About the Breed

A great deal has been written of the ancestry of our modern Samoyeds, a breed of eye arresting beauty with a heritage of service and companionship with mankind.  Many consider this dog of smiling face to be the most beautiful canine in the world.  He has a uniquely friendly and gentle temperament forged over the many centuries by constant association with the Northern Siberian Tribe of Samoyede people after whom they were named.

A primitive nomadic race whose habitat was the frozen tundra bordering the Arctic Circle, the Samoyede were a hardy good-natured people whose life consisted of being migratory keepers of the reindeer.  For generations they hunted, fished and trapped food and fur bearing animals, moving for fresh moss and lichen for the herd, living in tents (chooms) made out of reindeer skin, and in close companionship beside them always the dogs that they called “Bjelkier” (white dog that breeds white).  Their dogs became highly prized for the useful tasks they could perform, herding reindeer, hunting, guarding and for extra warmth in the family tent.

It was this close relationship which eventually led to the Samoyed we know today.  An intelligent dog with a devotion and love towards mankind second to none.
The Samoyed as a breed remains relatively unchanged from those early days, perhaps the most beautiful breed in existence, gentle, even tempered, loyal to a loved owner.  This magnificent white dog with smiling face and dark twinkling eyes, is said to carry in his face and heart the spirit of Christmas the whole year through.


Pre 1987 Kennel Club, London

GENERAL APPEARANCE - The Samoyed being essentially a working dog should be strong and active and graceful, and as his work lies in cold climates his coat should be heavy and weather-resisting.  He should not be too long in back, as a weak back would make him practically useless for his legitimate work; but at the same time a cobby body, such as a Chow's, would also place him at a great disadvantage as a draught dog.  Breeders should aim for the happy medium,  viz. a body not long, but muscular, allowing liberty, with a deep chest and well sprung ribs, strong neck proudly arched, straight front and exceptionally strong loins.  Both dogs and bitches should give the appearance of being capable of great endurance but should be free from coarseness.  A full grown dog should stand about 53.5 cm (21 ins.) at the shoulder.  On account of the depth of chest required the legs should be moderately long, a very short-legged dog is to be deprecated.  Hindquarters should be particularly well developed, stifles well angulated, and any suggestion of unsound stifles or cowhocks severely penalised.

  • CHARACTERISTICS - The Samoyed is intelligent, alert, full of action but above all displaying affection towards all mankind.
  • TEMPERAMENT - (See under Characteristics.)
  • HEAD AND SKULL - Head powerful and wedge-shaped with a broad, flat skull, muzzle of medium length, a tapering foreface not too sharply defined.  Lips black.  Hair short and smooth before the ears.  Nose black for preference, but may be brown or flesh-coloured.  Strong jaws.
  • EYES - Almond shaped, medium to dark brown in colour, set well apart with alert and intelligent expression.  Eyerims should be black and unbroken.
  • EARS - Thick, not too long and slightly rounded at the tips, set well apart and well covered inside with hair.  The ears should be fully erect in the grown dog.
  • MOUTH - Upper teeth should just overlap the underteeth in a scissor bite.
  • NECK - Proudly arched.
  • FOREQUARTERS - Legs straight and muscular with good bone.
  • BODY - Back medium in length, broad and very muscular.  Chest broad and deep ribs well sprung, giving plenty of heart and lung room.
  • HINDQUARTERS - Very muscular, stifles well angulated; cow hocks or straight stifles very objectionable.
  • FEET - Long, flattish and slightly spread out.  Soles well cushioned with hair.
  • TAIL - Long and profuse, carried over the back when alert; sometimes dropped when at rest.
  • GAIT/MOVEMENT - Should move freely with a strong agile drive showing power and elegance.
  • COAT - The body should be well covered with a thick, close, soft and short undercoat, with harsh hair growing through it, forming the outer coat, which should stand straight away from the body and be free from curl.
  • COLOUR - Pure white; white and biscuit; cream.
  • SIZE - Dogs 51-56 cm (20-22 ins) at the shoulder.  Bitches: 46-51 cm (18-20 ins) at the shoulder.  Weight in proportion to size.
  • FAULTS - Severe unprovoked aggressiveness.  Long foreface.  Blue or very light eyes.  Big ears with very little feathering.
  • Drop ears; narrow width between ears.  A bull neck.  A long body.  Slack tail carriage; it should be carried well over the back though it may drop when the dog is at rest.  Round, cat-like feet.  A soft coat; a wavy coat; absence of undercoat.  Absence of feathering.  Black or black spots.  Any sign of unsound movement.
  • NOTE - Male animals should have two apparently normal testicles fully descended into the scrotum.