New Husky 9 Months Old
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  1. #1
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    New Husky 9 Months Old

    So I took over the ownership of a 9 month old Huksy. Apparently the old owners bought her as a puppy for their apartment living and once she grew they couldn't keep her in the small apartment.

    Anyway, I have a big house and a big back yard with a tall fence (I know that one), I do live all alone but my 14 year old nephew lives with me a lot. I haven't had a dog in about 10 years so to some degree I feel like I'm new again to it.

    I plan on keeping her outside for the most part, I live in Colorado and while I do know it can get cold out here I also know these dogs are raised to live in cold weather. The previous owners of my house built a big dog house, like HUGE so I am going to fix it up and make it nice and cozy for her.

    I work M-F 9-5 but I also get to work from home two days a week and I'm off on the weekends. I don't want her to get lonely and plan to spend a lot of time outside with her, I'm a big out doors person and go walking every morning and at night. I'd like some feedback on keeping her out doors, maybe I'll invest in a second dog to keep her company.

    Anyway I have already bought plenty of toys for her since I know we are going to go through a lot of them, she loves to play tug of war but that is no problem for me. I bought her Nutro Natural Choice Large Breed Puppy dog food per the recommendation of the person at Petsmart but after reading online I think I am going to switch it up to Blue Buffalo Wilderness (Dry) due to some research on the internet.

    I also plan on getting us enrolled in some beginner obedience training offered by petsmart. They have a 6 week program for new dogs, although the training is probably more for me then for her.

    Anyway, I'd like to hear some suggestions, advice, about things I need to consider to keep my dog healthy and feeling loved especially as it relates to young huskys.

    Also some general questions I have:

    1) I plan to get her weighed tomorrow at petsmart and follow the directions on the back of the dog food but for a husky is that a good idea? How often should I feed her and how much?
    2) How often should I walk her, is 2x a day too much at 9months? Or is that good? I know these dogs pack the energy.
    3) What about dog treats / reward treats any recommendations?
    4) Rawhide Bones? A no no?
    5) When should I try and let her off her leash in a park so we can play? I assume a few months of bonding atleast?
    6) When can we go up to the mountains for a hike? Can I let her off her leash then? Or again try it with the leash at first then off?
    7) I know they have thick coats, how often should I brush her? Or should I just take her to the groomer every so often?

    Thanks for the help!
    Last edited by bcarpio; 10-21-2012 at 09:17 PM.

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    Senior Member luv2byte's Avatar
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    Re: New Husky 9 Months Old

    Congrats! Research the breed well, they are amazing animals but have stimulation needs. My husked love was my brother's, Wiley. He was my brother's baby that slept next to him at night.

    I also recommend you talk to your vet for trainer recommendations instead of Petsmart. You can also look here: http://www.apdt.com/

    Now..where are pics your new buddy?
    Ellie R. (married w pets)
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    Re: New Husky 9 Months Old

    Is there some reason you can't bring her in? Like your landlord won't let you or something? Otherwise, I'd strongly advise you bring her inside to live with you. Huskies, while independent, do not like to be isolated like that. Speaking from experience, my husky was an outside mostly dog for 5 years. I was finally able to bring her in back in July, and the change in this dog has been absolutely astounding. She was so unhappy out there, even with all my activity with her.
    Plus, being outside is dangerous. She could get into something, someone could steal her (which for huskies is a serious threat more than some other dogs just because of their popularity, and even more so if people realize she's a female, unspayed). That, and huskies escape practically everything and anything you can put them in. Mine can jump 6 feet straight upwards from a standstill, she can climb everything from fences to trees, she walks on buildings, digs, chews through chain link.
    I believe a dog would rather be with their person than with another dog. If you can bring her in, do it.


    2) 2 times is fine, it's good for her to get her energy out, good to keep her fit. Runs at your pace at that age may or may not be a good idea as it's usually best to wait until they're finished growing before you put any real strain on their joints.

    4) Most people won't recommend rawhides for several reasons, one being they can swell. Mine chew rawhides now and again but something else may be better.
    5) Don't. Yes, some people can trust their huskies off leash. Most can't. Please don't risk it.
    6) This could be another thing where you have to wait until she finishes growing, but others may have better input. Again, please don't let her offleash, especially in the mountains. They tend to have an insane prey drive. First squirrel and you'll never see her again.
    7) I brush mine no less than twice a day. A groomer isn't really necessary since they don't require any clipping or shaving.

    "Even-tempered at home but an aggressive hunter. Amenable to formal training. A good family dog that likes to please."
    The Redbone Coonhound, defined by the AKC.


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    Re: New Husky 9 Months Old

    There isn't really any reason I can't have her in the house, when I first brought her home she wanted to go in and I didn't let her, but I just ate went outside to play with her and offered to bring her in when we where done but she didn't want to. I do keep reading online that people say don't get a dog and leave them outside. I am torn. I need to figure out if she is house trained, I'll chat with the previous owner to see. I know they are active chewers so I didn't really want her chewing up my furniture, but I guess she can be trained not to??

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    Re: New Husky 9 Months Old

    Usually with a new dog you need to supervise, supervise, supervise. Especially with a puppy.

    I second (third?) keeping her inside. Outside can be dangerous, especially for a husky (there are a lot of videos of huskies escaping Fort Knox type constructs).

    If you catch her doing something you don't like, then clap your hands or make a quick noise to distract her. Then, show her what you want her to do. So for example, if you catch her chewing on furniture, say "Oops!" or something and then go "Here, take this!" and wriggle around a toy SHE CAN play with. Or give her something she is allowed to chew on. Don't punish her. She is a puppy and she doesn't know.

    Get a kong and freeze good stuff inside (kibble, veggies, wet food, peanut butter, etc). It will keep her busy those times you need her to chill out.

    Don't let her run around the house unsupervised until you learn more about her and her habits. Unsupervised puppy = trouble. Keep her in a kennel or a pen or a specific area (puppy proof room like bathroom or kitchen) while you are gone.

    EDIT: Start training now. Go to youtube and look up "Kikopup". She is a great trainer and you can learn a lot through clicker training. It is really fun and your girl will love it. Training is one of those things that can help you develop a strong bond with her, help you learn how to communicate to her what you want, and will tire out her little mind. Also, you will have a great, well behaved pet by the time she grows up. Can't stress it enough really. Just make sure to keep it fun and positive. Huskies don't do real well with corrections. They are very "what's in it for me?"

    11 year old- Siberian Husky Mix

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    Re: New Husky 9 Months Old

    Quote Originally Posted by bcarpio View Post
    There isn't really any reason I can't have her in the house, when I first brought her home she wanted to go in and I didn't let her, but I just ate went outside to play with her and offered to bring her in when we where done but she didn't want to. I do keep reading online that people say don't get a dog and leave them outside. I am torn. I need to figure out if she is house trained, I'll chat with the previous owner to see. I know they are active chewers so I didn't really want her chewing up my furniture, but I guess she can be trained not to??
    My husky, like I said, lived outside for 5 years (she'll be 6 in January). I brought her in and she literally had 4 accidents. 1 was because she was sick and couldn't make it outside so she went on a rug. I sprayed the rug off with a hose and some shampoo, let it dry and brought it back in. The other 3 times were because I ignored her when she wanted to go outside. She let me know multiple times she needed to go out, and I ignored her for something else, so she went. Ain't no thang. My bad.
    So I can't imagine a dog living in the house for 9 months would have trouble being house trained, unless they did absolutely 100% no training. And if she's not trained, train her. At 9 months, it shouldn't be nearly as difficult as it would be with a young puppy.

    They're not really much more of chewers than any other dog, but a lot of them tend to get destructive when left to their own devices, which is what will happen outside. It happens mostly when they don't receive exercise or stimulation, or anything else to chew on. Provide the dog with reasonable exercise and things like kongs and bones and other things to chew on and she should be fine.

    "Even-tempered at home but an aggressive hunter. Amenable to formal training. A good family dog that likes to please."
    The Redbone Coonhound, defined by the AKC.


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    Re: New Husky 9 Months Old

    Quote Originally Posted by Nil View Post
    Just make sure to keep it fun and positive. Huskies don't do real well with corrections. They are very "what's in it for me?"
    I also can't stress this enough. Huskies do NOT do well, at all, with corrections or harshness. They're cat-like in that it's about them, it's what can they get out of it. Make them think it's their idea and life is good.

    "Even-tempered at home but an aggressive hunter. Amenable to formal training. A good family dog that likes to please."
    The Redbone Coonhound, defined by the AKC.


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    Re: New Husky 9 Months Old

    Quote Originally Posted by bcarpio View Post
    1) I plan to get her weighed tomorrow at petsmart and follow the directions on the back of the dog food but for a husky is that a good idea? How often should I feed her and how much?

    My husky, Faolan, eats about 3 cups of food (Earthborn Holistic Grain Free) a day, if he eats it all. But he is very dependent on exercise to determine how much he will really eat. If I have a busy day and don't get him out to the dog park where he can run, then he may only eat 2 of the 3 cups of food I offer him. I think going by the bag is an ok place to start, but if your husky doesn't eat it all or eats it all really fast, I would adjust accordingly and watch her weight. If she starts gaining weight or looking really skinny after a month of eating a certain amount, adjust again.

    2) How often should I walk her, is 2x a day too much at 9months? Or is that good? I know these dogs pack the energy.

    At this age you do have to be careful with how you exercise her because she is still growing and too much strain on her joints can damage them. If you can walk her on softer surfaces (ie: NOT concrete), that would be easier on her joints. Faolan does fine with 1-2 hours at the dog park a day, and he has been doing that since he was 4 months old because he could exercise at his own pace and the ground was softer dirt instead of concrete. Walks do pretty much nothing to tire Faolan out unless we walk for a good 3 hours. What's good about the dog park is that he can run at full speed and wrestle with other dogs (inside a fence!). I can't get him to that fast paced energy-burning level on a walk. If you're a runner or biker, you might want to consider taking your husky with you once she's past a year old. They make bike leash attachments (WalkyDog or Springer) so that your husky can run along side you while you ride your bike. It takes a bit of training to get them used to it and so you can make the turns and stuff, but it would probably work a lot better than a walk. You would want to ease her into it, doing shorter jogs or bike rides and working your way up. ALWAYS watch your dog and don't push her to do more than she can comfortably handle. Of course, if you can't do jogging or biking then take her for lots of walks and give her lots of at-home play time and training to tire her out!


    3) What about dog treats / reward treats any recommendations?

    You can use your dog's kibble if she's really food motivated. We use Zukes training treats, as well as Natrual Balance dog food rolls, hot dogs, cheese, carrots, cooked chicken, or really anything that can be chopped up small and is safe for dogs to eat. It's good to have variety as it keeps them interested for a longer period of time.

    4) Rawhide Bones? A no no?

    Faolan loves rawhides, but they can be dangerous if your dog swallows too big of a piece because it can swell and cause a blockage in their digestive system. A good alternative is bully sticks, which are generally pretty pricey in stores but you can order them online at www.bestbullysticks.com .

    5) When should I try and let her off her leash in a park so we can play? I assume a few months of bonding atleast?

    I would HIGHLY recommend you not let your husky off leash outside of a fence. Huskies are born to run and will run for miles before they even think of home. They also have a notoriously high prey drive. All it takes is one squirrel and you'll likely not see her again. It takes a LOT of training (think years) to have a really reliable recall (like 99%, it's rare to reach 100%) in most dogs, and huskies are much more difficult than your average dog to train for a reliable recall.

    6) When can we go up to the mountains for a hike? I let her off her leash then? Or again try it with the leash at first then off?

    You may want to wait a few months before taking her for a hike. She's still growing right now. I'd say you can start off with shorter, less intensive hikes (easy on the joints) after she turns a year old and work your way up to longer hikes gradually. Again, I really wouldn't trust her off leash, especially in a wilderness area with lots of wildlife, but you can consider buying a longer leash (they come in 10, 20, 30, and 50 feet) if you want to give her more freedom.

    7) I know they have thick coats, how often should I brush her? Or should I just take her to the groomer every so often?

    Faolan gets brushed daily during coat blow (transitioning from cool weather to warm weather and vice versa) and once a week any other time. You could take her to a groomer during coat blow for a bath and blow dry, it really helps get out all that shedding hair (with Faolan, the place ends up looking like an indoor snowstorm). Otherwise I wouldn't bother with a groomer. Side note: NEVER SHAVE A HUSKY. It ruins their coat. They shed for a reason, they don't need to get shaved!
    Good luck with your new husky! Please share some pictures!
    Last edited by Daenerys; 10-22-2012 at 06:31 AM.



    RIP Faolan
    “Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole."

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    Re: New Husky 9 Months Old

    I think most places in Colorado has leash laws. It might vary from city to city, I'm not sure. I think it's pretty much leashed or voice controlled. There are fenced dog parks you can go to if you want for off leash play or maybe even something like a fenced baseball diamond. If your dog doesn't have a reliable recall, it's not really safe for her to run around off leash. Plus it's rude to other people.

    I'm not too sure about puppies and hiking. I guess coming down from a hike could be a bit rough on the joints. It kind of depends on what you consider a hike I guess. A trail with fairly gentle elevation gains would probably not be much of an issue. Actually since it's nice soft dirt trails it may even be preferred. If you're gonna go hike a fourteener or something, I'd probably wait a bit.

    I would definitely keep the pup leashed on hikes. Again I think most trails require voice tag or leash anyways.

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    Re: New Husky 9 Months Old

    So apparently they didn't house trainer her so I am going to have to learn how to do it.

    I decided to let her in the house last night and after walking around for a bit she urinated on the floor. The good thing is that I have tile floors and the clean up was pretty simple.

    I was going to fix up the dog house in the back, but I might just pass and spend my efforts on house training. I'm taking the day off today to spend time with her and get antiquated with some of the resources around to help me. Probably will buy a book on house training or at the very least watch some youtube videos and read some online resources. I know this site is chalk full of posts about house training.

    New Husky 9 Months Old-20121021_180425.jpgNew Husky 9 Months Old-541284_500009233351013_1627440593_n.jpgNew Husky 9 Months Old-20121021_180434.jpg
    Last edited by bcarpio; 10-22-2012 at 07:40 AM. Reason: added pics

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    Re: New Husky 9 Months Old

    She's very pretty!
    With house training, I can't stress enough: supervise, supervise supervise. This means watch her like a hawk, don't give her a second to herself where you don't have your eyes on her (unless she's sleeping, or laying in out spot playing with or chewing on a toy or treat.
    If you are supervising her enough, you will be able to PREVENT accidents. That is the goal. Take her outside more often than you think you need to, and don't let her wander around without you watching.

    It's so much easier if you really work on preventing accidents at all costs. That way, you are simply giving her one choice, potty outside. You aren't ever letting her potty inside, just from watching her so closely. The more she has accidents inside, the more habit it will become.....

    Good luck!

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    Re: New Husky 9 Months Old

    All i can add is good luck! huskies are not the easiest dog to train. They are extremely smart, even to smart. like mentioned above they only do what they feel is something they want to do. They pretty much ignore scolding or don't take it seriously because to me its almost like they know your limits and that we aren't gonna hurt them or anything. so they just don't care. Unlike most dogs they could care less how you feel. Most dogs are people pleasers. Huskies minds are beyond that, they understand too well and have moved on to doing things they want for their own benefit.

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    Re: New Husky 9 Months Old

    Huskies are a popular breed. See if there are any husky groups around. getting the opinion of lots of owners can really help. I don't have any input in the outside thing, but other husky owners probably do.

    1) I plan to get her weighed tomorrow at petsmart and follow the directions on the back of the dog food but for a husky is that a good idea? How often should I feed her and how much?
    Can you pick her up? If so, weigh yourself, pick her up and weigh both of you and now you have her weight.

    2) How often should I walk her, is 2x a day too much at 9months? Or is that good? I know these dogs pack the energy.
    That should be fine. How long will the walks be? See how she reacts. Breeds have general characteristics. I've met a very subdued border collie before who is totally unlike her breed.

    3) What about dog treats / reward treats any recommendations?
    Bully sticks are great as are food puzzles. I haven't had great luck with Petco. I find a lot of their products are just low quality.

    4) Rawhide Bones? A no no?
    Opinions vary. The risks really are that they would swallow a big chunk and have a blockage in their digestion system. Most nice pet stores will sell the highly compressed kind where that's less likely to happen. Regular bones can be a lot better but not cooked ones.

    5) When should I try and let her off her leash in a park so we can play? I assume a few months of bonding atleast?
    I'd keep her on leash in parks. You have a back yard. Get to know her better before you go that route.

    6) When can we go up to the mountains for a hike? Can I let her off her leash then? Or again try it with the leash at first then off?
    Most people would say no. In CO, you have bears, cougars, etc, right? You definitely don't want to hike if her shots are incomplete. I'd go with leash for a while and see how things go and if it's wild wild west I wouldn't want her wandering off or getting lost. I'd also be leery of big hikes until her bones have fused. I think that's about 18 months.

    7) I know they have thick coats, how often should I brush her? Or should I just take her to the groomer every so often?
    Read up on the breed and see.

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    Re: New Husky 9 Months Old

    So it's been one week now that we have been together and I just wanted to share some updates:

    1) The soft stool has went anyway (I posted another thread about that in the nutrition forum), so I think she just needed to adapt to her new food. I think she really likes this brand so I think I am going to keep her on it.

    2) I finally weighed her at Petsmart and she weighed 65lbs.

    3) I've taken her to the dog park now two times and she is great with the other dogs. My only problem is when its time to leave she generally just looks at me and goes on her merry way.. so I have to go get her. Hopefully more training and bonding will help with that. We also walk in the morning but nothing seems to wear her out like a trip to the dog park. Running and chasing the other dogs for an hour or so seems to do it.

    4) We got enrolled at Petsmart for their obedience training, today was the first day. She did really good.

    5) I think her previous owners tried to train her because when I have treats she seems to know, sit, stay, come, and lay down. I try and spend 1 or 2 sessions for 10 minutes a day going over these commands with her. I feel that I am making good progress.

    6) The house I live in had an old chicken coop in the back yard, my brother came over and we fixed it up really nice into a dog house, roofed it and stuffed the bottom with straw. At first I played with her in it and she seems to have gotten the idea that it's her house, and she puts all her "toys" in it (well most of them, like her favorite ones).

    7) So I do have a dog house for her so she can use it when I'm at work or what not, but I've also decided to let her sleep inside. Generally after she eats dinner and does her business she comes in for the evening. I got a doggy bed for her and she sleeps on it just fine. She hasn't urinated in the house since the one incident. Actually she will wake me up when she wants to go outside, which is generally at about 3:30 - 4am. She doesn't bark she just comes and stands in my doorway and shakes her collar. I'm a pretty light sleeper so it wakes me up.

    8) So besides not barking to wake me up, she actually doesn't bark at all. I've yet to hear a peep out of her. I asked the trainer at Petsmart why that was and if she was "debarked" and she said even dogs who get debarked generally try and bark and make some type of noise. She never even tries to bark. So I'm personally fine with that but it seems somewhat odd.

    Anyway, things are going well. I think we are both getting use to each other.

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    Re: New Husky 9 Months Old

    Some people have claimed huskies CANT bark ( this is not true) but many of them talk. more then bark. some of them are just quiet in general.

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    Re: New Husky 9 Months Old

    Quote Originally Posted by bcarpio View Post
    2) I finally weighed her at Petsmart and she weighed 65lbs.
    I'm not gonna lie, I'm dead convinced your dog has shepherd in her. This weight is about double what a husky should be, and if a husky (siberian) were to weigh this much, it would show. a lot.
    Just out of curiosity now, do the previous owners know the parents of this dog or anything?


    7) So I do have a dog house for her so she can use it when I'm at work or what not, but I've also decided to let her sleep inside. Generally after she eats dinner and does her business she comes in for the evening. I got a doggy bed for her and she sleeps on it just fine. She hasn't urinated in the house since the one incident. Actually she will wake me up when she wants to go outside, which is generally at about 3:30 - 4am. She doesn't bark she just comes and stands in my doorway and shakes her collar. I'm a pretty light sleeper so it wakes me up.
    This is a lot better than not coming inside at all. I would think most dangerous come around at night. At least this way she'll be safe and warm at night.
    The bathroom break early in the morning may go away. When I first brought my husky in, she used to wake me up at 3 every night to go out. After a couple of weeks, she stopped asking and now sleeps all the way through the night.

    "Even-tempered at home but an aggressive hunter. Amenable to formal training. A good family dog that likes to please."
    The Redbone Coonhound, defined by the AKC.


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