I recently walked in the woods with my neighbor and her Siberian Husky. While other owners let their dogs run free in the woods, she keeps hers tight and close on a strong leash.
"I wish I could let him run free," she says sadly.
"Why can't you?" I ask, watching other dogs bounding off into the distant cluster of pine trees.
"Because Siberian Huskies have a strong urge to run but no homing instinct."
If she let him off the leash, he'd run and run with no regard for traffic or danger. And he'd never return home.
Unlike other breeds, the Siberian Husky wants to run away and lacks that inborn, mysterious, and often astounding ability to return home. Other dogs can find their way back to you even if you drop them off hundreds of miles from home. Tales are told of Collie dogs, for example, who, when adopted into new families, have to be kept inside because their homing instinct is so strong they will return to wherever their previous home is even if it's in a different state.
Collies have an urge to run, but they always know how to find their way home.
Let me be more Collie than Husky! The urge to run--to follow the whims of an adventurous life-- makes me dash off to fulfill that career possibility or that dream. I'm a Siberian Husky racing off into the wild.
Praise God for the leash!
I wonder if when I feel most restrained by my circumstances that it's really the firm hand of God not letting me loose. He knows I'd run straight into danger with no ability to find my way back. That tether on my life that I think keeps me down is actually the lifeline that keeps me safe, loved, and home.
(Photo of Siberian Huskies by Randi Hausken Photos)