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Siberian Husky

Siberian Husky

Quick Facts

Genus: Canis

Location: Originally from Siberia, now found domestically around the world.

The Scoop

The Scoop:

The original sled dog

About 3,000 years ago, the nomadic Chukchi Indian tribe of the Siberia region of Russia needed help. Their people traveled the snow and tundra far and wide in search of food and survival, and needed help transporting their goods.

Enter the Siberian husky, a dog bred specifically by the Chukchis over many generations to pull their heavy sleds across miles and miles of barren, frozen landscape.

The original sled dog was born.

The breed remained specific to Siberia — hence its name — until the early 1900s, when they first were transported to Alaska to perform similar duties there. People began to take notice of the breed when teams of them began beating bigger and more established dogs in popular sled races in the region.

A Siberian husky team famously saved the city of Nome, Alaska, from a diphtheria epidemic in 1925 by delivering antitoxin across 674 miles through some of the most brutal conditions on Earth — in a stunning 5½ days. Fame from that excursion led to a media tour for some of the dogs across the United States, where Americans quickly fell in love.

They have become popular house pets, where they show a tendency to be extremely energetic and require a lot of exercise. They also have become a popular show dog because of their unique features.

A few other facts about the Siberian husky:

  • Siberian huskies usually have white paws and legs, but their coats can be a variety of colors and patterns. Most common colors are black and white.
  • Huskies were bred mainly for running, and they are able to carry large loads over long periods of time without warmth or even food.
  • The “Siberian Swirl” refers to Siberian huskies curling into a tight ball to sleep, with their tail covering their nose for warmth.
  • Siberian huskies can have blue eyes, brown eyes, a mix of both — even one eye of each color.

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