Alaskan Klee Kai

puppy alaskan klee kai

The Alaskan Klee Kai can be described as a miniature Husky.

The Alaskan Klee Kai (abbreviated as AKK) is a relatively new dog breed from the USA. “Klee Kai” originates from an Inuit language and translates to “small dog.” Among the ancestors of this energetic breed are Nordic sled dogs like the Alaskan Husky, which is reflected in its high exercise needs.

How Big Does an Alaskan Klee Kai Get?

You could describe the Alaskan Klee Kai as a Husky in mini form. It visually harks back to its larger forebears, the Alaskan Husky and the Siberian Husky. However, this small to medium-sized breed is cultivated as a compact companion dog, available in the following sizes:

  • Toy: Shoulder height up to 33 centimetres, weight up to 4.3 kilograms
  • Miniature: Shoulder height 33 to 38 centimetres, weight up to seven kilograms
  • Standard: Shoulder height 38 to 42 centimetres, weight up to ten kilograms

A Wedge-Shaped Head with a Striking Mask

Its dense, dual-layered coat consists of a soft, warming undercoat and rougher top coat. Most representatives of the breed are short-haired. Classic coat colours are red-white, black-white, and grey-white. Solid white animals are not desired.

The wedge-shaped head features a mask that stands out clearly against the white base.

Not only by its smaller size, but also by its relatively large erect ears and high-set hindquarters does the Alaskan Klee Kai differ from the Husky. The body is muscular, well-proportionate and slightly longer than tall.

Beware of Mix-Ups!

The almond-shaped eyes can be of any colour. “Odd-eyed”, or heterochromia, is also present. The furry rod-form tail creates a curl on the back, falling either to the centre or side. The scissor bite hosts strong, white teeth.

One should not confuse the Alaskan Klee Kai with the hybrid dog Pomsky. Although both are often described as mini Huskies, the former is considered a distinct breed by some registries.

In contrast, the Pomsky is one of the so-called Designer Dogs and results from crossing a Pomeranian with a Siberian Husky.

Character: Little Whirlwind

The Alaskan Klee Kai is a lively, energetic dog. When given enough exercise and appropriate activities, it shows its affectionate, loving side at home.

However, an under-stimulated dog can appear nervous and tense, and may develop a certain level of destructiveness.

Is the Alaskan Klee Kai Suitable for Novice Owners?

The breed is known as intelligent, adaptable and eager to learn, with a strong “will to please.”
This makes training the Alaskan Klee Kai manageable even for motivated new dog owners. Gentle guidance, consistency, and positive reinforcement yield the best results with this attentive pup.

Is the Alaskan Klee Kai a Family Dog?

In principle, the curious, loyal Alaskan Klee Kai is suitable as a family dog. However, it should not be left alone with small children, as it may react negatively to rough handling.
Due to its strong hunting instinct, cats and small pets like rabbits and guinea pigs might be seen as prey. For a peaceful coexistence, the AKK should be familiarised with them from puppyhood.
A well-socialised Alaskan Klee Kai is generally very sociable and can often be kept as a second or third dog with no issues.

A Vigilant Companion

This watchful dog is suspicious of strangers, which also makes it suitable as a guard dog.
It may bark occasionally and make its presence known through other sounds like howling and whining.

Keeping the Alaskan Klee Kai Busy

Unlike its larger relatives, the Alaskan Klee Kai can be well-suited to apartment living, provided it gets plenty of exercise. If a garden is available, it should be securely fenced.
Because once the Alaskan Klee Kai spots potential prey, it often cannot hold back. For this reason, it should only be unleashed during walks if it has a reliable recall.

Variety and Mental Stimulation Are Key

A spirited smart dog like the AKK wants to be physically and mentally challenged. It can indulge in various dog sports like agility, obedience and dock diving.
Note: Although sled dogs are among its ancestors, the Alaskan Klee Kai is only limitedly suitable for sled dog sports due to its size.
However, it very much enjoys long walks, varying games of throw and fetch and tracking work.

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Care and Nutrition: An Easygoing Pet

The short coat of the Alaskan Klee Kai requires relatively little coat care. But due to its undercoat, brushing during shedding periods is recommended to remove loose fur. Bathing the active AKK is normally not necessary.

The Right Diet for the Alaskan Klee Kai

This four-legged friend is not fussy with food: it’s neither prone to food intolerances nor obesity. It’s important to serve high-quality food, whether wet dog food, dry dog food or Barf, depending on the owner’s preference. When calculating portion sizes, consider the dog’s age, weight and activity level.

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The products featured above have been carefully chosen by our editorial team and are available at the zooplus online pet shop. This selection is not an advertisement for the mentioned brands.

Health: Few Hereditary Diseases Known

Generally, the Alaskan Klee Kai breed is robust and healthy. However, since the AKK has been selectively bred for only about 30 years, there isn’t much known about potential hereditary diseases.
Occasional health issues include liver and heart diseases, thyroid problems, patellar luxation, and cataracts. Factor VII deficiency, a congenital blood clotting disorder, is also seen in this breed from time to time.

What’s the Alaskan Klee Kai’s Lifespan?

The average lifespan is about 14 years.

History: A Companion Dog from Alaska

Linda S. Spurlin from America is recognised as the founder of the breed. In the early 1970s in Alaska, she began crossbreeding various dog breeds to create a small companion dog with the look of a Husky.
Involved in the breeding were the Alaskan Husky, Siberian Husky, American Eskimo Dog and the Belgian Schipperke. Unlike its Nordic relatives, the AKK is not a working dog, but a faithful companion for singles, couples and families.

In the USA, the breed is established and recognised by various organisations such as the United Kennel Club (UKC) and the American Rare Breed Association (ARBA). However, official recognition by the FCI, the Fédération Cynologique Internationale, is still pending.

puppy alaskan klee kai © Kablonk Micro /
To avoid behavioral problems, the Alaskan Klee Kai should receive plenty of exercise and be engaged in breed-appropriate activities.

Breeding and Acquisition: How Much Does an Alaskan Klee Kai Cost?

The Alaskan Klee Kai is still quite rare in Europe. Therefore, finding a reputable breeder working to the standards of American breeding associations can be challenging.

Those wishing to buy an AKK should keep an eye on breeder announcements and express interest early. Due to the low litter numbers, the cost for a healthy, purebred puppy can be quite high, usually between £1200 and £2500.

Conclusion on the Alaskan Klee Kai: A Tiny Bundle of Energy

With an Alaskan Klee Kai, it’s never dull. This cheeky, playful pooch is up for (almost) any fun. Despite its relatively petite size, it has a significant need for activity. Therefore, those seeking a more laid-back canine companion might consider a different dog breed.

Alaskan Klee Kai at a Glance

Highlights:Companion dog from Alaska that looks reminiscent of a Husky. The breed is not recognised by the FCI.
Character:spirited, watchful, intelligent, lively
Height at Withers:Toy: up to 33 cm, Miniature: 33 to 38 cm, Standard: 38 to 42 cm
Weight:Toy: up to 4.3 kg, Miniature: up to 7 kg, Standard: up to 10 kg
Fur:mostly short, with lavish undercoat
Colours:bicolour red-white, black-white or grey-white
Coat Care:easy to care for
Exercise:high exercise needs
Suitability for Beginners:rather yes
Barking:occasionally barks
Lifespan:approx. 14 years
Typical Illnesses:liver or heart diseases, thyroid issues, patellar luxation, cataracts
Price:approx. £1200-2500
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