The Ultimate Guide to the Australian Shepherd Husky Mix
I mean really, talk about mixing an absolutely adorable Australian Shepherd with an outrageously cute Siberian Husky, and what do you get?
Without a doubt, an irresistibly cute, four-legged fluff-ball that could melt the hearts of us humans!
Whether you’re a new owner of an Australian Shepherd Husky Mix or looking around for a new addition to the family, you’ve probably got some questions hanging around about whether or not the breed may be for you, can get along with family and children, their characteristics, the ideal living conditions, and more.
Throughout the article, we’re going to cover each topic, and more, for you to decide whether or not the Australian Shepherd Husky Mix is the right breed for you.
The Australian Shepherd Husky Mix:
A History of the Working Dog with a Heart of GoldThe Australian Shepherd Husky Mix is a crossbreed between the two purebreds: the Australian Shepherd and the Siberian Husky. The Australian Shepherd Husky Mix often goes by the name of an “Aussie Husky”, “Aussie Siberian”, or “Aussie Husky Shepherd.”
As with all crossbreeds, their history isn’t as evident as the history of purebreds are, so we’re going to look into the history of the parents.
The Australian ShepherdThe Australian Shepherd, commonly known as the “Aussie”, and previously known as the California Shepherd, New Mexican Shepherd, Bob-Tail, Pastor Dog, and Spanish Shepherd, has a rather unique history.
Despite its name, the Australian Shepherd did not originate from Australia. It is most likely that this breed was bred from the Collie varieties in the western United States back in the 1900s for the purpose of herding sheep.
Later on, in the 1950’s, the Australian Shepherd was then utilized for it’s working and intellectual capacity and employed as therapy dogs, family pets, drug detectors, handicap guide dogs, and search and rescue dogs.
The Siberian HuskyThe Siberian Husky, sometimes called the Husky, Sibe, Chukcha or Chuksha, is a medium-sized working dog and was originally bred as sled dogs in the Arctic region, and only came to the North Americas in the 20th century, serving as search and rescue dogs in the United States Army.
From the Spitz lineage, the nomadic Chukchi people of Northeastern Siberia bred these dogs for over 3,000 years, being able to maintain the purebred in an isolated region.
Physical Characteristics of the Aussie Husky MixThe Aussie Husky can inherit genes from either parent, and this can either be more dominant from one parent or a combination of both parents.
Crossbreeds often have varying features as they are bred from two different purebreds, and there is no fixed ratio as to what gene(s) will be inherited over the over.
You can definitely be guaranteed that the puppies will still be adorably cute and just as loving, though!
The Australian Shepherd Husky Mix is a medium-sized dog, which stands up to a height of about 20 - 24 inches at the shoulder for males, and for females, 18 - 21 inches. Their weight usually lingers anywhere between 40 to 55 pounds for the average male and 35 to 55 pounds for the average female.
The Aussie Husky has a dense, weather-resistant double-coat and comes in a variety of base colors, from black, brown, cream, gray, and white and in different combinations of shades and patches.
One color will usually dominate the chest to belly area and the legs and paws, while another color will dominate the rest of the body.
The facial features of this breed also exhibit triangular shaped ears, a narrow muzzle, and oval eyes in many distinct colors, and sometimes, bi-colored if inherited from the Husky.
Temperament of the Australian Shepherd Husky MixAs this breed is a mix between two purebreds, we can never be certain about what the offspring’s personality, temperament, and characteristics may be.
By nature, the Aussie Husky is an active, loyal, strong, and outgoing breed. They are also a very affectionate and friendly dog towards their family but may appear as distant when it comes to strangers.
It is important that these dogs are exposed to new people and especially other dogs from an early age with proper socialization techniques. Engaging in proper socialization during the puppy stages will ensure that your puppy will grow into a friendly, well-behaved, and well-mannered dog in his adult years.
Some good practices to reinforce socialization may be frequent walks to the local dog park so that your puppy can learn to socialize with both other dogs and other people. You may also opt to enroll your dog in training classes to hone his friendly, yet protective demeanor.
Health Conditions and Risks of the Australian Shepherd Husky Mix
The Aussie Husky Shepherd is a generally healthy breed and its expected lifespan estimates between 10 to 13 years, given normal circumstances.
Although, there are some health conditions that it may be susceptible to, including:
- Corneal dystrophy
- Ear Problems
- Elbow Dysplasia
- Eye anomaly
- Hip dysplasia
- Progressive Retinal Atrophy
Living Conditions for an Australian Shepherd Husky MixOne of the most important factors you should consider if you are thinking about getting this breed is if the living conditions are right for the dog. This dog naturally loves to escape from areas that have limitations, and a good example would be an enclosed space in a house, or as simple as a backyard.
If your dog will have access to a backyard, you will want to make sure that you have a secured and proper fence system installed. While a backyard will provide your pup adequate need to run in an open area, the last thing you’d want is for your pup to exert any cooped up energy by jumping over that fence!
In case you are living in a busy city and in an apartment, you may want to consider checking out this list of recommended breeds for city-dwellers, especially when living in a smaller apartment but would like to own a dog.
Children and FamilyAs mentioned above, the Aussie Husky is a very affectionate dog towards its family and generally won’t have much problem with children - but with all dogs, proper socialization training is required.
Here’s a list of the top 5 best family and children-safe breeds that are generally well known to get along with children if you have kids and are worried about introducing a dog into a family with children.
Other Dogs and Pets at HomeAnother important key to note is how well an Australian Shepherd Husky Mix will get along with other dogs and pets at home.
While it is true that proper socialization is needed at an early age for pups to display friendly behavior towards other pets, another essential question to ask yourself is whether or not your other pets are just as energetic as this breed is known to be.
Allowing your dogs to play together, have some company, and build a bond together is essential for a dog’s happiness, but the wrong dog or pet at home with an Australian Shepherd Husky Mix will leave you with an Aussie Husky that may be deemed as antisocial.
The perfect match for an Aussie Husky in the same household should be an energetic, playful, outgoing dog - most importantly, a dog that is of similar size to the Aussie Husky. A dog that is larger than this breed may make him feel intimidated, and that can hinder the outgoing and friendly personality of the Australian Shepherd Husky Mix.
On the other hand, if you pair this breed with a canine that is extremely shy, less energetic, and doesn’t like to play or socialize, the results may not be as well as you thought it would be, and tendencies are that they will be a terrible match as buddies in the same household.
Maintenance of the Australian Shepherd Husky Mix
1. Food and DietProper food and diet maintenance of the Australian Shepherd Husky Mix requires giving them nutritious food, suitable for their age and should contain a perfect balance of health supplements, minerals, and vitamins.
Since this breed is prone to both elbow and hip dysplasia, a good supplement to add to their diet is quality fish oil. It is also important that you ensure that he does not become overweight - obesity can result in extra strain on the joints, increasing the possibility of developing more serious health issues.
No dog’s metabolism is the same, so it is important to remember that some dogs will need more, or fewer, calories than others, as well as considering their activity levels and age. You should consider making an appointment with your dog’s veterinarian to discuss an appropriate diet for your dog.
The Aussie Husky Mix has a double-coat with a thick undercoat and will need frequent brushing. They are also moderate shedders, so if you’re planning on bringing an Aussie Husky into your home, you can expect to vacuum on a regular basis to properly maintain the amount of shedding in the household.
Frequent brushing, at the minimum, should be at least twice a week, or once a day for a healthy and shiny coat. The fur is most prominent to shedding during the early spring, but they can shed all throughout the year.
Ear health and dental health is equally important as taking care of your dog’s coat. You will want to regularly check and clean your pup’s ears for potential ear infections.It is best to use natural products as some cleaning products designed for dogs can contain harmful or strong chemicals that may affect his health. We recommend our PurOtic Ear Cleaner line of products if you’re looking for a safe, natural, ear cleaning product for your pet.For dental health, we also offer a safe, No-Brush Dental Spray for pups who don’t enjoy getting their teeth brushed!
Poor dental health can lead to further health problems such as tooth decay, infection, and pain, and can possibly make its way throughout the body.
It is important to regularly clean your pup’s teeth daily if possible to prevent plaque buildup.
3. TrainingThis breed is very intelligent and can be quite easy to train. It is important that you begin proper training techniques and enforce that you are the “leader” of the “pack” during the puppy’s growth.
Doing this is essential because it reinforces positive behavior as the dog ages. The last thing you would want is a stubborn dog who’ll refuse to listen!
These dogs absolutely love the outdoors, so training them outside can also help enforce positive behavior with positive rewards in an area where they will feel naturally happy and motivated to learn.
As with all training, these dogs won’t learn within a few hours and automatically remember the commands for the rest of their life. When training, be sure to do so consistently, and repeatedly, with positive reinforcements so that your dog will keep its loyalty towards you.
4. CostsThe average price of an Australian Shepherd Husky Mix will range from $600 - $1,000.
But that isn’t the only cost you can expect when it comes to owning a new puppy or dog. On medical costs alone, you can expect anywhere from $600-1,500 per year for veterinary costs, not yet including any health condition-specific medications or supplements.
Training classes may cost anywhere from $25 - $300 per year depending on books, classes, or a personal trainer.
There are also miscellaneous costs, such as toys, leashes, beds, food, treats, grooming, supplements and vitamins, and other unexpected costs, which may amount to an estimated $1,200 - $4,000 annually, or an estimated $100 - $400 monthly under normal circumstances.
Is The Aussie Husky The Right Breed For Me?
Before considering whether or not this is the right breed for you, you should ask yourself some of these questions:
1. Do you have experience owning a dog, or a pet with high energy?
2. Can you provide adequate time for exercise, playtime, or intense activity for your dog?
3. Do you have a home with a secured backyard and high fence (or willing to invest in one) to ensure that your dog is safe and cannot escape?
4. Do you have other pets at home that will make the perfect home buddy for the Aussie Husky? (Refer to “Other Dogs and Pets at Home” for precaution on whether or not they will get along together in one household)
5. Do you have a family with children, and if so, are you willing to provide proper socialization and training techniques to reinforce positive behavior in your dog as he ages?
If you feel that you have adequately answered yes to all of these questions and that the Australian Shepherd Husky Mix will be the right addition to your household, you can look forward to a happy, lively, outgoing, and loyal four-legged friend to the family.