Why Do Huskies Throw Tantrums? 8 Reasons & 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

Huskies are often referred to as a dramatic breed because they tend to throw tantrums at what might seem like the smallest inconveniences to us – but why do huskies throw tantrums? And what can you do to stop them once they start?

Huskies can throw tantrums for a lot of different reasons, but it is usually related to either an emotional or physical problem. The key to preventing tantrums is to spot the warning signs and act accordingly.

Ready to learn how to both spot and prevent your husky’s tantrums? Let’s straight get into it.

How To Tell If Your Husky Is Throwing A Tantrum

Before we look at the reasons a husky might throw a tantrum, it’s important to understand what a tantrum actually is.

Huskies are known for their dramatic behaviour and as a breed, they are very good at vocalising to express their needs and feelings.

A quick search on the internet will provide thousands of viral videos showing huskies acting like divas and seemingly making as much noise as possible.

Being vocal is how your husky will try to communicate with you, but it is not a sign that they are having a tantrum on its own. Huskies will make the most of any reason to use their voice and their loud barks and woos could simply be a sign that they are happy.

Tantrums are another way for your husky to communicate with you, and are more common in puppies. They can be identified as behaviours that are not typical of your husky and usually occur when your husky is trying to alert you to something that is negatively impacting them.

Typical behaviours seen in a husky tantrum include:

  • Erratic behaviour
  • Excessive vocalisation (howling, crying, whining)
  • Ignoring your commands
  • Destructive behaviour such as chewing furniture
  • Growling at you
  • Aggression towards you

Not all husky tantrums are the same, some huskies may behave very differently from others to express their feelings.

The way to identify a tantrum is to pick up on their actions during a tantrum that do not normally occur during their day-to-day behaviour.

Check out the video below which shows a classic example of a husky tantrum. They are vocalising excessively, ignoring commands from their owner, and looking very adorable in the process!

It’s important to distinguish between their normal behaviour and their tantrum behaviour as soon as possible.

If you can identify a tantrum when it starts, it will be much easier for you to determine the cause and your husky will learn that they can effectively communicate with you.

Why Do Huskies Throw Tantrums?

Now we know what a husky tantrum looks like, let’s get into the potential reasons.

As we’ve already discussed, a tantrum usually occurs because a husky is experiencing a negative emotion that they need help to overcome.

The reasons for their distress fit into two different categories, emotional reasons and physical reasons.

Physical Tantrums

In our experience, it is easier to identify the cause of a physical tantrum and stop them.

This is because the reasons for them are a little more obvious, and they’re easy for us to understand as humans.

1. Hunger

If a husky is not fed at their usual feeding time, they may start to worry about where they are going to get food from.

As their hunger grows, they will become increasingly stressed which may lead to a tantrum.

2. Thirst

Similar to being hungry, a husky can throw a tantrum if they do not have access to water when they need a drink.

The discomfort brought about by being thirsty can make them stressed.

3. Needing The Toilet

This one is very commonly seen in owners who leave their huskies unoccupied whilst they are at work.

Huskies have a lot of pride in the homes they live in and will not easily spoil them by doing their business indoors.

If they need the toilet and are unable to get into the yard, they can get very stressed as they worry that they’ll be punished for going indoors.

4. Pain

If your husky is having a tantrum that is not caused by something obvious, you should check that they are not experiencing pain.

Huskies will try their best to communicate to their owners if they are in discomfort so it is your responsibility to rule out the possibility of pain being the cause.

Please consult a vet if you think your husky is experiencing pain.

Try to make sure your husky’s needs will still be fulfilled if they are going to be left alone for some time. Huskies are creatures of habit and a change to their routine can be difficult for them to understand.

Emotional Tantrums

Similar to human toddlers, a husky may become overwhelmed by their emotions leading to them having a tantrum.

Emotional tantrums are harder to identify as a husky can’t explicitly tell you what is upsetting them. We recommend looking for changes to their physical surroundings or your behaviour towards them that could be triggering their tantrums.

5. Boredom

Huskies are a notoriously active breed and boredom is the most common reason for tantrums in huskies.

Their high energy levels need to be satisfied not only physically, but also mentally.

Two miniature huskies fighting

Huskies can very quickly become bored if they are left on their own for long periods or if they don’t have toys to play with. Read our husky exercise guide here to make sure your husky’s activity levels are fulfilled!

6. Lack Of Attention

Owners of huskies will know just how attention-seeking their pets are.

Huskies will happily be around their owners 24/7 and can get very annoyed or jealous if they haven’t had what they deem to be enough attention that day.

They can also suffer from separation anxiety if left alone for too long, which can result in tantrums.

7. Anxiety And Nerves

If something is causing your husky to be nervous like fireworks or a storm for example, then their stress can lead to a tantrum.

8. Unwillingness To Cooperate

This is something that all huskies will experience at some point. Huskies are very stubborn and will have no problem telling you if they don’t want to do something.

Even some of the most well-trained huskies will struggle with their stubbornness from time to time! A common example is asking a husky to drop something from their mouth.

Try to put yourself into the mindset of your husky. They only throw emotional tantrums because it is the easiest way for them to communicate their feelings to you.

How To Stop And Prevent A Husky Tantrum

By now, you’re probably wondering how you can stop a husky from having a tantrum and how you can prevent them in the future.

The way to stop a husky from having tantrums is to understand what is causing them in the first place.

If your husky has been having tantrums for a while now, try to look for patterns in the husky’s environment leading up to it.

For example, if your husky always seems to throw a tantrum just before feeding time, it might mean that they are getting too hungry and that you need to feed them earlier.

Identifying the cause of the tantrums will allow you to prevent the situation from occurring in the first place. Once you know what is causing the tantrum, stopping it should be as simple as addressing your husky’s needs.

Here are some questions to ask yourself if you’re trying to find the cause of your husky’s outbursts:

  • Do the tantrums happen around mealtimes? – Your husky might be getting too hungry between feeding sessions.
  • Do they happen when you’re leaving the house without them? – Your husky might have anxiety about being left alone. Look for whether actions such as putting your shoes on or picking up your keys trigger a tantrum.
  • Do they have a regular, fulfilling exercise routine? – Huskies like to stick to a routine and adjusting it may cause them to worry that they are missing out on their daily activities. Ensure that the exercise you give them is enough to tire them out for the rest of the day.
  • Could the tantrums be linked to a specific person? – Your husky might have built a negative relationship with a specific person, causing them to become stressed in their presence.
  • Do the tantrums happen first thing in the morning? – Your husky might need a bathroom trip earlier than when you wake up or could be hungry.
  • Are the tantrums occurring randomly? – If you can’t find any patterns in the times your husky throws a tantrum, it could mean that they are experiencing pain. Consult a vet for a check-up if you think this is the case.

If you are looking for more permanent tantrum-prevention methods, you may have some success in training your husky to have a higher stress tolerance.

This is not an easy task, as huskies are notorious for forgetting all their training once their emotions start to run high.

A Siberian husky laid on the floor winking

We recommend talking to a professional dog trainer if this is a route you would like to go down.

Husky Tantrum FAQs

We’ve checked the internet for some of the most commonly asked questions regarding huskies and tantrums – take a read below!

What Should You Do When A Husky Throws A Tantrum?

When a husky throws a tantrum, they are trying to communicate something to you.

Usually, this is a negative emotion or feeling so it’s important to find what’s causing it.

If you can find the cause (hunger, anxiety, boredom, etc.) then you can fix it and prevent it from occurring again in the future.

Are Tantrums In Huskies Normal?

Yes! Tantrums are a form of communication.

Your husky is simply trying to let you know that something is affecting them and that they want you to help.

Should You Punish A Husky For Having A Tantrum?

We do not recommend punishing a husky for having a tantrum, partly because they are unlikely to learn anything from it.

If you teach your husky that they can not express their emotions to you, they will trust you less and their negative emotions may end up being amplified in the future.

Try to find the cause of their tantrums to better understand why they are happening and how to prevent them in the future. If you want to learn how to punish your husky correctly, read our guide here.

Summing It Up

So, husky tantrums are simply a part of owning the breed. Whilst they may be an inconvenience to us, we should be grateful as owners that our huskies are so willing to communicate with us.

Let us know about your husky’s tantrums and how you prevent them in the comments below to help fellow owners out!

We want to see your huskies! Send in your photos for a chance to be featured in our gallery!

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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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