Folks who are undecided between adopting a Siberian husky or a Labrador retriever may find the perfect compromise by opening their home to the Siberian retriever. The Siberian retriever should not be confused with the Labrador husky, a rare Spitz-type purebred dog originating from Canada and utilized for pulling sleds. The Siberian retriever is not a purebred dog, but more precisely, it’s a hybrid, which is a cross between two recognized dog breeds. In this case, the Siberian retriever is attained by crossing the strikingly appealing husky with the amiable Labrador retriever. The result is a friendly mixed breed with a pleasing personality.
When two different breeds are crossed, the traits of the offspring tend to be varied, but estimated guesses can be made by looking at the parent dogs. Depending on the percentage of the mix, some of the Husky Lab Mix may resemble more the Siberian husky while others may resemble more the Labrador. One thing is for sure though: when you have the Siberian husky and Labrador as parents, you can expect the average Siberian retriever to be a rather big dog with long legs. Expect the Siberian retriever dog to weigh on average anywhere between 40 and 60 pounds.
The expression of the Siberian retriever is alert and intelligent. The head is typically triangular in shape with floppy ears as in the Lab or erect as in the husky. Some specimens may boast the typical facial masks seen in huskies. It’s not that unusual to occasionally find a Siberian retriever with eyes of different colors. You may therefore stumble on a Siberian retriever with one brown eye and one blue one. The coat color may vary from tan, chocolate and black. The tail may exhibit the typical graceful sickle curve as seen in huskies when they are paying attention.
When you put together two of the most loved breeds in the world, you can expect a nice display of qualities. Loving, affectionate, playful and cheerful are some of the adjectives used to describe the Siberian retriever dog. Reminiscent of the Lab’s past as a sporting dog who retrieved downed fowl in the wetlands, the Siberian retriever tends to enjoy playing in the water.
With the Labrador being a sporting dog and the husky being a working dog, the cross between these two breeds yields a dog with a high levels of energy. Daily exercise and a good amount of mental stimulation is a must. A home with a medium-sized yard is helpful as this dog loves to romp.
Training and early socialization is a must. A bored or lonely Siberian retriever will likely engage in digging, chewing and nuisance barking. This dog may have a strong prey drive, making it sometimes unsuitable for families with small, pocket pets. However, when raised together from an early age, there are chances Siberian retrievers may be safe with cats.
Training the Siberian retriever shouldn’t be much of a challenge. They are highly intelligent dogs who are eager to learn. The husky bloodlines may instill a bit of a stubborn streak, but with the right incentives, you can increase motivation. It’s not unheard of for Siberian retrievers to be utilized as hunting dogs or as police dogs for tracking down narcotics.
Siberian huskies are blessed with a nice insulating, heavy coat so they can thrive in winter climates; whereas, Labradors have a dense, short coat that is water-repellent. When you cross these two breeds, you likely end up with a dog equipped with a medium-length coat. This type of coat requires a moderate amount of grooming and tends to shed for a good part in the spring and summer months. Routine brushing can help keep those stray hairs at bay.
Is the Husky Lab Mix the Right Dog for You?
This dog is suitable to homes with a nicely-sized yard and owners open to an active lifestyle. Daily walks, hikes on park trails and a game of Frisbee are some fun options to help drain energy. If you are away for most of the day, you may want to look for another dog as the Siberian retriever craves attention and can easily feel lonely. Loneliness and boredom can lead to destructive behaviors. Some Siberian retrievers may also be prone to developing separation anxiety. These dogs thrive on some doggy sports such as disc dog, fly-ball, sledding, carting, agility and some tracking competitions. Those who have the time and energy to invest in these dogs are paid back with a patient, affectionate and lovable companion.