Huskies are energetic and free-spirited dogs. Though they can be a little mischievous, they’re generally good and sweet-natured dogs. But as a parent with young kids, bringing home such a big and energetic dog will always be a cause for concern.
Most Huskies get along well with older kids because they’re sociable and outgoing dogs. And since they’re often raised in packs, Huskies treat family members with sincerity and affection, including the kids. However, Huskies can be a danger for small children. While they may not intend to hurt a child, they can easily do so because of their lively temperaments.
Huskies are no doubt some of the best dog breeds you can find for any family. But before you bring one into your home with children, there are things you need to be aware of and prepare for. That said, here’s a parent’s guide to raising Huskies with kids.
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Husky Temperament for Kids
Before a parent brings a dog to a house with children, it’s important to learn about the temperament and personality of the breed. And according to Canna Pet, Siberian Huskies have the perfect temperament that make them amazing playmates for kids.
These dogs are free-spirited and good-natured, especially when interacting with humans. With dogs, they’re the same, though they require sufficient socialization.
If you plan on keeping your dog in the house for long periods of time, a Husky may not be the best fit. They’ll need plenty of exercise and they love being in the outdoors. Jogs, long walks, hikes and swim sessions are ideal.
They’re known to be a little mischievous, but it’s really their curiosity that gets them into “trouble.” To many owners, it seems as if Huskies were born to have fun. These dogs will play every chance they get.
It’s worth noting that they’re independent dogs with the ability to go on their stubborn streaks. And because they love to run, they should be kept on a leash at all times. It doesn’t take much for a Husky to run off chasing a squirrel.
Overall, they’re some of the most affectionate and loyal dog breeds you can find. With a friendly and cheerful vibe, it’s hard to go wrong with a Siberian Husky.
3 Reasons Why Huskies are Good with Kids
Huskies are eccentric dogs, at least according to many owners. However, it’s all part of their charm and it’s a big reason why they’re so loved within the dog world.
But are their quirky personalities and temperaments a good match for owners with children in the home? Here are three reasons why Huskies and kids can mesh together like peanut butter and jelly.
1. Huskies Are Loyal to All Pack Members
Siberian Huskies are undeniably some of the most loyal dog breeds. In fact, there are few dogs as loyal and loving as the Husky. They’re just stubborn sometimes. And according to the AKC, one of the Husky’s best temperament qualities is loyalty.
So why is this trait so crucial for your kids? What this means for your children is that they’ll have a canine companion that’ll always their backs. Huskies will look out for them and can be a little protective (but not possessive).
I would say my Husky girl is very loyal. She’s pretty much my shadow and is protective of me. If she’s not right next to me she has to be able to see where I am.– Leilatank (Reddit)
Combined with a friendly demeanor, a Husky will never intentionally hurt a small child, let alone a family member that’s a small child. It’s just not in their DNA.
Many Husky owners have told me that their dog doesn’t seem loyal. But just because they don’t “obey” a command doesn’t mean they don’t have loyalty.
In reality, Huskies are just independent-minded dogs with a bit of stubbornness. However, when the situation calls for it, their immense loyalty will shine.
2. Huskies Have the Energy to Match Your Kids’
Kids can be a handful. And depending on how old your children are, you already know they can be rowdy, energetic and somewhat adventurous (at least before they “crash”). The good news is that Huskies are pretty much the same.
Though these dogs can definitely outwork your kids any day of the week, they actually have the energy to keep up with them. Not all dog breeds are capable of keeping up with kids, especially if the children are quite rowdy.
In addition, some dog breeds may be much more likely to respond aggressively. For instance, it’s a lot more likely that a smaller Chihuahua may snap back at rowdy behavior.
So. Much. Energy. I’ve noticed that letting my husky run around is the only ‘activity’ that’ll actually tire him out.– Kristen B. (Husky owner)
Provided that your kids are old enough, a Husky will be a great way to “kill two birds with one stone.” At the end of the day, the hope is that the kids and dog will tire each other out. It’ll make life easier for parents – trust me.
3. Huskies are Sociable, Friendly Dogs
Has anyone ever told you how great of a guard dog a Husky makes? I would guess, probably not. This is because they’re way too friendly and playful for that. Huskies would probably greet the intruders with hugs and kisses.
They’re nice dogs, largely due to their sociable nature and personalities. Whether with other dogs or humans, they just want to be your friend and play, play, play.
It’s not in their nature to be aggressive. Rather, Huskies are curious about humans and tend to develop great relationships with most people, no matter their age.
With that said, you can see how this personality trait transitions nicely into a household with older kids. More often than not, the Husky will love meeting your children. And with enough opportunities to play together, it’s inevitable they’ll develop a strong bond.
Raising Huskies and Infants
When I say “infants,” I mean babies, toddlers or small children. And if you have one in the house, here are things to consider before bringing back a Husky.
The good news is that Huskies are not big barkers. As an experienced newborn parent, I know that loud noises and babies don’t mix well. There’s nothing worse than your dog waking up your toddler after you had just put them to sleep.
And it’s not just with babies, barking can even cause anxiety with sensitive small children. So, bark-heavy dog breed like the Corgi or Beagle may be a problem for infants if they’re not properly trained.
Just be aware that Huskies are much more of a howling dog. Though this may be slightly better than sharp barking, it can still upset infants. However, it’s possible to train your Husky to “be quiet” when in the home.
Introducing a Husky to a Newborn
Infants are much more vulnerable than a child. So, you should absolutely always keep a close eye on any interactions between a baby and Husky. No matter how “well-trained” you think your dog is, they can still be unpredictable.
It’s very likely that your Husky will give off the same love and affection to your baby too. However, the process will be gradual and does require a proper introduction and socialization.
If you’re expecting a baby, then there will likely be a lot of changes around the house. Start these adjustments well before the baby arrives. This way, your Husky won’t associate the changes with the baby.
Slowly start to lessen the amount of attention you give your Husky. Make sure to start this weeks before your baby arrives. A decrease in play will just seem “normal” once the baby arrives.
It’s no secret how great a dog’s nose is. They pick up the slightest scents. So, you might want to start adding new baby scents around the house. The can mean baby powder, lotion, baby foods and more.
Finally, you can play audio of babies. It can be of baby crying, laughing or anything really. The dog just needs to adjust to life with these sounds.
Raising Huskies with Kids
As mentioned, we think Huskies and children are nearly a match made in heaven. And if you think about it, both kids and Huskies have similar personalities: energetic, lively and mischievous.
But just because they’re similar doesn’t mean the relationship won’t require some work. Here are some things parents should be aware when raising Huskies alongside children.
Training the Children
Yes, you read that right! Your Husky isn’t the only one that needs special training. In this case, you’ll need to teach your kids how to play with and respect Huskies (or all dogs).
Some older kids can be extra rowdy when it comes to playing with the dog. For example, I’ve witnessed first hand of children trying to sit on my Corgi and ride her like a horse. It was terrifying.
Although Huskies are likely to withstand the rough play, children need to learn what is acceptable and what isn’t when playing with dogs.
With enough abuse from children, it can increase the Husky’s likelihood of reacting in an aggressive manner. And as parents, we want to minimize this as much as possible.
Don’t be afraid to set ground rules for your children when interacting with your Husky. Rules such as the following make a lot of sense:
- No pulling on the dog’s tail or ears.
- No trying to ride the dog’s back.
- Leave the dog alone when he’s eating his meals.
- Don’t put your face too close to the dog.
- Don’t make loud noises (yelling) around the dog.
- Never run away from the dog (may trigger dog’s instincts to chase).
Of course, you can add more or take away any of the mentioned rules as you see fit.
In the beginning, you’ll want to socialize the kids with the Husky as much as possible, but always while supervising any and all interactions. With some patience, they’ll be good friends in no time!
Training Huskies to be Around Kids
Thanks to the stubborn and independent nature of the Husky, this can be more difficult than training the children, surprisingly.
First, you’ll need to show your Husky that you are in charge – you are the alpha of the pack. Without this basic step, there’s a chance they’ll do whatever they please. This means you should never let them get along with bad behaviors.
Next you’ll need to teach your Husky basic commands that may be useful while they play with children. These commands can be: stop, down, get off, come and sit. If you need help teaching your Husky these commands, check out this useful guide by the AKC.
When training your Husky, make sure to always use positive reinforcement. This means to reward them for good behavior. Never use violence with your Husky, as they don’t respond well to it.
Tire Out Your Husky Before Playing With Kids
If you don’t already know by now – Huskies are ultra-energetic dogs. They can (and do) literally run for tens of miles at a time. So as you can imagine, Huskies have a lot of pent-up energy that needs to be released.
If you fail to provide them with the bare minimum amount of physical activity, they may show destructive behavior around your kids. That’s something no parents want.
With that said, Huskies need more than 2 hours of exercise each day (according to The Kennel Club)! It’s definitely a lot and not every owner can provide this much.
However, if you completely neglect their activity needs, you’re asking for extra energetic and crazy play time. They might even jump around and run circles around your kids.
So, make sure you give your Husky what they need. It also helps if you have an enclosed large backyard for your Husky to roam free when you’re busy.
Is Your Husky Good With Kids?
One of the best ways to gauge how well (and often) a Husky will get along with children is by asking real Husky owners themselves.
So we surveyed the popular Husky Subreddit and other popular forums to ask owners whether their dog gets along with their kids. Here’s what they had to say:
Real Owner Answers:
1. Herculesandwinter says: “Huskies love people and kids. Hang in there and give it some time and you will see his real personality. There awesome.”
2. Spinwizard69 says: “Huskies love kids!!! They’re so tasty and they can’t resist. In all seriousness, kids are the fun part of the pack. As long as the kids respect the dog and there is no history of dog abuse, it will be fine.”
3. Eartboundxplor says: “There’s really no dog as perfect for crazy kids than a husky. They’ll keep them occupied for hours at a time…its great.”
4. Rippinglegos says: “Our first husky loved our kiddos and so they are well adjusted. For reference, the youngest child of ours is 3 and a half.”
5. Simpsoncantsing says: “We have a 4 y/o Husky that we adopted about a year ago. Of course we were nervous since we have a 5 year old boy. But they got along GREAT from day one. They’re best friends now.”
6. Koisuru says: “Huskies can be great with kids. Most of them tend to like pretty much anyone they happen to meet, and that includes children.”
7. Sakusaki says: “There’s not a single bone of aggression in my husky. She’s played plenty with my nieces and nephews with absolutely no problem, not even accidents.”
8. Klawtastic says: “I have a 2 year old husky that absolutely loves kids. I lived by a school for handicapped kids and everyday walking her she would lick the kids hands through the fence.”
Is the Husky Right For My Family?
So, are Huskies right for your family with kids? It really depends. In order to foster a great relationship between your Husky and children, it takes some work.
You’ll need a lot of patience training your dog. Plus, you’ll need to be aware of the physical activity that these dogs demand. That said, Huskies are not ideal for busy families.
For families that plan to explore the nature and play a numerous of active games, a Husky will thrive. They aren’t large lap dogs by any stretch.
And because they’re such affectionate dogs, they need the love and attention as well. They may seem independent at times, but they care a lot about their pack.
If you can provide all this and develop/nurture the perfect environment for your Husky, your kids will grow up with a special companion they’ll never forget.
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