Until relatively recently, many people weren’t even aware that the Siberian Husky was a dog that you could actually own! However, it has recently become more popular and with the help of social media, there have also been a lot of myths reported about this breed.
So, what are the myths about the Siberian Husky?
The Siberian Husky Ancestor Was A Wolf – FALSE
The Siberian Husky is not related to the wolf. It might look like a wolf and it might sound like a wolf, but it is far from it. The wolf is what’s called an obligate carnivore, or otherwise known as a ‘true’ carnivore. This is an animal that only requires animal flesh to survive (or to be more precise, the nutrients contained within it). A Siberian Husky, however, is an omnivore. This is when the animal gets its nutrients not only from meat but also from plants (amongst other things). In case you didn’t know, you’re an omnivore.
However, I do admit they can really look like a wolf, right?
Siberian Huskies are Aggressive – FALSE
The Husky is about as far from being aggressive as you can get. The fact that they are not aggressive and not possessive is one of the reasons that makes the Siberian Husky so good in a family environment but makes it not so good at other things! Of course, all animals have their limits and if they are abused, pushed into a corner or constantly prodded around by children then it may become scared and feel the need to protect itself.
This last point is why children themselves need to be trained on how to act around a dog as well as the dog being taught.
Siberian Huskies Can’t Be Trained – FALSE
Following on from the last point, we all know that the Siberian Husky is stubborn but that doesn’t mean it can’t be trained. Is it more difficult training a Husky than most dogs? Yeah, probably but is it possible? Totally. Your best bet is to start training the moment their paws enters your home. Be consistent, authoritative and confident and your Husky will pick up commands just like any other dog.
Sometimes they may choose to ignore those commands but with a little perseverance you will end up with an obedient Husky. If you’d like to know a little more about house training your Husky, do check out this post (opens in a new window).
The Husky is Not Safe Around Children – FALSE
It’s just not true that the Siberian Husky is not safe around children. As the Husky is not naturally possessive or aggressive you really shouldn’t have any problems in this area at all. I mentioned earlier that you do need to teach children how to behave around animals and they shouldn’t be considered a toy that they can stick their fingers into and drag or carry around the house. The Husky will naturally not feel any aggression towards the child but the child will need to be taught how to act around the dog.
The very best thing you can do to ensure this happens is to properly socialize your dog at an early age. The idea around this is as that as soon as you get your Husky puppy you introduce them to as many different people (especially children) and animals (especially cats) as possible.
The Husky Makes a Good Guard Dog – FALSE
Because the Husky isn’t naturally a possessive or aggressive dog (I feel like I’ve mentioned this a few times now) – the Siberian Husky truly makes an awful guard dog. It’s just not what they were built for. In fact, if you decide to use your Husky as a guard dog then this is most likely what will happen:
- An intruder breaks into your property – your Siberian Husky hears something unfamiliar and gets up to investigate.
- The Husky finds the intruder who becomes nervous at the sight of your dog – meanwhile, your Husky wags its tail frantically.
- The Intruder considers escaping – your Husky, however, sees this intruder as a potential new best friend.
- The Intruder starts to reverse their steps and looks for the exit – your Husky quickly fetches his favorite toy so they can play together.
- Husky and Intruder become best friends.
So, if you’re considering training your Husky to become a guard dog, think again. It will not end well. In fact, if you have a pet fish then you’ll probably find they’ll do a better job than your Husky 🙂
Siberian Huskies were used in Game of Thrones – FALSE
Unfortunately, this program (that I happen to enjoy) is partly responsible for a lot of Siberian Huskies ending up being looked after by people who didn’t do the proper research before they bought them. They then realize, after a couple of months or so, that they can’t handle the special requirements of the dog. Unfortunately, it is then either discarded or returned.
The tragedy is that it wasn’t even the Siberian Husky that appeared in the program, it was the Northern Inuit breed of dog. This is actually a crossbreed that only originated in the late 1980s and was used because it closely resembles a wolf. There were many breeds involved in this cross, including the Siberian Husky, Alaskan Malamute, and German Shepherds.
The Husky is Stupid – FALSE
Only someone who hasn’t owned a Siberian Husky would say this. Yes, they can be a bit daft sometimes (okay, a LOT daft) but they are far from stupid. The Husky can be trained. Admittedly, it doesn’t always want to be trained and may initially resist, but that doesn’t mean it can’t be.
It’s not just about this though. They will have their favorite toys and they will find these and bring them to you on occasion. Not only will they find their favorite toy but they will find you, too. If you leave the room there’s a good chance the Husky will come looking and work out where you will most likely be.
The Siberian Husky has also been known to understand emotional signals from its owners. It will, if the bond is close enough, be particularly affectionate if you’re upset. Another example is if you’re thinking of going away for a night without telling them. Oh, they will know. They somehow realize that when you’re packing it means that you’re going away and they won’t be happy about this.
One other thing you’ll notice the Husky do is take you for a walk rather than the other way round. They will decide which route you’re going to go out today and they will also know when you’ve turned round to go home, they won’t be happy about it!
The Husky Will Pull You Over All the Time – FALSE
The Siberian Husky isn’t the biggest of dogs and although they have a high prey-drive you don’t need to be particularly strong to control this breed. As long as you have them on a leash and ideally an extendable one, you’ll be fine. Of course, if a small child is taking them out for a walk (not recommended unless properly supervised) then yes, if they bolt and aren’t told to stay then they may, briefly, forget themselves. I would say that this happens certainly no more than any other dog and actually, considering its size I’d argue it happens less than others!
The Husky Isn’t Sociable – FALSE
Are you kidding me? The Siberian Husky must be one of the most sociable breeds of dog out there. Anyone who has one and has seen how excited they get when either someone knocks on the door or when they’re outside getting attention from strangers will know how crazy this sounds.
The Husky absolutely thrives on interaction with other humans. This doesn’t mean they need us though. In fact, I’m sure they’d survive perfectly well without us if we weren’t around as despite being incredibly sociable, they are also an independent breed and they are perfectly able to fend for themselves.
The Husky Can ONLY Live in Cold Climates – FALSE
There’s probably another question which we should ask which is whether the Siberian Husky should only live in cold climates but that’s not what we’re answering here. The Husky was developed and bred for the extreme Siberian winters where temperatures regularly plummet to −50 °C (−76 °F). Now, I don’t know about you but where I live, that’s many times colder than my freezer!
Can they live in climates that are warmer than this? Of course, they can yes and indeed they can now be found all over the world and even in some climates you really wouldn’t expect, such as India and other areas of Asia. Be under no illusion though that their coat and other physical attributes were designed so they could survive in cold temperatures. They were not designed for the rest of the planet.
However, these dogs are doing perfectly well in both Europe and the Americas where temperatures range from the cold to the downright hot. You just need to adapt what you do with them to the conditions they are in. In hot climates they simply can’t run for as long and as fast as they could in Arctic conditions. It would be like playing football, in an Arizona summer, with a woolly jumper on and a thick coat. You could do it, but you wouldn’t perform well and would suffer throughout!
Generally though, in temperate climates, they will do just fine.
The Husky Will Cost You a Fortune in Food – FALSE
The Siberian Husky is unlike a lot of dogs in so far that they won’t eat until they can’t physically stuff any more food into their mouths. The Husky will only eat when hungry and what dictates how hungry they are (apart from their age) will be how much exercise they take on. Of course, if they are running around for hours at a time
So, don’t worry if they’re not eating as much as you think – they know how much they need and won’t eat any more than this. I kinda wish I could do this!