Why Does My Husky Bite Me? 11 Common Reasons

Does your husky bite you during playtime, or have they started to bite or nip at you during the day unexpectedly?

Huskies can bite for many reasons, including playing rough, during teething, or if they are experiencing pain. It’s important for owners to figure out why they are biting to make sure it isn’t a result of aggression or boredom, which can potentially cause an injury to you, another person, or another animal.

Stay tuned to learn 11 reasons why your husky might be biting, what you need to do about it, and whether huskies as a breed are prone to biting or not.

Are Huskies Prone To Biting?

It’s important to know that huskies are not very prone to biting if appropriately raised.

Huskies were originally used by the Chukchi people of Siberia and were raised to work with many other dogs and live alongside humans for food and shelter. They have a strong pack mentality, and behaviors like biting were not valuable in helping them survive.

You can find more details on how dangerous huskies are, including the latest bite statistics, in our article here if you want more information on this topic.

11 Reasons Why Your Husky Bites You

Now that’s out of the way, let’s get into the eleven most common reasons why your husky might bite you.

1. Playing Rough

Huskies can play rough, especially if they haven’t been exercised or are bored.

Some owners can make this worse by playing rough back, which can lead to biting pretty quickly. It’s usually not a problem as your husky should know not to bite you with any force, but if they get carried away, it can lead to unwanted pain.

2. Teething

Huskies will go through the teething for around eight months, and during this time, it’s extremely common for them to chew on anything in site, including you.

This usually distracts them from the pain of their teeth coming through, and it’s common across all dog breeds. If your husky puppy is biting you quite often, it isn’t something that you should be overly concerned about.

3. Pain

If your husky is in pain, either through teething or another problem like an abscess in their mouth or even an ear infection, they might use biting as a way to distract themselves or alert you that they are uncomfortable.

Look out for other changes in your husky’s behavior if you think they might be in pain, such as a reluctance to exercise or a lack of energy. Don’t hesitate to contact your veterinarian if you are worried.

4. Aggression

Most huskies are not aggressive by nature, but there are examples where they can become aggressive if they have been abused or raised in a poor environment.

It isn’t rocket science to figure out if your husky is being aggressive, and the best course of action in these cases is to speak to a qualified canine behaviorist.

5. Lack Of Socialization

Huskies that haven’t been appropriately socialized from a young age can be more aggressive toward other people and dogs, leading to biting as a defense mechanism.

All responsible owners should socialize their huskies as much as possible, but in some cases, this isn’t an option, like rescue huskies.

In these cases, it’s important to be aware of your husky’s biting tendencies, slowly socialize them, and introduce more obedience training to work on their bite response.

You may also need to work with a canine behaviorist in severe cases.

6. Lack Of Training

If your husky hasn’t learned that biting isn’t acceptable, either from their mothers in the puppy stage (bite inhibition) or from you (more on this later), they will assume that this behavior is acceptable.

7. Scared

If your husky is scared or startled, they might bite as an initial response.

It’s important to be aware of this type of biting, but you don’t need to worry about it unless your husky gets scared often.

For example, there’s a big difference between your husky nipping you if you suddenly wake them up from a nap versus your husky biting at strangers whenever they’re in public.

8. High Prey Drive

Huskies have a high prey drive by nature, which means they are prone to chasing after small animals without giving it a second thought.

Dogs with a high prey drive tend to be more ‘bitey’ than others during regular playtime.

9. Excess Energy

Huskies have one of the highest energy drives out of all dog breeds, which can result in some unwanted behaviors like biting when playing or getting bored.

10. Independent Nature

Huskies are Spitz-type dogs with the classic independent and stubborn personality traits seen across many Spitz-type dogs.

They will often like to spend some time to themselves, usually outside if the weather allows, and you might be met with a slight nip or bite if you try to take them out of this time.

11. Bonus Point – What About Their Protective Instinct?

Huskies are not an inherently protective breed because of how social they are; this means they are not ideal guard dogs and are more likely to befriend a stranger than to bite them.

There are some very rare cases of huskies biting intruders, though, so it is a possibility (although unlikely). This usually happens as a last resort and isn’t something you can rely upon.

What To Do If Your Husky Is Biting

If your husky has suddenly started biting you more often, it’s essential to figure out why it’s happening because huskies can bite very hard (320 PSI) if they mean it.

A husky playing with another dog in the snow
Huskies will often bite or nip other dogs while playing if they get carried away.

It’s very rare for a husky to bite with their full power because most huskies will have learned bite inhibition from a young age, so in most scenarios, it will be a one-off occasion during rough playtime if they get carried away.

If your husky does bite you properly, you need to take care of yourself first following these steps.

In cases of nipping or ‘gentle’ biting, there are a few quick steps you can follow to eliminate the most common reasons why your husky might be biting you:

Check Their Teeth & General Health

The first step should always be to check their teeth to see if they have any issues that could be causing pain, leading to biting.

It’s common for huskies and other breeds to bite you if they are experiencing pain, so look closely at the teeth and gums for any inflammation, bleeding, or damage.

If you give your husky bones as a treat, there’s a chance they could have damaged part of a tooth if you use the wrong type of bone or if it was cooked and became brittle.

If the teeth look healthy, but you still suspect your husky is in pain, taking them to the veterinarian won’t hurt to get them checked out properly. Sometimes, the pain can be caused by something that isn’t noticeable to an untrained eye, so always speak to a professional if you’re concerned.

Make Sure You’re Exercising Them Properly & Giving Enough Mental Stimulation

If your husky isn’t suffering from any health issues that are causing them pain, the biting could result from excess energy or boredom.

As a breed, huskies are prone to getting bored or restless quickly, so ensuring they’re getting enough exercise and mental stimulation is crucial.

  • Huskies need 2 hours of exercise each day. This is a very large amount, and a lot of owners find it difficult to meet this requirement, but without it, a husky can quickly become unsettled and energetic.
  • Alongside exercise, make sure your husky is getting enough mental stimulation in the form of obedience training, puzzle toys, and other things like games. Check out our guide for more ideas to give your husky more mental stimulation.

There’s no denying how much work huskies are to own – it’s one of the main reasons why so many unfortunately end up in shelters.

Address The Behavior When It Happens

If pain and boredom aren’t the problem, you’ll need to address the behavior when it happens correctly to teach your pup that it isn’t acceptable.

How you address the behavior depends on the biting they are doing.

Aggressive vs Playful Nipping

The easiest way to tell if your husky is biting out of aggression or another behavioral issue is if they are biting quite with a lot of force and if their face looks angry and not relaxed.

In these cases, the best thing to do is to work with a professional canine behaviorist to address the underlying cause.

If your husky looks relaxed and is biting gently, then you can address the behavior yourself. When they bite, let out a cry and let your hand go limp.

This should startle them, and if they stop, you can reward them with praise or a treat. Repeat this every time they bite you, only rewarding once they have stopped.

You can replace this with a time-out period where you stop playing entirely as well, or you can give them a command like sit and reward them afterward.

Make Sure Your Husky Is Getting Lots Of Socialization

Outside of everything else, socializing your husky will significantly impact how they behave around other people and other animals.

Ideally, it would be best to start this from a young age, exposing them to different environments and noises to build their confidence quickly.

Huskies are a very energetic and social breed that benefit significantly from socializing, not just from a biting point of view but also from a well-being point of view.

Even if your husky is mature, there’s always time to socialize them more.

Can Spaying/Neutering Stop Husky Biting?

There is evidence that spaying/neutering your dog can lead to a decrease in aggressive behaviors like biting, but it shouldn’t be done specifically for this reason.

Neutering your husky is a personal choice, but it does have several health benefits and is recommended for the majority of people, especially if you aren’t planning to breed.

In Summary

Biting shouldn’t be a problem for most huskies if they are socialized from an early age and taught bite inhibition.

If you’re worried about your husky biting aggressively, speak to a qualified canine behaviorist for assistance.

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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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