Why do Huskies attack Small Dogs – Huskies vs. Small Dogs

Huskies are famous due to their remarkable looks and distinct personalities. However, as much as they are beloved family pets, there have been cases where huskies have shown aggression toward small dogs.

Due to their natural hunting drive, territorial impulses, or fear responses, huskies may attack small dogs. Training, socializing, and monitoring can all assist in reducing this tendency.

This article will thoroughly examine why it occurs and why this behavior is crucial for all dog owners, especially those with huskies and small dogs in the same household.

Husky and other dogs are standing together in line.
Source: Freepik
Source: Freepik

Huskies are known for their friendly and pleasant nature. They can be great companions for small dogs if introduced and appropriately supervised. However, their strong prey drive can sometimes lead to issues. Let’s delve into the intricacies of huskies’ compatibility with smaller breeds.

1. Understanding Husky Behavior

Understanding why huskies might attack tiny dogs begins with studying their behavior. Huskies are intelligent, active dogs with a history of working as sled dogs. Their ancestors influence a husky’s behavior and interactions with other dogs.

2. Factors Influencing Husky-Small Dog Interactions

Before deciding, the aspects that influence huskies’ interactions with tiny dogs must be understood. Due to their background as sled dogs, huskies may perceive smaller dogs as prey.

When huskies feel their territory is being invaded, territorial tendencies can lead to fights. Fear can trigger aggressive behavior in huskies. Controlling their interactions requires awareness of these aspects.

1. Pack Instinct and Hierarchy

Huskies, descendants of sled dogs, carry a strong pack instinct. Within a household, they may perceive themselves as part of a pack, establishing a hierarchical structure. 

This pack mentality can lead to conflicts, especially if small dogs are considered lower in the hierarchy. Understanding and managing this instinct is crucial for fostering harmonious relationships.

2. Prey Drive

The prey drive in Huskies, a trait inherited from their wolf ancestors, makes them prone to chasing smaller animals. Small dogs may trigger this instinct, leading to pursuit or even aggression. 

Recognizing and redirecting this natural behavior through training and controlled interactions is essential to mitigate potential issues.

3. Resource Guarding

Huskies can display resource-guarding behavior, becoming possessive of their food, toys, or space. When small dogs approach these guarded resources, it can result in aggression. 

Owners need to address resource guarding through positive reinforcement training to create an environment where sharing is encouraged.

4. Socialization And Early Training

Early socialization and training are pivotal in shaping a Husky’s behavior. Without exposure to various environments, people, and dogs during their formative months, Huskies may struggle to interact appropriately. 

Proper socialization, along with consistent positive reinforcement training, helps prevent aggressive tendencies.

5. Fear and Anxiety

Huskies, like any breed, can experience fear and anxiety in certain situations. When confronted with unfamiliar small dogs or new environments, this anxiety may manifest as aggression. 

Identifying and addressing the root causes of fear and anxiety through gradual exposure and positive reinforcement is essential.

6. Territorial Instinct

Territorial instincts are deeply ingrained in Huskies. Small dogs entering their perceived territory may trigger defensive responses. Owners must introduce small dogs cautiously and allow gradual acclimatization to prevent territorial disputes.

7. Impact of Owners’ Behavior

Owners play a crucial role in shaping their Huskies’ behavior. Inconsistent training, lack of leadership, or unintentional reinforcement of aggressive behavior can contribute to conflicts between Huskies and small dogs. 

Owners need to model calm and assertive leadership to foster positive interactions.

8. Recognizing Signs of Impending Aggression

Understanding the subtle signs of impending aggression, such as changes in body language, growling, or heightened alertness, is vital. 

Proactive intervention based on recognizing these cues can prevent escalation and create a safer environment for both small dogs and Huskies.

9. Consequences for Small Dog Owners

Owners of small dogs affected by Husky aggression may experience emotional distress and concerns for their pet’s safety. 

The aftermath of such incidents can have lasting effects on both the small dog and its owner, highlighting the importance of preventative measures and responsible ownership.

10. Lack of Training

A lack of training, whether due to neglect or misinformation, can contribute significantly to aggressive behavior in Huskies. 

Consistent, positive reinforcement training is essential to establish boundaries, reinforce positive behaviors, and prevent conflicts with smaller dogs. Ongoing training helps maintain a balanced and well-behaved canine companion.

Read More: Will two male Huskies get along? 

A comfortable environment is needed for huskies and tiny dogs to cohabit happily. Introducing them gradually and in a neutral place helps them get to know each other.

Positive reinforcement, such as rewards and praise, helps develop trust and reinforce positive behavior.

Training and socialization are beneficial to both huskies and small dogs. Seek the advice of a competent dog trainer if problems arise. You can foster a pleasant and amicable relationship by being patient and caring.

Husky licking a lady face who is her owner
Source: Pexels
Source: Pexels
  • To prevent rough attacks on small dogs, dog owners must take proactive measures. 
  • Proper socialization from an early age is crucial, exposing huskies to various dog breeds, including small dogs, to reduce fear and aggression. 
  • Positive reinforcement training techniques should reward good behavior and foster positive interactions. 
  • Spaying or neutering the Husky can help curb aggressive tendencies related to dominance or territorial behavior. 
  • During playtime, constant supervision is necessary to ensure safety, and if any signs of tension arise, immediate separation and redirection of attention are essential. 
  • Establishing a clear hierarchy with the owner as the pack leader can prevent dominance-related aggression.
  •  If problems persist, seeking guidance from a professional dog trainer or behaviorist can offer tailored solutions to manage and correct aggressive behavior.

By implementing these strategies, we can create a harmonious and safe environment for all dogs.


Husky and her small pups playing on a snow.
Source: Pexels
Source: Pexels
Prevention is always better than cure. You can take several go-ahead steps to prevent aggressive incidents between huskies and small dogs.

Step 1. Proper Socialization:

Socialize your Husky with dog breeds, including small dogs, from an early age. Gradual exposure to different experiences will help reduce fear and aggression.

Step 2. Spay or Neuter:

Spaying or neutering your Husky can help reduce aggressive tendencies, primarily if related to dominance or territorial behavior.

Step 3. Supervision During Playtime:

Always supervise interactions between your husky and small dogs to ensure safety. If you notice any tension or aggression, separate the dogs and redirect their attention.

Step 4. Training For Resource Sharing:

Teach your Husky to share resources, such as toys and treats, with other dogs in a positive and controlled manner. That will reduce the likelihood of resource-guarding behavior.

Husky Getting Reward
Source: Snowdog Guru
Source: Snowdog Guru

Step 5. Establish a Clear Hierarchy:

Establish yourself as the pack leader and provide clear leadership to your Husky. A well-defined hierarchy can prevent dominance-related aggression.

Step 6. Consult a Professional Trainer Or Behaviorist:

If you’re struggling with managing your Husky’s aggressive behavior, seek help from a professional dog trainer or behaviorist. They can provide professional advice and guidance according to your Husky’s situation.

Also Read: Are Huskies Easy to Train

For proper pet management, it is essential to understand why huskies attack small dogs. Understanding husky behavior, detecting triggers, and applying appropriate training will help create a harmonious environment for huskies and small dogs.

Whether huskies and tiny dogs can get along depends on their temperaments and adequate introduction and supervision.

By remembering that each husky is unique, you can reduce the likelihood of disputes and ensure their happiness and safety.

Thanks for supporting us. Check out our other articles to show your support. I hope you find our article helpful and you learn something from it.

Also Read Our Other Articles:

1. Are huskies bad with small dogs?

It depends on the training that you have given your Husky. According to the activity, your Husky also gets along with small and big dogs.

2. What is the bite force of a husky?

According to the research, the biting force of a husky is around 320 PSI (pound-force per square inch).

3. Can a husky beat a pitbull?

Many people here have a misconception that a husky will win a fight due to its 320-pi bite force, fluffy coat, weight, height, and all

But in a real war, will these factors give a husky an edge while fighting a pit bull? The Simple answer is NO.

4. Who is more potent, wolf or husky?

The answer is “the wolf is more potent than the husky.” 

A wolf weighs, on average, 120 pounds and has a top speed of 40 mph, according to research. A husky’s average weight is 50–60 pounds, and its top speed is 30 mph.

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