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Alaskan Husky

An Alaskan Husky is not in actuality a breed of dog, but rather a category of dog. All breeds of highly efficient sled dogs fall under the Alaskan Husky category, as the Alaskan is the breed of choice for world-class dog sled racing and sprint competition. The majority of Alaskan Huskies have pointy ears and a tail that curls over their backs.

Vital Stats

Height: 23 to 26 inches
Weight: 40 to 60 pounds
Lifespan: 12 to 15 years

Physical Characteristics

Alaskan Huskies resemble Siberian Huskies in appearance. Males range from 40 to 60 pounds and females average 35 to 48 pounds. Because the Alaskan Husky is more a general category than a strict breed, it comes in any color and any pattern of markings.

The Alaskan Husky is larger and leaner than the similar looking Siberian Husky. Where Siberians often have blue eyes, or a combination of blue and brown, Alaskans’ eyes are generally brown.

It has good vision and a strong nose due to the inclusion of sight-hound in their genetics. Swimming and retrieving do not come naturally to the Alaskan Husky, but it can jump up to six feet from a sitting position.

Personality and Temperament

The Alaskan Husky tends to vary as much in temperament as it does in appearance. It is often affectionate with people as well as other dogs, and is are known for their enthusiastic cuddling. Though the Alaskan Husky is usually thought to be a "jumper," it usually jumps on people out of affection, not dominance.

The Alaskan Husky is loyal but fiercely independent, and will not stick close if let off-leash. It is an adventurer at heart and loves car rides and changes in routine. It can be willful and mischievous, and difficult to housebreak without a firm hand leading them. If you don’t have a lot of time to spend with a dog, an Alaskan Husky will not be the breed for you.


An Alaskan Husky’s coat tends to be self-cleaning, much like the similar Alaskan Malamute or Siberian Husky. Therefore, it doesn’t tend to get stinky and only need infrequent bathing. Shedding occurs once a year as a seasonal event during spring; it does not lose hair year-round.

The Alaskan Husky is extremely energetic, with seemingly unquenchable endurance. It does not do well in an urban apartment environment as it need a constant source of exercise. A spacious home with a large yard is ideal for the Alaskan Husky.


The Alaskan Husky lives approximately 12 to 15 years. It is generally considere to be healthy breed, but tends to fall victim to certain strains of genetic health problems similar to those found in purebreds. These may include progressive retinal atrophy, which culminates in blindness and hypothyroidism, and a congenital deformation of the larynx, which causes the dog to make a wheezing sound when breathing; earning Alaskan Huskies the nickname "wheezers."

History and Background

The Alaskan Husky, though not a recognized breed on its own, originates from the cross-breeding of multiple other breeds. The purpose of breeding an Alaskan Husky is to create the best working dog possible, so the bloodlines will depend on the specific purpose the Alaskan Husky will be used for.

A racing sled dog, for instance, may be any combination of husky and purebred pointer or hound, depending on the need for distance or sprinter speeds.

Originally, Alaskan Huskies were developed by mushers (the human dog sled racers) from the different bloodlines of native Inuit dogs. Some of the main breeds used now in developing Alaskan Huskies include the Eskimo dog, Siberian Husky, Greyhound, and German Shorthaired Pointer.

Comments  4

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  • There's No Such Thing
    09/07/2014 02:54am

    There is no such thing as an Alaskan Husky! You either have an Alaskan Malamute or a Siberian Husky, or you have a mongrel. Mongrels are just dogs made up of mixes of any breed, so you don't really know what's in them or what they will turn out like. Mongrels have no breed specifications and can not be registered, and all Kennel Councils worth their weight will not recognise any mongrel.

    Pure breds are recognised and have far more in depth knowledge and specifications. Also these are the only type of dog allowed to be shown at dog shows.

    Please don't make up breeds that don't exist, you just confuse people and this info is not correct as there is no breed by this name.

  • 01/07/2015 10:11pm

    Alaskan Huskies, while not a registered breed, are not mongrels. Mushers take very special care in breeding these athletes. Indeed, for some kennels the blood lines are known going back decades. What DragonTemple6 fails to understand is that the Alaskan Husky, or Eurohound or Greyster or any other sled dog line, are bred for performance, not appearance. See: “The Alaskan Sled Dog – a Genetic Breed Apart” http://www.genome.gov/27540617. The musher doesn’t give a crap what the dog looks like so long as it has a drive to pull and run for a hundred miles a day. So there is no breed standard that could be used in a show ring. Although there are a few racing lines of Siberian huskies, for the most part this breed has been ruined by show breeders who have no interest in what this dog was originally meant to do. In fact, in mushing circles they are jokingly referred to as Slowberians. This is not unlike what has happened to the Labrador Retriever – it has been bred to win in the show ring and these “flabador retrievers,” as some refer to them, are no longer a useful hunting dog.
    One last comment: All dog breeds at one time did not exist. They were made up just like the Alaskan Husky – they are the creation of man. In most cases these dogs were meant to do a specific task and that task was never to look good in the show ring or satisfy some arbitrary standard of beauty set by a kennel club.

  • 10/31/2015 06:32am

    MusherT nice post, I guess some people are just to upper to see dog as they should be,Show dogs are good looking dogs,but so are the working dogs of any breed,even mix, again Thank you for a good post

  • 01/01/2016 01:23pm

    Read the article before flicking your fingers across the keyboard. The article stated several times that the Alaskan Husky isn't a pure bred.



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