Coyote Vs. Husky: Key Similarities & Differences

When it comes to the coyote vs. husky comparison, there are a lot of similarities and differences between the two.

Coyotes are smaller than huskies on average in weight and have a more slender frame. They share different origins but are both members of the Canis genus, which means that they share quite a few similarities as well. For example, both are very vocal and have some similar wolf-like features.

Before we dive into the main comparisons, here’s a quick overview of the key similarities and differences between huskies and coyotes:

An infographic highlighting the similarities and differences between the coyote vs husky


You might be surprised at just how many similarities there are between coyotes and huskies, even though one is a wild animal and the other is a domesticated pet kept around the world.

Wolf-Like Features

Coyotes and huskies are part of the Canis genus, comprising wolves, dogs, coyotes, and more.

Coyotes and huskies specifically have very similar features that you would expect to find in a wolf.

A coyote with pointed ears

Coyotes have long snouts with erect ears and small eyes. Their coat ranges in color but shares many similar patterns and colors to a wolf, such as gray, red, and various shades of brown.

A close up of a husky with pointed ears with a faded background

Huskies are often mistaken for wolves, and research suggests that they might be even more closely related to them than we first thought.

Huskies have erect, pointed ears and long snouts, giving them a very similar facial structure to wolves, just like the coyote.


Coyotes and huskies can both live for a similar amount of time:

There have been cases of coyotes living much longer than 10 to 14 years in captivity, though.


Another critical similarity between coyotes and huskies is how vocal they both are.

Coyotes are known for howling and making various other unique noises like yipping, laughing and screaming.

Huskies are no different and are famous for the sounds they produce. Huskies can howl just like coyotes and make a range of other noises like talking, crying, and more.

These sounds are mainly used for communication.

Pack Mentality

Coyotes and huskies are both pack animals.

Coyotes in the wild build highly organized social systems and work in packs or family groups to defend their territory. This is why you might often hear screeches during the night when rival packs get into conflicts.

Huskies also have a pack mentality, as they were originally used as sled dogs to pull light loads over long distances. To do this, they would work with several other huskies in a pack that would work and live together.


Now that the similarities are out of the way let’s explore what makes these two different.

Domesticated Vs. Wild

One of the main differences between the coyote vs. husky is that coyotes are wild animals, whereas huskies are domesticated.

Huskies were domesticated by the Chukchi people of Siberia and used to aid in pulling sleds.

Coyotes remain wild and are dangerous to people because of this. You should always stay well away from a coyote if you spot one and never try to feed them.


Huskies and coyotes have extremely different temperaments, largely due to the fact that huskies have been domesticated for a long time while coyotes are still wild animals.

Huskies are very friendly to everybody – even strangers – and love to spend time around other people and dogs as well.

Coyotes are very timid and usually try their best to remain hidden from humans. If you happen to get close to them, they can become very defensive and aggressive as a defense mechanism.

Origin & Natural Habitat

Coyotes evolved in North America about two million years ago, whereas huskies originated from Siberia, where they were domesticated by the Chukchi people and used as sled dogs.

Due to these differences, huskies are much more adapted to cold weather and have thick, fluffy coats that help them to withstand cold temperatures.

Some subspecies of coyotes, particularly those found in more northern habitats, are also adapted to colder weather, but huskies are generally much more suited for these climates.

Size & Build

Huskies are larger than coyotes in weight and physique:

  • Huskies weigh between 25 and 60 lbs and reach 20 to 23.5 inches at the shoulder, depending on gender (see size chart here).
  • Coyotes weigh 20 to 50 lbs and reach anywhere from 18 to 24 inches in height.

Huskies are also built bigger as well, and their thicker coats also emphasize this difference.

A skinny coyote in a desert
Coyotes are very slender, with long legs and a (typically) skinny body

Coyotes have long, slender legs with slim frames, whereas huskies have broader shoulders, a more deep-set chest, and more muscle on their frame.

A Siberian Husky sat on some grass
Huskies have shorter legs in comparison to their bodies and broader shoulders.

Coat Colors

Huskies have a much wider range of coat colors, ranging from all-white to red and white, black and white, and more.

Most coyotes have a coat that is very similar to a wolf’s, with different shades of gray, red, black, and white mixed all around the coat.

The coyote coat is quite similar to an agouti husky, with a more speckled appearance.

Who Would Win In A Fight?

It’s hard to know for sure which one would win in a potential fight, as there are many factors to consider.

Huskies are usually larger in size, so there’s a good chance that a skittish coyote wouldn’t attempt to fight one without backup. There wouldn’t be much chance for the husky in the case of a pack of coyotes.

Domesticated huskies are not very defensive or aggressive. Still, if it came down to it in a one-versus-one situation, a husky could hold its own against a coyote and probably win simply due to the size difference.

However, if a large male coyote were to attack a small female husky, the size difference could easily work in favor of the coyote, so it’s tough to give a definitive answer.

In Summary

It’s quite interesting to compare coyotes and huskies because they have a lot more similarities than you would first expect.

Apart from the obvious domestic vs. wild difference, the main difference between the coyote and husky is size. Huskies are usually larger, with thicker coats in many different color combinations, whereas coyotes are slimmer and usually have speckled wolf-like coats.

Check out some of our other husky comparison articles below:

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About The Author

Caitlin is the owner and lead writer for The Malamute Mom. She has over 10 years of experience with Alaskan Malamutes and Huskies. She is currently working on getting her PhD in materials science but continues to write for The Malamute Mom in her spare time.

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