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A Northern Star

The spirited Siberian Husky is an eager worker and energetic friend.

The spirited Siberian Husky is an eager worker and energetic friend.

 

One day last July, Carol Nash looked out the window of her Wasilla, Alaska, home to find a black bear sitting on the ground beneath a tree in her yard, eating out of the bird feeder he’d torn down.

Oddly, it was a silent scene — she hadn’t heard a sound from any of the Siberian Huskies housed nearby in outdoor runs.
“Siberians are unreliable barkers,” says Nash, president of the Siberian Husky Club of America. “Some will sound off when someone — or something — comes, others won’t. Mostly, you open the door to anyone, and they wag their tails.”

Nash, an American Kennel Club judge, doesn’t hold the dogs’ silence against them. “Siberian Huskies are not guard dogs, and they never had to develop a guardian instinct,” she says.

Instead, the Siberian Husky descends from ancestors developed centuries ago by the Chukchi people of northeastern Asia for use as endurance sled dogs. These early dogs fulfilled the semi-nomadic natives’ need for a sled dog who could travel great distances at moderate speed and could carry light loads in low temperatures and with minimum energy output.

Want to read the full story? Pick up the December 2008 issue of DOG FANCY today, or subscribe to get 12 months of articles just like this.

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