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Are Samoyeds Good for First-Time Owners? Breed Facts & FAQs

Nicole Cosgrove Profile Picture

By Nicole Cosgrove


The first time that you lay eyes on a Samoyed, you’re likely to fall in love. They’re beautiful dogs, and their loving and loyal spirits make them great companions.

But if you are a first-time dog owner, you want to proceed with caution before getting a Samoyed as they can be difficult. So, why are they notoriously difficult for first-time dog owners, and what do you need to do if you’re going to get one? We answer those questions and more for you here.

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Are Samoyed Good for First-Time Owners?

The short answer to this is no, the Samoyed is not a good choice for a first-time dog owner. They’re gorgeous dogs with many great traits, but they can be a bit much for newbies.

There are a few reasons for this, but there are also a few traits that the Samoyed has that make them popular, anyway.

samoyed puppies
Image By: Zanna Pesnina, Shutterstock

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The 4 Reasons Why Samoyed Are Difficult for First-Time Owners

Going with a Samoyed is setting yourself up for a big challenge. Here are a few of their signature traits that can make owning them a bit challenging.

1. Stubborn Streak

This is by far the most common reason that a Samoyed isn’t a good dog choice for first-time owners. While some dogs easily bend to the will of their owners, that’s not the case with the Samoyed.

They’re extremely intelligent and have their own ideas about how they want to do things. You can train them, but even this is usually best left to an experienced handler. If you’re trying to figure everything out with your first dog, you better be ready for a challenge!

2. High Grooming Standards

The Samoyed has a beautiful coat, but that thick coat requires a great deal of work. You need to brush it out daily, and it will typically take 15 to 30 minutes to do so properly.

Samoyed dog in the summer forest
Image Credit: Nik Tsvetkov, Shutterstock


3. High Energy

Some dogs have more energy than others, and the Samoyed has even more energy than most high-energy dogs. Russians and Siberians originally used Samoyeds as sled dogs, and to run those sleds, the Samoyeds needed plenty of stamina.

They still have that high motor, so to ensure that they get the necessary activity to remain healthy, you must dedicate at least 2 hours’ worth of activities for them to do every day. If you don’t, you’ll find that your Samoyed displays destructive boredom behaviors in order to use up some of that pent-up energy.

4. They Need Constant Companionship

Unless you have a pack of Samoyed dogs for work, you likely want a Samoyed for companionship. There’s nothing wrong with that, but you need to be aware that they require your attention. They don’t do well alone, so you need to ensure that you can spend plenty of time with them.

This is a big burden for many owners, so you need to ensure that your dog can fit into your schedule before getting one.

Young beautiful woman in white shirt is hugging her white dog samoyed outdoors
Image By: Med Photo Studio, Shutterstock

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Top 3 Good Samoyed Traits

While there are a few traits that can make the Samoyed a challenging companion for a first-time dog owner, there’s a reason that they’re such a popular dog. It’s not all about how they look either, as these dogs have many redeeming qualities that endear them to dog owners everywhere.

1. Phenomenal Companion Dog

The Samoyed needs constant companionship. While some people view that as a negative trait that doesn’t suit their current lifestyle, for others, it’s exactly what they’re looking for. This dog will never want to leave your side, which makes for a great partnership between dog and owner.

2. Great for Cold Weather

If you live somewhere where it gets chilly, that isn’t an issue at all with the Samoyed. Their genetics have made them great sled dogs in Russia and Siberia, two places that likely get much colder than where you live.

When the cold weather comes, your Samoyed will love spending time outside, and it’s unlikely they’ll even get chilled.

3. Outstanding Working Dogs

If you need a high-energy working dog, the Samoyed is worth considering, especially if you live in a cold climate. Just keep in mind that they need a pack if this is how you want to use them, so you’ll need to get more than a single Samoyed to keep them happy.

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Final Thoughts

If you’re looking for a relatively easy breed to take care of for your first dog, the Samoyed isn’t it. They’re high energy and stubborn and have high maintenance requirements. But even with all those traits, the Samoyed is still a well-sought-after and loving breed. You just need to know what you’re getting into before acquiring one!

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Featured Image Credit: Grisha Bruev, Shutterstock

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