Too many people think of grooming as some sort of a terrible thing but in fact, it is not. The Siberian Husky is a relatively undemanding dog that is not difficult to care for, and grooming is your opportunity to spend some time with your dog.
The Siberians are very clean dogs by nature and have no body odor, they are like cats that take the utmost care of their appearance. Bathing requirements are minimum, and many owners wash their dogs only once a year.
The Siberian has a double layer of coat, the bottom soft fur undercoat, and a protective outer layer that actually grows through the undercoat. The outer layer is “waterproof” and protects the Husky from rain, dirt, dust, etc. The undercoat serves to provide insulation against heat and cold.
The Husky sheds twice a year in the fall and spring on average, but the dog sheds all of its undercoats most often in the spring. This process can take up to six weeks from start to finish. All dead hair must be combed out to ensure the rapid and strong growth of the new one. A warm bath and blow drying promotes even and easy hair loss making it easier to comb it out.
The Siberian Huskies do not shed in their natural climate, throughout the year (except when they blow their coats out) because of the cold and dry environment. But if you don’t live in Siberia, you will find that the Huskies tend to lose their coat throughout the year. The loss is a natural process. The dogs sweat only through their paw pads, so getting rid of excess hair in the summer is an absolute necessity to prevent heat stress.
(Note that the main loss process begins at 10-14 months old when the puppy hair falls out and is replaced by the coarser hair of an adult dog).
In general, compared to other breeds, the Siberian needs very little grooming, just a regular brush to remove dead hair. Do not shave or trim the Husky’s coat. The undercoat protects against overheating and the topcoat provides protection from the sun’s harmful UV rays and should not be trimmed.
The key to happy grooming is to teach your Siberian to accept being brushed and needing to stand or lie down quietly in the process.
Regular short grooming sessions should be done at least once a week to keep the coat healthy and shiny. Some people tend to forget about grooming as the winter turns cold, and this is a big mistake. The coat may begin to mat during the wet months if not brushed regularly, and the matting destroys the insulating properties and creates a very cold coat cover.
When brushing, start with a comb with wide bristles, preferably rounded ones, to break up any tangles. Then brush the dog vigorously following the hair growth.
Be sure to groom your dog’s entire body, including his belly and under the tail where tangles often hide!