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Samoyeds are energetic, inquisitive, quick-witted, mischievous, and some tend to defy authority. They remain ever-playful, from infancy through old age, and always have a twinkle in their eye.

Samoyeds are "pack" animals -loyal, and willing to serve their owners (leaders). Adolescents will sometimes test their masters to determine their role in the family "pack." Both sexes range in temperment from docile to dominent and testing their relationship to the "pack" and its leaders can range from refusal to come when called to trying to unnerve a timid owner in a test of leadership. Matching a puppy's character to its new family is just as important as its looks or pedigree, and a breeder's help is valuable here. It is very important to know the temperment of the parents. The temperment bred into the puppy and developed in the breeder's home, combined with the way you raise and train the puppy will determine that character, and how easily the pup will fit into your family's "pack" and lifestyle.

Samoyeds are active dogs. They need exercise: long, regular walks or runs and lots of playtime wih active inventive games to develop the mind and strengthen muscles.

Samoyeds become bored easily. If you don't provide activities and play-time, you may not like the results of the games your Sammy will make up on his own!

Samoyeds are not spectators. They're participators! They don't sit quietly in a corner until you're ready for them. They follow you from room to room, indoors and out, and enjoy being the center of everything you do. While this may not appeal to you, we Sam fanciers find this to be their greatest asset.

Copied from Selecting and Purchasing a Samoyed
Published by The Samoyed Club of America

The Samoyed (pronounced Sammy-Yed) were a tribe of people in Siberia who originally called the breed Bjelkiers. E. Kilburn-Scott, an English pioneer of the breed chose the name Samoyed to honor the people from whom the founding stock was obtained. The word samoyed is literally translated into "Living off themselves." Some reporters interpreted this as implying cannibalism, but most believe the truer implication to be one of self-sufficiency -- a nomadic people who managed to live off the land by their moving about.

The New Complete Samoyed
by Robert H. and Dolly Ward

Summary of the AKC Samoyed Standard:

  • SKULL wedge shaped, slightly crowned.
  • EARS strong, thick, erect, mobile, set well apart, rounded tips.
  • STOP well defined - not too abrupt.
  • EYES dark, deepset, well apart, almond shaped, expressive.
  • EYE RIMS black preferred.
  • MUZZLE deep, medium length and width.
  • NOSE black preferred.
  • LIPS black preferred, slightly curving up at corners.
  • TEETH scissors bite.
  • FLEWS should not drop.
  • JAWS strong.
  • SHOULDERS long, sloping, firmly set, 45 layback.
  • CHEST deep.
  • RIBS well sprung.
  • FORELEGS straight, parallel, moderately long.
  • ELBOWS turned neither in nor out.
  • PASTERNS strong sturdy, straight but flexible.
  • FEET large, long, flattish, slightly spread.
  • TOES arched, pads thick, hair between toes.
  • COAT double, undercoat soft and thick, outercoat with longer harsh hair standing straight out, free from curl, should glisten and be weather resistant. Quality more important than quantity.
  • COLOR pure white, white and biscuit, cream or all biscuit.
  • DISPOSITION intelligent, gentle, loyal, alert, adaptable, full of action, eager to serve, friendly but conservative; not shy nor distrustful, not overly aggressive.
  • RUFF long hair, around head and shoulders, frames head.
  • NECK strong, well muscled, carried proudly erect.
  • WITHERS separation 1" to 1-1/2".
  • BACK straight, strong, very muscular, medium long.
  • LOINS strong, slightly arched.
  • CROUP full, slightly sloping to tail root.
  • TAIL moderately long, profuse hair, mobile, carried forward over back or side when alert.
  • UPPER THIGHS well developed.
  • STIFLES well bent, 45 to the ground.
  • HOCKS well developed, sharply defined, 30% of hip height.
  • HIND LEGS parallel.
  • UNDERLINE tightly muscled, well shaped, swinging up in a pleasing curve.
  • GAIT should trot - not pace, move with quick, agile, well timed stride, with good reach in front & strong rear action drive. At speeds faster than a walk or trot, they should single track. Back should remain strong, firm and level.
  • SIZE HEIGHT - vertical distance from top of withers to the ground.
      Males - 21" to 23-1/2"
      Females - 19" to 21"
  • SIZE LENGTH (Horizontal line from point of breast bone to point of pelvis) approximately 5% more than height, slightly longer in females.

Also see the SCA's Clickable Samoyed for an interactive visual guide to the breed standard.