Siberian Husky vs Greenland Dog: Complete Breed Comparison

Siberian Huskies are super popular, but few people have heard of Greenland Dogs.

In this article, we’ll compare these Spitz-type dogs to see how they stack against each other.

Both dogs have an Arctic origin as sled dogs, leading to many shared features like thick double coats, stubborn personalities, and the ability to exercise for hours without getting tired.

This is only the start of the comparison though, so stay tuned for a full breakdown of the Siberian Husky vs Greenland Dog.

An infographic detailing the similarities and differences between the Siberian Husky vs Greenland Dog

What Is A Greenland Dog?

Before we get into the comparison, it’s essential to address what a Greenland Dog actually is because there is a lot of confusion about this breed (and rightly so!).

The Greenland Dog arrived in Greenland with the Thule people 4,000 to 5,000 years ago. It was used to pull heavy sled loads across long distances, much like the Siberian Husky but more suited for heavier work.

Since that time, the Greenland Dog has been known under many names, with the official name of Greenland Dog chosen in 1990.

Genetically speaking, the Greenland Dog is identical to the Canadian Eskimo Dog; the locations where they settled differ. The Thule people also bred Canadian Eskimos and have been residents in Alaska and Canada for thousands of years.

This is why there is a lot of confusion between these two breeds. It’s worth noting that Greenland Dogs tend to be slightly larger today than Canadian Eskimo Dogs; however, the small population of both breeds makes it hard to establish this as fact.

Recommended reading on the Greenland Dog:

Differences Between Siberian Husky vs Greenland Dog

Now that we’re on the same page about the Greenland Dog let’s explore some of the key differences between these two Arctic breeds.


Siberian Huskies win out in terms of popularity by a considerable margin.

They’re one of the most popular dog breeds in North America and the world, ranking 21st in the AKC’s list of the most popular dog breeds in 2022.

Most people don’t even know what Greenland Dogs are, and they are not officially recognized in many places, making them very rare.

There are very few breeders of the Greenland dog worldwide, and the breed is threatened with extinction, with an estimate of only 300 purebred examples in 2008. However, the UK is a hub for the Greenland Dog, with an official club.


Another key difference between the Siberian Husky and Greenland Dog is the size:

  • Siberian Huskies are much smaller, weighing 35 to 60 lbs and reaching 20 to 23.5 inches in height.
  • Greenland dogs reach an impressive 75 to 105 lbs in weight and 23 to 27 inches in height, as per the Kennel Club standard.

Greenland dogs are much more similar to Alaskan Malamutes in their size, rather than the slender Siberian Husky.

Breed Recognition

Siberian Huskies are a recognized breed across the world and were first registered with the American Kennel Club in 1930, with the Siberian Husky Club of America forming in 1938.

Greenland dogs are only recognized in a few places, with the Kennel Club and United Kennel Club of Great Britain in the UK and the Canadian Kennel Club in Canada.

The lack of recognition is mainly due to two things: the low number of Greenland Dogs and their genetic similarity to the Canadian Eskimo Dog.


Let’s see what things Siberian Huskies and Greenland Dogs have in common.

Arctic Sledding Origin

These dogs were initially used for pulling sleds across long distances, with Greenland Dogs more suited for heavier loads while Siberian Huskies excelled with lighter loads.

Spitz-Like Features

As Spitz-type dogs, Siberian Huskies and Greenland Dogs share many of the same features.

A black and white husky on a grass field

These include pointed ears, thick, fluffy double coats, and curly tails.

A Greenland dog up close
Credit – Slaunger, edited by Thegreenj, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

A double coat means that their coat is split up into two layers: a short, wooly undercoat that provides insulation in the cold and a thick overcoat of guard hairs that protects the skin and coat below from water and debris.

Personality Traits

Spitz-type dogs are not only well-known for specific physical features but also for being incredibly stubborn and independent at times.

This can make training either of these dogs very difficult, and it’s important to let them have time to themselves if they want it.

A positive benefit in terms of personality is the pack mentality that they have. This means they tend to get along very well with other dogs and people, making them good family choices.

Exercise Requirements

As sled dogs capable of pulling loads for miles at a time, Siberian Huskies and Greenland dogs require at least 2 hours of exercise every day.

They also benefit from being able to pull as they would naturally, which is why people can often have problems with their husky or Greenland dogs pulling on the lead.

Grooming & Shedding

The thick double coat these two dogs have needs to be groomed regularly, and even daily when they’re blowing coat, so expect to get yourself stocked up with the proper brushing tools.

Double-coated breeds blow their coat twice per year on average, which is a process where they lose a lot of their undercoat to prepare for warmer weather.

You can expect shedding year-round and even more during the coat-blowing season.


Fortunately, both breeds have pretty long average life expectancies, with huskies living 12 to 15 years and Greenland Dogs exceeding 10 or more on average.

Cold Tolerance

Greenland Dogs and Siberian Huskies are comfortable in very cold climates well below freezing, thanks to their origin.

Range Of Coat Colors Possible

Both dogs can have a range of coat colors. Huskies are typically black and white but can also be red and white, entirely red, agouti, and many more colors.

Greenland Dogs are very similar and come in a wide range of coat colors, from tan and white to red to black and white, with the only unacceptable color being merle, according to the Kennel Club.

Which Breed Is Best For You?

There isn’t much difference between these breeds in terms of how much work they are; both require a lot of exercise and grooming, and they are prone to stubbornness, too.

The real difference comes in how popular they are. Huskies are much more widespread, and you can find a breeder in almost any location in the world. In contrast, Greenland Dog breeders are incredibly hard to find, and getting one would be much more complicated.

The chances are if you’re looking for a Greenland Dog, you already know a lot about the breed and its history, and consequently, how the history of the Siberian Husky compares. If you aren’t sure, definitely read up using the recommended resources from earlier before deciding to get one of these dogs.

Want to read more husky breed comparisons? Check out some of our other recent husky comparisons below:

Featured image credit – Slaunger, edited by Thegreenj, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons

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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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