Samoyeds are typically very good about grooming themselves, and upkeep as far as bathing, is minimal. Dirt typically falls from the outer layer of fur with little work, making the dog deceptively easy to keep very clean looking. Though puppy fur is more porous and will tend to take on the color of grass or mud if the dog spends a lot of time in outdoor environments.
Brushing and Clipping
Upkeep in terms of brushing is more extensive, as the dense coat, and particularly the silkier regions such as behind the ears, will tend to mat if not combed out weekly. Samoyeds may occasionally need the fur between the pads of their paws trimmed, but otherwise their coat does not need to be clipped.
Except for medical reasons or in the case of severe matting, it is not recommended to shave a Samoyed's fur. The coat acts as an insulator against both cold and moderate heat, and protects the dog's light colored skin from burning in the sun.
When a Samoyed "blows" their coat, the majority of the undercoat sheds and is renewed. The old coat can come out in large clumps, leading to bald spots in some extreme cases. One can comb it deeply, with a metal comb, which will speed up the shedding process and allow the Samoyed to regain its usual appearance more quickly. Frequent combing during a blow will be a great help in preventing matting.
Bathing a Samoyed is somewhat time consuming, as the coat is semi-weatherproof and will take some time to get completely wet, then completely rinsed. The Samoyed coat should be dried with cool, forced air as water can be trapped in the very thick undercoat, has difficulty evaporating, and may remain in the fur for some time, possibly leading to an infection. Drying the Samoyed coat will also reduce matting caused by dampness in the undercoat.
It is important to rinse well, as any shampoo or soap left in the coat after bathing can also lead to a fungal infection.
An interesting characteristic of the breed is that these dogs have virtually no smell or "doggy odor" about them, making them especially well-suited to living indoors. The lack of dander also makes them hypoallergenic. The dense coat can make summer temperatures uncomfortable for them in very warm climates, and they prefer to be indoors where the air is cooled. The coat also acts as a natural repellent to fleas and ticks.