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History of the Siberian Husky

History  

 

The Siberian Huskies origin can be traced back to the ancient Chukchi sled dogs of the Kolyma river Basin in Northern Siberia. The breed was developed and encouraged by the Chukchi people, an ancient tribe whose culture was based on the long term sled dog.

 

These origins began some 2000 years ago and evolved in the harsh conditions and climate of that region.

The Chukchi sled dogs were required to travel enormous distances in order to hunt for their survival. They were bred to pull light loads at moderate speeds over incredible distances on very little food, and are the smallest of all native sled dogs.

 

The Chukchi people valued their good fast dogs highly and often traded against each other at the Markova fair, held at the Anadyr River. However such was the isolation and lifestyle of the tribe that it was not until the late 19th century when fur trading and then the gold rush at the turn of the 20th century made their influence on the breed that became known as the Siberian husky.

 

In 1908 it happened that a Russian fur trader Goosak returned to Nome with 9 Siberian Chukchi dogs for the purpose for entering the 1909 all Alaska sweepstake race, but it was Fox Maule Ramsy who imported the first selected teams of Siberian Huskies into Alaska in 1909. The second son of the 13th Earl of Dalhousie, he had come from Scotland to supervise the family investments in the gold fields. Fascinated by the excitement of sled dog racing and having seen Goosak’s small Chukchi dogs, he chartered a schooner and went to the Markovo fair, selecting 70 of the best dogs there.

 

The results of the 1910 sweepstakes were momentous. Ramsey's 3 teams were placed first, second and fourth, setting a record that has never been beaten.

 

The Siberian husky dogs had arrived these 70 dogs chosen by Fox Maule Ramsy formed the foundation for as what as known today as the Siberian Husky.

 

When Ramsy left the Klondike he sold his dogs to a young swede, breeding begane. Leonhard Seppela, who was later acknowledged to be the greatest dog driver of all time.

His daring 658 mile leg of the famous serum relay won him and Siberian Husky international acclaim, while saving the town of Nome from an out break of Dypheria.

 

Leonhard Seppela was the first to introduce Siberian huskies into the United States and out of Alaska, when he came to New England in the 1920's with his team.

His dogs won every race, and their beauty speed and temperament Intrigued American racing enthusiasts. Seppal along with Elizebeth Ricker began breeding Siberian Huskies. More were obtained from Alaska and thus the Breed began.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Breed Standard

General Appearance
Medium-sized working sled-dog, quick and light on feet. Free and graceful in action, with well furred body, erect ears and brush tail. Proportions reflect a basic balance of power, speed and endurance, never appearing so heavy or coarse as to suggest a freighting animal, nor so light and fragile as to suggest a sprint-racing animal. Males are masculine but never coarse, bitches feminine but without weakness of structure. Muscle firm and well developed, no excess weight.

Characteristics
Medium size, moderate bone, well balanced proportions, ease and freedom of movement, and good disposition.

Temperament
Friendly and gentle, alert and outgoing. Does not display traits of the guard dog, not suspicious with strangers or aggressive with dogs but some measure of reserve expected in mature dog. Intelligent, tractable and eager disposition. An agreeable companion and willing worker.

Head and Skull
Medium size in proportion to the body, presents a finely chiselled fox-like appearance. Slightly rounded on top, tapering gradually from widest point to eyes. Muzzle medium length and width, neither snipy nor coarse, tapering gradually to rounded nose. Tip of nose to stop equidistant from stop to occiput. Stop clearly defined but not excessive. Line of the nose straight from the stop to tip. Nose black in grey, tan or black dogs; liver in copper dogs; and may be flesh-coloured in pure white. In winter, pink-streaked ‘snow nose’ is acceptable.

Eyes
Almond-shaped, moderately spaced and set obliquely. Any shade of blue or brown, one of each colour, or parti-colours equally acceptable. Expression keen, but friendly, interested, even mischievous.

Ears
Medium size, relatively close together, triangular in shape, the height slightly greater than width at base. Set high on head, strongly erect, the inner edges being quite close together at the base, when the dog is at attention carried practically parallel. Slightly arched at the back. Thick, well furred outside and inside, tips slightly rounded.

Mouth
Lips well pigmented, close fitting. Jaws strong, with a perfect, regular and complete scissor bite, i.e. upper teeth closely overlapping lower teeth and set square to the jaws.

Neck
Medium length and thickness, arched and carried proudly erect when standing. When moving at a trot, extended so that the head is carried slightly forward.

Forequarters
Shoulder blade well laid back, upper arm angles slightly backward from point of shoulder to elbow, never perpendicular to the ground. Muscle holding shoulder to rib cage firm and well-developed. Straight or loose shoulders highly undesirable. Viewed from the front, forelegs moderately spaced, parallel and straight with elbows close to the body, turning neither in nor out. Viewed from the side, pasterns slightly sloping, wrist strong but flexible. Length from elbow to ground slightly more than distance from elbows to top of withers. Bone proportionate, never heavy. Dewclaws may be removed.

Body
Straight and strong, with level topline from withers to croup. Medium length, not cobby, nor slack from excessive length. In profile, body from point of shoulder to rear point of croup slightly longer than height from ground to top of withers. Chest deep and strong but not too broad, deepest point being just behind and level with elbows. Ribs well sprung from spine but flattened on sides to allow for freedom of action. Loins slightly arched, well muscled, taut and lean, narrower than rib cage with a slight tuck-up. Croup slopes away from spine at an angle, but never so steeply as to restrict the rearward thrust of hind legs.

Hindquarters
Viewed from rear, hindlegs moderately spaced and parallel. Upper thighs well muscled and powerful, stifles well bent, hock joint well defined and set low to ground.

Feet
Oval, not long, turning neither in nor out in natural stance. Medium size, compact, well furred and slightly webbed between toes. Pads tough and thickly cushioned. Trimming of fur between toes and around feet permissible.

Tail
Well furred, of round, fox brush shape set on just below level of topline and usually carried over back in graceful sickle curve when dog at attention. When carried up, tail should not curl too tightly, nor should it curl to either side of body, or snap flat against back. Hair on tail of medium length and approximately same length all round. A trailing tail is normal for dog when working or in repose.

Gait/Movement
Smooth and seemingly effortless. Quick and light on feet, gaited on a loose lead at a moderately fast trot, exhibiting good reach in forequarters and good drive in hindquarters. When walking, legs move in parallel, but as speed increases, gradually angling inward to single track .As pad marks converge, forelegs and hindlegs carried straight with neither elbows nor stifles turning in nor out, each hindleg moving in path of foreleg on same side. Topline of back remaining firm and level during gaiting.

Coat
Double, and medium in length, giving a well furred appearance, never so long as to obscure clean-cut outline of dog. Undercoat soft and dense; of sufficient length to support outer coat. Guard hairs of outer coat straight and somewhat smooth-lying, never harsh, rough or shaggy, too silky nor standing straight off from body. Absence of undercoat during shedding normal. No trimming of fur on any part of dog, except feet.

Colour
All colours and markings, including white, allowed. Variety of markings on head is common, including many striking patterns not found in other breeds.

Size
Height: dogs: 53-60 cms (21-231/2 ins) at withers; bitches: 51-56 cms (20-22 ins) at withers. Weight: dogs: 20.-27 kgs (45-60 lbs); bitches: 16-23 kgs (35-50 lbs). Weight should be in proportion to height. These measurements represent the extremes in height and weight, with no preference given to either extreme. A dog should not exceed 60 cms (231/2 ins) or a bitch exceed 56 cms (22 ins).

Faults
Any departure from the foregoing points should be considered a fault and the seriousness with which the fault should be regarded should be in exact proportion to its degree and its effect upon the health and welfare of the dog.

Note
Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended.
 
Kennel club.

 
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