Breed Standard Working Group
Husky Breed Focus
The Siberian Husky is a medium-sized working dog, quick and
light on his feet and free and graceful in action. His moderately
compact and well furred body, erect ears and brush tail suggest
his Northern heritage. His characteristic gait is smooth and
seemingly effortless. He performs his original function in
harness most capably, carrying a light load at a moderate
speed over great distances. His body proportions and form
reflect this basic balance of power, speed and endurance.
The males of the Siberian Husky breed are masculine but never
coarse; the bitches are feminine but without weakness of structure.
In proper condition, with muscle firm and well developed,
the Siberian Husky does not carry excess weight.
Size, Proportion, Substance
Height--Dogs, 21 to 23½ inches
cm) at the withers. Bitches, 20
to 22 inches
(51-56 cm) at the withers. Weight--Dogs,
45 to 60 pounds
(20-27 kg). Bitches,
35 to 50 pounds
(15-23 kg). Weight
is in proportion to height. The measurements mentioned above
represent the extreme height and weight limits with no preference
given to either extreme. Any appearance of excessive bone
or weight should be penalized. In profile, the length of the
body from the point of the shoulder to the rear point of the
croup is slightly longer than the height of the body from
the ground to the top of the withers. Disqualification--Dogs
over 23½ inches and bitches over 22 inches.
Expression is keen, but friendly; interested
and even mischievous. Eyes almond shaped, moderately
spaced and set a trifle obliquely. Eyes may be brown or blue
in color; one of each or parti-colored are acceptable.
Faults--Eyes set too obliquely; set too close together.
Ears of medium size, triangular in shape, close
fitting and set high on the head. They are thick, well furred,
slightly arched at the back, and strongly erect, with slightly
rounded tips pointing straight up. Faults--Ears
too large in proportion to the head; too wide set; not strongly
erect. Skull of medium size and in proportion
to the body; slightly rounded on top and tapering from the
widest point to the eyes. Faults--Head clumsy
or heavy; head too finely chiseled. Stop--The
stop is well-defined and the bridge of the nose is straight
from the stop to the tip. Fault--Insufficient
stop. Muzzle of medium length; that is, the
distance from the tip of the nose to the stop is equal to
the distance from the stop to the occiput. The muzzle is of
medium width, tapering gradually to the nose, with the tip
neither pointed nor square. Faults Muzzle either too
snipy or too coarse; muzzle too short or too long. Nose
black in gray, tan or black dogs; liver in copper dogs; may
be flesh-colored in pure white dogs. The pink-streaked "snow
nose" is acceptable. Lips are well pigmented
and close fitting. Teeth closing in a scissors
bite. Fault--Any bite other than scissors.
Neck, Topline, Body
Neck medium in length, arched and carried proudly
erect when dog is standing. When moving at a trot, the neck
is extended so that the head is carried slightly forward.
Faults--Neck too short and thick; neck too long.
Chest deep and strong, but not too broad, with
the deepest point being just behind and level with the elbows.
The ribs are well sprung from the spine but flattened on the
sides to allow for freedom of action. Faults--Chest
too broad; "barrel ribs"; ribs too flat or weak.
Back--The back is straight and strong, with
a level topline from withers to croup. It is of medium length,
neither cobby nor slack from excessive length. The loin is
taut and lean, narrower than the rib cage, and with a slight
tuck-up. The croup slopes away from the spine at an angle,
but never so steeply as to restrict the rearward thrust of
the hind legs. Faults--Weak or slack back;
roached back; sloping topline.
The well furred
tail of fox-brush shape is set on just below
the level of the topline, and is usually carried over the
back in a graceful sickle curve when the dog is at attention.
When carried up, the tail does not curl to either side of
the body, nor does it snap flat against the back. A trailing
tail is normal for the dog when in repose. Hair on the tail
is of medium length and approximately the same length on top,
sides and bottom, giving the appearance of a round brush.
Faults--A snapped or tightly curled tail; highly
plumed tail; tail set too low or too high.
Shoulders--The shoulder blade is well laid back.
The upper arm angles slightly backward from point of shoulder
to elbow, and is never perpendicular to the ground. The muscles
and ligaments holding the shoulder to the rib cage are firm
and well developed. Faults--Straight shoulders;
loose shoulders. Forelegs--When standing and
viewed from the front, the legs are moderately spaced, parallel
and straight, with the elbows close to the body and turned
neither in nor out. Viewed from the side, pasterns are slightly
slanted, with the pastern joint strong, but flexible. Bone
is substantial but never heavy. Length of the leg from elbow
to ground is slightly more than the distance from the elbow
to the top of withers. Dewclaws on forelegs may be removed.
Faults--Weak pasterns; too heavy bone; too
narrow or too wide in the front; out at the elbows. Feet
oval in shape but not long. The paws are medium in size, compact
and well furred between the toes and pads. The pads are tough
and thickly cushioned. The paws neither turn in nor out when
the dog is in natural stance. Faults--Soft or
splayed toes; paws too large and clumsy; paws too small and
delicate; toeing in or out.
When standing and viewed from the rear, the hind legs are
moderately spaced and parallel. The upper thighs are well
muscled and powerful, the stifles well bent, the hock joint
well-defined and set low to the ground. Dewclaws, if any,
are to be removed. Faults--Straight stifles,
cow-hocks, too narrow or too wide in the rear.
The coat of the Siberian Husky is double and medium in length,
giving a well furred appearance, but is never so long as to
obscure the clean-cut outline of the dog. The undercoat is
soft and dense and of sufficient length to support the outer
coat. The guard hairs of the outer coat are straight and somewhat
smooth lying, never harsh nor standing straight off from the
body. It should be noted that the absence of the undercoat
during the shedding season is normal. Trimming of whiskers
and fur between the toes and around the feet to present a
neater appearance is permissible. Trimming the fur on any
other part of the dog is not to be condoned and should be
severely penalized. Faults--Long, rough, or
shaggy coat; texture too harsh or too silky; trimming of the
coat, except as permitted above.
All colors from black to pure white are allowed. A variety
of markings on the head is common, including many striking
patterns not found in other breeds.
The Siberian Husky's characteristic gait is smooth and seemingly
effortless. He is quick and light on his feet, and when in
the show ring should be gaited on a loose lead at a moderately
fast trot, exhibiting good reach in the forequarters and good
drive in the hindquarters. When viewed from the front to rear
while moving at a walk the Siberian Husky does not single-track,
but as the speed increases the legs gradually angle inward
until the pads are falling on a line directly under the longitudinal
center of the body. As the pad marks converge, the forelegs
and hind legs are carried straightforward, with neither elbows
nor stifles turned in or out. Each hind leg moves in the path
of the foreleg on the same side. While the dog is gaiting,
the topline remains firm and level. Faults--Short,
prancing or choppy gait, lumbering or rolling gait; crossing
The characteristic temperament of the Siberian Husky is friendly
and gentle, but also alert and outgoing. He does not display
the possessive qualities of the guard dog, nor is he overly
suspicious of strangers or aggressive with other dogs. Some
measure of reserve and dignity may be expected in the mature
dog. His intelligence, tractability, and eager disposition
make him an agreeable companion and willing worker.
The most important breed characteristics of the Siberian Husky
are medium size, moderate bone, well balanced proportions,
ease and freedom of movement, proper coat, pleasing head and
ears, correct tail, and good disposition. Any appearance of
excessive bone or weight, constricted or clumsy gait, or long,
rough coat should be penalized. The Siberian Husky never appears
so heavy or coarse as to suggest a freighting animal; nor
is he so light and fragile as to suggest a sprint-racing animal.
In both sexes the Siberian Husky gives the appearance of being
capable of great endurance. In addition to the faults already
noted, the obvious structural faults common to all breeds
are as undesirable in the Siberian Husky as in any other breed,
even though they are not specifically mentioned herein.
over 23-1/2 inches (60 cm) at the withers and/or over 60 lbs.
(27 kg). Bitches over 22 inches (56 cm) at the withers and/or
over 50 lbs. (23 kg). Monorchid or cryptorchid.