West Siberian Laika

Sputnik 2, launched by the Soviets, sent the first dog into orbit on December 3, 1957. This dog was unfortunately sacrificed in the name of science. Popular belief still speaks of the dog Laïka as if Laïka was her name. In truth, the dog sacrificed in 1957 by the Soviet space program was in fact a Laika from West Siberia, hence the popular misconception.

Height 52 to 60 cm
Weight 20 to 30 kg
Life expectancy 11 to 13 years

Quick Overview of the West Siberian Laika

Temperament

  • Balanced and gentle
  • Independent
  • Close to his masters
  • Calm

Appearance

  • Very robust build
  • Developed framework
  • Superb silhouette
  • Hard straight hair

Health

  • Very solid and robust
  • Rarely ill
  • Generally enjoys good health
  • No particular genetic disease

Temperament of the West Siberian Laika

A superb dog with a very pleasant appearance, the West Siberian Laika has a strong temperament and a naturally independent and dominant character.

He is very intelligent and well-balanced, and he knows how to become the leader of the pack.

The master must absolutely control his temperament, and establish himself as leader of the pack, in order to teach his dog very early on what his true place is in the family hierarchy.

His great reserve towards strangers makes him an excellent guardian. He is rarely aggressive, but any unwanted intrusion will be received with a loud bark to make sure the stranger understands the message.

However, it is difficult for him to live in the city because he loves the great outdoors where he can run around freely.

To become a city dog, he will need to regularly enjoy a large space to spend his boundless energy.

Breed Appearance

West Siberian laity

Of medium size, the West Siberian Laika has a very robust constitution.

Endowed with a well developed bone structure, without being heavy nor rough, the Laika is solid and has a superb silhouette with strong and developed muscles.

Height

Between 54 and 60 cm (21.26 to 23.62 inches) for the male
Between 52 and 58 cm (20.47 to 22.83 inches) for the female

Weight

Between 20 and 30 kg (44.09 to 66.14 pounds) for the male
Between 20 and 30 kg (44.09 to 66.14 pounds) for the female

Color

His pretty dress is white, red or grey in all possible shades, salt and pepper or black.

Some subjects have a striped dress or patches in the same shades.

Hair

His harsh straight coat is rather rough, and the undercoat is thick and well developed.

Morphology

The head of the West Siberian Laika has a faint stop. His dark eyes are set at an angle, and oval shaped.

His erect ears are set high and end in a point. His nose is generally black.

His tail may be carried on the back of the thighs, over the back or firmly curled.

According to the FCI breeds nomenclature, this breed belongs to group 5, section 2 and is #306

Tips About this breed

For an inexperienced master, the task will be arduous, for he must show firmness and great tact, and teach him the notions of prohibitions and hierarchy.

The choice of a professional dog training center is sometimes not to be rejected in his case.

His socialization must also be early to avoid exacerbating his natural distrust of strangers, which is already well present in his temperament.

He can be very well suited to all family situations and types of owners, as long as the master remains the master and the dog knows who is the true leader of the pack.

The West Siberian Laika can delight many owners with his multiple abilities.

Whether a companion, guard, alarm, hunting or even a sleight dog for sport or competition, he excels in all his functions.

If he lives in a garden, it is preferable to give him a place of his own if you want to ensure the survival of flowers and other vegetable gardens.

This dog loves to make a lot of holes, it's part of his nature and unfortunately he can't help it.

Health of the West Siberian Laika

He is sturdy, very solid and rarely sick. The West Siberian Laika generally enjoys excellent health.

Fortunately, the breed is not affected by any genetic disease or particular flaw. The long life expectancy of the Laika is very appreciable.

GROOMING

His beautiful fur only needs brushing from time to time, no other special care is required to keep him clean and healthy.

History of this breed

He is a very old breed, coming from Russia, and a cross between two very related breeds of Laiki, the Laiki Hanstaka and Laiki Chanteiska, as well as the dogs of hunters of Western Siberia and North Ural.

The breed is widespread in Russia and widely used for hunting. He is in great demand in Russian regions, leading to the existence of kennels specialized in breeding Western Siberian Laikas in the hunting territories of the country.

Recognized in the 20th century, the breed spread rapidly thereafter. The West Siberian Laika exists along with three others in the same category, the East Siberian Laika, the Russian-European Laika and the Karelo-Finnish Laika.

The FCI recognizes only three of the four breeds, as the Karelo-Finnish Laika is not officially recognized by this federation. In Russian, Laika means "barking dog".

The dog's name therefore refers to the fact that some Russian dogs are bred precisely for their great ability to bark continuously and without tiring.

The Laika is an excellent hound, sleigh dog used for sport or competition, alarm and guard dog, as well as a superb companion.

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