Alaskan Klee Kai

Do Alaskan Klee Kai Shed?

February 19, 2023

I have to admit, of all the questions that I get asked about Alaskan Klee Kai, this one baffles me the most.  Do Alaskan Klee Kai shed?  My (sort of) joke answer is that Alaskan Klee Kai “only” have two shedding seasons per year.  The first is from January until June.  The second is from July until December.  At the risk of this being a very short article…YES, Alaskan Klee Kai shed, A LOT!

Alaskan Klee Kai shed

Alaskan Klee Kai Breed History

The Alaskan Klee Kai is a relatively new breed of dog.  The breed originated in the 1970s.  The Alaskan Klee Kai is such a new breed, in fact, that it is not yet recognized by the American Kennel Club.  In 2020 it was accepted into the AKC’s Foundation Stock Service, and the breed was recognized by the United Kennel Club in 1997.

Because it’s such a new breed, unlike some ancient breeds of dogs, we know how the Alaskan Klee Kai was originally created.  Their founder, Linda Spurlin, created the original Klee Kai by mixing Alaskan and Siberian huskies with smaller schipperkes and American Eskimo dogs.  In case you don’t know much about Alaskan huskies, Siberian huskies, schipperkes, and American Eskimo dogs, they are one in all double-coated dogs that shed quite a bit.

Thus, Alaskan Klee Kai Shed Too!

Alaskan Klee Kai shedAs their breed history suggests.  Linda Spurlin set out to create little huskies, and, for better or for worse, the little guys shed just as much as their much larger cousins!  Like other breeds with dense undercoats, Alaskan Klee Kai will blow their coats usually twice per year.  “Blowing their coat” is what we northern dog owners call it when our double-coated dogs basically explode fluff all over the place.  Normally in the spring and autumn, Alaskan Klee Kai will shed out a majority of their insulating undercoat to make way for new fur growth.

You can think of a double-coated dog blowing his or her coat as the dog changing coats to suit the new season!  In the spring, Alaskan Klee Kai will shed their thick winter coats in preparation for the upcoming hotter weather.  In the autumn, they will shed their thinner summer undercoat so they can replace it with a new, thick winter coat again.

But Alaskan Klee Kai Shed All Year Long!

Some people learn about Alaskan Klee Kai blowing their coats and figure that they can deal with shedding if it only happens twice a year.  Don’t fall for the trap!  If you share your life with an Alaskan Klee Kai you will be eating, drinking, and wearing Alaskan Klee Kai glitter (aka fur) all year round.  Although their regular, daily shedding won’t be anywhere near as excessive as their twice a year “big” sheds, it’s not even close to being an insignificant amount of fur.

My first dog, Kitsune, is a papillon.  Despite his hair being a lot longer than my Alaskan Klee Kai, Fenrir’s, Kitsune is single coated.  The amount of hair Kitsune sheds verses Fenrir is like night and day.  Kit barely sheds at all.  Fenrir will leave little Fen tumbleweeds all over our house if I don’t vacuum often enough.

Do NOT Get an Alaskan Klee Kai if You Can’t Deal with Shedding

If cleaning dog hair off your floors, furniture, etc. doesn’t sound fun to you, don’t get an Alaskan Klee Kai.  If the thought of going out with dog hair on your clothes, or finding fur in your food every now and then, is unappealing to you than this is not the breed for you.

If you’re trying to decide whether or not you want an Alaskan Klee Kai think about whether or not you’d want a full sized husky.  If the thought dealing with a shedding husky is off-putting to you, then do not get an Alaskan Klee Kai.

How to Deal with All the Alaskan Klee Kai Glitter

Brush brush brush your dog, brush them everydaaay (to the tune of ‘row row row your boat’!)

If your already owned by an Alaskan Klee Kai, or you’re seriously considering getting one, be prepared to invest in cleaning products.  A really good vacuum is an essential product.  A good broom and mop, and dog brushes are really important too.  If you really want to get serious, a forced air drier can be especially useful when your dog is blowing his or her coat.

In my experience, the best way to deal with all the AKK fur is to stay on top of it as much as possible.  I bathe my Alaskan Klee Kai twice a month and use shed control shampoo and conditioner.  Quite a bit of fur comes off of my AKK in the tub, so make sure you use a drain filter to prevent all that hair from clogging up your drains!  After his bath, Fen gets brushed and dried.  Even more fur will come off when you’re drying your dog.

Especially when they are blowing their coats, you’ll want to brush your Alaskan Klee Kai as often as possible.  The more hair you can get off of them, the less of it there will be to get all over your house!  If you get your AKK as a puppy, start getting them used to being brushed as soon as possible.  I was stupid and didn’t brush Fenrir as much as I should have when he was a puppy.  It took awhile, once he was an adult, to get him used to being brushed.

The theory of “more often is better” applies to cleaning your house too.  Sweeping and vacuuming aren’t fun, but the more you clean the less Klee Kai fur you’ll have to contend with at any one time.  Because believe me, you WILL have AKK fur tumbleweeds all over your house if you don’t clean often enough.  I also clean things like bedding relatively often.  Again, be cognizant of things like your drier and drain filters.  Keep them clean for the sake of your appliances!

Are They Worth all the Trouble!?

Cute Alaskan Klee KaiAlaskan Klee Kai are a very unique breed of dog.  They are high maintenance, needy little dogs that, in some ways, are more cat like than dog.  If I didn’t know any better, I could be convinced that the breed was created by mixing the world’s most mischievous cat with a high energy, hyper alert, clingy dog.  An…interesting…combination to be sure.  This is 100% not a breed for everyone, and that’s even before you take into account how much they shed.

If you don’t like the idea of owning a dog that sheds a lot, then this is defiantly not the breed for you.  The shedding can be managed if you’re willing to put in the work, but it’s a daily grind.  I love my Alaskan Klee Kai, Fenrir, and wouldn’t trade him for anything.  But I have to admit that I did underestimate just how much he would shed before I got him.  However, for me, having Fen in my life is 100% worth dealing with all the fur!

Comment below!  Do your pets shed a lot?  Do you have any tips for ways you keep your house nice and clean with pets?

Alaskan Klee Kai shed

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