Siberian Husky Eye Colors Explained: Myth Or a Fact?

 Last Updated on April, 2024

Dog owners usually choose their dogs based on the coat color once they’ve figured out the breed.

It’s not the same with the Siberian Husky breed.

The typical prospective Husky owner wants to pick the dogs based on their coats and eye color.

Raised by the Chukchi people in Siberia in the early 1900s, the Siberian Husky is one of the most elegant dog breeds. Their unusual genetics allows them to develop vivid eye colors.

iPetGuides is devoted to educating our readers more than anywhere. So, you’re in the right place if you’re looking for secrets behind different colored eyes.

Be sure to read through to the end as we cover the most critical areas.

Let’s get started.

Quick Summary

The 5 Siberian Husky eye colors are blue, brown, parti-colored (combination of two colors in one eye), bi-colored (one blue and one brown eye) & green.

Blue eyes are the most common eye color in huskies.

The gene responsible for green eyes in huskies is unknown and green eyes do not indicate any health issues.

Typical Husky Eye Colors

1. Blue Eyes

Every breed has a dominant coat color but not eye colors. It’s different for huskies. The gene that causes blue eyes is relatively more dominant. 

That’s why about 40% of huskies worldwide have blue eyes. It’s not an exaggeration to say that, unlike other dog breeds, the Husky is the dog breed that shows this tendency.

On the flip side, most Husky puppies are born with blue yes. It’ll take about three weeks for the puppies to open their eyes and fully form the retina. But it doesn’t mean the eye color will retain as they age. 

Blue Eyes husky standing on the ground

It’s similar to how German Shepherds change their coat colors as they leave puppyhood.

The gene responsible for the blue eyes of huskies is the ALX4 gene. It was a discovery made by Embark Veterinary Inc. But it’s not the gene itself that causes deep blue eyes, but a mutation. (1)

Is this blue color the same across all huskies? No. You’ll find huskies with dark ocean-blue eyes and even icy pale bright blue eyes. 

Apart from that, the dark skin around permanent blue Huskies eyes is a standard feature. Deflecting snow glare, sun glare, and these dark circles of skin do even some other reflections.

Although Huskies with the blue eye are commonly found, and yet have a high market price.

2. Brown Eyes

If blue eyes bring a fierce coldness to huskies, brown eyes do the exact opposite — bringing warmness. 

If you didn’t know, there are nine standard Husky coat colors, and brown eyes are phenomenal on all coats of huskies.

Husky owners looking for that homely warmth usually pick the Siberian Husky with brown eyes.

A recessive gene causes brown eyes. So, you have a fair chance of getting an offspring puppy from blue eyes Husky parents.

Brown Eyes husky

Similar to huskies with bright blue eyes, huskies with brown eyes also have a wide range of saturation. You’ll see a range from light hazel to dark brown eyes.

Don’t be surprised to see brown-eyed huskies just as much as those with blue eyes. 40% of the Husky population is brown-eyed. 

On the flip side, there’s a common misconception of defining Huskies with deep brown eye as black-eyed. 

But Siberian Huskies don’t have black eyes except for exceptionally rare genetic mutations. What actually happens is that you can’t isolate the dark brown shade from the relatively bigger black pupil. 

Don’t believe that rumor of brown-eyed huskies not being purebred — there’s no truth to that.

3. Parti-colored Eyes

Parti-colored eyes are a signature eye type of Siberian huskies. You’re least like to find parti-colored dogs of other breeds.

So, what does parti-colored actually mean? Parti-colored means that one eye has two colors.

The color distribution is irregular, almost always. You’re likely to find a blue-amber-eyed Husky whose eyes have scattered light blue and light brown colors.

The perfectly half-and-half color distribution is scarce. Usually, a different colored spot is closer to the side of the eye.

Parti-colored Eyes Husky

Only 5% of the Huskies have parti-colored eyes. This rarity has created a high-value market segment. Out of this 5%, the majority share blue or brown eyes.

Sectoral heterochromia is the genetic mutation responsible. It affects only a part of the single eye’s iris.

There is no hard evidence to prove that parti-colored huskies aren’t purebred. 

It’s rarer to find huskies with two parti-colored eyes than those with one eye. If you do, make sure to run some checkups with your vet to ensure there are no health risks.

But Huskies with one parti-colored eye is absolutely healthy and widely sought. 

4. Bi-Colored

Bi-colored eyes aren’t the same as parti-colored. Each of these Huskies eyes has one color.

A typical bi-colored Husky dog’s eyes will always be blue and brown.

Some breeders and dog parents believe that bi-colors indicate forthcoming health issues. But there’s no evidence of this.

After all, huskies with Bi-eyed Huskies make up 15% of the Huskies.

There can’t be 15% of blue-eyed huskies that are inherently sick.

Bi-Colored eye Husky

As mentioned earlier, blue and brown are the most dominant eye colors for huskies. So, you’re likely to find huskies with brown and blue eyes.

Remember that brown and blue colors don’t have a fixed hue. But the chance of finding dark blue eyes in blue and brown Huskies is higher.

Bi-eyed Huskies are typically purebred. The heterochromia gene that causes the bi-colors doesn’t affect their eyesight. 

But despite what some online sources may claim, the American Kennel Club (AKC) doesn’t have strict registration rules for eye colors. The standard colors they refer to are the coat colors.

Below the coat colors, you’ll find acceptable markings below the coat colors, if there are any.

5. Green

While parti-colored eyes are the rarest, the second rarest position is taken by green eyes huskies. 

There’s no doubt that a genetic mutation causes green eyes. But there’s no solid evidence to pinpoint the source gene and the type of mutation.

Remember how we told you that huskies are typically born with blue eyes? Well, some believe that greenness is an intermediate level between the blue and brown colors. It’s almost as if the color transition stopped midway.

green eye Husky puppy playing with a ball

However, there’s no hard evidence to prove that green-eyed huskies carry health complications. It’s just that they’re generally rare with a market value.

But our advice for you is not to buy blue-eyed Husky puppies for the price of green-eyed Husky puppies. There’s more than enough chance for the color to turn blue or brown.

The trick is to wait for the color to show hints of green as they leave the eye-color-changing phase of their life.

Does Husky Eye Color Change With Age? When Does it Stop? 

husky puppy standing on the ground

Yes! It does.

The Siberian Husky is recognized to change their coat colors, similar to German shepherds. The same theory applies to Huskies’ eyes too.

Husky puppy’s eyes start to change color between 5-8 weeks old. But don’t be surprised if it begins on the 8th week.

The color-changing transition should typically stop between 12-16 weeks. But this is the average timeline. 

Some of the color changes are commonly known, as mentioned earlier. The color change typically occurs between blue shades and deep brown. Green is an intermediate color.

If a breeder is absolutely sure of the eye color a Husky puppy will have, you should probably double-check your professional record.

As far as the industry consensus goes, there’s no guarantee that the puppy’s eye color will not change as the Husky turns into an adult.

There are rare instances when change undergoes even for six months. It’s better to take your Husky to the vet if the eye color changes in adulthood. Although it’s not always the case, it could indicate an eyesight problem.

Nonetheless, the American Kennel Club accepts all Husky eye colors, including blue, brown, or mixed. This includes all possible color intensities too.

But why do Huskies have different eye colors in the first place? Let’s answer that next.

Reason for Different Husky Eye Colors

Siberian husky lying on the ground

The main reason is the presence of unique genes in bodies. 

Some of them are recessive, and some are dominant. If you didn’t know, the Husky parents must have specific genes in their eyes for some color.

The supporting reason for that is the melanin distribution of the eyes. This is not the same as the body’s melanin concentration (or pigment). Because sometimes, the pigmentation that affects the coat color has nothing to do with the eyes.

For example, parti-colored eyes are a result of the sectoral heterochromia gene. The Herechromia gene is responsible for bi-colored eyes. The green-colored eyes are hypothesized to be a result of halfway stopping the color change from blue to green.

As mentioned earlier, the bluish hue of a Husky dog’s eye color results from the ALX4 gene. Because the eye colors of Huskies change with time, you can expect darker brown shades as the Husky’s adulthood begins.

How to Determine the Husky Eye Color? 

huskies lying on the ground

There’s no 100% guaranteed way of knowing the color, but you can get almost there.

The first and foremost step is handpicking a reputable breeder. 

The only dog breed that reputable Husky breeders breed would be just Husky. Buying Husky puppies from a breeder that breeds Border Collies isn’t a good idea.

The longer the years, the higher the chances of determining the Husky’s eye color.

Even the most experienced breeders can get their predictions wrong. There’s a method to get around that too. But for that, you need to wait at least 8-10 weeks.

By this time, the color changing would have reached almost the end. Exceed 12-13 weeks, and the color shouldn’t be changing.

If the eyes remain blue, then that’s 95% permanent blue eyes.

But remember that there are some rare instances when the color changes even after six months, as mentioned earlier.

This brings up the question of connection. After all, puppies should bond with you better. One way is to request the potential breeder to send photographs of the eyes. Or you can visit the location and check it out yourself.

Avoid using flashlights when you check the eye colors of Huskies. A flashlight’s quality is only 70-80% as good as pure sunlight’s ability to reveal colors. So, take the Husky puppy outside and observe its eyes carefully. 

When you do, you’ll even be able to see the color quality perfectly. However, this doesn’t mean you should make the puppy look at the sun directly.

You can end up with a slightly different tint even if you follow all these strategies. But it’s much better than settling down for a color you get but not what you want.

Are Huskies more prone to eye diseases? That’s our next subtopic.

Typical Eye Diseases Huskies Face

Siberian husky standing on the ground

Siberian Husky is a breed known to have a relatively higher tendency to go blind. Some of these breeds include English Springer Spaniel, Poodles, and Collie Breeds. We are not saying the breed typically has eye problems, but it’s better to cautious.

Let’s look at some of the most common eye conditions Huskies face.

Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA)

This condition is commonly known as PRA amongst vets. (2

Progressive Retinal Atrophy is a recessive condition, so the risk is very high if the Husky parents suffer from the disease.

The disease affects the retina portion of the eye. Within 1-2 years, the Husky will go blind as the retina stops working. But what’s interesting is that only 1% of the Huskies are. So, the probability is considered low even if there is a risk.

Can you diagnose or avoid PRA? Yes, you can!

A dog owner can observe some of the early signs of the condition. You should be worried if they have dilated pupils, night blindness, or even more reflection of the tapetum.

But you might not be able to notice these since you have no experience.

That’s why it’s always better to see your vet relatively more frequently during puppyhood because that’s when the body is still developing and has the highest tendency.

Remember that the risk of PRA is relatively higher in male Huskies.

Corneal Dystrophy (CD)

It’s not an exaggeration to say that Corneal Dystrophy is somewhat similar to cataracts. Similar to Cataracts, the eye turns hazy or opaque with time.

The main reason is the collection of lipids in the cornea. (3)

The final stage of this eye disease is Corneal ulceration, which directly leads to blindness. 

How common is it? It’s a recessive condition, so you should be extra cautious of the Husky parents, who are known to have battled the disorder throughout their lifetime.

Corneal Dystrophy (CD)

Unlike PRA, Corneal Dystrophy mainly affects adult female dogs. 

The stromal CD doesn’t require treatment as it seldom affects vision. But antibiotics are essential for ulcers. On the flip side, You can treat endothelial CD by using contact lenses.

But what’s possible is controlling, as there isn’t a cure for the condition.

Hereditary or Juvenile Cataracts

The result of Hereditary Or Juvenile Cataracts has increased opacity in the retina. What happens when the retina’s opacity increases?

As simple optics explains, the retina helps the focus light rays from an object that hits the eye’s lens to create an image. When the opacity increase, your Husky with Hereditary Or Juvenile Cataracts won’t be able to see clear images.

What’s upsetting is how the condition starts to show when the Huskies are as young as three months old. 

A recessive gene causes this condition, and that’s why you need to look out for the Husky parents.

Blindness is the ultimate stop of this disease. Early diagnosis will help you to control the condition with mild medication and eye drops. If that doesn’t work, the cure is surgical. (4)

Your Complete Guide to Husky Eye Care

Siberian husky lying on the floor

Huskies have a decent vision for dogs — in fact, they have about 20-40% of vision clarity as humans. But lack of eye care pushes Huskies to end up with tragic conditions.

So, what should the ideal Husky parent do?

The first and foremost step is to choose the right puppy. Consider it a preliminary stage where you evaluate the puppy’s pedigree and steer clear of puppies with questionable family histories.

Now you have a presumably healthy Husky puppy. Do you? Not yet. 

Remember that not all vets are experts in eye conditions. So, it’s better to choose a veterinary ophthalmologist.

Take your puppy to the ophthalmologist several times before the 12-13 week mark milestone. If you remember, that’s when the eye color transition entirely stops. Thanks to regular checkups, your ophthalmologist would know how to detect any forthcoming issues.

With time, regular eye checkups should decrease unless the ophthalmologist diagnoses cataracts. But it’s worth it, as you can cure cataracts in Huskies with mild medication and eye drops, as mentioned earlier.

Huskies aren’t dangerous, but you should expect them to be a little uneasy during eye checkups. So, remember to ensure the dog is on physical restraints.

You must also maintain a good connection with them throughout the session so they feel reassured of safety.

The next big question is very popular in the dog community. How does it apply to huskies? Let’s check it out.

Blue-Eyed Husky Risk — Myth or Fact?

blue eye Siberian husky

German shepherds with blue eyes are defined to be ridiculed with diseases risks. But is it really that simple to say that blue eyes in Huskies are not a risk at all? Not so much.

Let us tell you why.

Huskies are born with blue eyes usually — after all, 40% of the Huskies are blue-eyed. So, as we mentioned earlier, blue eyes are NOT a signal for diseases in Huskies, almost always.

So, as far as the myth goes, there is no truth. But let’s take a look at the exceptions.

The first exception is when they have pale icy blue eyes. As mentioned earlier, the eye color’s saturation depends on pigmentation level (while they exist because of the ALX4 gene). 

But the lighter the color gets, the more sensitive the eye receives.

The more sensitive the eye gets… You guessed it right, the higher the risk of diseases.

Of course, you can let the recessive complications slide. But there are so many other bacterial and other types of eye issues. So, huskies with extra pale blue eyes bring a relatively higher risk.

The second exception is none other than albino huskies. White Huskies and albino huskies are different. White huskies typically have black points, such as nose and paw pads, unlike albino Huskies. 

Albino huskies in most dog breeds have blue eyes due to the lack of pigmentation. Although lack of pigmentation might not be the reason for an Albino Husky’s eyes, all Albino Huskies will have blue eyes almost always.

So, although the core issue is the Albinism of the dog, they have blue eyes — and there is a risk.

Apart from these two complications, blue eyes in Huskies are completely fine.

Eye Supplements for Husky

Carrots
Blueberry
Brocolli

Supplements help you maintain and improve your Husky’s eye health. The first type is a list of food. They are,

  • Carrots 
  • Cold water fish 
  • Blueberry
  • Garlic
  • Brocolli
  • Eggs
  • Tomatoes

These food types are proven to improve dog eye health immensely for any dog breed.

The next type is specially formulated vitamins and supplements to improve Husky’s eye health. The best recommendable product is the Ocu-Glo Dog vision supplement. The product contains 12 antioxidants that have been proven to promote eye health.

Related articles:

In Conclusion 

Huskies look majestic from afar, and their beauty skyrockets as you look into their eyes. So, choosing a Husky based on their eye color is a great idea. But making decisions in that arena isn’t easy unless you know what you’re doing.

Now that you’ve read this passage carefully, you know everything that makes a difference.

So, be sure to return to iPetGuides in case you forget anything. After all, we want nothing but the best for our Husky lovers.

FAQs

The rarest eye color for a Husky is the parti-colored eye, which is as rare as green eyes.

The dominant and most common eye color for Huskies is blue.

Huskies can have 2 different colored eyes due to the heterochromia gene mutation.

Yes, Huskies can have red eyes, however, it is usually an indication of a health risk.

Huskies have blue eyes due to the ALX4 gene, which is a dominant gene.

Was this article helpful?

User Avatar
Author
Laura Vinzy
Laura Vinzy is one of our contributors. She is also a certified professional dog trainer & currently lives in San Francisco with her husband and her two rescue dogs.

Leave a Comment