The Alaskan Klee Kai was developed by Linda S. Spurlin of Wasilla, Alaska, and her family to be a companion-sized version of the Alaskan Husky. From the early 70's through 1988, the Spurlins carefully selected dogs who met their high standards for appearance and soundness. In 1988, they made the Alaskan Klee Kai available to others. Mrs. Spurlin and subsequent breeders of the Alaskan Klee Kai were and are determined to avoid health and temperament problems in their developing breed, even though it has meant very slow growth in the numbers of Alaskan Klee Kai. The Alaskan Klee Kai is still extremely rare. The breed's name was originally "Klee Kai of Alaska" but in 1995, it was changed to "Alaskan Klee Kai." Mrs. Spurlin created the breed name "Klee Kai". The Alaskan Klee Kai was recognized by the United Kennel Club January 1, 1997.
The Alaskan Klee Kai is a small version of the Alaskan Husky with a wedge-shaped head featuring a striking masked face, prick ears, and a double coat. The length of body is just slightly longer than the height. The tail is well-furred and curls over the back or to either side when the dog is alert or moving. The appearance of the Alaskan Klee Kai reflects the breed's Northern Heritage.
The most distinctive characteristic of the Alaskan Klee Kai is the facial mask which must be clearly visible due to contrasting colors. The full face mask is the most desirable. The Alaskan Klee Kai is very curious, active, quick and agile. His loyalty and alertness make the Alaskan Klee Kai an excellent watchdog despite his small size. While affectionate with family members, the Alaskan Klee Kai is reserved with strangers and in unfamiliar situations.
The head is clean, free of wrinkles, proportionate to the size of the body, with a moderate stop. When viewed from the top or side, the skull and muzzle taper toward the nose to form a broad-based wedge shape. Faults: Narrow head; insufficient stop; stop too steep. Skull-The skull is slightly rounded and somewhat broad; tapering gradually from the widest point to the eyes. Faults: Skull too flat or too domed. Muzzle-The length of the muzzle from stop to nose is equal to or slightly shorter than the length of the skull from occiput to stop. When viewed from the side or from above, the muzzle tapers slightly from where it joins the skull to the nose. The muzzle is well filled in under the eyes. The lower jaw is strong but not protruding. Lips are tightly closed and black, except that liver-colored lips are acceptable in dogs whose coat colors are shades of red with white. Faults: loosely
hanging lips: a shallow or receding lower jaw; a pinched or snipey muzzle: a too short or too long
muzzle. Teeth-The Alaskan Klee Kai has a complete set of evenly spaced, white teeth meeting in a scissors bite. Faults: Level bite. Disqualifications: Over or undershot bite: wry mouth. Nose-A solid black nose is preferred, although the pink-streaked "snow nose" is acceptable. A liver-colored nose is acceptable in dogs whose coat colors are shades of red with white. In profile, the nose is on the
same line as the top of the muzzle and extends just slightly beyond the lower jaw. Eyes-The eyes are of medium size and may be any color or combination of colors. Almond-shaped eyes are the most
desirable, followed in order of preference by oval and round. The eyes are set obliquely. Eye rims are black except that liver eye rims are acceptable in dogs whose coat colors are shades of red with white. Faults: Bulging eyes; eyes set too wide or too close together. Ears-The ears are prick, strongly erect and pointed upward, well-furred, triangular in shape, and slightly large in proportion to the size of the head. The leather is thick from base to tip. The ears are set so that the inner edge of each ear is above the inner half of the eye below it. Ear tips are slightly rounded. The ears are extremely mobile and react sensitively to sounds. Faults: Ears set too low. Disqualification: Hanging or drop ears.
The neck is medium in length, arched and carried proudly erect when the dog is standing. When moving at a trot, the neck is extended so that the head is carried slightly forward. Faults: Neck too short and thick, neck too long.
The shoulders are moderately laid back. The scapula and the upper arm form an angle of about 110 degrees. The shoulder blade and the upper arm are roughly equal in length. Viewed from the front, the forelegs are straight, parallel, and spaced moderately apart, with moderate to fine bone in proportion to the size of the dog. Pasterns are flexible and strong, moderately short, and slightly sloping. Elbows are neither close to the body nor out but are set on a plane parallel to the body. Front dewclaws may be removed. Faults: Straight shoulders, Weak pasterns, Short upper arm.