Struggling With A Lazy Husky? (9 Reasons Why And What To Do)

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This article has been fact-checked by Dr. Dilber Hussain, DVM, to ensure we're providing the most up-to-date guidance. READ MORE

Got a lazy husky and worried if there might be something wrong with your pup?

Although some huskies can naturally just be lazier than others, there is almost always an underlying issue. This can range from boredom to a lack of exercise to certain health conditions. 

In this guide, I’ll take you through 9 reasons why your husky might be lazy so you can quickly identify and solve any problem that might be affecting your husky. Let’s get into it.

Is It Normal For Huskies To Be Lazy?

It isn’t very common for huskies to be lazy as they are originally a working breed capable of running over 100 miles when trained properly.

Huskies usually need around 2 hours or more of exercise each day when kept as pets and also benefit from other mental stimulation from toys or other types of training. This is a very high exercise requirement and shows just how much energy a healthy (and happy) husky should have.

So, why do some huskies become lazy even though they are capable of more exercise than most other breeds of dog?

9 Reasons Why Your Husky Is Lazy

Here are 9 of the most common reasons for a lazy husky.

1. Boredom

Huskies are intelligent dogs that need a lot of mental stimulation to keep them satisfied. They will become easily bored if they aren’t regularly engaging in stimulating activities such as playing games, solving puzzle toys or obedience training.

If you aren’t meeting these needs then they can exhibit destructive behaviors, or become unhappy and not willing to exercise as often.

2. Exercise Requirements Not Being Met

Owning a husky is a huge responsibility, much more than most other dogs due to how demanding they are in terms of not only mental stimulation but also exercise.

As I mentioned before, huskies are not a lazy breed by nature and need plenty of exercise to stay happy. If you aren’t meeting this exercise requirement every single day your husky will start to become unsatisfied and may refuse exercise in the future.

3. Weather

Huskies are adapted to cold temperatures and thrive in these conditions.

If it becomes too hot for your husky (anywhere from 70°F (21°C) upwards) then they won’t be as willing to go outside and exercise as it will make them uncomfortable. Huskies are susceptible to heat stroke, so you really need to take the weather into account and exercise them less if the temperature is too high.

4. Old Age

Older huskies can become lazy for several reasons:

  • Weight Gain 
  • Pain due to joint or muscular problems
  • Less stamina

There doesn’t always have to be a solid reason here, either. Huskies simply have less energy as they get older, and this means they need less exercise and prefer to rest more.

5. Medical Issue

Underlying illnesses can cause huskies to become lethargic and lazy. Some of these include (source):

  • Infections
  • Parasites
  • Diabetes

If your husky suddenly becomes lazy then you should seek veterinary advice as soon as possible as it’s likely that they are suffering from a condition that has caused them to be this way.

6. Poor Diet

Huskies, just like any other animal, require a well-balanced diet for energy. Given how much huskies can exercise, it’s crucial to provide energy-dense food packed with nutrients to help them maintain their active lifestyle.

We recommend a commercial food diet from a brand like Orijen, but you can read our guide to find out more about the specifics here.

If you provide a poor diet for your husky they can lose weight and become lazy due to a lack of energy. Raw diets are actually quite a common cause of this because it can be hard to provide all of the nutrients required purely in a raw form without a lot of effort in planning the diet correctly.

On the other hand, you might be providing too much food which can make your husky gain weight and become lethargic. so it’s important to find a good balance here.

7. Personality

Husky personality varies a lot between individuals.

Some huskies can never get enough exercise, while others prefer less exercise and can be lazy. My old English Bulldog used to love going for long walks and running around after rocks on walks which you would never expect from this breed, so it can vary a lot between dogs.

8. Medication

If your husky has recently started a course of medication then this could be responsible for laziness or lethargy.

There are a lot of medications that can make your husky lazy, so always check the label for possible side effects and – as always – contact a veterinarian if you become concerned.

9. Separation Anxiety

Huskies are a very social breed of dog and can suffer from separation anxiety when left alone for even short periods of time.

This can have a big impact on their mental state, and also their energy levels as well. If your husky is using up its energy chewing excessively or simply from becoming too stressed when left alone, it may not have the energy for exercise when the time comes.

This can be misinterpreted as your husky being lazy when in reality they are just using their energy in the wrong place.

How To Encourage Your Husky To Be More Active

If you have a lazy husky there are things you can do to encourage them to become more active.

This is, of course, assuming that they are not simply ‘lazy’ due to old age or an underlying condition. Once these two factors are ruled out, try out some of the methods below to get your husky active again:

Make Exercise Fun Again

Variety is key when it comes to exercising a husky, and by introducing new types of exercise you can encourage a lazy husky to become more active.

Consider taking your husky for hikes or on your morning run to spice things up a bit.

Make sure to build up exercise slowly as well. If your husky is particularly lazy it will need time to recover from exercise to build up its endurance, so only increase the duration by 10 to 20 minutes each week.

Huskies attached with harnesses to pull a sled

Use Rewards During Exercise

If your husky isn’t a big fan of exercise but is motivated by treats then using treats during exercise is a great way to encourage them to be active.

Take a handful of small treats with you during exercise and give them to your husky as a reward every so often. Using small treats is crucial so they can be easily digested, and use them to encourage your husky; for example, if your husky runs around and then comes back to you when shouted during a walk, offer a treat as a reward.

Take A Look At Their Diet

Diet is crucial for huskies, so I recommend taking a close look at exactly what you feed your husky (including portion sizes) to see if any improvements can be made.

If you use a raw diet, make sure you are providing balanced nutrition. If you opt for mainly dry kibble, use our checklist to ensure the ingredients are suitable.

Keep portion sizes under control as well to keep your husky in a healthy weight range; if your husky is overweight or underweight it can affect its energy levels.

Use Toys

Huskies love to play with toys, and it’s an easy way to encourage activity as well.

Good options for toys for huskies specifically include chew toys and also puzzle toys that reward your husky with a small treat upon ‘completion’.


Are Huskies Low Energy?

Huskies are not low-energy at all.

In fact, they have a massive energy output and can be trained to run over 100 miles in one go. Although some huskies can become lazy, it’s usually quite easy to figure out why and help them return back to being active.

Is It Normal For Huskies To Sleep All Day?

If your husky is sleeping all day then this is an indication that something is wrong, such as an underlying illness.

Always contact your veterinarian if you notice any sudden changes in your husky’s behavior, such as sleeping for long periods of time.

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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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