Yakutian Laika

50-66 lbs
20-22"
Russia
Yakut Laika, Yakutskaya Laika, Sledge Dog, Tungusskaya, Chuvychanskaya, Arkticheskaya and Polarmaya

The Yakutian Laika originated in the Yakutia region of Russian Siberia. He has been a reindeer herder, hunting dog, sled dog and family companion. While technically he is an ancient breed, since preservation efforts began in the 1990s, many claim he is a new, re-born breed. He is a medium sized dog with a very dense coat to protect him from the Artic climate. With proper socialization and training, the Yakutian Laika can be a wonderful companion. He generally likes people but can be aggressive towards other dogs and anything perceived to be a predator. He is protective of his family and his home. He is an active dog and requires plenty of daily exercise and human interaction.

Purpose
Sledding, Hunting, Herding
Date of Origin
1600s
Ancestry
East Siberian Laika, Siberian Husky

Yakutian Laika Health

Average Size
Male Yakutian Laika size stats
Height: 21-22 inches Weight: 50-66 lbs
Female Yakutian Laika size stats
Height: 20-22 inches Weight: 50-66 lbs
Major Concerns
  • Eye Problems
  • Gastric Dilation Volvulus (GDV) or Bloat
Minor Concerns
  • Hip And Elbow Dysplasia
Occasional Diagnoses
  • Deafness
Occasional Tests
  • Hearing
  • CERF
  • OFA on hips and elbows
  • Complete Physical Examination

Yakutian Laika Breed History

While the ancestors of the Yakutian Laika are considered ancient breeds, he is relatively a new breed. The Yakutian Laika was first documented in the 1800s and it was estimated that there were several thousand in existence. However, his popularity dwindled significantly and by the 1990s his numbers had dropped to only a few hundred. The breed was resurrected during the 1990s and preservation efforts began to bring the breed back to his original look and purpose. The Yakutian Laika was bred by the aboriginal people of the northeast region of Russia better known as Siberia. Throughout history, dogs that are similar to the Yakutian Laika were described by explorers to the region by many different names including Sledge Dog, Tungusskaya, Chuvychanskaya, Arkticheskaya and Polarmaya. This breed has shown up in various published works including in Nicolas Cornelissen Witsen’s book published in 1692. Witsen is a Dutch scientist, traveller, ethnographer and geographer who explored the Siberian region and published his findings including descriptions of the Yakutian Laika and their usefulness to the people living within this harsh climate. During the 2nd extended Kamchatka expedition in 1730, the Yakutian Laika was used to pull sleds and act as guard dogs for the explorers. In 1839, the Yakutian Laika  was used during the winter months for mail delivery from Yakutsk through Okhotsk and into Kamchatka. Twenty sleds or sledges were used to carry cargo and mail. Each sled had a team of 11 dogs to pull between 1,000 to 1,400 pounds of cargo up to 53 miles each day. The Yakutian Laika once again showed up in literature in 1843 when Ivan Pavlovsky wrote “Geography of the Russian Empire” and described the breed’s influence on mail delivery. Professor Ivan Yakovlevich Gorlov published his book, “Overview of Economic Status, Statistics of the Russian Empire for 1849” and described the purpose of the Yakutian Laika. Yakutians used the dogs for sledding and carrying heavy loads. All year round dogs stay in the open air, in the summer digging a hole in the ground to cool themselves or lie in water because of mosquitoes. In winter they look for a shelter in deep snow pits curling up and covering their muzzle with a furry tail. Once he was not needed to haul cargo through the harsh Siberian region, the Yakutian Laika lost his popularity. It was not until the 1990s when a group of enthusiasts took a bigger interest in preserving the breed. Their efforts were successful and in 2004 the Russian Cynological Federation accepted the Yakutian Laika breed standard and began registering dogs. The International Cynological Federation has not yet recognized the Yakutian Laika. However, in 2017 the American Kennel Club began accepting the Yakutian Laika into its Foundation Stock Service.

Yakutian Laika Breed Appearance

The Yakutian Laika is a typical sled dog and has a muscular body and longer legs. He has a rounded rib cage and well developed chest. The double coat of the Yakutian Laika is very dense and medium long. His coat is straight with no curl or wave present. The topcoat is coarse and weather resistant. His undercoat is extremely dense and downy, being soft to the touch. His features are similar to that of his relative, the Siberian Husky, having the same wide set almond eyes that are either dark brown or blue. His coat is white, tri-color or white and black, although for those not being shown, he can be found in a wider variety of colors and markings. He has a black or brown nose with wide nostrils to help him breathe better when he is working in the colder climates. Males are generally taller and more muscled than the females. 

Eye Color Possibilities
blue Yakutian Laika eyes
Blue
brown Yakutian Laika eyes
Brown
Nose Color Possibilities
black Yakutian Laika nose
Black
brown Yakutian Laika nose
Brown
Coat Color Possibilities
white Yakutian Laika coat
White
pied Yakutian Laika coat
Pied
Coat Length
Short Medium Long
Coat Density
Sparse Normal Dense
Coat Texture
Yakutian Laika straight coat texture
Straight Wiry Wavy Curly Corded

Yakutian Laika Breed Maintenance

 The Yakutian Laika is not a hypoallergenic dog and does experience seasonal shedding that can get out of control if he is not brushed regularly. Generally, he should be brushed weekly to prevent matting and tangles. When shedding heavily, it is a good idea to brush him every day to keep the hair from getting onto everything. Use a pin brush and metal comb when grooming. A deshedder or detangler may also be used to make your job a little easier. Since the Yakutian Laika is a working dog, excessive trimming of his coat is not necessary. Trim between his foot pads to keep snow and ice or other debris from accumulating and causing him irritation. His coat naturally repels dirt and he does not have an odor so bathing should only be done two to three times a year. Trim his nails when needed, usually every two to three weeks. Clean his ears each week as part of his grooming routine. 

Brushes for Yakutian Laika
Pin Brush
Comb
Deshedder
Scissors
Brushing Frequency
Yakutian Laika requires weekly brushing
Daily Weekly Monthly

Yakutian Laika Temperament

Just like other Laikas, the Yakutian Laika is a highly intelligent breed that wants to please his master. He is relatively easy to train, although he can have a stubborn streak if he feels he is being disrespected. Training should be fun and upbeat, he does not respond well to harsh or boring training. The Yakutian Laika is a social dog with most people as long as he has been socialized early. He may exhibit aloofness around strangers but should not be aggressive unless he feels his family is being threatened. He is very protective of his family and will guard his home against both four legged and two legged predators. He does enjoy children that he has been raised with but will not tolerate disrespectful children. Since he has a relatively high prey drive, small pets should be closely watched when he is near. Because he has such a dense coat, the Yakutian Laika should never be left outside in a warm or hot climate. He will require air conditioning to keep him safe, although during the winter months, he will enjoy spending much time outdoors. 

Activity Level
Low Medium High
Rec. Walk Mileage Per Week
10 miles
Minutes of Activity Per Day
60 minutes

Yakutian Laika Food Consumption

Cups Per Day
2.7 cups
Daily Cost
$1.20 - $1.40
Monthly Cost
$34.00 - $45.00

Yakutian Laika Height & Weight

6 Months
Male Yakutian Laika size stats at six months
Height: 17 inches Weight: 25 lbs
Female Yakutian Laika size stats at six months
Height: 16 inches Weight: 25 lbs
12 Months
Male Yakutian Laika size stats at 12 months
Height: 19 inches Weight: 52 lbs
Female Yakutian Laika size stats at 12 months
Height: 19 inches Weight: 52 lbs
18 Months
Male Yakutian Laika size stats at 18 months
Height: 21 inches Weight: 58 lbs
Female Yakutian Laika size stats at 18 months
Height: 21 inches Weight: 58 lbs

Yakutian Laika Owner Experiences

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2 Days
2 People
Condo
Health
Grooming
Friendliness
Energy
Trainability
Pastimes
Tug-of-war
Fetch
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3 months ago
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