The Top Four Alaskan Dog Breeds

Alaskan sled dogs running in a harness

A special kind of dog dominates the harsh Alaskan landscape: sled dogs. Although not all Alaskan dogs are developed expressly for this purpose, three of the four breeds are employed in this capacity. Dogsledding is still a popular way to get around in the chilly terrain. And a robust canine is required in such a difficult environment. The temperature and geography of Alaska suit Alaskan dog breeds well. They are usually tough, athletic, and active. They also make wonderful, devoted companions.

Here are four dog breeds that hail from Alaska.

Breed Characteristics

The majority of Alaskan dog breeds have comparable characteristics. Their tapering skulls, highly pointed ears, and curled tails are all examples of this. They have thick, water-resistant coats as well as strong, muscular bodies.


Many dog enthusiasts are drawn to these types because of their remarkable wolf-like look, but do your homework before choosing an Alaskan dog breed. Their high requirements necessitate the ideal living environment to keep them healthy and happy, and their thick coats make them unsuitable for warmer climes.

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    Alaskan Malamute

    Alaskan malamute dog standing in grass

    The Alaskan Malamute is the most famous of Alaska's dog breeds, having been named the state dog in 2010. Hunters crossing the Bering Strait are said to have brought these dogs to North America thousands of years ago. Their name comes from the Mahlemiut Inuit people, who most likely bred them.

    These large canines were developed to transport huge items across great distances. These canines make up for their lack of speed with endurance and muscle. The dogs would assist in bear and seal hunts in addition to hauling.

    Malamutes are kind and friendly, despite their fearsome appearance. They are pack animals who flourish in small groups. These large teddy bears nevertheless require a lot of exercise and, due to their thick coats, do not perform well in hot temperatures. It would be perfect for an active family to live in a cool environment.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 24 to 27 inches (male); 22 to 24 inches (female)

    Weight: 75 to 100+ pounds

    Physical Characteristics: Hefty, sturdy build; tightly curled tail; thick, dense, double coat; can be white, gray, black, brown, or red

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    Alaskan Husky

    The Alaskan husky, like the Alaskan Malamute, was bred for labor. These canines, on the other hand, have a smaller frame and are bred for speed. Sled dog racing has been dominated by them.

    Alaskan huskies are descended from Siberian huskies and have been crossbred with other canines to improve speed, endurance, and strength. Greyhound and German shorthaired pointer were common crosses. Alaskan huskies vary considerably in height, weight, coat color, and pattern due to their hybrid heritage.

    Huskies from Alaska are energetic workhorses. They require a home where they can get enough of daily activity, such as or strenuous mountaineering. They are also pack animals who create tight, devoted ties with their companions.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 20 to 22 inches

    Weight: 35 to 60 pounds

    Physical Characteristics: Strong, sturdy build; double coat that can be short or medium-length; can come in almost any color or pattern

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    The Alusky is a mix between the Siberian husky and the Alaskan Malamute, as its name indicates. The husky's speed and the Malamute's power were combined to create this hybrid dog breed.

    The Alusky's precise origin is unknown, and this breed is uncommon to obtain outside of its native Arctic regions. The Alusky is a friendly, people-loving dog with strong intelligence and energy, combining traits from both parent breeds.

    Aluskies do not make ideal watchdogs due to their affectionate nature. They dislike being removed from their human relatives as well. These joyful, affectionate dogs thrive in a cold environment with a close, active family.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 23 to 28 inches

    Weight: 60 to 100 pounds

    Physical Characteristics: Long, sturdy, strong body; bushy tail; thick double coat; varies widely in color and can include gray, black, red, brown, tan, white, and cream

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    The Alaskan klee kai has the same stunning traits of the huge sled dogs on our list, but it only weighs about 20 pounds on average. In reality, the word "klee kai" is derived from an Inuit phrase that means "small dog."

    The klee kai was created for friendship rather than labor. Siberian huskies were bred with smaller dogs such as the American Eskimo dog and the to form the breed. Despite the fact that the Alaskan klee kai lacks the bulk and work ethic of its husky relatives, these little dogs are full of activity.

    These dogs are kind, clever, and lively, yet they are apprehensive of strangers. As a result, they are devoted family members and excellent watchdogs. They do, however, require extensive training and socialization to ensure that their protective nature does not become troublesome.

    Breed Overview

    Height: 13 to 17 inches

    Weight: 10 to 20 pounds

    Small height; thick double coat; back and around the eyes can be black, gray, or red, with white prominent on the belly, legs, and bottom part of the face and nose.