Alaskan Klee Kai are a breathtaking breed that are growing in popularity.
While there are thought to be around 13,500 in the United States, Alaskan Klee Kai do remain quite rare.
But Game Of Thrones actress Sophie Turner and her musician husband Joe Jonas have ensured these dogs have been getting more attention on social media.
Turner, who plays Sansa Stark in the hit HBO show, have an adorable black and white Alaskan Klee Kai called Porky Basquiat.
Not to be left out, Jonas adopted Porky Basquiat’s black and white brother in 2017 to reunite the siblings. Unfortunately Waldo died in July 2019.
Given the breed’s newfound fame on Instagram, Alaskan Klee Kai are sure to grow in numbers in the coming years.
However, as any Alaskan Klee Kai owners will attest to, these dogs are all celebrities when out and about.
There variety of colors and striking eyes ensure plenty of attention and questions.
We’ll break this article into the following sections:
• History of Alaskan Klee Kai
• Alaskan Klee Kai colors
• Alaskan Klee Kai eye colors
• Potential problems with Alaskan Klee Kai eyes
• Alaskan Klee Kai shedding
• Wrapping up
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History of Alaskan Klee Kai
The breed started in Alaska in 1970s. Linda Spurlin was responsible for creating the Alaskan Klee Kai. She predominantly used Alaskan Huskies, alongside some Siberian Huskies, which explains why these adorable little dogs look like pint-sized sled dogs. Spurlin added a dash of the small Belgian breed called Schipperke to help reduce the size of Alaskan Klee Kai. The final type of dog used to help create these Mini Huskies were the American Eskimo Dog. While Spurlin used these four breeds to develop her original Klee Kai, you can only get an Alaskan Klee Kai by breeding two UKC-registered Alaskan Klee Kai. Alaskan Klee Kai was officially recognized by the American Rare Breed Association (ARBA) in 1995 and by the United Kennel Club (UKC) in 1997.
Alaskan Klee Kai colors
Alaskan Klee Kai come in three different colors.
The first shade of Klee Kai is black and white, which is one of the more common colors of the breed.
The black and white color can be found in two different varieties: jet black/stark black and white or dilute black/salt and pepper black and white.
The black and white Alaskan Klee Kai share the same appearance traits of Alaskan and Siberian Huskies. Hence, if you adopt one in this color, be prepared to be asked many times whether your Klee Kai is a baby husky.
Another popular color is gray and white. Like the black and white Alaskan Klee Kai, they appear similar to Alaskan and Siberian Huskies. You tend to find either a dark/wolf grey or light/silver and white.
Like their sled dog relatives, Alaskan Klee Kai can also be found with a red and white coat. These dogs can stand out a lot, particularly when their blue eyes contrast against their red coats.
Some of these red and white Klee Kai dogs have a dark red and white color, but their coat can be interspersed with different shades of red, resulting in the cinnamon red and white members of the breed.
It’s important to note the official colors as listed by the UKC breed standard for Klee Kai are black and white, gray and white, and red and white.
While these three main colors are the traditional shades of the breed, Alaskan Klee Kai can often be almost all black with a little splash of white in their coat. Others can be a combination of black, red and white if one of their parents was a red coated dog.
The Alaskan Klee Kai Association of America gives further insight into Alaskan Klee Kai color on their website:
At this time, you could get any size and sometimes any color pup from any dog and bitch. Mostly they are being born black and white, grey and white, a few red and white , occasionally white (from the American Eskimos) and darks (from the Schipperke) . We do not have a lot of pups going oversized (over 17 ½”), but there are still some.
Given the Alaskan Klee Kai remains a relatively new type of dog, breeders will often refuse to predict the color or the size of a potential litter given the variety.
Breeders could vary their prices depending on the color of an Alaskan Klee Kai pup’s coat.
It is worth noting that white Alaskan Klee Kai can’t be shown in conformation in United States.
Alaskan Klee Kai eye colors
These eye-catching dogs already attract a lot of attention thanks to their beautiful coat colors and huge personalties.
But there is another element that makes these Alaskan Klee Kai dogs even more breathtaking.
Their eye color tends to vary from dog to dog, which makes this breed all the more unique.
The most common eye color is brown, which can really stand out against their beautiful coats.
Often earning them comparisons to White Walkers on Game Of Thrones, blue-eyed Alaskan Klee Kai have deep blue eyes that draw lots of attention from admirers.
Some will have bi eyes, with one eye sporting brown and the other boasting blue, while even within an individual eye, there is the possibility to have two different colors. This is called parti-eye.
Some red and white Alaskan Klee Kai can even have amber or green eyes, which gives them a festive theme given their gorgeous red coats.
Potential problems with Alaskan Klee Kai eyes
Alaskan Klee Kai are generally healthy dogs but like any breed, they do come with some health problems.
One of the potential health issues is Juvenile Cataracts, which can affect the eyes of these dogs. This occurs when an eye loses transparency of the lens.
The Alaskan Klee Kai Association of America outlines on their website that this isn’t an issue that’s seen very often by Klee Kai breeders.
Many breeders also do eye checks, or CERF, although cataracts are rarely seen in the breed.
Juvenile Cataracts could be the result of an injury to the eye, poor nutrition, old age or diabetes mellitus.
Of course, we recommend consulting with your vet if you are concerned about your dog’s declining vision.
Alaskan Klee Kai shedding
While these dogs have stunning coat colors, they do have one notable problem: shedding.
This breed do shed a lot and be prepared to clean up a lot of hair despite their size.
Alaskan Klee Kai have an inner coat and an outer coat.
The inner coat will blow out twice a year, which can be a particularly challenging time for an owner of these Mini Huskies.
The outer coat will continue to shed throughout the year, which means regular grooming and frequent vacuuming is a must with these dogs.
Alaskan Klee Kai come in three different colors: black and white, gray and white, and red and white.
Their eye color can vary but are usually a shade of brown or blue. They can have bi eyes or parti-eye.