The Samoyed breed is a large dog, mainly due to the thick, fluffy, double layered coat of fur they sport. They were originally bred by and took their name from the Samoyedic people of Siberia. Their original purpose was to help herd reindeer in harshly cold weather. Knowing the background of this hefty canine, you might be wondering if a dog so accustomed to the harsh cold of Siberia is suited for living in warmer climates.
In short, a Samoyed is capable of living in a hotter climate. Though they are more adapted to the cold and they will not enjoy the heat as much, they can adapt to the temperature. Their long, thick fur, originally meant to insulate from the cold can also help protect from the heat, keeping the much of the warmness out and the coolness in.
Although it is possible to have your Samoyed live in warmer climates, there is much care to be taken and signs to watch for if you want to keep them safe and happy. Read on to learn more about how exactly this cold weather dog can brave the heat, what to signs to watch for to prevent overheating, and what you can do to help your Samoyed.
Samoyeds in the Heat
As we said before, Samoyeds are more suited to the cold, having been originally bred in Siberia. However, they can brave the heat. Their coats have been known to provide insulation from the heat as well as from the cold. In short, it’s possible for their thick coat to keep in the cool and repel the heat.
With that being said, it is important to consider that a Samoyed would much rather be in cooler weather than hot. They are used to the frigid cold and are well equipped to deal with it having a thick, double layer coat of fur. If you live in a hot climate and want to own a Samoyed, there is some information and tips you should know to help your dog adapt and thrive in the heat.
How Your Samoyed Dissipates Heat
Many dog owners might think that shaving furry dogs like the Samoyed will help their pets adapt to the heat more. However, some studies have shown that the thick coat of fur on northern breeds of dogs actually help them tough the heat better. Compared to their short-haired canine cousins, Samoyeds are at less of a risk for overheating and heat stroke.
There are a couple reasons for this. The double layer of fur Samoyeds have act as a buffer between their skin and the sun. It is harder for the sun’s rays to induce heat-related illnesses when it is rebuffed by a thick coat of fur.
Secondly, the color of the fur, namely in Samoyeds, help deflect the sun even more. The bright white fur reflects the suns rays more easily than darker fur and, especially, more effectively than short, thin fur.
As with every other dog, too, Samoyeds expel much of their heat through panting. So if a Samoyed does become hot, don’t be surprised to see them breathing a bit harder.
The final, surprising way Samoyeds can dissipate heat is through their feet. Make sure you maintain their foot health (clip toenails, trim fur in the area) to allow them to effectively shed some heat this way.
Temperature Safety Standards
It is always best to air on the cautious side if considering the temperature extremes you are able to expose your Samoyed to. As a rule of thumb, try not to take your Samoyed outside in temperatures higher than 86 degrees Fahrenheit.
Some owners have reported that their Samoyed fared fine when out and about in weather as hot as 100+ degrees. Now, this may seem amazing, especially if you live in a hot area. However, these are just scattered reports and there are just as many about Samoyeds not taking kindly to heat this extreme.
Even though it is possible to successfully own a Samoyed in 100+ degree heat, it is recommended to only expose your pet to as little extreme temperature as is necessary. If you can help it, keep your Samoyed inside or in the shade if the mercury climbs too high.
There may come times when your Samoyed becomes too hot and uncomfortable from high temperatures. Excessive exposure or overly prolonged activities outside in hot weather can cause heat exhaustion and other heat-related problems.
Signs to look out for to know if your Samoyed is too hot include:
- Excessive panting. Panting is normal in dogs to dissipate heat, but if they are panting faster or harder than normal, they may be too hot
- Fidgeting or pacing. If your Samoyed looks agitated, is pacing around a lot, and cannot get comfortable sitting or lying down, this can be a sign that they are too hot
- Excessive barking or whining. If your Samoyed is at the door, whining to get in, it is probably time to let them in from the heat into a cooler environment.
Dehydration is another risk you may encounter when outside in high heat. First of all, to prevent this unpleasant problem, be sure to bring plenty of water along with you on walks or to the park, and have your Samoyed take drinks often.
Some signs you should look out for to see if your Samoyed is dehydrated include:
- Dry nose and mouth. This can lead to a temporary reduction or loss of their sense of smell and can cause dry gums.
- Excessive panting. Just like heat exhaustion, rapid or hard panting can also be a sign of dehydration.
- Dry eyes. A lack of moisture will cause your Samoyed’s eyes to dry, giving them a sunken look sometimes.
- Decreased skin elasticity. If you gently pinch your Samoyed’s skin and feel that it is tighter, this can be a sign of moisture loss.
- Lack of moving or eating. Losing too much moisture and being too thirsty can knock a Samoyed out. If your pet seems lazy or to have lost its appetite, get them some water quickly.
The signs of heatstroke are very similar to those of dehydration and heat exhaustion listed above. Keep an eye out for these signs to nip any potential problems in the bud. If your Samoyed encounters heat exhaustion, dehydration, or heat stroke, take action immediately.
If you notice any signs of heat related problems, take your Samoyed to the shade, inside, or to a cooler environment as fast as you can. Allow them to cool down and achieve a normal body temperature again. Give them water and ensure they drink enough to replenish any moisture they lost. This can also help them cool down faster.
If these problems persist, the best thing you can do is take your Samoyed in to your vet for a checkup. Your vet will know how to best treat your individual Samoyed and how to best avoid these problems in the future.
How to Keep Dogs Cool in Hot Weather（Inside and Outside Home）
Keeping your Samoyed cool in hot weather is a great preventative way to avoid any heat-related problems. The best way to do this is to avoid going outside if temperatures exceed around 86 degrees Fahrenheit. Keep the inside of your home cool and provide some shady spaces where your Samoyed can relax and cool off.
If venturing outside, ensure the temperature is not too high. Bring plenty of water with you and make sure you are having your Samoyed take drinks often. Do not overwork your pet in the heat. Stop and rest in shady and cool areas every so often to help your dog maintain a good body temperature.
Should You Shave Your Samoyed in the Summer?
No, do not shave your Samoyed during the summer, not matter how hot is gets. Shaving them can actually have the opposite effect of your intended goal. A Samoyed’s fur is one of its best tools it has in fighting the heat. If you shave your dog, then you take away its natural double layer buffer against the sun.
There are some debates on whether it is better to trim their coat a bit or to leave it long. One side says shorter hair still deflects much of the sun’s rays and keeps them cool by taking off any excess fur. The other side says the more fur the better since more fur can deflect more of the sun’s rays and keep the Samoyed cooler.
The best way to know is to consult your vet. They will know the best thing to do for your dog, no matter what school of trimming though they subscribe to. After all, we do not dare claim to be more knowledgeable than a trained professional.
Does Your Samoyed’s Diet Affect His Heat Tolerance?
As long as your Samoyed is eating a healthy food in a healthy amount each day, their diet should not hinder their ability to tough the heat too much. The issues start to arise when your Samoyed’s diet becomes unhealthy.
If your dog is eating too much or not getting the proper nutrients it needs, this can lead to obesity and other health problems. These problems can, in turn, negatively affect how well your Samoyed’s body is able to adjust to the heat. If you want your Samoyed to be functioning at peak performance, feed it well.
What You Should Know If You Live Somewhere Where It’s Always Hot
The most important thing to remember if you live in a hot place and own a Samoyed is to stay alert. Watch for signs of overheating or other heat-related problems.
Always ensure a shady, cool place for your Samoyed to relax and cool down in, no matter where you are. And always have water on hand to keep you both hydrated.
Your pet is a tough, durable dog that can adapt well to the heat, but it is important to properly care for them. The Samoyed, after all, was bred to thrive in the Siberian cold.