Home Breeds Samoyed


Robust but graceful, originally developed to hunt, haul sleds, and herd reindeer, the Samoyed is a precious companion for northwest Siberia’s Samoyede people. As working dogs, Samoyed dogs can sometimes be strong-willed, but most importantly, they are still friendly, gentle, and loyal.  Nicknamed the “Smiling Sammie,” Samoyed dogs are friendly and affectionate, and love their family. 

Other Names Bjelkier, SamoiedsKaia Sabaka, Samoyedskaya
Color Biscuit, Cream, White, White & Biscuit
Height Males: 21-23.5 inches. Females: 19-21 inches.
Weight Males: 45-65 pounds. Females: 35-50 pounds.
Life Span 12-14 years
Personality Adaptable, Friendly, Gentle
Exercise Energetic
Popularity #58
Groom Needs 2-3 Times a Week
Kids Friendly Yes
Dog Friendly Yes with supervision
Watch Dog
Family Dog
Litter Size 4-6

Samoyed Pictures

Samoyed Video


The Samoyed is a large-sized dog with a double coat of thick fur. It appears in a white coat that is resistant to cold, perhaps an adaptation to the Arctic conditions of their origin. Also called Sammies or Smileys, Samoyeds make good-natured companions to the family and have a way with the corners of their mouth that creates the semblance of a smile (but this expression rather serves in preventing icicles from falling on their face). They were bred as herd dogs, hunting dogs, and sled dogs, hence they are classified as working dogs by the American Kennel Club.

A standard male of this breed weighs between 45 and 65 pounds and is likely to stand at a height of 21-24 inches from paw to shoulder. The females run smaller than the males and would normally weigh around 35-55 pounds and stand at a shoulder height of roughly 20 inches. The Samoyed is gentle and amiable, and have an average lifespan of 11-14 years.

Living with Samoyed

The Samoyed has an abundant double coat, with a soft, thick, wooly undercoat and a longer outer coat of harsh hair. They shed quite a bit all the time, and more heavily during the shedding seasons in the spring and fall. Daily brushing is necessary to keep loose fur under control when they seasonally shed their coat, and frequent brushing would prevent mats, dirt, and manage fur around the house during the rest of the year. Bathe the Sammie about every three months.

Check and clean your dog’s ears with a gentle, dog-friendly cleanser to prevent dirt buildup that may cause infections. Brush their teeth several times a week to remove tartar buildup and the bacteria that lurk inside it, and the daily brush is better to keep fresh breathe and prevent gum disease. Trim the nails once or twice a month to prevent painful tears and other problems.

Samoyeds require several hours of physical activity each day as they are working dogs, and changing up the activity is ideal for keeping them mentally stimulated. They need room to romp and play, and a moderate walk or jog, or a good run in an enclosed area every day. 

Don’t allow them to exercise vigorously in a hot climate, it is better to do exercise in the early morning or evening. And during the heat of the day, keep your dog inside with fans or air-conditioned room.

Samoyeds like to stay outside in cold weather, they would entertain themselves for hours in the snow, especially if they have children to play with.

Generally, it is recommended to feed a Samoyed with two to three cups of high-quality dry dog food every day, divided into two meals. More importantly, the food amount should depend on the dog’s weight, size, age, and activity level. There should be fresh and clean water at all times. 

Some dogs are easy to get overweight, so you need to watch their calorie consumption and weight level all the time. Treats may be an important aid in training, but excessive intake can lead to obesity. Also, owners need to distinguish which human food is safe for dogs and which are not. If you have any problems with your dog’s weight or diet, just consult from your veterinarian.

Samoyeds are prone to the following health conditions: canine hip dysplasia, cataracts, diabetes, Samoyed hereditary glomerulopathy, hypothyroidism, gastric torsion…

Major concerns: CHD

Minor concerns: cataract, gastric torsion, hypothyroidism

Occasionally seen: diabetes, PRA, PDA, RD/OSD

Suggested tests:

Hip Evaluation

Cardiac Exam


PRA Optigen DNA Test

Ophthalmologist Evaluation

Total Annual Cost: $3150

Cost is estimated for the first year and may vary depending on many factors, such as dog food, health care, leash, collar, licensing, possible fencing, crates, training and obedience classes, dog-walking, grooming, treats, toys, flea, tick, and heart-worm meds, microchips, etc.

Samoyeds are intelligent, eager-to-please dogs who can learn basic obedience commands with ease, and they require love and attention. Samoyeds need a firm but loving hand in training. It is better to keep lessons short and offer plenty of positive reinforcement and praise because they are easy to get bored when training.

Besides, agility training and dog sports training are essential to keep your dog happy and engaged. They enjoy learning new things and advanced training can keep them busy and burn off their excessive energy.


The Samoyede people of Siberia are believed to have pioneered the breeding of the Samoyed dog breed, long before the turn of the 19th century. The Samoyede tribe was famous for herding reindeers and it was only natural for them to keep dogs that would oversee this difficult job, as the landscape and climatic conditions of the region were harsh and unforgiving. A dog for such a job had to be of remarkable strength and intelligence, relentless and hardy.

The Samoyeds are believed to be descendants of the Nenets herding laika dogs, hence they belong to the Spitz group or northern dog group. The Samoyeds come in white coats, unlike their ancestors which have a variety of coat colors. The Samoyeds were active herd dogs, herding reindeers up and down the polar regions. They had added responsibilities as hunting dogs, watchdogs, sled dogs, and companion dogs to the family.

Some historians claim that families that owned Samoyeds in the past shared their bedrooms with their dogs, especially the friendly ones. Aggressive dogs were left out to brave the harsh weather of Siberia. Other reports have acknowledged the feats collared by this special breed of dogs, especially as regard expeditions by explorers in the North and South Poles. Many of these explorers take back these dogs to their home towns after the expedition. This is how the Samoyed dogs came to be in places like England and Norway. Hence, several modern-day Samoyeds have origins in these countries.

Helpful Information


Breed Club Link:

Breed Club Rescue: 

Breed Club Rescue Link: