Anyone experienced with huskies? General Chat

Discussion in 'German Shepherd Dog' started by dianeburms, Dec 10, 2023.

  1. dianeburms

    dianeburms New Member

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    Anyone experienced with huskies?

    My daughter has her heart set on a Siberian husky, she has been begging for several of years now.
    Here is her backstory... She will be 12 years old in 20 days. She is dyslexic and is mildly autistic, Asperger's to be specific. She has always had trouble in school and with being in a social setting. So I promised her last year that if she tried harder in school and brought her grades up; if she raised a guide dog puppy for 4h and does most of the care; and if she does extra chores around the house to help "pay" for the puppy we would get her a sibe.

    So far she is doing great, she has raised her grades from almost all Fs to C's and D's, she even joined choir and band! She is helping out with extra chores and we currently have a 2 month old black lab that she raising. Of course at her age she is not perfect she does complain some about the extra work, but all in all we are happy with the progress she has made.

    Her plans with the pup is conformation, sledding/bikejoring, and obedience/rally I am not sure how competitive she will be but I am happy she wants to actually compete. I have bought her books on huskies, and she has been looking up information on the internet.

    I have started the researching breeders, though it will still be a year or 2 before we actually bring home a puppy. The problem I am having is my daughter is pretty specific on what she wants. She wants either a black and white or a grey and white with blue eyes. All the reputable breeders I have looked at state on their website that the application will be thrown out if you request blue eyes, as they do not breed for eye color. I totally understand not breeding for eye color, but if my daughter is willing to wait for a certain color then why cant we request it. Any suggestions on how to talk to the breeder about this issue?

    Does anyone have any tips or advice on raising a husky, like I said we have started to research all the care and we are in the process of making our yard more husky friendly/escape proof. I just want some personal experience stories I can show my daughter.
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  3. dianeburms

    dianeburms New Member

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    thanks in advance for any help
  4. Toedtoes

    Toedtoes Member

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    Chris B likes this.
    My dad had a show husky when we were growing up. As an adult, I fostered a husky mix. Here is what I can tell you.

    A husky is smarter than you are. A husky is smarter than your daughter. A husky is smarter than your entire family put together.

    A husky knows this. A husky takes perverse joy in pointing it out to you every moment of every day.

    A husky brain is never at rest. Never Ever. Even in deep sleep, that brain is thinking. It is coming up with clever ways to remind you that he is smarter than you could possibly think he is.

    A bored husky is not at home. He's left to have some fun. It doesn't matter that you "dog proofed" the yard. He is smarter than you. He got out in that way you never even imagined he could possibly get out.

    You can run a husky for a month straight non-stop. The moment you get home, you will be dead on the couch unable to move. He will have found the stash of wrapped Christmas gifts in the shower stall (don't ask how he got into the closed bathroom - he's a husky), dragged them outside, opened all of them, buried the kid's barbie, shredded the $300 tennis shoes, kindly disassembled the new laptop, came back inside, removed the hall rug from the house, ate the container of cat treats (yes, I know you had them in the locked storage room above the garage - he's a husky), and is now staring at you with leash in his mouth becaue it's time for his evening 50 mile jog.

    Here are a couple actual occurrences by the two huskies in my life:

    My dad had put a storm door in the big garage door so he could go in and out to the driveway without opening the entire thing. The dog would open the door and go off visiting friends daily. My dad put a lock on the door. The dog learned how to unlock it. My dad ran electrical fence wire around the door and had it on a switch so he could turn it on when he put the dog out. The dog quickly learned to just step on the door frame when he first went out. If he got shocked, he waited until someone used the door and then checked it again. If he didn't get shocked, he opened the door and went visiting friends.

    The first day after I got my foster that I had to go to work, I put her and my two dogs in the backyard. Two hours later, I came home for my breakto check on them. As I walked in the house, I felt there was something different, but I couldn't explain what it was. As I walked through the kitchen, I thought "did a pipe burst? Why is there water all over the floor?". I opened the back door and found all three dogs standing there smiling at me. Out of the corner of my eye I saw something moving. Hey, how'd my cat get out here??

    Well, that dog had played with the other dogs, torn up a few things, played in the water bowl until the water was gone, then realized that if she pried open the chain link fencing to the side yard, she could access the catio and climb in through the window to go inside and play for a while and dump that bowl of water, and then come back outside afterwards. In literally, two hours.

    When I finally got her a home, it was with someone I knew, so I got updates constantly. They took up agility. This dog was faster and better than any of the border collies or jack russells in the group. She was amazing! Then they would go to the competitions. They'd walk into the ring and as soon as the leash came off. Gone. That dog was out of the ring and playing with all her doggy friends. Her Mom called after this had been going on for months asking me why. I told her: "she knows she can do the course and win; you know she can do the obstacle course and win; she knows you know; that's good enough for her she'd rather go play."

    She would jump up on the top rail of the fence and watch the neighbor kids play in their backyard. She never joined them. It was enough that all the parents KNEW she could if she wanted to do so. She chewed up every sprinkler head in the yard - even with hours of daily agility practice, cart pulling, etc.

    In the end, you will never outsmart a husky. You will spend their entire life just trying not to fall too far behind. They will challenge you. They will never be cuddly, affectionate dogs. They are fiercely independent. They have been bred to go weeks pulling a sled in the worst of conditions, finding their own food (mushers didn't carry dog food in those days because cargo room was money), and knowing where they AND the sled needed to go at every step. Life as a pet is no where near enough of a challenge for them. They need their brains worked. The adage you often hear with dogs "a tired dog is a good dog"? Well it doesn't hold true with a husky. Because running them tired doesn't work their brain. That's like giving Einstein 1st grade math problems to keep him busy.

    I love huskies. I admire huskies. I would never bring home a husky. I don't want to work that hard every day for 12+ years.

    So, if you are going to do this, you need a plan. And you need a plan B. And a plan C. And then you need to adjust each plan daily, if not hourly.

    Proofing your yard - you need to put in chicken wire a good 2 feet below ground because he will dig under. He will jump over a 6ft fence. He will open gates and doors. He will wait quietly for hours until someone forgets to lock the gate - them BAM he's out. When he's laying peacefully in the sun, look at his eyes. You will see his brain twirling and swirling away inside his head. He's coming up with a new idea. And it's gonna be a doozy of an idea. You might want to get some caffiene while you can, you're gonna be busy.

    And no, this does not get better with age. A 5 year old husky, a 10 year old husky - it doesn't matter. So, in 6-8 years when your daughter is potentially starting to go out on her own? You will have a 4-6 year old husky who needs all that attention and activity and mental stimulation and one less person around to help.

    As for eye color and breeders, it basically comes down to this: a good breeder doesn't breed until they have a waiting list. This is to prevent them from having too many puppies and too few homes. If each person on that waitlist says "I'm willing to wait until a grey and white puppy with blue eyes comes along", then they end up with a bunch of puppies no one wants and a really long waitlist of picky people.

    And, when they do have a litter, they will sell the best of the litter as show dogs. This is because having champion show dogs in the line increases the value of future pups. So, they don't want to promise you a particular color because they may only have one of them and it is full blown champion quality. If they promise you that color, then they either have to piss you off and say "sorry, changed my mind, you can't have this one" OR they lose their future champion to be a pet dog. They want to decide which pup goes to which home in order to protect their lineage, their investment, and to avoid disputes. You get the puppy they offer you - if you're lucky, you might have a choice between two puppies.
  5. Hailey Gambrel

    Hailey Gambrel New Member

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    Helidale and Toedtoes like this.
    I have a husky named Liberace (lib-er-a-chi)
    Huskies are very very very stubborn dogs that is very well known and there not easy I will tell you that. I’m 21 and lib is a lot for me to handle let alone a 12 year old. Then again everyone is different I dont know your daughters patience level and handleability, but I’m sure a husky should be a first time dog, there’s plenty of breeds that look closely but are much less stubborn and will be easier to manage.

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