The Red Huskies are pack of 10 dogs living in Indonesia.
A mixture of Siberian Huskies and Samoyed Husky mixes, the Red Huskies have accumulated almost 70,000 followers on Instagram.
Luna, Kiara, Keenai, Simba, Shadow, Coby, Kayla, Oakley, Drogon and Leia make up the Red Huskies.
However, the star of the show is Danica, who keeps her Husky pack in check.
We spoke to Danica’s Mom Melisca about her Husky Pride, raising a daughter with dogs and some of the misconceptions in Indonesia.
You can follow the Red Huskies on Instagram (@thehuskypride).
The Red Huskies Questions and Answers
1) Can you give me an insight into how you ended up with 10 huskies?
At first I owned one husky, which was Luna, by accident. My brother actually got her but he couldn’t handle her stubbornness so he gave up and let me have a try. It took me a full four months before Luna listened to any command that I said. LOL! She was THAT stubborn. It was after that experience with Luna that I fell in love with husky breed. The feeling when I was finally “respected” as her pack leader. Two years after I got Luna, one my best friends wanted a husky like Luna so I decided to help him look for one. This led me to stumble across Simba. When I saw his picture, it was love at first sight. I tried to brush it off, to no avail. I kept thinking about him, so I decided to contact the breeder – and the rest is history.
Having two, I wondered what it would be like if they had puppies. After some time, Luna bred three pups. I initially wanted to keep only one, but you could say I’m extra picky about the potential owner of my puppies, and not any of the “suitors” were up to my standard, so I decided they would be better off with me. Fast forward another year, another friend of mine sent me a picture of a dog named Oakley. She was asking me why he was almost hairless and I told her that there was something wrong with him and I wanted to pay the owner a visit. The next day we went there and we saw the conditions in which he was staying in. He was being kept in a chicken coop with no food and water and his wounds (yes, he had open wounds) gave a foul odor. My instant thought was, ‘I have to get him out of here’. The previous owner said he had taken Oakley to the vet and Oakley had no hope of being nursed to health, which was nonsense, since what he has was just demodex, from improper treatment and environment. To cut a long story short, I managed to raise the funds, using my Instagram – to bail him out and bring him to the vet where it took a good six months to get him back to full health. During these months, I met my boyfriend (now husband) – who owned Coby and adopted Oakley. So by the time we got married we are happily blessed with 7 furkids. When I’m 7 months pregnant, my husband stumbled across Shadow’s ad and told me he wanted him. I strictly said ‘NO, I’m 7 months pregnant and can’t imagine having to discipline a husky-samoyed mix pup’. Nevertheless, he bought Shadow anyway which brings us to 8. I told him again that he needed to spay Shadow before any of the female are in heat, but he kept postponing it then Luna got pregnant again (imagine that). Thankfully I know some family members and close friends that were looking for a Husky and a potential house for the pups so I contacted them. Three went with the family and the other two stayed with us.
2) We love the concept of your daughter (aka Khaleesi) and her husky pack. What inspired you to start your Instagram page?
It was my personal Instagram at first, then when I got Luna, my posts were mostly about her, then Simba, then the pups. I changed the name to @huskypride after the three pups were born. So since early 2015, its officially become their Instagram.
The reason I made the account about Danica as the “Khaleesi” of the pack is sadly due to the fact that in Indonesia, there are still misconceptions about the “danger of owning a dog when you are pregnant”.
Many people still believe that owning a dog while pregnant is dangerous for the pregnancy. When they’re pregnant, the dog usually gets dumped, abandoned (being kept in cage for 24 hours with no more social interaction) and given up for adoption. They don’t bother to do a background check on the potential adopter as long as they can get rid of their dog fast enough before it harms their “pregnancy”. This is totally ridiculous and I’m trying to educate people who believe these myths in Indonesia – and all over the world. Such things are nothing more than nonsense. Since my pregnancy, I’ve kept my daily life normal, and after labor, I only took one week to get accustomed with the newborn baby before introducing her to the pack members, one by one.
3) What is day to day life like with 10 huskies?
Haha.. it’s busy for sure. Lots of poop cleaning and brushing, especially during shedding time. It never snows in Indonesia but sure feels like it does whenever they have their shedding time. Our vacuum cleaner also never stays to far away – it’s always there when we needed it.
4) With so many personalities, do you have to play peacekeeper or do they all get along?
Living with a “big pack” like this taught me a lot about the lives of a dog pack as a whole. I personally learned a lot from them. They sees the human as the prime pack leader, but whenever we’re not around, they’ve got their own pecking order. There’s the pack leader, the vice, and the “peacekeeper”.
5) Can you identify a pecking order within your pride of huskies?
Yes. I can name them from top to bottom actually: Luna, Kiara, Keenai, Simba, Shadow, Coby, Kayla, Oakley, Drogon and Leia. Kiara has been trying to take over the pack leadership from Luna (her mom) for a while now, but up until this moment, despite being smaller, Luna still holds her power.
6) Was it an easy transition introducing the dogs to your daughter?
It’s a continuous process. I believe it’s still on going. The basic thing to do was obviously teach the pack first not to act “crazy” around the baby. And to do so, I do a lot of one-on-one with each of them and the baby. To get them to familiarize with her and teach them the boundaries of what they are allowed to do or not to do around the baby. When the baby was six months old, I started to teach her to pet the dogs and not pull their fur away. So whenever she grab the fur, I will immediately open her palms and rubs it on the dogs fur and eventually she gets it also. This happens with any kind of interaction. I just have to keep reminding them to behave nicely to each other, over and over, until they all understand it.
7) What tips would they have for people with dogs who have a child or one on the way with huskies as pets?
The best thing is to not change how we behave around the dogs. They know and can sense that “something/someone” new is coming. But they were our family member first, and they’ve got to keep being our family member, despite the arrival of the baby. During the introduction, I think it’s important that none of the parents are anxious, we need to be calm during the introduction, and keep every session short at first. Like in 5 minute intervals for each session. And if the mother is busy with the baby (less time with dogs), dad can supplement and fill mom’s doggy time so that the dog doesn’t felt left out. And for children, always teach the dog and the kid to respect each other and keep repeating the boundaries that they should know over and over until they all understand.
8) Does your daughter have a favourite member of her husky pack?
Simba and Shadow are her favorite. They’re the ones who respect her personal space. The others are still too eager to give her “kisses” and sometimes still overwhelm her.
9) I’ve heard it said that red and white huskies are more vocal and a little crazier (my red and white Alaskan Klee Kai is definitely crazier than my black and white lady). In your experience, is that true?
Nope. The talkative one in my pack is Shadow, a mix Samoyed Husky who is black and white. The other reds are not talkative at all.
10) How much exercise do Siberian Huskies need?
When I only had Luna, I used to take her on a bike ride daily for about 1 hour to get her energy level down. If she didn’t get it, she become bored and “destructive” as in trying to amuse herself by digging on the sofa or eating the sofa altogether lol. With a bigger pack, it helps because they drain each others energy out by playing chase and wrestling all day long. There’s always someone who is up for playtime so they tire each other out evenly. But for 1-3 huskies, I believe one hour exercise is minimum to keep them happy.
11) Is it expensive to feed Siberian Huskies?
Yes. Besides the food, they also need additional vitamins for their fur and their bones as well.
12) What is the most common question you get asked about your Siberian Husky pack?
“Are they dangerous?”
“Is it okay to still live with your Husky during your pregnancy”
“My husky tends to nib a lot, how can I stop this?”
“My husky wont listen to me, how do I make him/her listen?”
13) Do you have a favorite memory/post on Instagram?
Yes. The one photo of Danica with the whole pack. It’s a one in a million shot and I don’t know whether or not its possible to recreate. Lol.
14) What advice would you give to someone considering a Siberian Husky as a pet?
Do a lot of research beforehand. Huskies are not an easy breed, and definitely not for a first time dog owner. However, if it’s your first dog and you already have it with you just read a lot and don’t hesitate to ask more experienced owners to help you bond with your husky.
15) How much time do you dedicate to building your Instagram page?
My Instagram has been running since 2012, so its been seven years. Usually I concentrate on the weekend on doing posts for the upcoming weeks. However, I’ve been lagging behind on my post lately. Juggling between Danica and the pack is getting harder hahaha.
16) What tips would you give to someone thinking about starting an IG page for their pet?
Keep it genuine and share what you love most about your pet. People like reading facts about them, know what they are capable of. They even love your pet as one of their own once you get connected to the audience.
17) What other Siberian Husky accounts would you recommend?
Pros/Cons of Siberian Huskies
• Playful – They’re energetic and love to play all day. They also a good travelling companions.
• Friendly – They don’t have “aggressive” in their dna, so they made a good family pet (family with children).
• Smart – Huskies are incredibly smart, and once you’ve earned their respect, it’s a lot of fun to teach them tricks.
• Stubborn – If you don’t know how to earn their respect, they tend to ignore basically everything that you say, even when they understand it.
• Escape Artist – Due to their high intelligence and curiosity, as well as their independent trait, any chance of an “adventure” is so tempting to them and they’re prone to run away to chase the “adventure that awaits them”.
• Friendly – It’s a positive and negative at once. We had a break-in at our house last month, and all 10 huskies didn’t give any signs during the 20 minutes the thief was inside the house. So yeah. Not a good watch dog if you are looking for one.