The Samoyed is a large breed of dog belonging to the spitz group of dogs. It was developed by the Samoyedic people of Siberia, Russia, from which it also gets its name from. Their purpose was to be a herding dog but it also served well as an overall working dog.
The dog worked well when herding reindeer and was also helpful pulling sleds over this cold and snowy terrain. They are very much recognizable for its double layers of fluffy, white fur. Another name for the Samoyed is Bjelkier, which is a term mostly used in Europe.
History & Origins
The Samoyed draws its origin from the Siberia. They were mainly used by the Samoyed people who used them for various things. It was a perfect working dog and they managed to use it for herding, pulling sleds, hunting and many more things. The Samoyed is actually described as a basal breed and this breed predates the modern version which was established in the 19th century.
It has been determined that the Samoyed is a dog that belongs to the spitz or northern dog group. This is a Eurasian dog type which has a variety of use, mainly already exploited by the people from the area. Once they noticed how good and powerful these dogs are in certain situations they immediately started using them. It is believed that the Samoyed is a descendent from the Nenets herding laika. This dog was not only white, but it came in a variety of different colors.
Samoyed Characteristics & Temperament
A Samoyed maintains a happy disposition. Just by looking at it you can see that this is a dog which prefers to be happy, energetic and diligent. This makes the worse guard dogs, but they can be trained to be watch dogs. They will bark at anything that disturbs their area and protect the estate. When it comes to trainability, they are very intelligent dogs so they can easily be trained to be obedient. They excel at dog sports, due to their sled pulling and herding backgrounds. Their strength and diligence helps them profusely to do so.
If the dog is not trained well it might get a tendency to pull its owner while being walked and instinctively herd people. When board they might start digging holes. But training them well will prevent all the negative tendencies they might develop. They are still good with kids and enjoy spending their time with their owners. A Samoyed is a great family dog and is what they are usually kept for in modern times.
Appearance, Colors, Size
There is a difference of the established size for Samoyed dogs depending on the Kennel Club. Actually, the AKC accepts dogs which are 21–23.5 inches for males and 19–21 inches for female. On the other hand, the UK Kennel Club accepts them at 51–56 centimeters for males and 46–51 centimeters for females.
A Samoyed has black, almond sharped eyes. Although other colors are possible, like blue, they are not accepted by any Kennel Club. The Samoyed keeps its ears erect and they are covered with thick fur and they also have triangular shapes. The tail is also one of their distinguishing marks and they carry it over their backs.
They are also defined by their thick and dense coats. The top coat consists of coarse and straight guard hair. The top coat actually protects the second one and keeps it clear and free of any debris. The undercoat actually has short and soft fur which is the part that keeps the dog warm. The coat color is predominantly white or biscuit and other coat colors are not accepted by any means.
A Samoyed is a pretty healthy dog and they do live a pretty normal lifespan. The average life expectancy for a single dog is between 12 and 14 years. The biggest problem with these dogs is that they develop certain hereditary issues. They have a tendency to create something which is called Samoyed hereditary glomerulopathy. This can develop more in females but actually all dogs are affected by it. But there are other far more serious conditions that you have to care about.
In most cases reacting on time will save your dog, so you have to know about these conditions. The included ones are Diabetes mellitus, Progressive retinal atrophy, Pulmonary stenosis, Hip dysplasia and sebaceous adenitis. You should consult your vet when getting this type of dog so you know which precautions to take.
Samoyed Grooming & Shedding
A Samoyed sheds all year long but has two mayor shedding periods. Their long hair is actually a nightmare to keep and sustain. But what is more important is the maintenance. When they shed, you could give them daily brushing in order to remove the dead hear. But during the heavy shedding periods, their hair comes out in cloves. During this period the hair actually blows and you can remove it by hand. But it is also much better to remove it using special brushes.
They are supposed to have hypoallergenic fur, but that is only true in some of the cases. But it is true that they create less allergies. What is also important to know is that you have to maintain their fur more than other dogs. They require a lot of brushing and occasional baths are also important. Clipping their nails and brushing their teeth is another necessary factor when grooming these dogs.
Price and Breeders
Samoyed dogs are now very much sought for. Although their original purpose is not much of use to modern people, they still like keeping them as pets. But their price does not go down because of this. So if you want to own a Samoyed, the price ranges from a starting 600 dollars and goes all the way to 1,300 dollars for a puppy Samoyed. But believe us, they are well worth the price, particularly when they are coming from a quality stock.
Sometimes the price of a Samoyed can be too much for a person. Luckily, there are other, cheaper ways for people to get a dog that they desire. A Samoyed could be adopted and various organizations allow you to do so. Rescue groups, like National Samoyed Rescue, have taken it upon themselves to help these dogs and at the same time help people who want to have these dogs.