Samoyeds are loyal and fun dogs to be around and are good at getting the job done with their superior strength; but are Samoyeds easy to train?
In general, yes, Samoyeds do well during training sessions due to their keen intelligence and willingness to please. If you are consistent, you’ll find training your Samoyed to be easier than you thought.
Here’s what you should know to make training your Samoyed a fun and efficient endeavor for the both of you.
Samoyed Training Challenges
You’d be surprised, but their intelligence can be both a blessing and a curse.
They are used to having lots of activities and tasks to complete and are typically busy dogs. So, if they have nothing significant enough to stimulate them during training, they will start to feel antsy, and create their own means of movement, while disregarding your demands.
Also, Samoyed are used to running in packs and “following the leader”, and if you are not dominant enough, they will either give little concern to your commands, or become the “pack leader” themselves.
This would cause heavy concerns in the proper development of your Samoyed.
On a positive note, Samoyeds are generally happy dogs, and show it all the time! Yet their energy, although joyful, can be a big distraction during training as well.
Becoming the Alpha Dog
When training your Samoyed, it’s important for you to become the “Alpha Dog” or the leader of the group. This means that you are the person giving the commands consistently and showing your Samoyed how to successfully complete the task(s) given to them.
This is a process for both you and your Samoyed, so there’s no need to rush it. Another tip to remember when becoming an Alpha Dog is discipline.
Whenever your Samoyed disobeys or disregards a command, initiating a non-violent negative punishment upon your Samoyed – such as taking away a treat, or not giving them a rub on the head – is necessary and O.K.
Why? Because it establishes you as the provider of security and food, which is an important pillar of being the Alpha Dog and getting the other members of your group to listen and pay attention to your instructions and commands.
Establish a Training Schedule
One of the best ways to get started with training your Samoyed is to establish a training schedule.
The schedule itself will allow for you to structure which skills and tricks you want to teach your Samoyed, along with different tactics to teach it to them. It’s an efficient and effective tool that is recommended for any Samoyed training session.
What’s included in this training schedule is how many days per week you’ll be training, how long each session last, and any rewards or punishments that you want to give for good or not so good behavior.
The training schedule also provides your dog with a routine, which conditions their body into being ready to learn and retain the information that they have been given by you.
Routines for Samoyeds also keep their temperament even because they know to expect some structured quality time with you.
Potty Training with a Pad or Newspaper
Potty training should start in puppyhood and should continue throughout their growth until they can go to the bathroom, in the appropriate area, after signaling you or simply going to their proper location.
Potty training a Samoyed is a lot like potty training a child; it all comes down to timing and reinforcement.
Know that your Samoyed will have to go to the bathroom within 30 minutes of drinking, or two hours of eating. With this knowledge, you can time when you take your Samoyed to the bathroom.
Using newspaper is an O.K. idea, but the urine could seep through the paper, and you’ll always need newspaper! Pads seem to be a better idea based on social consensus due to their cleanliness, absorbance, and more aesthetically pleasing designs.
Positive Reinforcement is Crucial
It sure is!
Positive reinforcement is simply an additional attribute that increases a behavior; like a treat, a pat or rub on the head or body, or simple verbal communication using phrases like “good job!” and “who’s a good dog? You are!”
Dogs may not be able to comprehend human language as well as we do, but they do understand the tone of your voice, which is why verbalization is a great positive reinforcer. Or, it can be anything that you know your dog will go crazy for if you give it to them.
The point of giving your Samoyed positive reinforcement is to let them know that they successfully completed the task, and that they should keep doing the same thing when given the same command.
It’s a representation or symbol of being rewarded for doing the right thing.
It’s Best to Start Training as a Puppy
Yes, the best time to start training your Samoyed is when they are a puppy. Social training, obedience training and potty training are proven to be more successful when initiated in their early puppyhood years.
Socially training your Samoyed puppy will allow you to learn what triggers them and what calms them, so that they can play nicely with other animals and humans. Early obedience training is crucial for providing your Samoyed pup with a jump start towards developing good listening ears and following instructions correctly as soon as you give them.
They will see it as a form of leadership and security and will become used to your actions as they grow. Potty training is always easier to start when they are puppies because they are more prone to take directions better and see it as bonding time between you and them.
Learn How to Motivate Your Samoyed
No matter how happy you are about it, motivation for your Samoyed is the key to having successful training sessions with them.
The right motivation is the difference between your Samoyed laying down when you tell it to, and it being defensive because you told it to; so, learning what motivates your Samoyed is imperative.
The trick is to use whatever item your Samoyed will want and give it to them right after they successfully complete your command.
The motivation can be anything; it can be their favorite treat or piece of fruit, a big hug, something to drink, or maybe one minute of play time with their favorite toy.
Their motivation should bring them joy and make them feel good about whatever command you gave them, so that they’ll have a positive association with that command and be willing to do it repeatedly.
Training the Adult Samoyed
Would you believe that training an adult Samoyed is not as much of a headache as you would think?
The most important attributes to remember when training an adult Samoyed is that they are mature dogs that should be treated as such, and that their intelligence is higher than a pup, and will need more substantial motivation to be successful.
I’ll say this, the better the relationship between you and your mature Samoyed, the better training sessions will go. They will be willing to listen and learn from you, if you are being more dominant than them, yet fair.
Rewards go a long way with motivating and training your fully grown Samoyed; treats are one of the best motivators but be mindful of how much you give them to keep them attentive for the next command.
How Long Does It Take to Train a Samoyed?
In general, it could take a few weeks to a few months to train your Samoyed; the time frame is based on what you want your young canine to learn.
Remember, Samoyeds are intelligent dogs, and can catch on quickly, with the right trainer. With an optimal setting your Samoyed could learn simple commands like roll over, sit/stand, bark, and lay down within a few weeks of consistent training.
Protection training could take a week to months as well, based on how they are taught to defend you if an intruder were to invade your space, while potty training can take up to 4 weeks.
It all comes down to consistency, rewards, firmness, and motivations; and with a balance of those attributes combined you can have your Samoyed trained sooner than you think.
How Long You Need Every Day?
Samoyeds are very smart dogs that respond well to firmness. They are good with picking up cues quickly when they are given with strength behind them.
These attributes, plus 15 to 20 minutes per day that’s dedicated directly to organized training, will aid you in training your dog efficiently and effectively.
15 to 20 minutes per day is enough time to either learn one new command and practice it over and over or review previous commands that have been given that may need some fine tuning or enhancement.
Time for dogs moves much faster than time for humans, which means they tend to get bored much quicker than we do.
Which is another reason why keeping your training sessions short, between 15 to 20 minutes, is a great idea; it allows for your Samoyed to have enough time to learn the command and retain it inside of their neurological and muscular memory.