional mischievous nature is why training them early is so important. They are also a very social dog that is incredibly loyal to their family, so socialization training shouldn’t take too long with them. Their thick coat requires regular grooming but no one can argue how magnificent and beautiful it is in appearance.

Alaskan Husky

The Alaskan Husky is the equally beautiful counterpart to the Husky name. They are not yet AKC registered but are classified as a working dog breed. Due to this, they have been bred for strength, speed, and their personality and body reflect this. They are not a pure breed but instead are a designer dog that exist for the purpose of sled pulling.

Due to their designer status, their looks are not consistent. With any color of fur presenting itself and its size alternating, it can be a little confusing. However, what is always recognizable is the similar appearance to that of a Siberian Husky, but with a much leaner, but taller body. As for their nature, they require a lot of exercise to combat their high energy levels, but ironically, are a very calm dog. Arguably, more calm than the Siberian Husky and are therefore, experts will often recommend them to families.

huskies are sled dogs
Huskies are very active and strong dogs/

Dog Breedds That Look Like Husky

Many people can confuse a lot of breeds for being a Husky. We will break down the top ten Husky-like breeds and explain a little bit about them.

Alaskan Malamute

An Alaskan Malamute has a very similar appearance to the Siberian Husky, however it does have a few recognizable differences. Firstly, this is a much large and more muscly dog. It has a much less narrow frame and face and overall looks fuller and heavier. Experts believe this breed to have some wolf genetics in them from long ago which is thought to influence their size. Behaviorally though, this breed is very gentle and affectionate with people. They love to play and place their family above everyone else. However, this breed often prefers the company of humans over dogs. A singular dog household may be more suitable for this breed therefore.

Samoyed

This pure white, sled pulling dog is another medium breed on our list. Breeders playfully recognize the Samoyed for their smile which was bred into the breed to avoid drooling and ice forming on their face during sled pulling. Due to their thick coat, they require regular grooming and provisions to colder areas such as cooling mats. This breed is very loving, but excessively so. People will often describe them as demanding and destructive in order to achieve that goal. They are also known to suffer from separation anxiety due to their need for human contact. So you may want to consider purchasing anti-anxiety aids such as an anti-anxiety vest.

Labrador Husky

The Labrador Husky is a crossbreed between the Labrador and Husky that was originally bred in Canada. No one knows exactly why this cross was created other than for another sledding breed. However, some suspect that the Labrador was used to help create a dog with further waterproof fur and to add strength for sled pulling without altering the appearance too much. This breed is a lovely family dog that is playful, friendly, and very loving. They also possess the high intelligence of the Labrador, which makes training not only easy but very enjoyable for them.

American Klee Kai

The Alaskan Klee Kai is known as a small Husky, the term Klee Kai actually means little dog in Inuit. Interestingly though, this breed comes in three sizes: toy, miniature, and standard, and therefore ranges from a very little dog to a medium breed. As the name suggests, this breed comes from Alaska and was bred to be a Husky-lookalike companion. The breed comes in four different colors including all white, and white combined with either black, red, or gray. As for their nature, they are the most independent breed we have discussed so far. They are very intelligent but can be stubborn and anti-social with both dogs and humans.

American Eskimo Dog

The American Eskimo Dog, actually bred in Germany, is known for their intelligence. As a result, this breed became well-known for being easy to train. Soon they became one of the most popular circus dog breeds and were also used in film and TV for tricks. This is another breed that comes in three sizes: toy, miniature, and standard, but they are still usually classified as a smaller dog. They are a very social breed and love to interact with just about anyone, play and training are also a must to keep them mentally stimulated. Known for their white, fluffy coat, they will need a lot of grooming to maintain their fur’s color and softness.

Greenland Dog

Greenland selectively bred the Greenland Dog for a cold-bearing sledding dog. This is a large breed of dog with a lot of muscle mass. Unfortunately, their numbers are low but were even lower in previous years. It is thanks to Greenland’s efforts in maintaining the numbers of this breed that they still exist. They created a number of projects to maintain high numbers and monitored all those that are around with registering and micro-chipping. This dog is very loyal and hard-working but only if it has been well trained and has a firm owner. They can be independent and stubborn so need to be well socialized and trained from a young age.

Miniature Husky

Bred to be an exact miniature replica of the Siberian Husky in personality and appearance, the Miniature Husky really achieves that goal. They look exactly like a little Husky and even behave similarly as well. Their temperament is a very social and happy dog, they are friendly to everyone they meet and crave human attention. Hence why they may also suffer from separation anxiety. Do not doubt them because of their size though, they require a lot of play, exercise, and mental stimulation. Be aware though that if you are considering purchasing this breed, they do suffer from many health issues. Eye diseases, hip and elbow dysplasia, and skin problems are but a few of their health concerns.

Sakhalin Husky

The Sakhalin Husky is a very rare sledding dog breed. Initially they came from Sakhalin Island Russia, hence their name. This breed is of a medium size that many are currently trying to save from the brink of extinction by local breeders in Japan, who also call the breed the Karafuto Ken. Usually they are black or black and white, although they can come in a variety of different colors. As a sled dog, they will also need a lot of grooming done on their coats to maintain a high-quality. This is a very hard-working breed with a high level of intelligence. They are very calm and love to be affectionate to their owner without being clingy.

Chinook

The Chinook is a US-bred dog that, although they can be a sledding dog like a Husky, are rarely mistaken for them. They have much shorter coats, often colored red to chestnut, and can have floppy or pointed ears. Furthermore, their work expands from sledding to search and rescue, carting, and even agility. They are a strong but slender dog breed and are quite agile. As for their personality, they are very intelligent and loving dogs. They are also very gentle which is a factor that makes them great for households with children. Just be sure to keep training them and walk them a lot to make sure they are not getting bored.

Mackenzie River Husky

The Mackenzie River Husky is a name used to describe a collection of sledding dogs. No dog put into these categories are purebred or of a specific breed, but from those that look like or are Huskies. Usually they are another long, double-coated dog breed that is quite large and muscular. The colors range considerably though, with the most common being brindle or tri-color. These dogs love the company of other dogs and bond with them heavily. They also have a high level of intelligence, but they are not the easiest to train due to their independence. It also means it can take a while for them to form bonds with their owner or family.

husky temperaments
Huskies have proven to be great companion dogs!

Husky Types: FAQ

We have found a selection of frequently asked questions concerning the different types of Huskies.

How many different huskies are there?

The two main types of Huskies include the Siberian Husky and the Alaskan Husky. The Siberian Husky is the predominant Husky breed with the Alaskan Husky being a working dog breed. There are many husky look-alike breeds though that are mistaken for the Husky, which is where confusion often comes in.

Are huskies related to wolves?

All dogs have descended from wolves but that does not mean they are closely related to wolves. They are as closely related to wolves as many other dog breeds that do not appear to look like wolves. A Husky can still mate with a wolf and reproduce young so they are still closely linked, but they are not closely related.

Can huskies live in hot weather?

Huskies can live in hot weather, but they do need extra care taken to make sure they are not overheating. Refer to a groomer to make sure their coat is short enough but never shave your dog’s fur. This can lead to skin and fur problems. Furthermore, making sure your dog has access to shade and other cooling areas such as a cooling bed will help. Finally, always give them fresh access to water to avoid heatstroke.

Are huskies easy to train?

Huskies have the capabilities to be trained because of their intelligence, however, their independence makes training difficult and will require a lot of time. Start training them from a young age and be sure to use positive reinforcement to help them to learn.

Why do huskies shed?

Many dogs with long fur have what is known as a double coat, and these ‘blow’ twice a year in preparation for different seasons. This is where they shed their old coat for either a thicker winter coat or a thinner summer coat. Therefore their shedding is to prepare for new temperatures.

As you can see, many will use the term Husky for so many different kinds of dogs. Many of these are sled dogs, although some are companion breeds or other working dogs. Each dog has different needs, care, and behaves differently. So it is important to assess each breed and husky-type as an individual. It helps them to get the best life and you to get the best match.

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