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 Thoughts on an outdoor husky?

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mcp123
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PostSubject: Thoughts on an outdoor husky?   Mon Nov 02, 2015 9:16 pm

Hello!

Our husky puppy Mila is now about 6 months old and she's primarily been an outdoor dog. We live in town and have a fenced in backyard, a nice 5x10' kennel, and an igloo dog house. Since we've gotten her she has been outdoors and been fine. During the day if we aren't home, she is locked up. As well as at night. Recently she has become very attached (mainly after she got spayed). Don't get me wrong, I see this as a good thing, although she likes to sit next to the patio door and bark/yip until she gets attention. We do give her plently of attention and take her on daily walks to burn up some energy. As a result of the recent barking I did a simple search and came across many posts (mainly Yahoo), which people criticize husky owners for keeping their dogs outside. A lot of "if you can't have your dog inside to give constant attention you don't deserve to be a dog owner".

That specific line really disturbed me and made me question if my wife and I are doing things wrong. We both grew up with labs, which were outdoor dogs..which is why we came into this planning on Mila being outdoor. And yes, I understand they are completely different breeds with different needs. She likes her kennel at night but doesn't sleep or go in her doghouse very often

So, I'm just looking for some general opinions on this topic as well as husky owners who have their pup/dog outside (I'm sure Mila is not the only outdoor husky).

We are considering letting her inside during the nights when we are home, crating her inside at night, and keeping her in the outdoor kennel during the day. Currently I have her inside right now and she is just laying next to me, calm as can be.

Thank you in advance!
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aljones
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on an outdoor husky?   Mon Nov 02, 2015 10:04 pm

I think you might be in for a surprise.  First for a bit of very ancient history.  Husky's in their home with the Chukchi were family dogs, they lived with their family, they were the "electric blanket" for the kids (and probably some of the adults as well).  I think it safe to say that any Husky is generally happiest when they're with their family.

I'm trying to think of anyone here who has a Husky as primarily an outside dog - and no one comes to mind.  There probably are some but I think the percentage is going to be very low ...


Quote :
A lot of "if you can't have your dog inside to give constant attention you don't deserve to be a dog owner".

That seems to me to more than a bit extreme.  If Mila is happy outside (not barking, not trying to get out, not making a nuisance of herself) then I'd say that's fine for you and her.  These dogs aren't dumb ... none of them (except for a shitzpoo maybe?) If she knows that you're not at home and she's comfortable being confined (that does prompt the question of how "locked up" is she?) until you get home - then she's smart enough to accept the inevitable.  When you get home and let her out to run (do her duty, etc) the she knows that you're home and when you go in, I'd expect that she'd want to go in with you - that's just the nature of the beast.

Now, I have to laugh a bit; in the past 30 years, I've also had two black labs - they were fine outside playing but when they got done, they wanted to be where I was;  that might mean they got to be a foot warmer (their choice) then that was fine.  They had the option of being outside, they just didn't stay there for long ...
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mcp123
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on an outdoor husky?   Mon Nov 02, 2015 10:19 pm

When I say locked up I am referring her to being in her 5x10' kennel, with water and the dog house.

As for our lab- We lived on an acreage and the lab was a hunting dog (not that makes much of a difference) but he would love to explore and never had the feeling of wanting to be inside. He also had an outdoor kennel, dog house, etc. I guess every dog/owner is different. Where I grew up I cannot name anyone that had an indoor lab. Then again, most people around our area lived on farms and had their 'farm dog' that would roam.
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CoraTheHusky
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on an outdoor husky?   Mon Nov 02, 2015 11:08 pm

Personally Cora is an indoor dog, she sleeps beside me every night and I wouldn't have it any other way. I love having her in the house with me and she also seems to love being with me. My parents (who watch her during the day) even say that she seems sad without me. That being said if your dog is safe well fed and happy then you are doing the right thing for your family.
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amymeme
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on an outdoor husky?   Tue Nov 03, 2015 12:14 am


Wee got Ami to be an outdoor dog to deter deer from destroying our property. We are a newly retired couple so home most of the time. Ami has a 100 ft trolley with a 20 ft tether attached for when we are not home. And a very nice dog house filled with a thick layer of straw. That is inside a 3/4 acre fenced backyard. When we are home, he has free rein of 4 ish acres to roam within an invisible fence.

At first he was outside until about midnight and then crated in an outbuilding at night. He was walked 2-3 miles twice a day and played with several times a day.

Then... we grew more attached, Ami started to come in for bits... Then it was just in the kitchen... Then he killed a rabid raccoon, went into "house arrest". Then we worried about more rabid raccoons... husband started worrying about possible coyotes (I don't).

Then Ami started becoming more playful, more affectionate. Then we took a trip and he stayed in the hotel with us..

Long story short: he now sleeps in our bedroom, has his own chair(the throne), we have a doggy doorbell for him to go in and out when he wants and has become quite the character with loads of personality.

It has b been well worth it... he's much happier, I think.

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aljones
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on an outdoor husky?   Tue Nov 03, 2015 12:53 am

Laughing ... well, we had our farm dogs, too. The were invariably mixed breed mutts who worked with us; the labs were, depending on the time of year, either working dogs or spoiled pets .... but even as working dogs, all the retrievers - of whatever variety - were house pets as well. The mongrels lived in the barns and most of the time went with us when we were out. Bear in mind though that this was when I was a teenager living on the farm - more than a few years ago.
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amozo
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on an outdoor husky?   Wed Nov 04, 2015 3:43 pm

@amymeme wrote:

Wee got Ami to be an outdoor dog to deter deer from destroying our property.  We are a newly retired couple so home most of the time.  Ami has a 100 ft trolley with a 20 ft tether attached for when we are not home.  And a very nice dog house filled with a thick layer of straw.  That is inside a 3/4 acre fenced backyard.  When we are home, he has free rein of 4 ish acres to roam within an invisible fence.

At first he was outside until about midnight and then crated in an outbuilding at night.  He was walked 2-3 miles twice a day and played with several times a day.

Then... we grew more attached, Ami started to come in for bits... Then it was just in the kitchen... Then he killed a rabid raccoon, went into "house arrest".  Then we worried about more rabid raccoons... husband started worrying about possible coyotes (I don't).

Then Ami started becoming more playful, more affectionate.  Then we took a trip and he stayed in the hotel with us..

Long story short:  he now sleeps in our bedroom, has his own chair(the throne), we have a doggy doorbell for him to go in and out when he wants and has become quite the character with loads of personality.

It has b been well worth it... he's much happier, I think.

_________________

This is a cute little story. I am glad Ami made it as an indoor dog. I think most dogs are happier that way. I personally don't understand why you would want a dog if you are going to keep it outside and away from you majority of it's life. Get a goldfish instead.
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amozo
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PostSubject: Received error and message double posted. Please excuse this post.    Wed Nov 04, 2015 3:44 pm

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Last edited by amozo on Wed Nov 04, 2015 3:45 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Received error and message double posted. Please excuse this post.)
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amymeme
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on an outdoor husky?   Wed Nov 04, 2015 8:01 pm

@amozo wrote:

This is a cute little story. I am glad Ami made it as an indoor dog. I think most dogs are happier that way. I personally don't understand why you would want a dog if you are going to keep it outside and away from you majority of it's life. Get a goldfish instead.

NOTE: Though Ami is inside as much as he likes, he prefers to spend the majority of his time outdoors. He somehow knows when I'm serving a meal and he rings the doorbell to come in, gets his snackies, then wants out again. Only if it is really really hot does he stay inside during the day. In the winter...he's out. I think if he had his choice, he would be out at night, too but after the rabid raccoon and the bull in the backyard, I'd rather be awake if he is roaming his 4 acres.
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tyler.jenkins.125
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on an outdoor husky?   Thu Nov 05, 2015 5:28 pm

@amozo wrote:


This is a cute little story. I am glad Ami made it as an indoor dog. I think most dogs are happier that way. I personally don't understand why you would want a dog if you are going to keep it outside and away from you majority of it's life. Get a goldfish instead.

I don't necessarily think it's fair to say this. A dog being owned (whether outside or inside) is one not in a shelter, not being euthenized, happy, ect.
There obviously IS a line. I pass a pitbull on our walks who is on a 10' lead and NEVER gets walked or played with. It's disgusting...

To the OP, If your dog is happy outside and you are making sure she's getting enough exercise and love, I see no reason why she can't live outside. If she is unhappy, maybe getting another dog that she could bond with and play with would satisfy that urge to be with you all the time. Maybe a rescue close to her age. If she's crying, she's probably just lonely.
If getting another dog isn't in the cards, maybe letting her inside for a few hours a day would help.

hope this helps!
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capellalayla
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on an outdoor husky?   Fri Nov 06, 2015 11:54 pm

When I think of outdoor Huskies, I think of pro racing kennels that keep their dogs outdoors all the time. They may have a few house dogs, but the rest are outdoors. Those dogs in general are some of the happiest I've met. They are a "pack," however; I don't believe an outdoor Husky by itself lives a fulfilled life, even if you play with it and exercise it daily. Huskies are pack-oriented, so if you're indoors while the dog is outside all day, it will get very lonely very quickly. So, if you're going to have an outdoor dog, I'd advise getting more than one.
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capellalayla
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on an outdoor husky?   Fri Nov 06, 2015 11:59 pm

Just read a little more of the exchange above and have this to add: In the OP's case, if things are working well and the dog seems fine with the current situation, why fix what ain't broke? Some dogs just don't mind being solitary, though in general my statement about Huskies as pack/family-oriented dogs still stands.
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amymeme
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on an outdoor husky?   Sat Nov 07, 2015 12:07 am

I suspect your girl would be very happy, outside in the day when you are working, hanging with you at night inside and crated inside (or sleeping beside your bed) at night for sleeping overnight. That is sort of the life that Ami has, even though we are retire - his outdoor time for most of the day is his choice.
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glorth2
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on an outdoor husky?   Tue Nov 24, 2015 4:31 pm

I have to be honest that it was a relief to read this thread. I've owned 2 huskies in the past (longer than 10 years ago) but just rescued my 8yo male. Full disclosure, I had been dealing with a breeder, who I gave a $250 non-refundable deposit to for a puppy. She still has it and who knows if I'll ever use it. I've been scared of asking some questions for fear of being judged harshly. Anyway, I just moved into my house this past July and there is currently no fence. I'm going to have a fence installed but I live in the "town" area of a small town on one of the main(ish) streets. Ie, I think a 6' high PVC privacy fence would be an eyesore. I WANT Snickers to be more of an inside dog but for right now he seems to want to be outside all the time until (our) dinner time (he can eat whenever he wants). Come evening time, he will hang out with us, sleeping on the couch or stretching out on the floor until he needs to go out. At night, he spent the first night in bed with me but has spent every other night either sleeping on the couch or the floor...his choice, he can sleep wherever he wants. I've been taking him on walks in the morning and this morning we found the local dog park which is just fantastic and we were the only ones there. He sometimes gets a 2nd walk in the afternoon/evening but maybe not EVERY day.

Because I'm still trying to work the fence thing out, he is currently on what I would call a "run". It's the tie out kind with the aircraft cable, except that I sink the stake in 100lbs of concrete. I've made very sure that there is nothing at all that he can get wrapped around. I work very close to home and can work from home sometimes so I've been at least stopping home at lunch to check on him and worked at home a few afternoons to make sure that he's OK. Because I wasn't sure on the puppy front, I have an extra large size crate on the way but it's not here yet. I've had several people offer me crates they weren't using but none are big enough. I feel that it's better to wait for the right size rather than put him im something where he's cramped. Anyway, I spoke to the rescue that I adopted him from this past weekend and was made to feel very guilty because he's on the run when I'm not there and because I wasn't planning on the giant fence. I feel like I'm rambling now but I tried giving him the run of the house one day that I went to work and he had stated pulling the weather stripping off the door that leads to the backyard. Conversely, he LOVES beiong outside. I'm home now and he's outside, laying on the grass, happy as a clam.

So, I don't WANT Snickers to be an outside dog but he seems quite happy right now. It turns out that a friend of a friend is a fence guy and I really need to check his price before anything else. It's not like anyone is putting fences up on Thanksgiving anyway. I'll definitely try and get something that looks appropriate but is safe for my guy too. I know the escape art routine and I think that leaving him out in a big fenced yard (no matter how good the fence) is just a puzzle waiting to be solved by a husky. So, all that said, does anyone have some fence recommendations or non-recommendations? TIA!!
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amymeme
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PostSubject: Re: Thoughts on an outdoor husky?   Tue Nov 24, 2015 8:59 pm

Fences: wood ones, they can chew/claw apart or holes, chain link/welded wire, they can climb, invisible fence, they can be seen from the road, others (animal and human) can get in, tie outs, same as invisible fence plus they can get tangled. Crates keep them safe and your house safe but are confining, some dogs never adjust to crate, others somehow manage to destroy them.

Me? Ami likes outside during the day...most of the time. Ever since I read about the husky inside in a crate in a house fire, (survived but required serious medical care) I am loathe to leave Ami in the house if we are not home. He is about as safe and secure as possible in our trolley/fence set up. There's always a risk and there are pros and cons for most any setup - you have to choose what is best for you and your dog. Not the rescue, not us, not your neighbor (well, provided he doesn't bark/howl all day lol! )

In your situation, I think I might temporarily use a trolley then install nice looking neighborhood compatible fence AND line it with an invisible fence. It depends on whether you worry about intruders taking your dog, traumatizing him or poisoning him...I watch too many movies!

The reasons I do not leave Ami alone in the backyard is that our invisible fence is over 4 acres, the backyard is only 3/4 acre so if he chose to breach the backyard fence he could be possibly be snatched by someone (that boy would go to anybody who opened a car door affraid ) Also, there is a large inground pool out there - I do have a loop of wire around that and Ami no longer goes there but...ya never know (he once went on the winter cover and would have drowned had I not been there.) And, finally, I don't know if he would stay contained on the invisible fence alone if we were not at home (he did stay contained last week when there were 4 chickens on the other side of the road...very interested, but did not cross the boundary bounce Why the chickens crossed the road, I do not know...

I think the big thing for keeping a husky contained is managing their boredom...at age 8, your boy may be more sedate and less likely to roam...only you can judge that.

I certainly would not feel quilty letting him outside since he seems to like it.
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