The Siberian Husky is well known for its stunning wolf-like features (although it really has as much in common with a wolf than any other breed of dog), thick coat and unusual personality that lends itself to a certain type of owner. They are a breed of dog that will insist on an owner that is equally as crazy as them. For you do need to be just a little bit crazy to own a dog like this. When you buy a Husky you are entering into a full-time, long-term relationship and it will change your life. If you weren’t fit before the Husky, you soon will be as their exercise requirements are pretty extreme.
The Husky certainly has a preferred climate but that doesn’t mean you can’t own one wherever you are. However, there is another question as to whether you should. So, for those of you located in Florida, let’s answer the question that I know so many of you have been asking!
Can you own a Siberian Husky if you live in Florida? Yes, you can own a Siberian Husky dog if you live in Florida. Although the humid subtropical climate in this region is far hotter than what is ideal for this breed of dog, with careful consideration to the welfare of the Husky both during exercise and when inside your home, it is possible to keep one as a pet in Florida.
What Is The Average Temperature In Florida?
So, what kind of temperatures are typically seen in Florida?
We can see from this that Florida can be pretty warm during the Summer but when you understand that the Husky can overheat at temperatures of 0 °F then you will understand why some people say that owning a Husky in this kind of climate (humid subtropical) would be a problem for the Husky! The problem lies with the Husky’s coat of course. The dog was designed to survive (and thrive) in temperatures as low as -70°F, not the rather more pleasant (in our eyes) Florida summer. The Husky has a double-coat and we’ll come on to that in a bit but you have to be a lot more careful when out with the Husky in these conditions.
Although the summer’s in Florida are quite hot and humid (not a good combination if you’re running with a thick coat on) the winter months don’t get particularly cool either. Even on the coldest of the Florida Winter nights, it would still most likely be warmer than the hottest day in the Siberian summer!
Can The Siberian Husky Live In Hot Climates?
Yes, the Siberian Husky can live in hotter climates. In fact, if you want more information about this subject then I have a whole post dedicated to it, which you can check out here (opens in a new window).
In summary though, yes – you can live with a Siberian Husky in Florida, however – you do need to take some precautions. Firstly, your home should be air-conditioned and as most homes are, this shouldn’t present a problem. Where the problem comes is when you need to take them outside for their exercise. As I mentioned earlier, the Husky can overheat at very low temperatures and you will not be able to exercise them as much in cooler climates, of course. Direct sunlight should be avoided wherever possible and even in the shade, you must give them regular breaks with fluids.
As long as you’re sensible with the exercise and have somewhere cool for them to rest when they come back into your home, you should be fine.
However, with so many dog breeds available you should certainly consider a breed that is more suited for this climate than the Husky.
What Makes The Siberian Husky Special?
Anyone who owns or has even met a Husky will know that there are many special things about them that set it apart from other dogs. They are not aggressive in any way (so don’t try and use them as a guard dog) and they are also not possessive. It is these two qualities, combined, that make them one of the best family dogs you can get. They are usually very safe around children and other dogs and won’t become territorial in your home. Another reason why children love them so much is that they are also quite mischievous (read: naughty) and I think kids like this 🙂
The Siberian Husky loves being in the company of humans. In fact, if it doesn’t have some kind of human company then it can quickly show signs of separation anxiety which can then equally quickly turn into
The Husky has an in-built prey-drive that can cause problems if it sees a small mammal when outside. Before you know it, the Husky will be running after it and won’t give you a second thought! This is the reason why it is not recommended to keep a Husky in a home which also has cats. Although there are many families who have reported no problems at all with these living arrangements, there are also reports from families where the Husky has lived in perfect harmony with a cat for years, only for one day when the Husky saw the cat as prey and the consequences were disastrous.
What really separates the Husky from a lot of other breeds though is their passion for being outside and exercising. Well, they don’t see it as ‘exercising’ of course, they just love being outside and running about. You need to be fit to keep a Husky happy as you’re going to have a hard time keeping up with it. You will need to commit at least two outdoor sessions a day with each one lasting around an hour. This can not be a gentle plod around the neighborhood. You need to get the Husky up to running-speed and keep them there for as long as possible. The limiting factor won’t be when they get tired, it will be when you get tired.
Where Did The Siberian Husky Come From?
The Husky originated in Northern Asia, the Chukotka Peninsula in Siberia, to be precise. Here, the Husky lived with the Chukchi people for hundreds and hundreds of years. In fact, without the Husky (it was not known as the Siberian Husky until it left Siberia) the Chukchi may not have lasted as long as they did. The dog was bred for a specific purpose over many generations. They needed a dog that would be able to run long distances at speed without much rest (it would pull the food that the hunters caught from coastal regions to inland regions where the people were based), without much food intake as it was scarce. It also had to be a gentle breed as it would spend the cold Winter nights living with the Chukchi families.
The Husky also had to be an intelligent breed as it needed to not only understand the orders it was being given but it had to carry them out also! All these traits, that were bred into the Husky over generations can still be found in the Husky that we know and love today.
The Husky stayed in Siberia until the early part of the 20th Century when it was imported into Alaska, primarily as a sled dog. From here, over time it was seen in more and more places and with the advent of social media and the sharing of images, word got out that this was a particularly terrific breed of dog. It started to be seen in a lot of locations where you typically wouldn’t expect to see it. One of these places would be Florida.
The Siberian Husky’s Coat
The Husky has a special, dense coat so it could withstand the extremely low temperatures it faced when in Siberia. It consists of two layers – a dense undercoat (the primary coat) and a thicker outer coat that consists of guard hairs. These guard hairs help protect the Husky’s delicate skin from superficial injuries and also provides an extra layer of insulation.
This undercoat will ‘blow’ once or twice a year, which basically means it will shed a lot more than usual and this will happen typically during Fall or Springtime. These ‘blows’ are activated by hormonal changes which are triggered by the amount of light in a day. During the spring, the thick undercoat that protected the Husky during the winter will shed (usually in large clumps). It will then re-grow, but a lot thinner for the hotter summer months. This thinner coat provides protection from the sun and also from insects. Then, after summer this thinner coat will come out and a thicker one will grow in its place in time for winter.
So, you can see the problem. The Husky’s coat is not designed for Florida, or any warm climates. But does this mean the Husky can’t live in hotter climates?
Hopefully, this article has been of some help to you if you are considering buying a Siberian Husky for your Florida home. There are quite a lot of things to consider when investigating this, most of them related to the temperature and how much hotter it is than their ideal climate. There are, however, so many other breeds of dog that are great with a family set-up, and handle the temperatures here better, you would not be doing your due diligence if you did not explore other breeds also.
If you’d like to know more about this awesome breed of dog, please check out my Complete Guide to the Siberian Husky – you’ll find out pretty much everything else you could think of about them!