DescriptionSiberian Huskies (usually shortened to 'Huskies') are a short-medium haired, large-sized dog breed. They are loyal, mischievous and affectionate pack dogs who will do everything to please their owners. Their fierce independence, intelligence and curiosity make them interesting and entertaining companions, but they can be very challenging to own if you are not experienced with training and socialising dogs — this isn't a breed recommended for first-time dog owners.
NeonatalDuring the first 4 weeks of your Husky's life, they should spend most of their time with their mother and litter-mates. It is highly unusual for the puppy's owner to care for them during this time and is best left to a responsible, reputable breeder. Your puppy's body will double in weight as their muscles, organs and bones develop.
|Nutrition||During the neonatal stage, your Husky puppy will get most of their nutrition from their mother's milk. At around 4 weeks you may wish to introduce a mush of minced protein such as beef, but always consult your vet first before changing your puppy's diet at this stage.
|Health||During this time it is important to monitor your Husky for any infections, diseases or birth defects. Puppies are unable to urinate or defecate by themselves initially, so their mother helps them but may additionally require your assistance.
Keep your vet's contact details close by and educate yourself thoroughly on this stage of puppy development. By the end of this period, your puppy will be mobile and will explore the world mouth first — be sure to keep choking hazards and toxic foods out of their reach.
|Behaviour||During most of this time your Husky puppy will be asleep or inactive, but they will soon be playing with their brothers and sisters. After 3-4 weeks they will go through as much sensory development as a human baby does in a few months. It is important to avoid disturbing the puppies' mother as she will be likely be protective, but some interaction with the young pups is normal so they become used to human touch.|
WeaningWhen you take your Husky puppy home (usually at around 8 weeks) you should provide them with lots of stimulation and affection. This is a formative time for your puppy and will be when they learn to walk, play, bite, hold their bladder, and interact with others. If you have other pets or children who visit regularly, you should introduce them to your puppy early.
|Nutrition||During the weaning stage, you should slowly introduce into their diet a nutritionally complete dog food which is appropriate to your Husky's large size and young age. This breed tends not to be greedy, but be sure monitor your puppy's weight and adjust the amount of food in their diet from there. You should also familiarise yourself with lists of toxic foods and plants to avoid.|
|Health||During this time you should provide your puppy with a small, shallow bowl of clean water and refresh the contents frequently. Huskies are a relatively healthy breed with few common genetic problems, however, their thick coat requires a lot of attention and will need daily brushing during warmer months when their coats shed. Be sure to acquaint your puppy with brushing from a young age.|
|Behaviour||Due to the changes in their environment, your Husky puppy will be under a significant amount of stress. It's important to provide lots of affection and socialise your young puppy well. Huskies are pack dogs and will respect you as their leader, but you must establish yourself as the alpha from the beginning. Establish consistent boundaries and be firm, but not harsh, so that your puppy has a clear understanding of the rules.|
PuppyBy the time your Husky reaches puppyhood their personality will be well developed and you will have a highly intelligent and affectionate friend who is eager to explore the world around them. Be patient with your puppy, socialise them early and provide them with stimulating games to play with you — these factors combined will help shape your puppy into a well-behaved and friendly adult who will adore humans and other dogs.
|Nutrition||Your Husky puppy's diet should be based around a high quality, nutritionally complete puppy food. You may also wish to introduce them to fresh, lean raw meat — however, don't feed your puppy any meat you would not feed to a fellow human being. You will soon find that your Husky puppy is likely not greedy and will eat until they are full — forgoing the excessive eating habits of other breeds. It is still important to monitor your puppy's food intake to avoid overeating and excessive weight gain.|
|Health||Husky puppies should be frequently groomed to accustom them to the experience of being brushed. During the warmer months they will shed their heavy winter coat, so daily brushing will stop your house from looking like the Siberian landscape your puppy is native to. Bathing should be relatively infrequent as Huskies tend to keep themselves clean — bathing too often while they are young may make them lazy when older.|
|Behaviour||Huskies are intelligent, playful and are generally aware of their own size, which usually makes them well-suited to families with children — however, they should be watched while they are puppies in case they are too boisterous with small children. Husky puppies rarely bark, but will often howl for a variety of reasons ranging from excitement to hunger — this can be trained out of them to some extent but with mixed results depending on the individual.|
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