Huskies are one of the most common household breeds in the USA and are forever gaining popularity. Huskies are considered a fun, energetic, social dog that loves human company, but do they have a dark side? Are huskies dangerous?
Although huskies are often perceived as dangerous, they do not hold the typical traits of a dangerous breed. In fact, huskies are naturally friendly and are very welcoming of strangers, which actually makes them terrible guard dogs.
Training and lifestyle is a crucial part of raising a well behaved husky. If done right, it’s extremely likely your husky will be fun, loving, caring and affectionate to you or whoever greets him.
The facts from dogsbite.org
The vast majority of DBRF (Human Dog Bite Related Fatalities) do not come from huskies.
Some of the most recent data is from a 13 year period, 2005-2017 where “433 Americans were killed by canines”. Pitbulls and Rottweilers were responsible for 76% (329) of these deaths. Huskies contributed to 13 out of 433 in those 13 years, just 3%
Labrador Retriever is the world’s most popular dog. A breed that never resembles aggression or is regarded as dangerous. Labrador retrievers sit at 9 fatalities, 4 less than huskies over the 13 year period.
Should huskies, as a general dog breed be considered dangerous when they are so close to the number of fatalities from Labrador Retrievers? A breed that never is regarded as dangerous.
Characteristics that suggest huskies are not dangerous
Siberian huskies have been domesticated for a long time and they are one of the world’s favorite breeds. They are actually considered to be a great family pet for many good reasons so let’s take a look at these positive characteristics.
Huskies are not overly suspicious
Even concluded by the AKC, the Siberian Husky is NOT a breed that is naturally suspicious of strangers or people unknown to them. The strong sociability in huskies actually makes them more inclined to befriend a stranger, not be cautious or aggressive towards them.
Due to the lack of suspiciousness, huskies do not make good guard dogs. In fact one of the last behaviors you can expect to see from a husky when a stranger enters your house is any kind of aggression.
Huskies are friendly and for the most part, sociable
Huskies were originally bred and raised in large packs, sometimes up to 15 strong. Living the pack life leads them to be a very playful and sociable breed.
Huskies although in the beginning may not seem to be a very sociable breed, they certainly have the ability to be just that!
After all, this breed is used to spending their whole day with other dogs and their human tribe. Not only just working, but eating, sleeping, playing, and living was done in constant company.
Huskies crave company (dog and human)
Living so closely with their pack of dogs and humans also made them accustomed to having company at all times, something they really love and need. In general, huskies are ready to make friends with almost anyone in the chance of making a new playmate.
There’s nothing more your husky will love than snuggles up on the couch, spending time with you and your family. This is something that makes kids and huskies bond so well.
How huskies could potentially be dangerous
There are a few characteristics that could be seen as contributors to a potentially dangerous husky. Most of these are not strictly negative characteristics, but one may argue these could lead to a dangerous husky.
Huskies have a lot of energy and need to be stimulated
Huskies were originally bred to pull heavy sled loads across big distances in harsh weather, they are a true working dog that has developed great stamina and energy levels.
It is very important that any husky is adequately stimulated through daily physical exercise AND mental exercise like training.
If this is neglected then it would be normal that the outcome will be bad behavior and destructiveness. This means your husky is a frustrated husky. When dogs become frustrated it has to be released in one way or another, usually being destructiveness but it is not limited to this. It is entirely possible that a frustrated husky could be a dangerous, aggressive husky.
Huskies are classed as a medium to large breed
Huskies are considered to be of medium to large size, the males usually always being on the large end of the scale.
A big dog comes with a lot of strength and power and the Siberian Husky boasts agility as well. This size mixed with their never-ending desire to play, jump and dash around makes them hazard to small children in your household.
Huskies love to play fight and have developed this boisterous behavior from their previous pack life. If proper training is not instilled from a young age, this excitement and jumping up could lead to them taking the playfight too far, not knowing exactly when to stop.
Huskies are independent and stubborn
This one is more subjective and is harder to say whether or not can lead to aggression or dangerous behavior.
Nevertheless, I added this because of how difficult training a husky can be and they famously have a mind of their own. Huskies tend to adopt a strong attitude of “doing what I want… when I want to”
This independency and stubborn attitude could be linked to a less controlled dog that can never be fully trusted.
However, I understand this will vary and is heavily dependant on the training given to a husky from a young age.
The physical appearance of huskies doesn’t help them
Despite the husky’s medium to large build and wolf-like appearances, this does not mean they are wolves or dangerous like wolves, although it’s completely understanding to think they can be.
Despite sharing very close mitochondrial DNA with wolves, so do most other dog breeds, the husky is no closer to a wolf than a poodle is.
The physical aspect of huskies gives them more of a bad rep than what they actually deserve.
Granted, this has nothing to do with their behavior and is something they cannot help.
Ways to prevent your husky being aggressive or dangerous
Assuming you have a husky puppy, you must give all the necessary training from an early age to avoid a badly behaved, uncontrolled husky later on.
With proper training, you are able to have a very obedient, kind and loving husky that never displays aggression or poses a threat to anyone else.
To prevent an aggressive, potentially dangerous husky it comes down to these important points
- Understand dominant behavior and control it
- Properly train your husky
- Exercise your husky sufficiently
- Start socializing early on
Understand dominant behavior (and control it)
From a young age, your husky puppy (female or male) will start showing signs of dominance and will be testing you.
This dominance test can be seen in a lot of different actions and behavior and needs to be understood and addressed right from when you bring him home.
Huskies are a pack dog that needs to know who is boss, a clear hierarchical system is needed in your household and your husky HAS to know he’s at the bottom.
Any kind of jumping up, biting too hard, boisterous behavior needs to be solved with immediate training. It’s a mistake to think this is “ok because they are a puppy” Once your husky is fully grown to be 60lbs jumping up and biting will be a big issue.
A husky who thinks he’s the boss, will for sure cause many issues in your home.
Properly train your husky puppy
Training if you couldn’t tell by now, is the most important overall thing you can do to ensure an all-round well-behaved obedient husky.
Perhaps one of the worst mistakes a new puppy owner makes is thinking they need to wait to start training, or that they “have time”.
Your husky puppy is absolutely more than ready to start a serious training routine. So when you bring them home, basic obedience commands, potty training, crate training, bite training, leash training are all to be implemented.
Thankfully, I have many articles on husky training here on My Happy Husky and one is specially designed for husky puppies: How to Train a Husky Puppy, The Correct Way!
Exercise your husky sufficiently
Huskies are a super high energy breed that needs to be properly exercised in order to be well-behaved.
Huskies can run up to 100 miles per day, without much trouble. This instantly gives you a clear understanding of what we are talking about when we say “energy”
This high energy breed can become frustrated if adequate exercise is not given to them on a daily basis. Frustration can lead to destructive and aggressive behavior.
Huskies should receive around 2 hours of intense exercise per day in order to release their energy and be sufficiently stimulated.
It’s also a good idea to have interactive toys and administer obedience training on a daily basis for mental stimulation. Another important requirement for this intelligent breed.
Start socializing early on
One super important part of any puppies development is proper socialization from a young age.
Proper socialization has a big impact on preventing aggressive behavior in your husky later on.
Socialization helps your puppy learn than other dogs and people are there to be friendly and not a threat. A well-socialized dog better gets along with all other dogs and people for their whole life.
The recommended window of opportunity where socialization is best given is as early as possible, 3 weeks old is a good place to start.
From 16 weeks old your puppy can indulge in things like puppy playschools and dog parks, something that is highly recommended for maximum social experiences. Constantly bumping into new puppies, dogs and owners will broaden their ability to be around other animals and people without fearing them. Animal Humane Society
Are kids safe around huskies?
This one is debated heavily, and of course, is an area where a lot of caution should be taken regardless of opinions. I have an interesting article completely dedicated to answering the question are huskies good with kids
There have been a few incidents in 2019 where huskies have caused injuries to kids. This will always be a very sensitive topic with people defending the kid and others defending the husky. This clash of opinion will go on forever, without a conclusion…
Huskies are currently the 14th most popular dog breed according to the AKC and are a very well accepted family dog.
The Siberian husky is considered a loving, affectionate intelligent dog breed that in general does not pose a threat to kids or young children.
However, it’s important to clarify that due to their size, desire to play mixed with their high energy, this may be too much for a young child and obvious hazards are present. Intentionally or not your husky could easily play too rough for a kid. You should never leave a dog and a child unsupervised.
So, are huskies dangerous dogs?
It’s a fair conclusion to say that ANY dog, not just a Siberian husky could be dangerous under certain circumstances.
The Siberian Husky as a general dog breed is not a dangerous dog, and with proper training and care will be a loving, affectionate, sociable dog without any issues.
Remember there are exceptions for every breed and if a husky due to whatever reason is aggressive, they certainly have the size and strength to be a dangerous threat to anyone, child or adult.
Are you thinking of getting a husky? If you are then do not hesitate, the husky is a wonderful breed. The most important things to be sure of is having the time, commitment and focus for their exercise and training needs. If you do, there will be no issues.
Thank you for reading, If you have some advice or tips, please comment below and help the many other husky owners that will read this article after you!
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