Ana Oliveira
Dr Ana Oliveira (DVM, University of Lisbon)
Photo of adult Sammypoo
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The Sammypoo is an active and smart dog. This is a crossbreed between a Poodle and a Samoyed, bringing together the Poodle’s loving character and playfulness and the Samoyed’s loyalty and cheerfulness to create an affectionate family dog. These are people-oriented dogs, demanding quite a bit of attention and lots of exercise.

There can be two versions of the Sammypoo – a miniature and a standard-sized version. Their coat has hypoallergenic properties, which makes Sammypoos a good choice for people with allergies. They have an easy-going personality and are fond of children, which makes them an interesting option to consider as a pet.

About & History

As most designer dogs, the Sammypoo is a young crossbreed that probably dates to the 1990s. Some claim the Sammypoo has been around earlier, in the 1980s, and others believe Sammypoos are younger, having originated in the United States as late as the 2000s.

Regardless, the Sammypoo results from the attempts of breeders to improve personality traits and create a hypoallergenic hybrid dog, prioritising small size and hybrid vigor (and thus decreasing the probability of genetic diseases inherited from his purebred parents). To look at the history of both the Samoyed and the Poodle, is to understand the Sammypoo.

The Samoyed

Samoyeds are fluffy, white-coated dogs originally from the cold regions of Siberia and whose name derives from the Samoyed tribe. Dating back to the 19th century, they were working dogs, used for herding, sled-pulling, guarding, and hunting.

Samoyeds were bred from the Spitz dog breed and lived among fishermen and hunters, whom they helped in work-related tasks, but also provided companionship. Samoyeds are gentle, friendly dogs that are now commonly found as household pets.

The Poodle

Poodles rank among the topmost popular dog breeds around the world. This is mainly due to their friendly nature, intelligence, and fur qualities, as they practically do not shed. The origins of the Poodle are uncertain, although there is a tendency to associate this breed with France, where he was widely popular in the 18th century; he has been claimed to have originated in places as varied as Germany, Spain, England, North Africa, and Asia. The Poodle was used for water sports, agility, and herding, as well as companionship.


The Sammypoo is a solid dog, with a medium length, dense, curly (and soft) coat that can take up a variety of colours, though the most commonly seen are white, merle, tan, chocolate or pied. Sammypoos’ eyes can be brown or amber, their muzzle is pointed, and their ears are triangular in shape, hanging down.

The Sammypoo can be of two different sizes: there is a smaller version (miniature Sammypoo) and a larger version (standard Sammypoo). The standard size is the most common, with males weighing from 20 to 27 kg (45-60 lbs) and being 46 to 56 cm (18-22 inches) tall. Females are somewhat shorter and lighter. The miniature version is, of course, smaller, weighing less than 13-14 kg (30 lbs). The variability in size is common and expected since this is a hybrid dog, but obviously the smaller the parents, the smaller the offspring.

Character & Temperament

The Sammypoo is an active dog who loves to play and engage in different activities, both mental and physical. Due to his ancestors’ working nature, this is a dog who needs to be exercised, stimulated, and kept busy; otherwise, he will get bored and find his own entertainment, which may be chewing on objects or furniture. Likewise, and due to his herding nature, he may have a tendency to chase other smaller pets.

Sammypoos are affectionate, friendly, and intelligent. They can be stubborn at times, but because they are so eager to please their humans, being smart and quick to pick up on their cues, training is generally easy. They are also good with children. The Sammypoo is a loyal dog, alert and vocal towards strangers, but too friendly to be a guarding dog. A Sammypoo makes a great pet for an active family, as he needs plenty of exercise and human interaction.


Sammypoos are smart, intelligent dogs. As such, they are highly trainable. Sometimes the Sammypoo can be temperamental and willful, which can make training a bit more difficult. Nonetheless, a consistent, positive approach towards training usually works. Rewards and verbal praise are much appreciated by the Sammypoo and are thus encouraged.


Sammypoos are considered healthier than their parents. They may live up to 14 years, given they are not afflicted by illnesses that are typically associated with the Poodle and the Samoyed. These include:

Hip Dysplasia

Hip dysplasia is a condition of the hip joint that may be inherited from the Samoyed parent. It is prevalent among larger dog breeds and affects movement, as walking becomes too painful. Pain is due to the inflammation that occurs around the joint, which is caused by its constant wear and tear.

The femoral head and the hip socket, which together make the hip joint, should be aligned for a correct and healthy function of the joint, but due to genetic and environmental factors, this does not occur in dogs with hip dysplasia. Although there is no definitive cure, hip dysplasia can be managed therapeutically.

Mitral Valve Disease

Mitral Valve Disease is a degenerative condition of the heart that mainly affects older dogs of smaller breeds. In this condition, the heart muscle thickens and enlarges, causing a leakage of the blood that flows from one heart chamber to the other. As the disease progresses, it may lead to congestive heart failure, as the heart fails to pump the blood effectively.

The most common clinical sign is a heart murmur audible by auscultation. The condition can be managed with drugs although many dogs may live long lives being monitored at regular intervals of time, even without treatment.

Digestive Issues

Among the most common digestive issues that may occur in Sammypoos, bloat is the most probable. Bloat may occur in Sammypoos of standard size, those with deeper chests and larger abdomens. The condition is described as the stomach distending with air, usually after the dog eating too much and very quickly (and thus ingesting a lot of air), followed by exercise.

The swollen stomach then rotates around itself, blocking the blood flow. This is an extremely dangerous condition that requires urgent and immediate intervention, as surgical treatment is the only way of reversing the condition and reestablishing the blood flow.

Sebaceous Adenitis

Sebaceous Adenitis is an inflammation of the sebaceous glands of unknown origin – it is a genetic condition that Sammypoos may inherit from the Poodle parent. This skin condition appears as white dandruff that starts scaling in the head region and then progresses to the rest of the body.

The coat acquires a dull appearance and the most affected regions may become hairless. Diagnosis is achieved with a skin biopsy and treatment focuses on controlling the inflammatory process and regenerating the sebaceous glands if they are still active.

Exercise and Activity Levels

Sammypoos are energetic dogs who will need at least one hour of exercise each day. Besides running, long walks or any other sort of active exercise that will help burn off their energy, they also require games to keep them mentally challenged. Activities, such as hiking, playing frisbee, obedience, and even swimming are good options.

The Sammypoo will enjoy any activity involving close interaction with his family. Running off-lead and socialising with other dogs in dog parks is also encouraged but beware of the Sammypoo’s tendency to wander and to chase other small dogs.


The Sammypoo is considered a low-shedding dog, which is a highly sought characteristic for many prospective dog owners, as well as the hypoallergenic properties of his coat. Nonetheless, he still requires brushing at least 3 to 4 times a week to prevent tangling and matting.

A seasonal trimming by a professional groomer is also recommended to keep him looking at his best. Due to the shape of their ears, which predisposes to the accumulation of debris and dirt, it is recommended that their ears are checked and cleaned weekly.

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