The West Siberian Laika is an excellent and fearless hunter. They are gentle, sensitive and very affectionate. These dogs are certainly not fearful and have a strong personality. The West Siberian Laika is a working dog that is not difficult to train, but these dogs do require a consistent and equitable approach from their owner.
They are true family dogs that need a lot of exercise and spiritual challenges. These dog breeds are great for active owners who enjoy walking and jogging with their dogs. This versatile dog can be used for various dog sports such as detective work, agility ( agility ) and rescue work.
West Siberian Laika – FCI Breed Group 5
The West Siberian Laika belongs to the group of Spitz and dogs of the original dog type Section 2 Northern hunting dogs
Country of origin: Russia – Western Siberia
Current and original tasks: Hunting dog for all kinds of game; No sled dog or sniffer dog!
Temperament: Stable, even-tempered. A powerful dog with a very well-developed sense of smell to detect game with an alert, sensitive and outspoken passion for hunting, is just as fond of feather hunting as a furry game. Self-aware and alert to strangers.
Temperament: Lively, Protective, Territorial
Appearance of the West Siberian Laika
Height: Female: 52–58 cm, Male: 55–62 cm
Colors: The colors are gray with reddish-brown, red with reddish-brown, gray, red, fawn, reddish-brown in all shades and pure white or a combination of these colors.
Weight: Female: 18–25 kg, Male: 18–30 kg
The West Siberian Laika retained the characteristics of wild ancestors under the influence of natural selection. This is a medium and above average sized dog with a strong skeleton. The males are larger and more muscular than females. The withers are well developed, the back is broad, the croup is moderately long and slightly sloping. The tail is bent abruptly by a ring on the back or on the thigh.
The head, seen from above, is sharply wedge-shaped and shaped like an elongated isosceles triangle, with a moderately broad skull. The snout is sharp, long, but not narrow, with some expansion in the area of the canines.
The transition from the forehead to the muzzle is pronounced, but not sharp. The nose is black; in white dogs, it can be brown. Ears are upright, movable, set on high. The eyes are small, oval, dark brown, with an oblique part of the eyelids and slightly deeper than other types of huskies.
The West Siberian Laika ‘s coat is dense, wiry and straight, with a soft but thick undercoat.
The West Siberian Laika is native to the North Urals and West Siberia. Today’s West Siberian Laikas originated from two types: the Mansijskaja and the Chantejskaja Laika. The two types show a lot of similarities in size, color, and use.
However, there are some differences to note. The Mansijskaja type is built lighter, has a less pronounced stop, a narrower head, a longer muzzle, less coat, and no collar. The Chantejskaja type is heavier built, has a wider skull, a clearer stop, a shorter snout and is richer with a well-developed neck collar. In the current West Siberian Laikas, both types are mixed, but often an output type can still be recognized.
Character traits of the West Siberian Laika
The West Siberian Laika is well-balanced, confident and confident. He is affectionate and loyal to the family and the pack. He is also social and friendly with strangers and shows no aggression towards people. He will not easily start a fight with other dogs on his own, but if necessary he can defend himself well and effectively, he never fights for no reason.
The West Siberian Laika is intelligent and eager to learn, but not slavish and therefore needs challenges and does not repeat the same thing repeatedly. He must be brought up in a gentle and friendly manner, avoiding a harsh approach.
The West Siberian Laika is an energetic dog with very good stamina. He needs a lot of exercise. In addition, every Laika has a good to very well developed hunting instinct. This means that chances are the dog will go after the game as soon as the opportunity arises. Due to the way a Laika hunts, it is not unlikely that the owner will have to wait a few hours before the dog returns. In many countries, this is not allowed and an independently hunting dog is even shot.
That is why it is very important that when choosing a Laika one is not only guided by the natural appearance of this breed but realizes that it also includes natural behavior and that keeping a Laika as a domestic dog has consequences, such as finding a way for the dog to release its energy and use its hunting instinct.
Training and handling
The West Siberian Laika has a very well developed orientation and a strong instinct for self-preservation. The Laika is a maximum of nature, which means that all-natural dog behavior is still present in him. People who expect the dog to follow slavishly and take no initiative is not suitable as the owner of this special dog breed.
The West Siberian Laika is especially suitable for active people who like to go out in nature.
West Siberian Laikas are friendly and have good contact with people after education, if necessary they can protect their relatives from strangers. Pets that they grew up with and live with are treated calmly, unlike wild or simply unknown animals that they want to chase with their innate aggression.
If you are inexperienced, capricious or unbalanced, this dog breed is not for you. An owner who is calm and sporty is a good combination. They are intelligent and learn new commands fairly quickly. A clear, consistent and loving upbringing is necessary. A hard upbringing is out of the question. Spend a lot of time and attention on good socialization, so that they have the opportunity to grow up to be a balanced and stable dog.
The West Siberian Laika is a healthy breed. Few health problems occur. However, some cases of epilepsy, eye problems, and dental problems are known. Hereditary diseases for the breed are not race-related.
West Siberian Laikas are active and need sufficient freedom of movement and a good dose of stress. They prefer to live outside and cannot adapt to apartment life. They feel comfortable in almost all climatic conditions and are more adapted than other breeds to a strongly continental climate.
For the care of the teeth, it is recommended to brush them at least twice a week. Check the ears regularly. The ears must be clean and free from fungi, parasites and other infections. In case of injury to the ears, it is recommended to immediately treat the wounds with a disinfectant and apply a healing ointment.
The eyes. Another weakness of working hunting dogs is the eyes. Regularly check the eyes for inflammation, pollution, and redness. Ask the vet for more information to prevent a further inflammatory process.
Finally, regularly cut the claws with good nail scissors and visit a vet regularly to vaccinate and deworm in time.
The West Siberian Laika has a rich, dense coat, consisting of hard outer hairs. They have a natural coating that protects them from pollution, so these dogs are washed quite rarely. The coat will renew itself twice a year and at that time of shedding it is necessary to completely remove the undercoat in one go with a shepherd’s rake.
These West Siberian Laikas have an extremely effective metabolism that makes them more resistant to hunger. Exhausted during the hunt, the West Siberian Laika is able to restore its strength in a few minutes, for this it is enough to feed it. These dogs can eat fine chunks or fresh meat.
The West Siberian Laika puppy
When purchasing a West Siberian Laika puppy, the future owner must take into account that these dogs still have a lot of exercise. In case these dogs have too little exercise, they may do night work in the living room. For up to two years, the dog behaves like a playful puppy and it is easy to imagine the consequences of such pranks.
Prospective owners who do not plan to engage with their dog on a daily basis, including training and walking, should not comfort themselves with illusions. The hunter’s instinct is too developed in these dogs and will lead to constant escapes. Therefore, it is worth preparing for frequent, long walks, active pursuits, but even this will not completely calm the hunter.
Buy a puppy
If you are considering buying a West Siberian Laika puppy, you can look for a reliable breeder. Always buy a puppy with a pedigree from an experienced breeder.
When buying a West Siberian Laika puppy, it is recommended to pay attention to the mother and, if possible, both parents. It is desirable that the offspring are obtained by planned mating. In addition, it is important for you to decide whether the dog will be a worker alone or whether an exhibition career is expected. In the latter case, the requirements for the puppy increase significantly.
If you take a new dog into your home, it is very important that it clicks between you and the puppy. There are several dog breed clubs in Belgium and the Netherlands that can designate you as a good breeder. Visit our breeders’ page for more info, these people are best placed to give you more information about this special breed of dog.