Siberian Huskies have a strong prey drive, and generally do not get on well with cats and other small furry animals (rabbits, guinea pigs, ferrets, etc) and birds. A young puppy Siberian Husky may present no obvious threat to these other animals, only to turn predatory after a couple of years as they mature.
Of course there are always exceptions to a general rule – the author of this section owns two Siberians who have lived in harmony with cats for several years. However they were brought as young pups into an established cat household, and certainly wouldn't show significant inhibition at chasing after a strange cat or other small (non-dog) animal outside of their household. The Siberian Husky that can peacefully co-exist with cats and other small furry animals is a rare dog indeed!
It must be emphasised that prey drive and aggression are oft-confused but completely different concepts. A Siberian Husky may be absolutely friendly and accepting of people and other dogs, both those known well and total strangers, yet without a moment's thought chase down and kill a possum running through their yard at night.
Prey drive is simply an innate hunting behaviour learned over many hundreds of generations in harsh arctic conditions, where Siberian Huskies were often kept on a lean existence. This was especially so over summer when the Siberian tribes had no use of sled dogs and often turned them loose to hunt for themselves. Because the prey drive is instinctive and cannot be 'unlearned', no amount of training is likely to effectively suppress this desire.
Of course, prey drive behaviour is not appropriate to modern urban living, but the dogs don't know that! The only solution is to not let the opportunity present itself – keep your Siberian Husky away from these other animals at all times.
Ineffectively managed predatory behaviour can be the cause of much misery when a Siberian Husky is allowed to escape and kills or maims another person's pet. The dog can't be blamed for this – it's just obeying its natural instinct. Be aware and don't allow the situation to arise in the first place!
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