Any movie buff with a particular partiality towards animals will in all probability be in love with the movie 8 below. And if one were to watch it, so would they fall in love with the movie; if not the movie, then the protagonists for sure. And no, the late Paul Walker is not being talked about here, but the fascinating team of eight absolutely adorable snow dogs. Another movie with this breed in the lead is Snow Dogs where a Miami dentist inherits a pack of snow dogs, which he eventually learns to love and trains them for the annual event.
There is just something so endearing about huskies that one can’t help but feel an instant connection to them. There is a reason so many movies and books have huskies as a central character. These gorgeous furry creatures are not only one of the oldest breeds, but are some of the most fiercely loyal dogs one would come across. Their lovable, playful temperament is loved and appreciated by one and all. The Siberian husky as the name suggests, originated in Siberia and is characterized by its dense coat. It belongs to the Spitz genetic family. The thick furry coat, triangular erect ears and markings are distinctive.
The snow clad mountainous terrains of Northeast Asia was where this breed was first brought in to use as a working dog. They would be used to pull heavy loads of luggage and people through long distances over some of the roughest terrains in the most unpredictable climatic conditions. The ancestors came from some severely harsh and chilling climates in the Siberian Arctic. In spite of the weather, the breed has always been extremely active, energetic and resilient to all environments. The breed was eventually imported to various parts of the world, including Alaska, Canada and the United States. Because of their ability to persevere through the snow, they were originally only used as sled dogs, but as their popularity grew they adapted to be used as family dogs or even in the show business.
The dog will ideally live for 12-14 years weighing 16-27kgs growing up to the height of 51-64cm. to help them adapt to the cold weather, they are born with a thick undercoat and a soft outer coat. Such an arrangement makes it able to survive in Arctic temperatures that could be as low as -60 degree Celsius. What is interesting is that in spite of being ideally suitable for cold climates, their coats can adjust to warmer temperatures with relative ease. The outer coat reflects heat in the summer and can naturally change to adapt to the hot temperatures, although weekly grooming is essential in all seasons. They exist in all shades of black to white with distinctive patterns and combinations, sometimes with a hint of brown or red. They can have eyes ranging from blue to green to brown or amber. Some huskies are known to have eyes of differing colors or part-colored.
The breed name Husky originates from the word Esky, as a derivative of Eskimos, their first human companions. Their uninhibited loyalty and faith in their owners has been well documented in movies based on real life, such as 8 Below, when in spite of being temporarily abandoned in an Arctic storm, they survived and waited for the return of their owner for over 50 days, all by themselves. Their undying love and affectionate nature makes them an all-rounder of sorts. They are prone to display signs of their ancestral behavior. This includes tendency to howl instead of bark. They love to play and run. Because of their inherent traits similar to that of an escape artist, fences as high as 2 meters are recommended.
They are incredibly protective of children, and need constant human companionship. One must make sure to provide them with their daily dose of intense physical activity. Because of their predatory instincts, they might not be accepting of other animals in the house and can become a source of worry in presence of small animals. While at the same time, this trait makes them a formidable form of safety and security against intruders. They tend to need training lessons to differentiate friend from foe and other obedience issues. They are extremely intelligent and are trusting companions. Most of their health issues are genetic such as seizures or ailments related to eye defects. Because of their medium to large size, lack of exercise makes them prone to bone issues such as hip dysplasia. When used as sled dogs gastric and breathing difficulties become increasingly common.
They are cute and cuddly and are extremely attractive for young children, so much so that the Siberian Chukchi people used to have the dogs look after their children. They are gentle in their demeanor, yet have a tendency to be destructive, roam and run away. But with their genetic directional skills, they easily find their way back. If trained well when young, they make great family dogs. They are independent in a way, but still enjoy human interaction. Their outgoing nature is just another addition to the exhaustive list of their qualities, which just makes them even more desirable.