The Alaskan Husky is a category of dog, but it falls short of being a breed. It is defined by purpose and lacks registration and restrictions to ancestry. The Alaskan Husky is one of the fastest sled dogs, sometimes running over 19 miles per hour. They are primarily bred for their racing ability.
The Alaskan Husky is a mix of various northern dog types, especially the Siberian Husky and the traditional Alaskan village dog. Many other types of dog contributed including the wolf, Doberman, Foxhound and Greyhound. The category originated in the early 1900s when Alaskans decided they wanted smaller, more lightweight sled dogs than the Saint Bernards they had been using.
Alaskan Huskies usually weigh between 38 and 60 pounds and can come in any coat color or pattern. The eyes can also be any color and are often light blue. The coat of an Alaskan Husky is never long, usually short and medium, and not as dense as northern purebreds.
The Alaskan Husky is a popular pet in Alaska, because those deemed unfit for racing are often given away. It makes an excellent pet if its owner is willing to exercise it regularly. The Alaskan Husky needs plenty of room to play, and for this reason, is not necessarily the best type of dog for an urban dweller. If multiple Huskies are kept together they tend to be especially vocal, but can be trained otherwise (with great effort). They enjoy hunting, running and playing and tend to become destructive when bored.
The Alaskan Husky is typically shy and not aggressive toward humans or other animals. They do not back down from encounters with moose (which occur frequently in northern regions), and are often killed by being stomped; almost as many are killed by wolves in the northern forests.
In general, the Alaskan Husky is a healthy creature. They are prone to ear infections, especially if raised in humid regions. They also may experience PRA, hypothyroidism, and wheezers (an esophageal disorder occurring in white-haired blue-eyed dogs). The Alaskan Husky usually lives for between 10 and 15 years, although they tend to deteriorate rapidly at the 6 year mark.