10 things to consider before getting an Alaskan Klee Kai

Kieran Beckles
By Kieran Beckles
Updated on November 23, 2019

1) Separation anxiety

Alaskan Klee Kai are one of many dog breeds that can struggle with separation anxiety. These little dogs become quite attached to their owners, which is great when you want to cuddle up on the couch. On the downside, leaving your Alaskan Klee Kai can be a difficult experience. These anxious dogs can resort to persistent barking, crying or whining, as well as other behaviours such as destructive chewing and defecting.

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Solutions could include using a dog camera to see and talk to your Alaskan Klee Kai in an attempt to soothe their anxiety.

2) Shedding

The breed come in three different sizes: standard, mini and toy. No matter the size, be prepared for a lot of hair if you decide to bring home an Alaskan Klee Kai. These spitz dogs shed a significant amount. Alaskan Klee Kai have an inner and an outer coat. The former blows out twice a year when the shedding can get out of control. You’ll need a good vacuum to keep on top of their hair. You should regularly groom an Alaskan Klee Kai to help get rid of dead hair.

3) Price

Alaskan Klee Kai can suffer with separation anxiety (Photo: lifewithkleekai/Instagram)

Alaskan Klee Kai can suffer with separation anxiety (Photo: lifewithkleekai/Instagram)

Alaskan Klee Kai started in Alaska in the late 1970s. Linda Spurlin was responsible for creating the breed. She initially used Alaskan Huskies, as well as Siberian Huskies, American Eskimo dog and Schipperke. They were created as companion dogs. While they remain a rare breed, they have enjoyed a surge in popularity in recent years. These dogs can cost between $1500 and $3000 depending on each individual breeder. The price of an Alaskan Klee Kai puppy could vary depending on their eye colour and coat colour.

4) Require socialisation

Alaskan Klee Kai can be aloof and shy around strangers. As mentioned above, they can become closely bonded to their owners. However, it is a good idea to socialise your dog with as many people as possible from a young age. Giving visitors treats to reward your Alaskan Klee Kai is one way of helping to improve their social skills. Once your AKK pup has all its injections, you bring it to puppy classes and puppy manners.

5) Stubborn little dogs

Alaskan Klee Kai can be quite stubborn dogs. They have a high IQ so they can be easily trained. It is a good idea to start from a young age and make sure training sessions are consistent and regular. Your local vet should be able to recommend some socialisation classes in your area. AKK are suited to agility training and obedience classes due to their intelligence. Some members of the breed have been know to try to outsmart their owners if given the opportunity. For that reason, you should start training your dog as a puppy and continue to do so into adulthood.

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6) Need regular exercise

Don’t be fooled by their size, Alaskan Klee Kai still need regular exercise. These dogs are related to sled dogs Alaskan Huskies and Siberian Huskies. Alaskan Klee Kai like to go on regular walks or trips to the dog parks. These versatile dogs have been known to hike for miles and miles with their owners, while some have no problem going on long runs with their human companion. They have been described as “apartment-sized huskies”. While their small size does make them ideal for people who live in smaller homes, they’ll need entertainment and stimulation to avoid them getting up to mischief. The more exercise an Alaskan Klee Kai can get, the less likely they will resort to destructive tendencies.

7) Mini celebrities

Photo: lifewithkleekai / Instagram

Photo: lifewithkleekai / Instagram

Sophie Turner and Joe Jonas are perhaps the biggest celebrities with Alaskan Klee Kai. The Game Of Thrones actress had a black and white AKK called Porky Basquiat before her husband adopted Porky’s sibling and named him Waldo Picasso Jonas. Unfortunately Waldo died in July 2019. Other famous owners (past and present) include Miley Cyrus and Bill Belichick. But you don’t have to be a celebrity for these little dogs to attract interest. Ask any AKK owner, going outside with your small-to-medium dog goes hand-in-hand with lots of questions. A quick trip to the shop can be extended by substantial minutes and even hours as you field questions about your dog. If you don’t want to be hassled by strangers on your daily errands with your AKK, this may not be the right breed for you.

8) Expert escape artists

Forget Houdini! Alaskan Klee Kai are the greatest escape artists. Some will say the breed can never be trusted off a leash because they are genuine flight risk. However, others have successfully managed to train their Klee Kai in recall. Alaskan Klee Kai are prey driven and will chase small animals when outside. You will need to ensure your backyard or garden is perfectly secure, or else these expert escape artists could find a way to get loose. Therefore a fenced yard works best for an AKK.

9) Picky eaters

These little dogs are full of energy and have big personalities despite their small frames. In spite of their high energy levels, some Alaskan Klee Kai can be picky eaters. They have been known to turn their nose up to breakfast or dinner, which can be quite a concern for owners of this breed. One idea that works well is varying your dog’s meals so it doesn’t get bored. There an array of options, including home cooked delivery companies.

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Of course, helloBARK! recommends consulting with your vet before changing your dog’s diet as our canine pals can react in different ways to change.

10) They like to talk

Alaskan Klee Kai are not afraid to voice their opinion – literally. These dogs will let you know if they’re not happy with a situation. Given Alaskan Klee Kai are related to Alaskan and Siberian Huskies, this talkative trait shouldn’t be a surprise. Each AKK can have a different voice. It could be a sharp bark, a little yodel or a full on howl. If you like to talk, then it could be the perfect marriage. For those who live in apartments or with neighbours in close proximity, a noisy dog could be a problem. The services of an experienced dog trainer could help to curtail an Alaskan Klee Kai that talk too much.