What makes the Pomsky so special? In addition to having one of the cutest names in the canine kingdom (a mix of Pomeranian and Siberian Husky that rolls off the tongue a bit easier than “Huskeranian”), this crossbreed carries a larger-than-life personality in a petite body, says Kim Baumann, vice president and director of education for the American Pomsky Kennel Club (APKC) and owner of KP Pomskies. “They make you laugh, and their antics brighten your world,” she adds. Looking like a miniature wolf doesn’t hurt, either.
Pomskies have only been around since 2012. Due to the size difference between the two breeds—Pomeranians tend to max out at around 7 pounds while Huskies can weigh as much as 65 pounds—first-generation Pomsky puppies are born to Siberian Husky dams and Pomeranian sires via artificial insemination. The result is a fun, family-friendly pup that can feature traits from both of its parents, like the Pomeranian’s spunky personality and the Husky’s talkativeness.
Caring for a Pomsky
Speaking of those parental traits, both Pomeranians and Huskies are known for being highly intelligent and attached to their humans. The Pomsky breed is no different, so you should expect a companion who needs attention and activity to thrive. Boredom can lead to behavior issues, so early training and socialization are musts.
Moreover, while Pomskies are naturals at getting along with humans and other dogs, they may not recognize cats and other small pets as companions right away; therefore, slow, supervised introductions are needed. “But if the pet parent is consistent and quickly resorts to [enlisting the help of a certified trainer or veterinarian] at the first sign of not being able to control the situation,” Baumann notes, “Pomskies can make fabulous dogs.”
Baumann describes the breed’s energy level as moderate to high and says they’re often categorized as “athletic companion dogs.” However, according to the APKC, most Pomskies acclimate to the amount of exercise you provide, whether that’s a 30-minute walk in the morning and evening or hours of hiking or running a day. Their brain needs exercise too, via training, puzzles, and toys.
Pomskies are bred to look like a smaller version of their Siberian Husky parent with the fox-like tail of a Pomeranian. A full-grown Pomsky is 12–35 pounds. They can have brown, amber, green, gray, or blue eyes, and even heterochromia (meaning each eye is a different color). Pomskies have a double coat that can come in a variety of colors characteristic of their parents.
Pomsky Health Issues
Pomskies are considered a generally healthy breed with a lifespan of 12–15 years. However, because the breed is relatively new, we don’t have a lot of data regarding what health issues they are susceptible to.
The APKC has an open health survey where Pomsky parents can submit diseases and issues their furry companions experience. And while the vast majority of pet parents reported no health problems, here are some of the most common issues noted in Pomskies:
When the patella (kneecap) moves outside its normal groove within the femur (thigh bone), this is called patellar luxation (dislocation). This is one of the most common orthopedic conditions in dogs and is particularly common in Pomeranians.
The signs of patellar luxation vary according to the severity of the condition, but include limping, bunny-hopping, and a popping or cracking knee joint. If the patellar luxation is severe enough, surgery may be recommended.
Similar to humans, dogs can be allergic to various substances, including plants, pollen, and food. When these allergens come into contact with a dog’s skin, respiratory tract, or gastrointestinal (GI) tract, the immune system kicks into gear and releases substances that cause inflammation.
A Pomsky dog with allergies can have inflamed and itchy skin; recurring ear infections; hair loss; or rarer symptoms such as sneezing, coughing, and GI problems.
The condition can be managed by combining multiple treatments, including:
Identifying and avoiding allergens
Keeping the coat clean and healthy
Immunotherapy (i.e., an allergy vaccine)
The hip consists of a ball-and-socket joint. If these two interworking parts don’t grow correctly and at the same rate, the joint can become loose and unstable—a condition referred to as hip dysplasia. This can lead to permanent joint damage, including osteoarthritis, as the cartilage wears away and scar tissue and bone spurs develop.
Common symptoms include:
Trouble walking up or down stairs
Reluctance to get up or jump
Shifting weight to front legs
Loss of muscle mass in back legs
Baumann says responsible Pomsky breeders will use DNA testing in an effort to avoid passing on the health conditions Pomeranians and Siberian Huskies are predisposed to.
What To Feed a Pomsky
Every Pomsky is different, so it’s important to partner with your veterinarian to determine the type of food that will be nutritionally complete for your pet’s age, size, and health history.
No matter if a puppy or a Pomsky adult is joining your family, ask the previous caregiver (the breeder or foster parent) what they have been feeding the dog. If you would like to provide a different dog food, transition your dog to the new diet over a week or two to avoid upsetting their stomach.
How To Feed a Pomsky
How Much Should You Feed a Pomsky?
The nutritional label on your dog’s food bag should include a recommended daily feeding guide that will give you a general idea of how much to feed your Pomsky based on their weight.
However, it’s best to discuss the matter with your veterinarian. They will tailor their recommendation to your dog’s weight, body condition score, lifestyle, and health needs.
Nutritional Tips for Pomskies
As long as your dog is eating a complete and balanced diet of dog food approved by the Association of American Feed Control Officials (AAFCO), your Pomsky typically won’t need anything extra. However, your vet may recommend specific supplements if your pet develops a health condition.
Behavior and Training Tips for Pomskies
While all dogs benefit from early training and socialization, these commitments are especially important when caring for a smart, active dog like a Pomsky. With consistent direction, they’ll flourish.
Pomskies are bred to look like a smaller version of their Siberian Husky parent with the fox-like tail of a Pomeranian.
Pomsky Personality and Temperament
Pomskies are brainy pups, so don’t let that mind go to waste—in part because boredom can lead to behavior issues. The breed does best with regular physical exercise, mental activity, and human interaction. The more time you spend with your dog, the more you’ll get to enjoy their fun, spunky personality.
The APKC’s open health survey shows that some Pomsky parents have noticed separation anxiety in their pups. Pomskies are highly loyal dogs who get very attached to their human companions, so it isn’t surprising that many experience stress when their people leave them behind.
If you notice signs of separation anxiety, like pacing, excessive barking, loss of appetite, destructive behavior, and toileting accidents, schedule a veterinary visit so you can rule out any underlying health problems and work toward a solution.
Pomskies don’t tend to be as vocal as their Husky parent, but they may “speak” more than the average dog. Early training can help keep the peace in your house and neighborhood.
Pomskies thrive with early, consistent, positive training. Crate training is a great place to start, and it can also help with separation anxiety. If you’d like to enlist professional assistance, puppy training and socialization classes can be helpful. Ask your veterinarian for suggestions.
Fun Activities for Pomskies
Pomsky Grooming Guide
Pomskies have a double coat consisting of an undercoat and a topcoat. According to the APKC, the breed can exhibit three different coat types: standard, wooly, and plush.
Despite their dense coat, Pomskies aren’t particularly difficult to groom—but they do still need regular care.
The APKC says that, except for in the case of a medical procedure or condition, you should never shave your Pomsky. Their coat serves as a natural protective barrier against cold, heat, the sun, and potential irritants such as insects and plants.
According to the APKC, most Pomskies need to be brushed two to three times a week using an undercoat rake or slicker brush. Focus on areas like behind their ears, the backs of their legs, and behind the elbows and armpits. Pomskies should be bathed about once a month.
During spring and fall when the undercoat sheds, take your Pomsky to the groomer for a de-shedding shampoo and blowout. This will help to keep your house (and your dog) clean.
The exact coat grooming routine depends on the dog and the coat type. The APKC offers the following advice:
Standard coat: The standard Pomsky coat has a length of less than 1 inch. Though this tends to require less maintenance than the other coat types, brushing is still necessary at least once a week. Breeders have reported that standard-coat Pomskies shed more individual hairs than hair clumps.
Plush coat: The plush Pomsky coat has a length of 1–2.5 inches, a fluffier texture, and longer hairs on the tail, ears, head, and legs. The plush coat needs to be brushed at least twice a week.
Wooly coat: The wooly Pomsky coat has a length of around 3 inches or longer. Unsurprisingly, this longer hair requires more brushing—several times a week—and a sanitary trim every two to three months.
Though relatively uncommon, it’s possible that your Pomsky will develop tear stains. And while most dogs with tear stains are perfectly healthy, sometimes tear stains can be a sign of an underlying problem, so it’s important to let your veterinarian know if your Pomsky suddenly develops them.
Make a habit of checking your Pomsky’s ears at least once a month, perhaps during bathing or brushing. Watch for signs of an ear infection, including redness, debris, odor, and pain. If you notice a change in your dog’s ears, contact your veterinarian.
Considerations for Pet Parents
High in energy, intelligence, and a need for companionship, Pomskies thrive in settings where they receive consistent attention, direction, and exercise. With proper training and introductions, Pomskies can adapt well to homes with children and other pets, including apartment settings.
Regardless of where you live, whether it’s a spacious house with a large yard in the countryside or an urban condo or apartment, it is important to make plans to meet your Pomsky’s mental and physical activity needs. Daily walks or runs, training sessions, food puzzles, and hiking are all great options for engaging the breed’s brain and body.
And though Pomskies aren’t considered a high-maintenance breed, prospective pet parents should make time for regular brushing and make peace with the inevitably of shedding.
How big do Pomskies get?
The answer largely depends on the size of the parents, which can vary widely. However, the APKC says most Husky-Pomeranian mixes weigh 16-24 pounds. Pomskies have three size categories:
- Toy Pomskies weigh up to 15 pounds and are less than 10 inches tall at the shoulder.
- Mini Pomskies weigh 12–20 pounds and stand up to 14 inches tall at the shoulder.
- Standard Pomskies weigh 20–35 pounds and are 12–18 inches tall at the shoulder.
How much is a Pomsky?
The APKC notes that the typical Pomsky price is between $2,500–$5,000. This depends on several factors, including the quality of the puppy and the parents and how much health testing the breeder does.
If you’re on a budget, Baumann adds that you may be able to find and rehome an older Pomsky puppy or adult for a lower price. You could also let a breeder near you know you’d like to get on the waitlist for a retired breeding Pomsky.
Do Pomskies shed?
Though Pomskies shed fur every day, they shed heavily only during the spring and fall. During the shedding seasons, you may want to have your lint roller at the ready and schedule a visit to the groomer for de-shedding help. The APKC adds that of the three coat types, the standard coat reportedly sheds the most.
Should I adopt a teacup Pomsky?
Behind every tiny teacup Pomsky is a large list of potential medical issues. That’s because while reputable breeders use genetic testing to produce healthy dogs that adhere to the breed standard, teacup breeders tend to skip this step in favor of producing the smallest dogs possible.
These poor breeding practices can lead to higher instances of several medical problems, including patellar luxation, hydrocephalus (abnormal accumulation of fluid in the brain), dental disease, and heart disease.
Featured Image: Golden State Pomskies
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