Huskies are very loving creatures and people who have them will vouch for that. But how far can you go?
A lot of people think their husky might not love them because these magnificent dogs are not big on cuddling.
What’s the scoop on this? We’ll tell you.
- Huskies and Cuddling: Yes or No?
- When Do They Like It?
- When They Don’t Like It
- Can You Change That?
- The Bottom Line
Well, the answer to this question really isn’t binary. Not all huskies are alike, but it is actually safe to say that they do like to cuddle when they want it.
That’s right. They do it for specific reasons in specific situations and on their terms. So, if you have a husky, you should know what those conditions are so that you don’t annoy them with your overt expression of love.
But here’s the good news. Huskies really do love their humans, even if your particular canine is not a super-duper cuddler.
How do you know this? You need to observe them carefully and figure out what is drawing them to you.
They really like being in the company of their humans, but they do it when they are in the mood for it.
And in this context, it is very important to note that if you try to force your cuddles on them, they might become aggressive and that’s not good for anyone.
You want to know when to do it and you also want to be sure of how to do it. Because if you are rash in your attempt or so they think, your husky will feel a lot of stress.
That’s the opposite of what you’re trying to do, right?
Also, you can touch them gently and affectionately but they don’t like to be held. Their preferences are not limited to cuddling but being held too.
Huskies have a lot of energy and tend to run around knocking things over and also chewing on stuff that is accessible to them. These dogs also need to be entertained pretty much constantly.
That means they need your attention and like to interact with you as often as possible. But that does not mean you can hold them or even carry them around.
So, you need to figure out other forms of affection like walking around with them or playing games.
Also Read: Why Are Huskies So Vocal?
Back to cuddling.
While huskies are a friendly breed and like hanging out with most people they meet, you need to make sure you teach them not to chase other animals if they are going to grow up with other pets.
Cuddling is also a way to express affection which is why you can count that as a scenario when they are open to it.
But it’s important to remember that their mood needs to be good in the sense that they want to play around and will tolerate a bit of it even if they are not entirely up for it.
Huskies are friendly, as mentioned before, but they are not considered to be the most affectionate of dog breeds. At least not by the American Kennel Club or AKC.
Depending on the way they have been trained and socialized, some huskies are a bit more social but not so affectionate. So, these are all things to keep in mind.
It’s a matter of nature versus nurture sometimes. Now let’s look at the specific situations when your husky is likely to cuddle with you.
They Want Warmth
This is one of the reasons why a lot of dogs like to cuddle and the husky is no exception. Even though this breed of dogs has a thick coat that protects them, they do get cold once in a while and they are happy to snuggle up next to you.
This is also possible if they were just taken outside or are feeling a bit of a draft from somewhere. They also get cold when they are sick and need a little outside help to keep their temperature balanced.
You want to be aware of these situations. And if they are sick or there is a draft somewhere in the house, you want to take care of them as soon as you can.
Now, even though huskies are originally from cold weather regions and they inherently know how to deal with cold, their domestication can lead to some changes.
It’s called learned behavior and most dogs are prone to it.
They Want to Relieve Stress
Cuddling, like in humans, reduces stress levels in huskies too. If that’s something you have in common with your furry little friend, well, fortunately or unfortunately, you might both be in luck.
In fact, there is research to show that the production of oxytocin happens in a similar fashion in both humans and dogs as a result of cuddling.
They Want to Feel Safe
Huskies used to run in packs in the wild back when that’s where they were. So, naturally, they are inclined to feel safer when they have that sense in their environment.
So, time and again, it is possible that they reach out to their human and snuggle up next to them to feel the safety of a pack.
It means that they feel comfortable with their human and that’s good news for you. It is also possible that they do this when they are ready to go to sleep.
But you should also make sure that they are not feeling threatened in their regular space because that is entirely possible too.
They Want to Guard You
These are not dogs known for their protective instincts but they do feel so from time and time. And when they think they need to protect you, they come cuddle with you.
Cute, isn’t it?
There are a lot of reasons why a husky doesn’t want to cuddle.
Now, Siberian Huskies are friendly with adults, kids and dogs. And if they were socialized with other animals, they will be friendly with them too.
They are not crazy about barking, but if they are provoked, they will howl.
But all huskies have reasons to not be warm and, quite literally in this case, cuddly. Let’s take a look.
They Were Mistreated in the Past
If you didn’t get a puppy or if it was a rescue, it’s possible that they were not treated well. For a breed that is not cuddly by nature, this makes the possibility of cuddling even rare.
But if they were treated badly in the past, they will also stop being affectionate. That’s because they are naturally more suspicious and scared of humans.
If the mistreatment has gone as far as leaving them with injuries, well, your job just got tougher.
They Weren’t Socialized or Trained Properly
If your husky wasn’t properly socialized as a puppy, it’s not going to open up all that easily.
So, training them as pups is a very important and non-optional thing. Make sure they get comfortable with other people as well as kids.
If the training and socialization was not effective or enough, you will get a not so loving husky.
They’re Old or Ill
This should be understandable.
As your dog gets old, it doesn’t have the energy it did in its youth and that makes it not be as affectionate. It might even not cuddle when you expect it to.
You want to leave them alone because it’s not their natural state of existence and you don’t want to bother them.
The same is true when they are ill or in pain. They tend to stay away so that they can cover up their pain or injury and make sure it is not touched.
So, it’s a good idea to check on your husky if it’s acting more distant than usual. And if you find anything, please take them to the vet as soon as you can.
You probably already know that dogs get depressed too; it makes them want to stay away from everyone, and everything like humans do a lot of the time.
You know this might be the case if you haven’t been spending as much time with your canine and it hasn’t particularly reacted to it.
Because remember, it is not the cuddliest dog, but it is still quite affectionate.
There are a few subtle things you can do to encourage your dog to cuddle with you. But you have to be understanding of its natural preferences and only nudge and not force it into doing what you want.
Here’s what you can try.
Don’t Force It
Of course, you shouldn’t forcibly hug or cuddle your husky. That is not cute like you might think it is and it’s very annoying to your little one.
This might trigger bad behavior or negative directions. In fact, if you stop irritating your dog, it might improve your relationship because it might just love you more for being considerate.
It takes some time and it happens in steps, but patience is the price you pay.
Make Them Want It
Your husky has many ways of showing physical affection. So, you can try engaging some of those like petting them or stroking their head to let them know you are “feeling the love”.
You essentially need to demonstrate in a controlled fashion that you will come to them. If they are happy about you petting them for about half a minute, take it to the next level.
Then, you stop for about 15 seconds and watch what they do. After that, you should try to cuddle them for about 10 seconds and see if they will let you.
And make sure you stop after that before your husky might get annoyed. That lets them know that you are in charge and they will start coming to the alpha.
It sounds like a bit of a mind game because it is. But it is not evil, and that’s how you need to manage your little guy.
Use Positive Reinforcement
With dogs, like children, positive reinforcement is a great idea. It works in obedience school and it works with cuddles too.
You can try giving them a reward whenever they let you cuddle them. You can give them a treat after the cuddle and that might nudge him into letting you cuddle them.
But if they don’t, you can’t bribe them into it. So, watch their response and act accordingly.
Also Read: Are Huskies High Maintenance Dogs?
Huskies cuddle when they want to and it’s for specific reasons.
It could be for functional purposes like keeping themselves warm or relieving stress. They also do this when they themselves want to feel safe or like they need to protect you.
These are all great times for you to leap into action and give your husky the snuggles. But if they’re not into it, leave them alone.