30 June 2023

Let's talk about... Samoyeds: what are they?

  • Samoyeds are a spitz-type breed that originated from Siberia.
  • They were originally used by the Samoyed people for herding reindeer, pulling sleds, and keeping warm in the harsh Arctic climate.
  • They are known for their stunning white, fluffy coats, erect ears, and friendly smiles.
  • These dogs have a gentle and friendly nature, making them great family companions, but they can be challenging to train, so are better suited to more experienced dog owners.
  • Sammies are often referred to as "smiling dogs" because of their naturally upturned mouths, which give them a perpetually happy expression.
  • They grow to between 50-60cm in height, and weigh between 16-30kg.
  • The average lifespan of a Samoyed is 12-14 years.
Samoyeds  Exercise Needs: 4/5 Grooming Ease: 2/5 Trainability: 2/5

What is the temperament of Samoyeds like

  • Samoyeds have a wonderful temperament. They are known for being friendly, gentle, and affectionate dogs.
  • They form strong bonds with their families and enjoy spending time with them.
  • Samoyeds are usually good with children, if they have been well-socialised with them from a young age, as they can be patient and tolerant.
  • They have a playful and energetic nature, so they thrive in an active environment where they can participate in various activities.
  • Proper socialisation from a young age is important to ensure they are well-behaved and comfortable around strangers and other animals, as some Samoyeds can be a little shy.
Kumo, the Samoyed

How much exercise do Samoyeds need?

  • Samoyeds are a highly active breed and require a good amount of exercise to keep them happy and healthy.
  • They need at least 1 to 2 hours of exercise every day, which can include walks, playtime, and engaging activities.
  • Although there is no scientific basis to the 5 minutes of exercise per month of age “rule”, it can be a guide to make sure you don’t over-exercise your puppy. Sammy  pups could get 5 minutes of exercise per month of age once or twice a day, but reduce it if it feels too much for your pup.
  • As well as walks though fun, mental stimulating games can entertain and tire an active pup.
  • By the time they reach adulthood, around 1 to 2 years of age, they can handle the full exercise needs of an adult Samoyed.
  • And don’t forget mental stimulation, these smart pooches need to have their big brains tired out too or they can get distressed.
Mellow, the Samoyed

Do Samoyeds need a lot of grooming?

  • Yes, Samoyeds have a beautiful, thick double coat that requires regular grooming to keep it in top condition.
  • They have a dense, insulating undercoat and a longer, weather-resistant outer coat.
  • To prevent matting and keep their coat healthy, they should be brushed at least 2 to 3 times a week.
  • During shedding seasons, which occur twice a year, Samoyeds experience heavy shedding and will require more frequent brushing to remove loose hair.
  • Additionally, regular grooming sessions help maintain their coat's cleanliness and prevent the accumulation of dirt or debris.
  • Like any dog, regular tooth brushing with a dog-specific toothpaste twice daily is ideal. If you can’t manage that much, just do it as often as you can.
Sky, the Samoyed

Are Samoyeds easy to train?

  • Samoyeds are intelligent dogs that enjoy learning and pleasing their owners, but are not the easiest breed to train.
  • Although they are generally eager to please, they can also be independent and stubborn at times.
  • With consistent and positive training methods, Sammies can be trained effectively.
  • Early socialisation is crucial for Samoyeds to ensure they develop good manners and are comfortable in different situations, as they can be a little anxious.
  • Positive reinforcement techniques, such as treats, praise, and play, work well with this breed.
  • Keep training sessions fun, engaging, and varied to keep them interested and prevent boredom.
Zeppelin and Hendrix, the Samoyeds

What do Samoyeds eat?

  • Samoyeds thrive on a balanced and nutritious diet. Feed them high-quality dog food formulated for their specific life stage (puppy, adult, or senior).
  • Puppies should initially eat four times a day, then down to three, then to two at six months old.
  • For most Sammies you can make the change from puppy to adult food gradually at between 12 and 16 months old. Your pet food supplier and/or vet can advise on individual cases.
  • Remember to monitor their weight and adjust their diet accordingly to prevent obesity, as Samoyeds can be prone to weight gain if overfed.

Are Samoyeds healthy?

Samoyeds are generally healthy dogs, but like any breed, they can be prone to certain health conditions. It's important to be aware of these potential issues and provide regular veterinary care. Some common health concerns in Samoyeds include:

Bones and Joints

  • Hip dysplasia - a condition where the thigh bone and pelvis do not sit together properly at the hip joint


  • Cataracts - a common cause of blindness due to a clouding of the lens of the eye
  • Corneal Ulcers - open sores on the cornea of the eye
  • Progressive retinal atrophy (PRA): this is when the retina of the eye, breaks down, leading to blindness


  • Diabetes -  a condition where your dog can’t produce enough insulin to control their blood sugar levels
  • Hypothyroidism - a condition where your dog does not produce enough thyroid hormone

This list is by no means comprehensive, if you have any concerns about the health of your dog, or if you want to discuss further if a Samoyed is right for you, consult with your vet.

BorrowMyDoggy loves Samoyeds

BorrowMyDoggy has 766 Samoyed members.

Information on this page should never replace advice given by your veterinarian.  Potential health issues presented are given as a guide only and are not meant to be comprehensive.  If you ever have any concerns about your dog’s health contact your local vet.

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