Cross breeding different kinds of dogs have given us some of the most popular dog breeds. Think goldendoodles, pomchis, puggles and even the gorgeous husky lab mix (otherwise known as the Siberian Retriever). In this article, I’ll be detailing more information about this breed and why so many people are so attracted to colors, markings and beautiful thick coat resembling a wolf. Most importantly, you’ll find out if this breed will be suitable for your lifestyle and situation.
Where Does The Siberian Retriever Originate From?
Guessing the origin of some dog breeds can be a pretty hard job, especially when parent breeds are completely different. The Siberian Retriever breed actually goes by a couple of names such as Labrador Retriever Husky Mix and Husky Labrador Mix. These dogs are pretty popular among the designer dog breeds and are the result of breeding a Siberian Husky with a Labrador Retriever.
To understand the traits of a cross breed, we’d have to look at its parents. The Labrador Retriever traces its roots to Canada, Newfoundland. It all began in the 18th century, and they were at first called St. John’s dogs. They were bred to be companions, family pets, and working dogs. Known for helping fishermen, they also made great family pets. When the British saw the Labrador Retriever, they even took some of them back home to England to serve as hunting dogs which was when the Labrador Retriever got its name. By the end of the 19th century, the Labrador Retriever completely disappeared from Canada, but continued to gain popularity in England.
The Siberian Husky has been here for a long time. They are an old breed, and it is believed that they came from Chukchi which was a Siberian nomadic tribe. Their primary job was to help with transportation by pulling sleds, but they were also amazing family pets. Chukchi children would often sleep with their Siberian Huskies for warmth, comfort, and protection. During the Alaskan gold rush at the turn of the 20th century, the Siberian Husky was a valuable breed for their ability to pull sleds in harsh weather.
Now that we know who its parents are from, let us address the actual Siberian Retriever breed. It is believed that this breed was bred on purpose during the last couple of decades which makes them designer dogs. There are breeders who are only using purebred dogs with all necessary health clearances but there are also breeders who are looking for an easy buck, resorting to breeding dogs without details of their origins or parents.
What Can I Expect?
Let’s start with the basics. A Siberian Retriever grows up to 25 inches, which is an average height for this breed. The average weight varies from 40 up to 60 pounds. They have silky, short to medium hair and they do require moderate grooming.
If you wish to add a Siberian Retriever into your family, this loyal dog will be more than prepared to be your family’s new best friend.
In general, they are not such big fans of being alone, They can tolerate heat well enough but feel most at home when they are in the cold. They are great with kids, make great family pets, and they get along with other dogs even though they can consider some smaller breeds as prey.
If you live in a flat or a condo, do think twice before getting yourself a Labrador Retriever Husky Mix. They need open space, and they need it a lot. They are intelligent which means that you will have no trouble in training them, but you need to be firm. They can easily put on some extra weight, so it is really important to keep them active and to make them exercise. They can develop some health problems, but the average lifespan is between 10 and 15 years. Some genetic conditions they might inherit can range from arthritis, eye and skin diseases, hip dysplasia and cancer to name a few.
In general, you will realize that this breed is an extremely loyal, lively, active and intelligent breed known for serving in the police and military. They are also frequently used as guide dogs for the blind and service dogs for the disabled.
What Is Its Temperament Like?
If you are looking for an intelligent dog and a new best friend, then this breed might be the perfect dog for you. They are full of love, are affectionate and are actually known to be very patient. They are often the perfect choice for families with children because they require long play sessions and who better to serve that need than a lively and boisterous child?
They crave attention and have huge amounts of energy. Another interesting thing about this breed is that they love spending time in the water. As energetic as they are, they are also known to be calm, often understanding how to behave well under different circumstances. Even though the parent Husky breed is known to possess the tendency to bark, this breed is actually known to be a lot quieter. They are very protective, and if they sense that someone in the family is in danger, they will alert someone by barking out of necessity.
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Siberian Retrievers are relatively big dogs which mean that you should probably give them up to four cups of premium dog food. Divide that into two meals for one day, every day.
As mentioned, this breed can put on extra weight, so it’s really important to keep an eye on how much food they are eating throughout the day and how much they exercise. It is recommended that they are fed premium dog food. Commercial dog food purchased in a pet store is usually loaded with carbohydrates and dogs can have a problem digesting them.
Training and Exercising With Your Siberian Retriever
They are easy to train, inheriting that well known trait from the Labrador Retriever. They are eager to please their owner and are very intelligent too. As they get older, you might notice more of a Siberian Husky side emerging. They might try to test your patience and your leadership skill as they become more independent.
The best thing you can do is to start with training while they are still puppies. And don’t be afraid to be firm while training them as they are pack animals and really do enjoy following their pack leader. This way, you can prevent them from becoming too stubborn. Also, remember that it is important to have your dog socialize with other dogs and people.
When it comes to exercising, this breed certainly needs a lot of it. In fact, try to schedule a twice daily walk to let your dog get the fresh air and exercise it needs. They often love being off the leash, running free and are even known to be good with the frisbee and other interactive games. This dog is known to be extremely sociable so do be prepared to fulfill its social needs. Think lots of swimming, walks, games, frisbees, hiking, camping trips and more.
As it has its parent Labrador’s gene mutation, do be aware that your dog can become obese without adequate exercise or activity. It will come in handy if you have a medium to large yard for your dog to run around on a daily basis but be sure to have a reasonably strong fence.
Grooming Your Husky Lab
When it comes to grooming, get ready for low to moderate levels of maintenance. They do shed more during the Spring and Summer seasons and moderately throughout the year so get ready for regularly brushing. Try to brush once to twice weekly just to maintain its coat. Remember that brushing your Siberian Retriever is important for the health of their coat so don’t skip it even if shedding doesn’t bother you. Overall, grooming is rather low maintenance.
You will have to clip his nails when they get too long, and you will need to brush his teeth up to three times every week.
Is A Siberian Retriever Suitable For Your Lifestyle or Your Family?
Because they are affectionate pets, they will get attached to you as an owner which means that you won’t be able to leave them alone for longer periods of time. They are the best choice for big families with children, a family in which they will have enough activity, exercise, and company.
A medium sized yard is somewhat of a must-have when it comes to this breed. You should get some durable and sturdy dog toys, and that should keep them occupied in case you have to leave them alone for a longer period.
If you are looking for a dog that can be a friend, a companion and a worker, then the Siberian Retriever is the right choice for you. If you have a family with children, then this breed will be an amazing addition to the family. They will protect you, love you, and serve you with utmost loyalty.