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Samoyed - Appearance & Grooming

Source: PetWave, Updated on July 16, 2015


The Samoyed is a strong, alert, agile Arctic dog who carries himself with poise, dignity and grace. The broad head is wedge-shaped and forms an equilateral triangle on lines between the inner base of the ears and the central point of the stop. The muzzle is neither too wide nor too thin and tapers toward the nose. The lips are black and curve upward, giving the appearance of an ever-present smile. The nose should be black, but liver, brown or “Dudley” colored noses are not penalized in the show ring. The erect ears are triangular in shape and rounded at the tip. Built to withstand hard work in harsh weather, the body should be muscular and the chest should be deep. The feet are large and covered in thick hair to protect against the elements. The tail is long and curls over the back. The extra-thick double coat may be white, cream or biscuit in color.

Size and Weight

Mature male Samoyeds should ideally stand between 21 and 23.5 inches at the shoulder and females should be slightly smaller, standing 19 to 21. While there is no set weight standards, males generally weigh between 44 and 65 pounds, while females typically weigh between 35 and 55 pounds.

Coat and Color

The Samoyed wears an incredibly thick double coat that is made up of a soft, woolen undercoat and a coarse, long straight outer coat. The coat functions to insulate the dog in cold weather, acts as a sunscreen in warm weather, and is naturally dirt-resistant. The coat is so thick, in fact, that the Samoyed people used to make clothing from the hair. The males have a thicker, heavier ruff around the neck than females. Samoyeds come in colors of white, white and biscuit, cream, or biscuit. The coat has a distinct silvery sheen.

Grooming Needs

Grooming the thick coat of the Samoyed can be a very time consuming fact. Bathing is easy – with regular brushing, the naturally dirt-resistant coat will stay clean and because the Samoyed doesn't emit a dog odor, bathing is only required as needed. Bath time can take a while, however. Thoroughly wetting, shampooing, rinsing and drying a Samoyed can be an all day affair.

The heavily-shedding coat should be brushed at least twice per week when the dog is not shedding, daily when he is. Trimming is not necessary, except between the toes if the hair gets too unruly. Trimming a Samoyed is actually not recommended as it alters the texture of the coat, leaves the dog vulnerable to extreme temperatures, and in the summer, can lead to sunburns.

Check the dog's ears on a weekly basis for signs of infection, irritation, or wax build up. Cleanse regularly with a veterinarian-approved cleanser and cotton ball. Brush the teeth at least once per week to prevent tartar buildup and prevent gum disease. Additionally, nails should be trimmed once per month if the dog does not wear the toenails down naturally.

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