Samoyeds are iconically beautiful pups.
They have an enormously fluffy coat, happy smile, endearing eyes, and a playful personality – so it's easy to see why they're becoming an ever more popular choice amongst potential pup parents.
These wolf-like dogs look made for cold winters and hard terrains, but do they always have a snow-white coat or are there other Samoyed colors?
Here's what you need to know about these hairy dogs and all the colors they come in!
History of this ancient breed
The name Samoyed comes from the Samoyedic people, a nomadic group that traveled from Asia to Siberia thousands of years ago. Whilst living in some of the harshest conditions on earth, these people bred dogs that were both very hard-working and the ideal family pet.
These white dogs could be used to haul heavy loads over ice and snow, as well as to help their owners hunt Reindeer. Over time, the Samoyedic people began to herd Reindeer rather than hunt them, so the Samoyed dog developed into an incredible herding pup too.
Not only are these dogs strong, brave, and intelligent, they're also loving and adore affection. They were bred to be a loyal part of the family, protecting the members and often living with them to provide extra warmth.
Samoyeds today are just as loyal and active as their ancestors. They need a lot of exercise and mental stimulation to keep them happy and healthy dogs.
Are all Samoyeds white?
Whenever you imagine a Samoyed, you think of a big, white, cloud-like pup running around in the snow. So you'd be forgiven for thinking these dogs always have a white coat.
But there are actually a few different Samoyed colors apart from snow-white. These include cream, biscuit, and white and biscuit (sounds delicious)!
What's the most common Samoyed color?
Although there are a few different variations, pure white is definitely the most common Samoyed coat color. These pups were first bred to have a thick double coat that could help them withstand cold winters and blend in with the snow – which is why the majority of them are white.
What are the different kennel clubs saying?
Different kennel clubs around the world accept different breed standards for many dogs. One such breed standard is coat color. You need to keep this in mind if you're thinking of entering your dog into show.
- American Kennel Club: Pure White, Biscuit, Cream, White and Biscuit
- United Kennel Club: Pure White, White and Biscuit, All Biscuit, Cream
- Canadian Kennel Club: White, White and Cream, White and Biscuit, Cream, All Biscuit
- Federation Cynologique Internationale: Pure White, Cream, White and Biscuit
All the different Samoyed colors
Here are all the different coat variations for these dogs – with pictures!
These adorable white, wolfish pups are easy to recognize in your local dog park. Their bright white coat helped their ancestors to blend in with their surroundings so they could protect and creep up on reindeer more easily.
Many Samoyed puppies are born white dogs but can develop biscuit and cream spots or change their coat color entirely. If you have your heart set on a pure white Samoyed pup it's best to do your research and check with your chosen breeder. They should be able to give you an analysis based on the parent pups.
A cream Samoyed can easily be confused with a white dog. If you look a little closer at its thick coat, you should see that it has more of a yellow tinge – similar to light custard.
To be considered as a true cream Samoyed by the American Kennel Club or other kennel clubs, your pup has to have a very light-colored coat. A darker coat color (which we think should be named caramel, fudge, cookie, or something equally delicious!) won't be accepted.
Interestingly, only the Samoyed breed and the Pekingese breed can be referred to as biscuit. Compared to cream Samoyeds and white Samoyeds, these beautiful pups are fairly easy to distinguish.
Biscuit Samoyed dogs have a golden, biscuity coat that partially covers their bodies. Usually, their color tends to be on their necks, ears, and shoulders. You'll generally see that tails and chests are predominantly bright white.
It's very difficult to be 100% certain of your pup's coat color. A white Samoyed puppy may grow up to be a biscuit Samoyed! And, a puppy that has color markings may become a white adult. If you really want a biscuit Samoyed, check with your breeder for consistent breeding and try to adopt the darkest puppy!
White and Biscuit Samoyed
A white and biscuit Samoyed has a white base coat and patches of light biscuit across its body. Unlike a doggo with a biscuit coat, white and biscuit Samoyeds have an even more predominantly white color.
As with other Samoyed coat colors, this one can also change over time and become lighter. In fact, working out the exact color of a Samoyed can be quite difficult!
So, do black Samoyeds exist?
Wouldn't that be great? A big black fluffy pup that's (probably) slightly easier to keep squeaky clean!
Unfortunately, however, there's no such thing as a black Samoyed dog – regardless of what some breeders might tell you. Samoyeds were developed to blend in with their snowy and icy surroundings, which a black pup wouldn't really do.
Understandably, many people want to know if black Samoyeds really are a thing and this has led to some unethical breeders claiming it is. Even without being an expert in genetics, it doesn't really seem possible to produce a black Samoyed puppy from light-colored dogs.
If you really like the idea of having a black Samoyed, there are plenty of other dog breeds that are just as fluffy as a Samoyed but darker in color. A Blue Bay Shepherd, for example, might be the perfect match!
Does coat color have an effect on the dog's health?
Samoyeds are generally healthy dogs and their color has no effect on their health. In the past, some have thought that these pups may be albino, and therefore have some health concerns associated with that, but this isn't the case.
Regardless of your dog's coat color, they may suffer from Progressive Retinal Atrophy, cataracts, hyperthyroidism, and diabetes. A major concern for this dog breed is hip dysplasia. Feeding your pup nutritious dog food, giving them plenty of exercise, and regular checkups should mean they have a life expectancy of 10-12 years.
Samoyeds shed. It doesn't matter whether you have a biscuit Samoyed or a white one – you can expect to groom them regularly to keep their coats sparkling.
This dog breed has a long, slightly rougher outer coat and a soft, wooly undercoat. As with most double-coated pups, they need regular brushing to stop mats from forming and to keep the worst of the shedding under control. They'll also blow their coats twice seasonally and you'll definitely want to be grooming them even more during this time!
Samoyeds are hairy all over, so make sure you also softly brush their legs and faces to remove any dead hair.
How often should you bathe a Samoyed?
As with anything that's predominately white, these dogs' coats are prone to stains and getting dirty. If using a good quality shampoo that doesn't dry out their skin, you can wash them weekly which helps to keep their coat looking good as new. Many Samoyed owners, however, bathe their pups every 4-6 weeks.
How can you keep a Samoyed white?
After a while, many owners of white dogs notice that they're going a little yellow around the edges. But there are a few things you can do to keep these pups pearly. Try washing them with a special whitening shampoo and use a tear stain remover to remove brown or pinkish markings around their eyes.
As with pale-skinned people, white pups are more likely to burn in the sun. Make sure your Samoyed has plenty of shade (they like colder conditions anyway) as too much sun exposure can slowly change their coat color too.
If you want a lot of color options to choose from then a Samoyed may not be the perfect pup for you. They come in white, cream (which can sometimes appear white), and biscuit (which can lighten over time to look white). So there's not a huge range.
These dogs are, however, gentle, hard-working, and beautiful in each color. They need an active family that can keep up with their energy levels and that will give them plenty of attention. They also require a dedicated groomer who's happy to give them some regular TLC!
How many Samoyed colors did you know? Did you think there were more?
I’m Charlotte, a content and copywriter from the North of England and currently living in Berlin. Animals have always been a huge part of my life, so writing about dogs is a total pleasure! I love all kinds of dogs and their cheeky personalities, but I’d have to say Weimaraners are my favourite!