Huskitas, the cross breed of the Siberian Husky and the Akita, has become one of the most popular dog breeds in recent decades – chiefly because they’re so darn fluffy and adorable, but also because they possess many great characteristics that make them an ideal canine companion. The Huskita personality takes the best of both worlds from their parents; the fierce loyalty of Akitas with the boundless energy of Huskies.
So what are the realities of keeping a Huskita and how can you tell if they will be the right choice for you? Huskitas are very playful and affectionate which makes them a great fit in family homes, although their protective, almost guard dog like nature means they may not be so friendly in a household with many other pets, so bear this in mind. They can also be quite high maintenance dogs, owing to their heavy shedding and exercise needs, so they are the perfect dog for an active owner.
If you’re still on the fence about adopting a Huskita (or the Siberian Akita as they’re also known), we take a look at what you can expect from this beautiful mix breed. From their feisty personality to their care and grooming needs, the following info should be able to answer whether you are compatible with Huskitas – and vice versa!
Huskitas have an average life expectancy of around 10 to 13 years, although they can live as long as 15 years in ideal health conditions.
Physical Characteristics (Size and Physical look)
Huskitas have a fairly stout build with strong legs and a curly bushy tail, and of course, the first thing you notice about a Huskitas is their luxuriously fluffy coat. Because of their Russian Siberian Husky heritage, they have a thick double layered water-repellent coat to keep them well-insulated in harsh conditions, which in addition to making them cuddly pets also means they’re heavy shedders (more on their grooming needs later!). Their coat colors can vary between white, brown, gray and reddish brown or be a combination of these.
They also have short muzzles with round black noses and tend to look at you with a friendly curiosity through almond-shaped eyes.
Fully grown Huskitas measure 22 to 26 inches high and can weigh 50 to 75 pounds on average.
Huskitas are naturally very playful, alert and high energy dogs, almost to the point of being quite hyper sensitive to their surroundings. This can make them great during play or getting their exercise, but it can also mean they are quite wary around strangers at first and dislike new experiences. They love consistency, so any sudden changes to their schedule tend to make them anxious and occasionally aggressive in response.
They are also very loyal and protective to their owners, which can make them very affectionate around you, but slightly distrustful of other dogs, but you can work on this by ensuring they socialize from an early age.
Due to their large size, common health issues of Huskitas tend to be bone related, most notably Hip and Elbow Dysplasia, which causes the ball and socket joint to become malformed. Huskitas can also be prone to inherited conditions including obesity, bloating, eye problems, Hypothyroidism and Epilepsy. Feeding your Huskita an appropriate diet (info below) will encourage healthy bone development, as well as regular exercise to build muscles and support loose joints.
Huskitas benefit from a weekly brushing of their coat using a firm bristle brush for regular maintenance. During their seasonal shedding, however, they may require more frequent brushing to reduce the volume of fur they shed. Their seasonal bi-annual shedding (when they ‘blowout’ their undercoat) leaves behind a lot of fur! But you can make it more manageable by using a pin brush to draw dead hairs out of their exterior coat layer.
Luckily, a Huskitas coat is quite tough and waterproof which repels dirt well, so they do not need to be bathed constantly. But be sure to keep their nails clipped at least once a month to prevent painful overgrowth. Other than around the time of their shedding, Huskitas have fairly average grooming needs.
Huskitas have above average energy levels and are prone to boredom if inactive, so they benefit from frequent and moderate exercise each day to burn off all this energy. To keep your Huskita happy and healthy, we’d recommend that they get at least 90 minutes of daily exercise (puppies should get at least 45 minutes of moderate exercise each day).
They crave lots of open space for runs and hikes with you, so if you live in a rural or suburban area all the better for their exercise needs. Huskitas have been recorded as having a weekly walking mileage of 14 miles on average, so be prepared to hike, jog and run with these four-legged friends and buy some decent trainers – you’re gonna need them!
The Huskitas highly alert and protective nature has made them ideal as hunters and working dogs. Their hyper sensitive and energetic temperament makes them an excellent choice for police work and carrying out guard duties. Originally, the main purpose of their parent Akita breed in Japan was to hunt mammals including elk and small bears, though nowadays they remain a spiritual symbol of protection and happiness in Japanese culture.
Equally, their fierce loyalty and protective qualities make Huskitas perfect companions and guard dogs for those living alone, and they aren’t afraid to challenge any other dog or small animal that comes into your path!
Like their Akita parent breed, Huskitas are prone to weight gain, so it’s essential that their diet is managed properly. As puppies, Huskitas should be fed frequent but small meal portions that can be easily digested, so 1/2 a cup of puppy food around 3 to 4 times a day. As fully grown adults, Huskitas should be getting 4 to 5 cups of dry dog food each day, splitting this amount into two balanced meals.
It’s important to note that due to their size and high energy levels, the nutritional needs of a specific cross breed mix like Huskita can change throughout their life, so it’s wise to get a specific recommendation about this from your local veterinarian. Their weight and overall health may require specific food types or portions, so it’s always wise to get this checked with a professional from a young age.
Are Huskitas Protective?
Yes, since they have inherited hunting instincts from their parent Siberian Husky breed, Huskitas can be very protective and watchful over their owners and their household.
How Much Does a Huskita cost?
Since Siberian Huskies and Akitas are a highly sought after breed, cross-bred Huskita puppies can cost between $750 to $1,000. Huskitas were originally viewed as a designer breed, but many have found their way into shelters and rescue centers, so if you can, always try to choose adoption over buying.
If you do buy from a breeder, make sure they can be trusted – reputable Huskita breeders should be able to answer all questions you have about the breed itself and have good knowledge of their parent (Husky and Akita) breed.
Is a Huskita Right for Me?
As tempted as you might be by their cuddly appearance and playful spirit, it’s essential to think carefully about whether you can provide all a Huskita needs before rushing to take one home with you. Depending on where you live, your patience and your own fitness levels, adopting a pet Huskita may or may not be the right dog for you. Find out if you could be an ideal Huskita owner below – do the following apply to you?
- You don’t suffer from allergies (Akitas are not hypoallergenic)
- They are not suited to climates that are too warm
- They are not suited well to apartment living
- They relish frequent amounts of exercise
- They require patience and consistent training
- They are best for active, adventurous owners
- They are better suited to suburban or rural areas
- They prefer to be the sole dog of the household
- They shed heavily every 6 months
- They have a tendency to become overweight
Best Climate for an Akita/Husky Mix(Huskita)
Huskitas generally do best in colder climates, but can also fare well in climates that stay consistently cool as this will be more comfortable for their heavy double-layered coats. Colder climates also mean their seasonal shedding of their undercoat will be less severe, so this is good news for your home and belongings! Huskitas are not suited to climates with stark seasonal contrasts i.e. in New England states.
The Attention an Akita/Husky Mix (Huskita) Needs
Though Huskitas can be affectionate and submissive with their owners, they also like their independence, so they don’t necessarily require constant attention from you.
The best way you can show your Huskita adequate attention is by ensuring they get the exercise they crave by giving them plenty of opportunities to burn off their energy.
Huskitas tend to feel restless and act out if they become bored and may tend to show this with aggression rather than eagerness like lap dogs and retriever breeds.
Compatibility with Children
Huskitas can make great pets in family homes and can be very compatible with children, thanks to their affectionate and playful nature. Huskitas make especially wonderful companions for older children, since they have very high energy levels and will benefit from lots of runs and active play.
When Huskitas are playing with smaller children, they should always be supervised just in case – as playful and loving as they can be with young kids, Huskitas are quite sensitive to changes in their surroundings, so if your young child accidentally mistreats them, your Huskita may pose a danger to them.
The key to making them more docile and compatible with children (and more people in general) is to give them plenty of opportunities to socialize with kids early on in their puppy years. Huskitas are at their happiest when they are in a stable environment, so as long as you introduce your young Huskita gradually with your children, there shouldn’t be a compatibility issue.
Compatibility with Other Animals
Huskitas are fairly independent and their protective hunting genes can make them quite wary of strangers (this includes other pets at home or outside). For this reason, their compatibility with other animals is hard to gauge on a general basis, and will largely come down to the individual Huskitas temperament.
Though they descended from Huskies, the Huskita mix breed does not share their parents pack animal instinct, so sharing their space with other animals can be a challenge. The bottom line: Huskitas prefer to be the only dog in the household, but they may learn to share their space with other animals if this concept is introduced gradually and in a way that will not cause them stress.