Huskita - Detached but LoyalHome » Dog Breeds » Huskita
The Huskita is a large to giant mixed breed the result of crossing the Siberian Husky with the Akita. He tends to have a detached or aloof manner but is a very loyal dog. He is multi-talented participating in areas such as weight pulling, carting, sledding and guarding. He has a life span of 12 to 15 years.
|Here is the Huskita at a Glance|
|Average height||22 to 26 inches|
|Average weight||70 to 120 pounds|
|Coat type||Dense, harsh, thick, water-repellent|
|Grooming Needs||Moderate to high|
|Shedding||Moderate to high|
|Tolerant to Solitude?||Moderate|
|Tolerance to Heat||Low to moderate|
|Tolerance to Cold||Excellent|
|Good Family Pet?||Good|
|Good with Children?||Good with socialization|
|Good with other Dogs?||Moderate to good with socialization|
|Good with other Pets?||Moderate to good with socialization|
|A roamer or Wanderer?||High|
|A Good Apartment Dweller?||Low to moderate|
|Good Pet for new Owner?||No|
|Trainability||Fairly difficult to train|
|Exercise Needs||Fairly active|
|Tendency to get Fat||Fairly high|
|Major Health Concerns||Bloat, eye problems, SA, Hypothyroidism|
|Other Health Concerns||Hip dysplasia, obesity|
|Life Span||12 to 15 years|
|Average new Puppy Price||$500 to $1200|
|Average Annual Medical Expense||$485 to $600|
|Average Annual Non-Medical Expense||$500 to $600|
Where does the Huskita come from?
The Huskita is also known as a hybrid dog or a designer dog. Designer dogs refer to the mixed breeds that have grown in popularity in the last two decades. While mixed breed are no new development, the deliberate mixing to create just a mixed breed just because it is trendy to do so is! Some of these dogs are more popular and successful than others and that draws the attention of puppy mills and disreputable breeders pout to make money only. If you are interested in one of these dogs do some careful research before you make a purchase. With such recent breeding there is not really a history or even specific origin details known about most designer dogs, the Huskita included. Therefore we have to look to the parent breeds to see what traits and so on are going into him.
The Siberian Husky
Coming from a Siberian tribe of nomads called the Chukchi, the Siberian Husky was bred to pull sleds and be great family companions. They were so trusted in fact with children that they slept together so that the children got warm, comforting beds who would also protect them. In 1908 in Alaska the gold rush happened and the Husky was used for pulling sleds. They were also entered into sled dog racing like the All Alaska Sweepstakes. When the borders were closed by the Soviets in 1930 and no more Huskies could be imported in, the breed that were already there remained and thrived.
Now he is still a pack animal but just uses his owner and family as his pack. This means as owner you have to establish yourself clearly and firmly as pack leader. The Husky will test this position now and then. He has a lot of energy and if not given enough mental and physical stimulation he can become very destructive and poorly behaved. He can also get like that if left alone for long periods as he can suffer from separation anxiety. Otherwise he is fun, endearing and friendly. They love attention and a chance to show off and entertain. They do not make good watchdogs in fact because they are so friendly to anyone.
In Northern Japan there is a province called Akita and this is where the dog gets his name as it is thought he originates from there. He has been around since at least the 17th century and was bred for the purpose of hunting game, small and large, and guarding the Japanese royal family. It was actually Helen Keller who introduced the dog into America, she had admired a story about the dog when there and the Japanese who thought highly of her presented her with an Akita puppy. The story told of a famed Akita who was so loyal and devoted to his professor owner he would come meet him at the train station every day when he returned from work. When his owner died that dog continued to visit the station at the same time every day for another 10 years until he died. More Akitas were brought back to America after World War II.
Today there is a split over this breed with some following the American standard and some following the Japanese. The Akita has proven himself to be loyal with the story above but also to be brave. London Zoo has an orphaned tiger cub and they wanted an animal to help raising it and they chose an Akita puppy. The tiger and the puppy grew up together successfully. The Akita while being faithful and brave can also be willful though. He is intelligent but does not do well with other dogs. He needs a firm and consistent owner and lots of exercise. If he is not trained and socialized properly he can become aggressive.
The Huskita is a very loving and protective dog, alert and able to be a watchdog. He can be somewhat aloof or detached because of his independent side but with his owner and family he is loyal and affectionate also. He is known to be a strong dog but with his willfulness this combines into a dog not ideal for first time owners. How he reacts to strangers really depends on which dog he takes after more, if more like the Husky he will be fine, if more like the Akita he may consider them a threat.
What does a Huskita look like
This is a large to giant dog weighing 70 to 120 pounds and measuring 22 to 26 inches in height. He has a tail that curves, a medium sized muzzle and head and his nose color varies with his coat color. His coat can be dense, harsh, thick and water-repellent and common colors are white, gray, tan, black, amber and brown. His eyes are oval shaped and medium sized and ears are triangular and stand erect.
Training and Exercise Needs
How active does the Huskita need to be?
He needs to be kept fairly active in order to keep him happy, healthy and better behaved. He would enjoy things like long brisk walks, jogging or running, trips to a dog park, going for a swim. He is not best suited to apartment living. If under exercised he can act out from boredom. He should also have access to a yard where he can play, and some game he would enjoy with you or family are typical dog ones like fetch, tug of war, Frisbee and so on.
Does he train quickly?
This is not an easy dog to train due to his independence, stubbornness and instinct to test for dominance. You will need to be patient, firm and consistent as well as very confident at all times. If he senses you are hesitant, unsure or not committed at any time he will try to dominate you. If you need to it is certainly worth investing in professional help. Ideally only experienced owners will adopt this dog. Early training and socialization are important as their strength and tendency towards aggression could be a problem when they grow up if not gotten a handle on when they are still young and impressionable. With a good trainer they will learn well, they are intelligent.
Living with a Huskita
How much grooming is needed?
This is a dog with moderate to high needs when it comes to maintenance mostly because of the shedding. He will shed throughout the year anyway but then will do seasonal shedding also. How bad this is or how long it lasts depends on the climate where you live. In colder climates it is less, or in climates that maintain a cooler climate all year long. There will be a lot of brushing and vacuuming if you choose this dog! He will need bathing as and when he gets dirty enough to need it. Ear cleaning can happen once a week using a damp cloth or cotton ball. Brush his teeth at least three times a week and his nails will need clipping if they get too long.
What is he like with children and other animals?
With early socialization and training he can be very good with children and with other pets. It also really helps if he has been raised with them. Children need to be taught too how to play nicely and not to mess with his food. If he leans more towards the Akita and he has not been socialized or trained he will not do well around children who are naughty or mean to him and may snap at them. He might also view other animals as prey to chased. It is best not to have the Huskita with other dogs, he does better if he is the only one.
He is a good watchdog but does better living in a house with a yard rather than an apartment. He does very well in cold climates but is not at all really able to handle anything too warm or hot. He will need to be fed 4 to 5 cups of high quality dry dog food each day, which should be split into at least two meals. It is important to watch his food and treats because he could easily become overweight.
There is the possibility this dog could inherit the health issues his parents are prone to. To get the most healthy dog buy only from the best breeders and ask to see health clearances. Those issues include Bloat, eye problems, SA, Hypothyroidism, Hip dysplasia and obesity.
Costs involved in owning a Huskita
A Huskita puppy costs between $500 and $1200 at the moment but these prices can fluctuate depending on where you live, health and age of the puppy, how reputable the breeder is, what is offered with the puppy and how trendy this mixed breed is. Medical costs you may need to cover if the breeder does not are deworming, blood tests, micro chipping, neutering and shots which will be $290 to $330. You will also need basics that include a collar, leash and crate which will cost $160 to $200. Ongoing costs each year for non-medical things like a license, training, food, treats and toys come to $500 to $600. Ongoing costs each year for medical things like pet insurance, flea prevention, vaccinations and check ups come to $485 to $600.
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While this dog is certainly not for new owners and will mean dedicating yourself to his exercise and grooming and training needs, the work you put in will be well rewarded. He is very loyal and would be a great companion to someone who knows what they are doing and can commit.