I’m still not sure how I wound up with this breed, having been raised with Dobermans! After all, I’ve gone from ‘wash & wear’ to 6+ hours of grooming for one dog, and from highly responsive and trainable to the ‘make me’ & ‘I’ll do it if and when I want to’ training challenge! From trusting a Dobe off-leash, to NEVER letting a white dog off-leash, and from lazing around on the couch during the coldest days of winter in my childhood, to not being able to keep my dogs in the house now if the temperature even THINKS about going down to freezing!It all stared in 1989, when I showed my first Samoyed. He was a client’s dog, young and stubborn, and his name was Nanuk. After I finished his Championship, the owner’s faced the unfortunate situation of having to re-home him. I offered to take him until they found the right home him, and, long story short, wound up keeping him myself. When he came to live with me, he was over 2 years old, and had been raised with the philosophy of “he’s only disagreeing with us” every time he asserted himself. Well, he was a handful and a half during his long life with me – challenging me at every turn until his last day. What I will always appreciate about Nanuk was his ‘wild side’ – placid was NOT a word he’d even heard of! We developed a relationship of mutual respect, and through it all, I somehow fell in love with the breed. Maybe it was Nanuk’s thrill of life, or the way that fall and winter brought out the best in him – they are my favourite seasons, too!
While Nanuk was in his prime, I showed him to # 10 Samoyed in Canada. He also won Best of Opposite Sex (Best Male) and Best Veteran at 7 years of age at the national Samoyed Specialty in 1996. He was a good quality dog, though very English in type, and very different for what was being shown at the time. Our limited success did not deter me, however, and I decided I wanted to start breeding. Unfortunately, we were not able to find the right girl for Nanuk, so he was neutered at 10 years old, and he lived another three years. In 2002 he crossed the Rainbow Bridge at the tender age of 13 years. His spirit never failed him, but unfortunately his body was not so kind
I purchased my first girl, Krystal, in 1994, to start a breeding program. Unfortunately, Krystal did not turn out and I decided not to breed her. I thought about placing her in a home, but her temperament was exceptional! She was everything Nanuk was not – obedient, placid, and trustworthy off-leash! I worked with her, and she easily earned her CD title with all qualifying scores of 194 ˝ - she was consistent! In her later years she became a PALS visitation dog, visiting seniors and enjoying every last minute of it! She converted my brother’s wife from ‘cat-person’ to ‘dog-person’, and LOVED the neighborhood children. Krystal passed over the Rainbow Bridge at the tender age of 12 years, in early 2006.
Once it was clear Krystal was not going to be bred, I looked for another girl. In 1997, a breeder friend of mine was retiring from dogs, and needed to place his dogs. We talked about one of his girls in particular, and that was when Cheers came to live with us. She was 5 years old at the time, never been bred, and was raised a kennel dog – no house manners, and NOT housebroken! I fell in love with her, though, and she was a lovely girl. We tried several time to breed her before Nanuk was neutered, but alas, it was not to be! Cheers lived out her years in our home, becoming a true matronly girl as she aged. Our only sadness in 2005 was losing Cheers, as she crossed the Rainbow Bridge at 13 years old.
In 1999, a couple of years before Nanuk left us, a friend of mine came to me with a 6-month old male Samoyed puppy for me to show. I watched this youngster in my backyard for maybe 15 minutes before I looked at my friend and said, “This is a Best in Show dog – I want a piece of him!” I became co-owner of the puppy shortly thereafter. The puppy’s name was Tundra.
I kept Tundra with me that fall until he finished his Canadian Championship as an 11-month old puppy, and he was sent to the US in 2002 to earn his American Championship, which he earned quite readily over 6 months. Tundra stayed at home with us and grew up, and grew coat, for the next few years and I started planning his show campaign year for 2005. One of the main goals for that year was to keep Tundra ‘sparkling’ for whole year. We managed to make it through, although quite trying at times while I let him have his way in some group rings, knowing he was embarrassing me, but knowing it would pay off in the end. And did it ever! In October, 2005 we won an exciting Best in Show at Canada’s largest indoor show at Lower Mainland in B.C., bringing his total to 5 Best in Shows for the year. In the 122 times we entered a breed ring, Tundra only lost the breed 10 times. Tundra’s show record for 2005 includes 5 Best in Shows, 1 Reserve Best in Show, 23 Group 1st, 10 Group 2nd, 14 Group 3rd, and 17 Group 4th.
In April 2006, I offered to look at a two 10-week old girls from a long-time Samoyed breeder to help her decide which one to keep. Well, once I saw the two girls, I knew I was taking one of them in particular home for me – I had finally found my foundation girl!
Many thanks to Sheri Dalton of Edmonton, Gandale Samoyeds, for letting me steal Vixen away from her! Vixen finished her Canadian Championship at 8 months of age and has become our foundation girl at Sershan Samoyeds, producing five Canadian Champion puppies from two litters. Vixen comes from a long line of working Samoyeds, and it is apparent in Vixen’s temperament. She has the true focus and drive of a versatile working dog, and really needs to be doing things. Vixen is a great dog at lead on the sled, and works just as hard in the team.
In late 2007, at 16 months old, Sider came to us from Jeanne Nonhof of Moonlighter Samoyeds in Wisconsin, USA. Jeanne has bred several top U.S. Champions, and what I enjoy so much about Jeanne is her obvious love of the breed, and her work with them. Not only does she show these wonderful dogs, she does agility and weight-pull as well!! She genuinely appreciates the true versatility of this breed, an appreciation we share.
With only one previous US show under her belt as a puppy, Sider proved her worth here in Canada in short order as a ‘yearling’ at 16 months old, earning her Canadian Championship in only two weekends!! Sider has won my respect as a real working dog and she works hard in every position on the sled team; she excels at wheel, works well as a lead dog, and pulls just as hard in team. Sider is a great all-around sled dog, and a truly great girl to have around.
These dogs, Tundra, Vixen, and Sider, are the foundation dogs for Sershan Samoyeds. Their detailed accomplishments, more pictures, and pedigrees can be found on their individual pages under ‘Boys’ and ‘Girls’.
We breed only once a year, with puppies available to just the right homes. Each litter is planned well in advance, with the goal of keeping at least one special puppy at home as a new Sershan Samoyed family member. We are quite grateful to those families that have opened their homes to a Sershan puppy, and appreciate the love and care they provide.
Sershan Samoyeds is very proud to note the accomplishments of some of our dogs from our litters to date; these are dogs that are either still at home with us, or shared with very special families.. Please go to the ‘Boys’ and ‘Girls’ pages for details and pictures of each of these dogs.
Foundation Litter – Tundra & Vixen – April, 2008
Please check our Puppies page for any upcoming litters we have planned