How Long Do Huskies Live? Practical Tips On Enhancing Lifespan


Have you ever been around Siberian Huskies? They’re unique dogs with unique personalities. In fact, they’re one of the most talkative dogs you’ll meet in your life. After we share their history and their conversational abilities, you can listen for yourself. Human ancestors might even owe their lives to Husky ancestors. How long do Huskies live? On average 12-15 years.

We’ll not only tell you that, but how you can make sure they live the most fulfilling life possible. More than many other dogs, doing buddy things together with their pack — meaning you — is the thing they live for.

A Husky’s Lifespan Is Relative To The Quality Of Care Its Given ~
And Depends Upon Your Ability To Fulfill Their Needs.

A Little Husky History

When waves of early humans traveled out of Africa hundreds of thousands of years ago, they didn’t have dogs. Homo sapiens was the first species to establish a partnership with canines, and some anthropologists think that it’s one of the main reasons our species is the one that survived. Although today’s Huskies have about the same amount of wolflike DNA as other dog breeds, they look like wolves because they evolved alongside humans in the cold forests of northern Siberia.

Genetically, they’re related to the Spitz family of working dogs that include American Eskimos, Samoyeds, Akitas, Keeshonds, Norwegian Elkhounds, Malamutes, and others. A Russian fur trader introduced Siberian Huskies to Alaska during the Nome Gold Rush where they pulled sleds across rough terrain in harsh weather.

Their popularity rapidly grew after teams of them successfully helped deliver antitoxins during a diphtheria epidemic in Nome in 1925. How long do Huskies live? Known for their energy, stamina, and eagerness to work, these hardy sled dogs usually don’t retire from hard work until they’re nine years old or so.

Known for their energy, stamina, and eagerness to work, these hardy sled dogs usually don’t retire from hard work until they’re nine years old or so.

Natural Husky Characteristics

By knowing that Huskies were bred for thousands of years to help forest peoples in brutally cold climates survive, you can guess some of their natural tendencies. They worked together with their humans and other Huskies in teams to pull loads, track game, and herd reindeer over long distances in all kinds of weather. They developed thick coats and undercoats of protective fur that repelled moisture.

To catch prey and to create shelter during rough weather, they became naturally skillful diggers. Traveling over long distances, they learned to use their voices for communication. To survive, they had to be strong, adaptable, and active with perceptive minds.

Some Huskie lovers joke that it’s no coincidence that “Husky” and “Houdini” both start with the letter “H,” meaning that they’re determined escape artists. How long do Huskies live? Hint: usually longer than a decade.

The Special Personalities of Huskies

how long do Siberian huskies live

Ask any Husky lover why they love their dogs, and be prepared to enjoy their stories. Huskies love their pack. If they’re awake, they’re interacting with humans or other dogs. Curious about what’s going on around them, they enthusiastically engage with anything that catches their interest.

Huskies are very friendly but not always eager to obey, and will let you know how they feel. Naturally drawn to children of all ages, they enjoy playing but sense when to be gentle. You asked, “How long do Huskies live?” Another hint is that they’ll almost grow up with your kids, having fun along the way.

Huskies Love To Communicate And Have A LOT To Say

Huskies use their voices for communication more than most other breeds. Not big barkers, they use a variety of yowls, moans, yips, whistles, growls, groans, and other sounds that don’t even have names. In the wilderness of the far north where nights are long and dark, sharp vision was less important to survival than hearing.

Working and living in packs, these dogs’ communication relied on hearing other pack members. The Husky life expectancy depended on it. For that reason, Huskies are hard-wired to “converse.” Canine communication expresses the status of a need: desire, intention, and emotions regarding the need.

In addition to thirst and hunger, they’re in the habit of communicating with their pack about the stress of pain, threats, dominance, frustration, and boredom. Pack animals need frequent reassurance to maintain strong bonds among members, whether for playing or cuddling.

You can train your Husky to talk and sing with positive reinforcement. The more you listen and respond to your Husky, the more he or she will love interacting with you. Short training sessions with small, healthful treats are motivation to do what’s already a natural behavior. As a matter of fact, your laughter alone is positive reinforcement!

What Does Husky Howling Mean?

husky life expectancy

Why do dogs and wolves howl anyway? In the wild, howling is like a lighthouse to guide the pack home. Dogs often howl to guide their human back home as well. Howling often marks boundaries so potential invaders know that the territory is protected. It also alerts other pack members to gather around a cornered prey animal.

As you might imagine, howling can express loneliness, frustration, and anxiety, especially if your dog knows that it gets your attention. We don’t know all the meanings behind howling but dog behavior scientists continue to study this fascinating topic. What triggers your own dog to howl?

Domestic Dogs in General & What Helps Them Thrive

We’ve highlighted how vital mental and emotional wellbeing is to members of a pack. You know yourself how good you feel when you’re safe among friends. You can think better and sleep better when your stress levels go down. Our canine buddies are no different.

Good nutrition throughout the lifespan is just as important. When you ask how long do Huskies live, you already know that basic health centers around food and water. Although the pet food industry has improved in recent years, to stay in business the manufacturers have to mass-produce low-cost products that last a long time.

An increasing number of canine nutrition experts are publishing studies on the many benefits of what’s commonly called the B.A.R.F. diet: Biologically Appropriate Raw Food. By supplying a nutrient-dense, highly digestible variety of fresh, unprocessed ingredients, the BARF diet helps dogs eat what kept their omnivorous ancestors healthy before they partnered up with humans. See our post on Can Dogs Eat Raw Chicken Bones? Why They Should! and Can Dogs Eat Raw Chicken? Bone Up On The Real Story!

What Does Nutrition Have To Do With How Long Do Huskies Live? Everything!

“Omnivorous” refers to eating all kinds of available edibles. Canine ancestors hunted large game when available but also fed on the entire bodies of small animals such as rabbits, rats, birds, reptiles, fish, and insects as well as eggs. The organ meats and stomach contents provided different kinds of valuable nutrition. In addition, even modern canines eat roots, vegetables, grasses, fruits, seeds, and nuts.

Let’s talk more about fish. Fish provide protein, minerals from their bones, and valuable fats and oils. Fish oil provides several health benefits, especially from cold-water wild-caught fish such as salmon, mackerel, and trout. Notably rich in omega-3 fatty acids, salmon oil’s anti-inflammatory properties aid in a strong heart, increased immunity, flexible connective tissue and brain health. They also support a healthy skin and coat, cognitive function, and vision.

Huskies Need Clean Filtered Water

Did you know that water is considered a nutrient, too? Clean water is essential for life and health. Although the Environmental Protection Agency has the legal authority to monitor the safety of drinking water, not all contaminants and disease-causing germs are regulated. What’s more, the EPA has no control over unknown sources of local contamination.

Husky-type dogs thrived for thousands of years on clean water from natural springs, snowfalls, and glacial melts.

Husky-type dogs thrived for thousands of years on clean water from natural springs, snowfalls, and glacial melts. Since the quality of tap water varies from location to location, and since most bottled water contains microplastics, there are steps you can take to provide your household with the safest water possible.

An increasing number of people find that investing in a reliable reverse osmosis filter system not only gives them a long-lasting unlimited amount of clean water, but pays for itself in a short time, and helps the environment by decreasing the amount of plastic you contribute. The reverse osmosis process uses membrane filtration rather than chemical means to remove water contaminants.

Special Needs of the Husky Breed

How long do Huskies live? Giving this kind of care will definitely help your Husky live a longer, healthier, and happier life:

  • Provide a balanced diet tailored to your dog’s weight, age, and health.
  • Provide oral care by brushing teeth at least three times weekly.
  • Provide ample fresh, clean water. Snow is not drinking water.
  • Maintain an ideal weight. Overweight dogs are more likely to suffer from arthritis, cancer, overheating, and other conditions.
  • Brush regularly, at least once a week, more often if needed. Don’t be annoyed by shedding — your pooch isn’t annoyed by your shedding.
  • Be conscious of the temperature to prevent overheating.
  • Promote regular exercise without overdoing it. Match it to your Husky’s age, weight, and health. Don’t force exercise; if your dog is resistant, something is wrong. Check breathing, heartbeat, abdomen, legs, and feet.
  • Engage in enjoyable and mentally stimulating activities together with your Husky pal to strengthen your bond.
  • Mesh your dog’s care routine into your own schedule because, after all, your life is enmeshed with those of your loved ones!

Potential Husky Health Issues

Appropriate nutrition, clean filtered water (not tap), a chemical-free environment, proper training for mental and emotional health, adequate exercise, socialization, connection and relationships all contribute to the longevity factor. Health predispositions can greatly be reduced if not eliminated by a holistic lifestyle, which has been the purpose of this post.

  • Hip dysplasia: A genetic abnormality of one or both hip joints, this condition is common in large dog breeds. It is progressive, painful, and can lead to crippling immobility.
  • Cataracts and other eye issues: Nearly 10% of Siberian huskies will develop cataracts as puppies, a clouding of the lens inside the eye that causes vision loss.
  • Hypothyroidism: While the cause of low-functioning thyroid is unknown, lack of the important hormones can cause lethargy, muscle loss, skin and coat problems, and sensitivity to cold.
  • Degenerative myelopathy: This is a genetic condition affecting Huskies more than other breeds. It affects the nerves and muscles mostly in the hind legs by causing progressive loss of strength and functioning.
  • Zinc deficiency: Huskies and other “snow dogs” often need more zinc than other breeds. A deficiency causes immune system weakness, poor healing of sores, hair loss, and other problems. The most digestible zinc is found in meat and raw bone.
  • Follicular dysplasia: Early in life, pups can develop a problem with their hair follicles that result in abnormal hair growth, irritated skin, and bald patches.

How long do Siberian Huskies live? They depend on their humans looking out for their welfare by paying attention to their needs. Working with an open-minded holistic veterinarian will give your beloved pal the best of all worlds. You’ll stay informed about the pros and cons of different veterinary practices. Click here for a list of vets suggested by the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association.

Good Training Increases Dogs’ Lifespans

We already mentioned how you can teach your dog to “converse” with your more. Training is like nutrition in that it has to be done right to work right. It always involves the human being trained as well as the dog.

Knowing behavior boundaries will make your pooch trust you as the pack leader and look to you for direction. Less stress means a longer life. How long do huskies live? Longer with training! The Husky lifespan without preventable accidents can last approximately 15 years.

Is a Husky Right for You? And Are You Right For A Husky

older husky

Here’s a checklist of characteristics that should influence your decision to bring a Husky into your life:

  • Your experience with other Northern breeds
  • High energy level with a need to run and stay active
  • Need for purposeful work such as obedience training, pulling a load, agility, etc.
  • Need for a spacious yard with a deeply sunk fence to contain the Husky wanderlust
  • Frequent howling, screaming, and vocalizing
  • Heat intolerance
  • Passionate love of snow and ice
  • Year-round heavy shedding
  • Thorough brushing at least weekly
  • Need to be with other dogs and people as part of a pack
  • Need for attention, interaction, and play
  • Independent thinking (translation: challenging to train if this is your first dog)
  • Strong curiosity
  • Lack of natural guarding behavior due to friendliness
  • Strong prey drive
  • Long lifespan (how long do huskies live? 12-15 years)

The Husky lifespan depends upon your ability to fulfill their needs.

FAQ — Frequently Asked Questions

Are huskies related to wolves?

All dogs are related to wolves because they share a common ancestor. However, looking like a wolf doesn’t mean carrying more wolf DNA. The Northern breeds, like wolves, adapted to frigid climates by developing thick double-layered fur coats, winter-colored fur, a high metabolism to keep warm, and a strong prey drive to prevent starvation. How long do huskies live? A long life as long as they can stay active.

Will raw meat make my dog wild?

No! The purpose of food is nutrition to help the body function. Improved nutrition means improved health. Improved health means improved vitality. Vicious behavior in otherwise quiet animals indicates a problem, often injury, pain, fear, or defensiveness. It can also indicate the introduction of a new factor such as newborn puppies or an invader.

Do all huskies have blue eyes?

Many people assume that dogs who have one or two blue eyes are part husky, but it’s not necessarily true. Dalmatians and Border collies can carry the same genes for the absence of brown pigment. Husky eyes can be brown, blue, both, or some of each.

In fact, normal Husky eye colors include amber and green. Although all husky pups are born with blue eyes, they won’t get their final eye color until they’re 2-6 months old. Another interesting fact about Husky eyes: like wolves, Huskies have special oil in their tears to protect their eyes against damage from cold winds.

Should I shave my husky in the summer?

No, you shouldn’t shave your dog but lightly trimming some long hair is okay, especially done the way a professional recommends. Shaving and clipping without using the proper technique can irritate your pooch’s skin, tear it, and expose it to sunburn. A dog’s coat is not a “coat” like human clothing.

Natural fur is composed of layers of different kinds of hairs that provide insulation to prevent overheating. As you know, dogs shed excess undercoat fur. If you want to help, brush your dog often. Bathe your dog from time to time to remove gummy oils and dead skin.

In fact, play in the water with your dog and have fun together. How long do Siberian Huskies live? Much longer when they’re assisted to live their most natural lives with loving companions like you.

Final Thoughts

Huskies are incredible dogs. Their working relationship with humans for mutual survival over thousands of years has forged a strong bond. They may not be ideal for people who have never lived with a dog before, but their unique contribution to making humans what they are today is undeniable.

How long do Huskies live? A better question might be how long they’ve helped humans live. Finally, in response to your other question — Do Huskies ever stop talking? — the answer is NO! Huskies never stop talking!

Resources + LINKS

Summer pet care, especially for certain breeds:

A good quality salmon oil we’ve used for our dogs:

An excellent natural canine nutritional supplement:

Suggestion for a user-friendly efficient water purification system that we’ve had success with:

If you still haven’t got enough of gabby jabbering conversation eloquent expressive etc Huskies, here’s more:

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