East Siberian Laika

Other names: Vostotchno-Sibirskaia Laika

East Siberian Laika
East Siberian Laika

The largest of the wolfish Laika breeds of Russia is a lean and work-lady type, as are her cousins the Karelo-Finnish Laika, Russo-European Laika, and West Siberian Laika. Informally developed to hunt, to pull a sled, and even as a drover, she has enjoyed more purposed breeding by professionals over the past half-century after her numbers declined dramatically. She is said to have the closest connection, among her cousins, to her wolf heritage, and as such she can be a little hunty and independent and therefore unsuitable for some young families. However, were you to locate one of these rare beasts for adoption, you would likely find her a loyal and serious companion.


Key facts about the East Siberian Laika

  • Life expectancy : Between 12 and 14 years
  • Temperament : Affectionate, Intelligent, Hunter
  • Size : Medium
  • Type of coat : Short, Hard

FCI Group

FCI Group

Group 5 - Spitz and primitive types


Section 2 : Nordic Hunting Dogs

Physical characteristics of the East Siberian Laika

Adult size

Female dog Between 21 and 24 in
Male dog Between 22 and 25 in


Female dog Between 44 and 66 lb
Male dog Between 44 and 66 lb

Coat colour

White, or piebald (white with patches). May have specks of colour on legs.

Type of coat

Double: harsh, straight outer and soft, woolly inner. Medium length.

Eye colour

Dark brown.


Wolfish with a little less discipline to her look than the more cartoony West Siberian Laika, the Eastie is all the same easy on the eye: her proportionally large, serious head may give the impression of being slimmer than it is due to a wedgy outline that borders on the triangular. Her face is economical, with a short, blunt muzzle, tight lips, and slanting oval eyes. Her ears are erect and V-shaped. Her body is broad but tight, muscular, and poised for action, while the fluffy, sickle-shaped tail of this hunter of the former Soviet Union adds relief.



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The East Siberian Laika will usually be affectionate, kind, and trustworthy towards her family.


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This dog likes to be kept stimulated with play and challenges, but she can also keep herself entertained.


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She is constantly on the alert.


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This is one very intelligent hound, who can be used for many hunting or sledding missions.


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The East Siberian Laika is a natural hunter and however domestic she may appear, those instincts linger still.

Fearful / wary of strangers

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She may be wary of unfamiliar people and can be very protective of her family. 


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She is an independent-minded dog, since her ancestors needed to use their initiative in the field; this means she can be a bit stubborn today.

Behaviour of the East Siberian Laika

Tolerates solitude

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Loneliness is not a problem for her, as long as she is not constantly isolated from her social group.

Easy to train / obedience

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The East Siberian Laika is clever and eager to please, so training can be a joy – except when she rears that stubborn nature of hers.


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She has a pretty active voice.

Tendency to run away

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Her hunting instinct compels her to follow tracks, which may lead her astray of her familiar environment if it is not well secured.


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She can become destructive if poorly trained or left alone for long periods.

Greedy / Gluttony

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Treats are always very welcome as a reward for good deeds or positive reinforcement during training.

Guard dog

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She can make a keen watchdog as she is very alert and protective of her family and territory. However, caution should be taken because she can become aggressive in her defensive attitude.

First dog

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Due to her strength and potential for aggression, the East Siberian Laika can be a challenge for inexperienced masters, so it’s important to have an understanding of her expenditure needs.


East Siberian Laika in a flat

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An apartment will usually be too restrictive for this dog, who likes the freedom to roam outside.

Need for exercise / Sporty

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She is a very sporty dog ​​who constantly needs activities to feel good. She must be well-walked every day, and must practice intense physical activities as often as possible.

Travelling / easy to transport

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Despite her average height, her independent temperament and guarding instinct mean that she’s not a great traveller.


East Siberian Laika and cats

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She does very well around cats, however the cats don’t do so well because she likes to hunt them.

East Siberian Laika and dogs

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She is not brilliant with other dogs as she tends to be highly territorial. In particular, she will be defensive with other dogs of the same gender. Socialization from puppyhood can help her get along with some dogs.

East Siberian Laika and children

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She can be charming and playful with children, and will make sure that all members of her social group are well-protected.

East Siberian Laika and the elderly

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This dog will only be suitable for an older person with the energy to exercise her and the experience to train her safely.


We do not have enough data to set an average price. Looking after a dog of this size typically costs between £70 to £100 a month, including food, medical/insurance, and incidental expenses.


She should be brushed regularly.


She sheds continuously and especially as the seasons turn.

Nutrition of the East Siberian Laika

A traditional diet of quality meat, vegetables, and starchy foods, is preferable.

Health of the East Siberian Laika

Life expectancy

This is usually a hardy and healthy dog with few known genetic illnesses. The average life expectancy is between 12 to 14 years.

Strong / robust

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The East Siberian Laika is a hardy outdoors type.

Withstand heat

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She may suffer in the heat due to her thick coat, so water and a shady spot should be available.

Withstand cold

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This dog’s double coat is perfectly designed to weather cold climates.

Tendency to put on weight

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Not especially.

Common illnesses

Good to know

The East Siberian Laika is hard to get hold of outside of her native region.

Origins and history

The East Siberian Laika is an exotic mix of Siberian wolf with the Chinese and Japanese spitz-type dogs that passed through the region centuries ago. It wasn’t until 1947 that she was granted her own breed name aside from that of her Laika cousins. Her number dipped as this all-purpose dog lost out in popularity to more specifically-purposed dogs, but efforts were made to build her number, and today her numbers are now safe, if still quite low.


Bartok, Vlad, Marie, Sophie

Find out more dog name ideas here


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