The Samoyed is a beautiful dog hailing from one of the coldest places on earth, Siberia. They are great workers and family oriented. While these dogs don’t do well in warm climates, you will have an excellent companion for long days sledding or snowshoeing through wintery places. Expect a gentle and friendly companion in this breed. Read on to learn more about the Samoyed.

Description of the Samoyed

The Samoyed is famous for his “Sammy smile,” which serves a dual function of being both cute and preventing icicles from forming around his mouth in freezing weather. This gives a slight indication into the typical weather this breed is used to working in.

These dogs originally traveled with the Samoyed people of Asia, who migrated to Siberia a thousand years ago. Their working blood gives them plenty of strength for hauling, herding, and hunting, but their close bond with people makes them excellent family pets and attentive companions.

The Samoyed is a beautiful breed, whose thick white fur covers a lean and compact body. These dogs move gracefully and quickly over all types of terrain. Their darling faces are complete with button noses, pointed ears, and bright, keen eyes. The Samoyed is truly a happy and lovely breed.

Life Expectancy and Size

The average Samoyed lives a life of 12 – 14 years. They are generally hardy dogs but certain health conditions may shorten their lives. Working with a reputable breeder can help prevent some conditions.

Small enough to travel with easily but still big enough to be an excellent working dog and hunter, the Samoyed is an ideal size for pretty much any purpose. The males stand 21 – 23.5 inches tall and weigh 45 – 65 pounds; and the females stand 19 – 21 inches tall and weigh 35 – 50 pounds.

Protective Ability

The Samoyed evolved to be an excellent protector and watchdog. They started off as hunters of Reindeer, but slowly their role turned to being a herding dog, and with that they developed acute vigilance and protective instincts. But these dogs are often quite friendly to strangers and will make better welcoming dogs than they will guard dogs.


Thanks to their tight bond with their family, the Samoyed is eager to learn and loves working with you. They can be independent but with firm, patient, and kind training will be excellent companions.

Positive rewards-based training is a great method for this breed. Their love of family means they respond well to things like treats and games.

Keeping training sessions fun and interesting is also a great way to make the best use of your time. This will keep your Samoyed motivated and engaged.

Energy Level

Like many dogs, the Samoyed does well with moderate exercise. They were bred to trek long miles through the snow and have plenty of endurance, but are just as happy playing games in the backyard with their families and relaxing on the couch. They make well-balanced pets for both active and less active people alike.

What Living with a Samoyed is Like

These dogs are great with children and other pets they are raised with. Their general friendly nature and outgoing personalities make them perfect companions for those who want a happy and loving dog. The Samoyed can be quite active but only require moderate exercise to stay fit.

Sedentary families can also find a great pet in the Samoyed. They are an adaptable breed and are happy so long as they get to spend time with their humans.

Care of the Samoyed

The Samoyed does well in many homes and with many people. Their biggest requirement is lots of interactions with their families.

Environmental Needs

Bred to work and survive in the harsh winter conditions of Siberia, the Samoyed is a cold weather breed that thrives in snowy, freezing climates. They do not adapt well to hot climates so consider keeping them inside and air conditioned if you live somewhere warm.

Exercise Needs

Used to walking many miles and working long days as hunters and herders, the Samoyed can exercise for long periods of time, but they don’t necessarily need to. A few long walks a day, backyard playtime, and games are all great ways to get some moderate exercise in for your pup.

If you love to ski, snowshoe, or partake in another wintery sport, the Samoyed is a great companion and will love spending all day outside with you. Just bear in mind that summer sports may cause your dog to overheat.

Shedding and Grooming

If you think the thick white coat of the Samoyed takes a bit of maintenance you would be right. Daily brushing is a must to keep his long outer coat and soft undercoat clean and mat free. These dogs do go through a big shed once or twice a year so be prepared for extra brushing at that time of year.

This breed sheds frequently.

Regular nail trimming and ear cleaning are an important part of any dog’s hygiene regimen.

Ideal Home Environment

These dogs do best in a home where they receive plenty of family time and affection. Their history as close members of a pack, of humans that is, means they love to be included and will become miserable and destructive if left alone.

Active and sedentary people can find a great pet in the Samoyed. They love to exercise and are up for most anything, but are also happy lounging around with their families at home.

Cooler climates are ideal for this breed, though they can be okay in warmer places if kept in cool areas like an air-conditioned house.

The Samoyed can have health problems that may be costly or time consuming to deal with, so be prepared before adopting.

Health Concerns

Though generally healthy, the Samoyed is especially susceptible to certain genetic issues. These include eye problems, hip dysplasia, and cardiac disorders. Working with a reputable breeder is a good way to start your puppy off on the right foot. Regular check-ups are also important to help catch, treat, or prevent health issues that may arise.

Behavior Problems

Separation anxiety can be a problem for the Samoyed. Their close bond with their family means they often never want to be alone. Plenty of socialization early and teaching them how to be comfortable alone will help prevent your dog from becoming destructive.

But be sure that your Samoyed is never left alone for too long. These dogs need attention, and while a few hours are all right, all day is often too long to go without seeing their humans for this breed.