Whether you have a Husky at home and a new kid on the way or you’re thinking of adopting a new Husky companion for your child, one question remains, Are Siberian Huskies good with kids?
You might have gotten mixed messages from your friends or read something negative on the internet. Let us set the record straight once and for all!
Are Siberian Huskies Good with Kids? Are They Good Dogs?
Siberian Huskies are fantastic dogs with a very rich and impressive history! This is a high-energy breed. Your Husky will gladly keep your kids occupied in the backyard for hours! In fact, they will probably tire before your Sibe does.
If cared for in a proper, loving, and nurturing environment, your Husky will grow to become very gentle and sociable!
If you’re looking for an energetic dog that can go for hours and still offer more, the Husky is your breed. These guys were bred to work for long hours, and your Husky will have a near-limitless level of energy.
If you’re looking for a great snow dog that doesn’t mind the cold, Siberian Huskies are perfect for you! They were bred to tolerate very low temperatures, so northern climates won’t bother your pup in the least.
Are you seeking a perfect hiking companion that will gladly join you on your trek? This is the kind of work huskies were literally born for! Your dog will cherish those nights out at the campground and long days hiking.
You might even be able to prevent future animal dander allergies from developing in your child!
Are Siberian Huskies Aggressive?
Siberian Huskies have the capacity for aggression and can be aggressive, but most won’t be. Most Siberian Huskies are fantastic companions! There are several factors that go into the answer.
Dogs are naturally very social animals. They are happiest when living with others, whether that be people or animals. Wolves or most other canids will live in groups in the wild. Aggressiveness would be counterproductive to this lifestyle.
No dog, no matter the breed- whether it be a chihuahua, Bull Dog, Mastiff, Rottweiler, or any of about 200 other breeds, is inherently born aggressive! Aggressiveness is a learned response to a dog’s environment.
He might act out aggressively if a dog feels threatened. If a dog was poorly trained and has been taught other humans are frightening and mean to do him harm or steal from him, he certainly could respond aggressively!
There are inherited genetic factors that might predispose a dog toward aggression. For example, dogfighting was legal in the 1600s in England. These dogs were bred partially for their aggression toward other dogs and would be genetically prone toward animal agression.
They still could have been fantastic animal companions if raised to be friendly around other dogs! Properly nurturing a dog has an enormous impact on his personality.
Siberian Huskies weren’t bred for their aggression. They were bred to work alongside their human owners. Your Husky shouldn’t be aggressive, but training and socialization have an enormous impact!
Are Siberian Huskies good with kids, or are they aggressive? This really depends on you and how you raise your dog. Most Siberian Huskies are great with kids!
Socializing a Husky
It’s best if you begin socializing your husky as a young puppy. There shouldn’t be much of a break between social contact from littermates to your home and family. The most important time period to begin socialization is between 8-12 weeks!
Your Husky puppy is soaking up information and new experiences like a sponge during that third month! He will welcome new encounters, as long as you ensure they are happy ones.
Socializing an adult for the first time can be much more difficult, especially since you’re dealing with a powerful animal that could easily cause harm.
You want to wait to socialize your Husky puppy with outside animals until he’s completed those core DHPP vaccines. These are given in a series of three, at around 8, 12, and 16 weeks.
How do you socialize a young puppy?
Step One: Let Your Husky Explore
You’ve just brought your new puppy home. This is a completely new environment from everything he’s ever known to this point. It can be a huge adjustment for him!
Allow your pup to explore his new living environment. Encourage him to smell furniture, flooring, and new areas. Show him where he can go, and block off areas he shouldn’t. Allow your pup to adjust to this new home before you introduce other variables.
You’ll want to offer constant, close supervision at all times! Puppies can easily find trouble if there is trouble to be found, so crate your pup when you can’t supervise. Puppy-proofing his environment is also important (no choking hazards, all wiring out of reach, etc).
Step Two: Adjusting to Touch and Interaction
Great socialization involves interactions with family, friends, and even strangers! Without overwhelming your puppy with too many encounters at once, begin introducing one family member at a time.
Now is the time to introduce kids to your husky!
You always want to supervise, especially if it is a young child you’re introducing. Your Husky puppy is very small and delicate! This means he is easily injured. A fall, such as a drop, could prove fatal. Supervise like the child is interacting with a newborn infant.
- Encourage belly rubs and gentle petting!
- Touching and gently holding the paws will make future nail trimming easier.
- Allow the child to stroke your Husky’s tail and fur. Be very firm about the “No Pulling” rule!
- Encourage your child to play simple games with the new husky.
You’ll want to be very careful not to frighten your new puppy! Always use a cheerful, happy tone of voice. Shower your puppy with enthusiastic praise for these interactions! You’re showing your puppy all human touches will always be friendly and enjoyable.
Step Three: Short First Encounters
Don’t do too much too fast. Begin with a few members of the family, or just you. If you want your Husky to adjust to several people at a time, gradually add a new person to the mix!
The very first interaction with your child should be brief and mild! Don’t overwhelm your pup. Play with your little one a little bit near your child or allow him to roam around and investigate freely before you jump into the child holding your husky.
You eventually want to socialize your puppy to larger gatherings or parties, so he is accustomed to louder noises and many strangers, but not yet! Save this until your pup is a few weeks older. You’re taking baby steps for now, one child/person at a time.
Be very careful when allowing small children to pick up or handle your dog. Even if the dog isn’t injured, a drop can be very traumatic!
Dogs naturally don’t perceive hugs the same way humans do, and this could make your Husky feel uncomfortable. Watch for:
- Licking the nose/lips excessively
- Frequent yawning (very common sign of anxiety)
- Tail tucking
- Arched back with low posture
- Frequent wining when being handled
- Leaving the room whenever child is around
Step Four: Schedule Playdates/Interactions
It’s hard to socialize a new puppy properly! Most adults have full-time jobs. In the era of Covid-19, many work from home but still have to work.
Yet we can’t stress the importance of socializing a puppy enough! If you train your dog anything in his life, this might just be the most important.
Scheduling playdates or interactions will help you stay organized and ensure things get done! Try making a weekly checklist. Ask your friends or family if they can have their child over for about 30 minutes of mild puppy play 2 or 3 times a week. Talk to your neighbors.
Puppy “obedience” classes are fantastic! The social contact your puppy will get is going to be much more valuable than any obedience skills he’ll learn. There might not be children there, but your puppy will be able to interact with other puppies and adults!
The Great Race of Mercy
If you’ve ever seen the Disney movie Balto, you’ve heard about “The Great Race of Mercy”. As legend would have it, several children in the Alaskan city of Nome were suffering from Diptheria, back in the winter of 1925.
Diphtheria is a terrible disorder that can lead to difficulty breathing, heart failure, and even death! The American CDC recommends vaccinations even today. Several children had already passed at this point!
Travel by air or train was impossible. The trek was too far and treacherous to be made on foot, and today’s snowmobiles didn’t exist. There was only one option left- sled dog.
Twenty mushing teams raced against the clock to transport lifesaving serum from a hospital in Anchorage, 674 miles away! The lives of about 10,000 were at risk if they didn’t make it in time. Though they succeeded amidst terrible conditions, several dogs lost their lives along the way.
Is a Husky a Safe Family Dog?
A husky can be a wonderful family dog! These are sweet, gentle animals, always eager to please. Because they are so high-energy, Huskies can entertain the kids for hours!
There are a couple of key concepts that need to be considered.
A Siberian Husky is a very high-energy breed! These dogs were bred to work all day in very harsh environments, and their energy is nearly endless. A Husky can become destructive if his exercise demands aren’t met.
A frustrated Husky will find ways to entertain himself. He might become an escape artist, dig holes throughout your yard, or even threaten other neighborhood animals he hasn’t been socialized with.
Are Siberian Huskies good with kids? Your husky should get along wonderfully with your children! You’ll still need to socialize slowly while always supervising, just like you were introducing another pet to the home.
Because of their intensely high energy level, your Husky might unintentionally knock over any small children or toddlers. This is true for many large to giant breeds.
You’ll want to supervise extra closely if you have a child younger than 6 at home.
Health Benefits for Kids Growing up with a Dog
We think every child should grow up with a dog companion! This is a fantastic life experience and offers integral social contact many kids lack (especially when homeschooling).
More Physical Activity
Siberian Huskies have a boundless amount of energy, and love to play! Your husky will keep your child busy for hours if he can. Any exercise, walks, or play your child can offer his pet would be gladly welcome.
Higher Self Esteem
When tested, children with an animal companion to help care for have shown higher rates of self-esteem! Children always have a companion. Though dogs aren’t human, your child will never be alone!
Tasks should always be appropriate to the age of your child. Children still don’t have the maturity level of an adult and should never be completely responsible for the life of any pet.
Enhanced Cognitive Abilities
Research has shown some young children who enjoy talking to pets, whether it be praise, offering commands, or simple jabbering, have shown enhanced cognitive development!
Even simple training techniques or behavioral learning can help improve your child’s problem-solving skills.
Decreased Chance for Allergies
There are many studies that suggest young children raised with dogs are much less likely to develop allergies to animal dander! There aren’t many dog breeds that shed as much as a Siberian Husky, so this is perfect.
Are Siberian Huskies Good with Kids?
Siberian Huskies are very affectionate with a wonderful nature, always eager to please! On top of that, your 4-year-old Husky will probably easily outpace your 6-year-old child when it comes to playtime.
You will have to socialize your Husky with your child, and socialization might be more difficult if you’re dealing with an adult that has never encountered children. The same is true for any dog breed! Socialization is best begun during those first few months.
Young children should never be left alone with Huskies, or any dog breed. Always supervise your young children!
If you’re asking yourself “Are Siberian Huskies good with Kids?”, the answer is YES! This is an ideal breed to raise around your child.