The Samoyed’s smile is one of the most heart-warming qualities of these wonderful Russian dogs. With their fluffy and soft coat, Samoyeds are truly hard to resist. But as an owner, you may wonder if all their fluff means they shed a lot.
Samoyeds are heavy shedding dogs. After all, they were bred to survive in sub-zero temperature, thus needing a thick and warm coat for protection. However, the thick double-coat of the Samoyed means they’re also prone to excessive shedding twice a year (usually in the spring and fall) when they blow their coats.
Just take a look at a Samoyed’s fluffy coat and grooming can seem daunting. But trust us, this won’t be as bad as you think. We’ll discuss why these dogs shed so much compared to others. In addition, we go over the best ways to deal with Samoyed shedding.
4 Reasons Why Samoyeds Shed So Much
Samoyeds are big and fluffy, making them susceptible to being shedding canine machines. But how come these dogs shed so much more than other dogs?
Shedding in Samoyeds can be explained by investigating in 4 main factors: why they were bred, the double coat, seasonal shedding and malnutrition. Let’s examine each factor to find out exactly why Samoyeds shed so much.
1. Samoyeds Are Built For the Cold
Nearly all dogs were bred for a specific purpose. And depending on the roles (jobs) of the dog, they were bred with certain qualities, temperaments and physical traits that fit the bill.
As mentioned, Samoyeds were primarily bred by the Samoyedic people in the harsh cold climates of Siberia (in Russia). In other words, they were developed to work in severely cold temperatures.
Not only were Samoyeds loyal companions to this indigenous tribe, but also served as hunting dogs, sledge-pullers and reindeer herders. They were the ultimate multi-purpose working dogs for the Samoyedic people.
All these jobs required Samoyeds to be working outdoors, most likely in the snow. So, it made sense for these dogs to have a large fluffy coat that kept them warm while working long hours.
Dogs like the Samoyed need to live in cold regions to remain comfortable. Can you imagine taking your Sammie for a walk during a 90 degree summer day?
And although Wag Walking says they can live in hot weather, they won’t be very comfortable and probably not very excited to go outside. The bottom line is that Samoyeds have a thick coat, and a thick coat means more chances to shed the fur.
2. Samoyeds Have a Double Coat
Not all dogs have a coat built like the Samoyed’s coat. These dogs sport a double coat, which according to Pet 4 Homes, only 78 recognized dog breeds have.
So what’s a double coat? This unique coat is comprised of two layers of fur: a topcoat and an undercoat. Both of which, serve very specific purposes for the Samoyed.
The undercoat is a dense and short coat that acts as an insulator to keep the Samoyed warm in blistering cold temperatures. It has a wool-feel to it, which may explain why it does such a great job.
Fluffier dogs tend to have a more dense undercoat. Given how fluffy the Samoyed is, we know their undercoats are much thicker than most double-coated dogs.
On the other hand, the topcoat is a set of taller hairs that protect the Samoyed’s skin from various hazardous elements in the environment (dirt, water, snow, etc.). After all, they’re called “guard hairs” for a reason.
With two sets of coats, expect the shedding to be moderate (if you’re lucky) to heavy year-round. But it’s really two seasons of the year that double coats become a big problem.
3. Samoyeds Will “Blow Their Coats”
It’s normal for all dogs (except the hairless breeds) to experience heavier shedding during the spring and fall. However, double coated dogs, such as the Samoyeds, have it much worse.
Twice a year, Samoyeds will experience excessive shedding. We call this “blowing coats” in the dog-owning world, and it’s unique to double coated dog breeds.
In the fall season, a Samoyed will likely start shedding its lighter, summer coat in preparation for the winter cold. Shedding is necessary to grow a much thicker and warmer coat.
Similarly, when spring comes around, the Samoyed will start shedding its thick winter coat in preparation for warmer summer temperatures.
With that said, Samoyeds tend to experience much heavier coat blows during spring because they shed the thicker coat.
It’s worth noting that indoor dogs (that aren’t regularly exposed to sun light) may not be as affected by seasonal shedding when compared to outdoor dogs.
4. Malnutrition Leads to Shedding in Samoyeds
Last but not least, a lack of nutrition can cause excessive shedding in a Samoyed (and pretty much any other dog breed with fur). So, it’s crucial your dog is getting the proper and necessary nutrients.
According to Dr. Roy Cruzen (DVM), most owners owners pick the cheapest quality dog food that barely meets the nutritional quality requirements. Relying on solely cheap food is not enough for your dog.
The number one reason for excessive shedding is a poor diet.– Dr. Roy Cruzen (DVM)
Pete Lands DVM from the Saint Francis Veterinary Center agrees that poor nutrition will always lead to more shedding than usual. He says that the trend of giving gluten-free diets to your dogs can cause similar issues of excessive shedding too.
Because Samoyeds shed so much, it can be difficult to determine what is “excessive shedding” and what is normal coat blowing or year-round shedding. But if excessive shedding persists for too long, always contact your dog’s veterinarian, just in case.
How Much Do Samoyeds Shed?
So, we know they’re heavy shedders and why they are. But how much do these dogs really shed? According to Animal Wised, Samoyed are one of the heaviest shedders.
But in our opinion, only real Samoyed owners know best. So, we decided to survey the popular Samoyed Subreddit, other forums and our readers for real answers to this question. Here’s what the owners had to say.
Real Owner Answers:
1. Conmanau says: “Samoyed fur is like glitter – you should expect to find it in the weirdest places at the weirdest times. My parents are still finding fur from our Sammy who passed away many years ago.”
2. Artifishelldog says: “My sammie is a shedding machine. I’ve grown to just accept it and invested in a heavy-duty vacuum (and many many lint rollers).”
3. Bubbletea says: “My Samoyed’s shedding is fine. It’s easy to pick up and only happens heavily once or twice a year. I’ve had him for a while now and have not noticed any excessive shedding.”
4. Whydoyouflask says: “Samoyed shedding is constant and steady most of the time, but they have these “molting” periods where it comes out in clumps. Other than that, it’s no worse compared to any other breed.”
5. Seralexpertak says: “It’s not smart to underestimate the shedding of these dogs. I didn’t think it would be a big deal until I got one myself.”
6. Richiefun10 says: “Do Samoyed shed? Is the earth round? Of course they do and it can get really bad if you’re not on top of it (such as grooming).”
7. Nicksamdog says: “We have a Samoyed. Great dog, but a lot of work with grooming, such as lots of brushing and cleaning the house. And I do mean a lot. They don’t smell though, so that’s nice.”
8. Opusintinc says: “Samoyeds shed a lot but i’m surprised at the number of owners that claim it’s that bad. Maybe I got lucky.”
How to Deal with Samoyed Shedding
Yes, Samoyeds will shed and it will most likely be a lot. However, you’re not completely doomed. There are ways you can help minimize shedding in your Samoyed.
It will take some time, so if you’re a busy owner, this dog is probably not for you. Instead, consider a hairless or hypoallergenic dog instead.
Regular grooming will always help to cut down on general shedding, but will be all kinds of fun while they’re blowing their coats (it’s snowing!). It will also help keep their fur in good condition.– Reddit User (FortressOfTrees)
Grooming a Samoyed can be time consuming, but it reduces the chance of excessive hair all around your house. And if you’re allergic to dogs, this practice is a must.
Brushing a Samoyed
One of the best ways of keeping your Samoyed’s coat “in check” is with consistent coat brushing. Keyword being “consistent.” Not all owners make or have the time for this, but it helps a lot.
According to Reddit users, most Samoyed owners brush their dogs every day. Others will brush their dogs every other day. However, few will brush them less than once a week.
How often you brush your Samoyed really depends on the individual dog. Some shed more than others, so make sure to feel it out.
Because Samoyeds have a unique double coat, I highly recommend using the Furminator. This brush was made for double coated dog breeds.
In fact, I use the Furminator with my Australian Shepherd (also double coated)!
It’s not just me, but thousands of happy owners swear by the product. For a Samoyed, get a large for long hair. You can check it out here.
This is a tough brush, so you’ll need to be careful when brushing your Samoyed, as to not damage the skin. If you’re gentle, your dog will be fine.
It’s a very effective brush and definitely worth the money.
Bathing a Samoyed
Baths are essential for dogs. However, there’s a fine line between “just right” and too often when it comes to bathing.
While it’s great to clean your dog every now and then, bathing too often will wash away the essential oils on the hairs that protect the dog.
So how often should you bathe your Samoyed? According to Samoyed owners, it really depends on how dirty your dog is. Some give their Samoyed a bath every 2 months, while others do it just twice a year.
The good thing is that Samoyeds don’t smell like, well, dogs. They’re fairly clean dogs for the most part, unless they decide to roll around in mud.
As long as you’re not washing your Samoyed every week, then you should be fine. Just be aware of the frequency.
But when it comes to dog shampoo for your Samoyed, it’s important that you pick something that’s all-natural and easy on the skin.
Dog Shampoo for Samoyeds
Personally, I think the best and most popular options are oatmeal-based dog shampoos. Here are just a few of my favorite ones:
- Pro Pet Works All Natural Oatmeal Dog Shampoo – It’s made from all-natural oatmeal. This shampoo is my “go-to” that I used with my Australian Shepherd. Plus, it’s made in the USA.
- Earthbath All Natural Dog Shampoo – Earthbath is one that I’m planning to try out very soon. It’s a time-tested product because it’s been on the market for so long time and people love it.
- Paws and Pals Dog Shampoo – We currently use this with our family corgi. Paws and Pals is a very reputable brand. It smells great and works great!
There are plenty of great dog shampoos on the market. Just make sure you do your research first.
Also, you never want to use human shampoo with your Samoyed. The skin of the dog is much more sensitive than ours. So, it’ll cause more problems than solutions.
So, Is the Samoyed For Me?
So if after reading through all this and you still want a Samoyed, then they’re probably right for you. As long as you’re not allergic to dogs and have time to groom and exercise them, then they’re perfect.
Samoyeds are amazing dogs with a strong work ethic. You’ll need to put them to work in order to maintain a happy dog.
What’s great is that they’re perfect playmates and companions for children. In addition, you can’t help but smile back at a Samoyed. With their “upturned” mouths, it looks like they’re always happy (and they probably are).
If you’re living in a cold region, then a Samoyed will thrive. Please don’t bring these dogs into a warm climate area.
In conclusion, Samoyeds are heavy shedders year-round and especially during spring and fall. Only those that are willing to put up with this will experience such a wonderful and charming dog.
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