We have two Alaskan Klee Kai, Copper and Skye.
While many Americans are unfamiliar with the breed, we first heard about Alaskan Klee Kai almost 10 years ago but it wasn’t until 2016 that we were finally read to bring home our own Mini Husky.
Her name was Skye, a little eight-week-old black and white ball of fluff who came with a big personality. We drove down to Los Angeles to collect Skye from Nordic Mini Husky, our Alaskan Klee Kai breeder of choice.
Having carried out thorough research, we decided that Brenda Tobin and her puppies were perfect for us.
Skye didn’t suffer from any car sickness on the drive home, which took seven hours. She slept for most of the journey in her preferred position: on her Mom’s shoulders. This remains a favourite spot for Skye, even though she’s now a “mature” one-year-old pup.
She didn’t take long to settle into a crowded house with in-laws. In fact, she almost immediately managed to get the prime spot on the couch and work her charms with the grandparents, who loved to feed her little treats from the kitchen counter tops!
After her 16 week shots, we made an effort to bring Skye to some dog parks. She socialised pretty well but occasionally would go through spurts of non-stop barking. Puppy classes followed which saw an improvement but she could still be unpredictable around other dogs. Never unfriendly, just very loud! This is a trait of the Alaskan Klee Kai breed.
We moved into an apartment in early 2018 and Skye adapted to her crate pretty well, having previously slept in a smaller cage when she was a puppy. However, Skye struggled with separation anxiety. Again, this is a common theme with Alaskan Klee Kai dogs.
In March 2018, we made the impulse decision to contact Nordic Mini Husky when we saw three little red and white Alaskan Klee Kai pups appear on their Facebook page. Less than two weeks later, we were driving six hours to Oregon to bring home Skye’s brother Copper.
Copper and Skye both have the same father, Apollo, who is red and white Alaskan Klee Kai like his son. Perhaps this bond helped the pair to become firm friends despite an early sibling rivalry.
Indeed, their first meeting off leash was an intense affair (at least for their parents who were concerned whether Skye would accept a new rival in the apartment). But Copper let his sister know in emphatic style that while he may be a little Alaskan Klee Kai pup, he wasn’t going to allow his older sibling to bully him. After a couple of brief play fights, the pair were curled up together on our bed.
Copper helped to improve Skye’s separation anxiety, and ironically, it is our red and white cuddle monster who is more likely to throw a tantrum when his parents now leave the house. Skye is more than content to sit and stare at our Furbo Dog Camera.
Both are pretty relaxed around other dogs and usually just want to play.Like most Alaskan Klee Kai dogs, they are very vocal and love to talk. Some dog owners have misconstrued this as aggression, but for the most part most recognise that a wagging tail and a chirpy bark means one thing: chase me!
Copper and Skye particularly love two Doxin/Terrier pups that relish the chance to play boisterously with our Alaskan Klee Kai pups at the dog park.
Skye is the dominant Klee Kai in the apartment. She gets her way when it comes to sleeping in the best position on the couch, napping next to Mom or chewing her favourite toy. Copper, on the other hand, loves to chase his sister around the apartment in an attempt to aggravate her.
Skye is more independent than Copper and is happy to be in a different room basking in sunlight. She won’t follow us around the house and is content just so long as she can hear her parents are close by.
Copper craves attention from the people he trusts. Unlike Skye, he is desperate to be next his Dad when he is cooking in the kitchen or relaxing in the living room. Copper even likes a visit to the bathroom!
He doesn’t really show an interest in toys unless Skye is obsessed with one of her balls or stuffed animals. For Copper, life is all about chasing Skye, whether it be biting her tail or nibbling at her legs.
When it comes to dinnertime, we have found Nom Nom’s homemade cooked meals work best. Copper and Skye have previously tried kibble and air dried meat but both were somewhat picky, which says a lot because Copper is very food motivated.
Despite being little over 10lbs each, Copper and Skye LOVE to hike around the many hills and trails of the Bay Area. Their energy levels are rarely depleted and our Alaskan Klee Kai pups love to march together like their Siberian Husky relatives at the front of the pack.
While we previously had a rescue dog and a black pug, Copper and Skye have filled a void in our hearts that we didn’t know existed with their unique personalties and love for each other. The Alaskan Klee Kai breed is special and we would love to help potential owners with any questions that you have so feel free to drop us a line: [email protected]
You can also follow Copper and Skye’s adventures on Instagram: @lifewithkleekai