January Dog of the Month – Samoyed

It’s that time again! For January’s Dog of the Month we are featuring the Samoyed, a.k.a Sammies! Talk about a pupper that can stay toasty warm, even when the weather is far from it!

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Samoyeds were originally bred as companions for northwestern Siberia’s Samoyede people, also known as the Nenetsky. They originated thousands of years ago on the Taimyr Peninsula of Siberia. Sammies are almost impervious to cold, working very well in the freezing temperatures of Siberia. They excelled at herding reindeer, pulling sleds, tracking animals, hunting and keeping their owners warm at night. According to some research, scientists theorize that this breed does not have any wolf or fox DNA – most other breeds do. So it’s believed that Samoyeds are the closest cousins to the original “primitive” dog. Sammies started migrating out of Siberia at the end of the 19th century and the early part of the 20th century to help with expeditions, including Sir Ernest Shackleton’s famous journey to the Antarctic! Sammies possibly made their way into England around the 1800’s and it’s said that some of them came as gifts to royalty from the Czar of Russia!

They are a breed known for their smile! Naturally, the corners of their mouth turn upwards, giving them a cheery look that goes very well with their personalities. Which is: happy, bouncy, and loyal. There is a purpose to their smiles too! The upward turn of their mouths keep Sammies from drooling, and that helps prevent icicles from forming on their faces when they are outside in the chilly weather. They are a working breed that are very loyal and devoted companions. In a few areas of the world, Sammies are still working herding reindeer and pulling sleds!

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Other than the Sammies infectious grin, they are also well known for their thick, silvery-white or cream coloured coats. They have a strong, muscular body and sweet dark eyes. In the winter, their coat is so thick that you can barely see their skin underneath! They have perky triangle shaped ears and a curly bushy tail that turns up, and flops over. Samoyeds are a medium-sized breed, with a height ranging from approximately 19 to 23 inches and weighing between 50 to 65 pounds. Crazy fact – they can pull up to 1.5 times their own body weight!

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Overall, Sammies are a very healthy breed. But like with all breeds, they can be predisposed to some health issues. This may include: Hip dysplasia, glaucoma, Samoyed Hereditary Ghlomerulopathy and diabetes. Samoyed Hereditary Ghlomerulopathy is disease that is passed down from the puppys parents. It involves the kidneys and can lead to renal failure. It’s important to always have your pup see their vet regularly to make sure they stay healthy and happy.

Every pup needs loving family and a fur-ever home. If you want to learn more about potentially adopting one of these noble and loving dogs, check out Samoyed.org : Samoyed Rescue. They are an organization of volunteers that focus on finding homes for the Sammies.

That’s all for this month! Happy New Year and stay tuned in for our next months featured dog!

References: dogtime.com, akc.org, hillspet.ca, vetstreet.com, dogbreedinfo.com/samoyed, animalplanet.com

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