Around eight years ago, I was going through a bad patch, and in my infinite wisdom, I decided that I absolutely needed to have a dog to help me weather this difficult period.

Having read quite a bit about dog breeds on the internet, I felt immensely knowledgeable on the subject, and decided that doubtlessly, a Samoyed would be right the breed for me. So I just went and chose a puppy from a litter advertised by a “breeder” in a local paper, and took him home.




Around four months later, I noticed that Kovi was in continuous pain, and leaning against walls, as though he could not support his own weight. Kovi was around six months of age at the time. X-Rays revealed that he had severe hip dysplasia -in both hips. He was in so much pain, that the vet decided not to wait till he got slightly older to  operate on him, as would normally be advisable. So the vet first operated on one hip, and a few weeks later the other.

Following that, Kovi started showing signs of severe aggression. I happened to find out that at least one of his siblings had exactly the same issues – hip dysplasia and aggression – and also got to know that at the time there was a whole crop of Samoyeds in Malta, all with hip dysplasia and with aggressive traits. Everyone advised me to put him down. I refused.

I learnt all I could about dogs and dog training from books. I took Kovi to a training school. I used to meet up with the chief instructor at the school almost on a daily basis, to learn as much as possible from him.

Everyone told me that because he was a Samoyed, and because of his problems, he would be impossible to train. Yet the only time I entered him in one of the Obedience competitions the club organised, he won the competition. And he became substantially less aggressive.




Kovi is now over eight years old. He does not walk well (you can see the defect in his back legs in the above photo). But he is alive, well, and happy.

I started this blog for a very simple reason. I wanted to share what I learnt about dogs, to help dogs and their masters enjoy their relationship to the full. I hope you enjoy this blog, and look forward to your comments and suggestions.



6 thoughts on “Home

  1. anna muscat

    what u did with this dog is amazing considering the state he was in so I congratulate you for your courage to keep Kovi and your help towards others with similar problems starting from me. thankyou anna

    Liked by 1 person

  2. joseph muscat

    allow me to give my thoughts . your best advice on this breed would be ”not to be bred at all in malta”,they are cold weather dogs and not suitable for our climate, same as st.bernards, they can only suffer and we dog lovers wont be happy, seeing them in such pain..


  3. Hi Joseph, thanks for sharing your thoughts. Yes, I agree with you, these breeds are not well suited for Malta, and both the decision to get a dog and the decision as to which breed were hasty, ill-thought out, spurious decisions on my part to say the least.


  4. Jerry Polidano

    Dear Andrea, You were misfortunate to purchase a puppy that had been bred from parents that carried out the faults into the siblings.
    I admire your love for keeping him on and nurturing him to his needs and making him the dog he is today. However being a Northern breed does not make him out of our climate in Malta, any northern country has high temperatures in summer, dogs of this kind have a coat suitable for both weather conditions, it is very dangerous when the so clever groomers agree into shaving such breeds that can become harm to the dog, if you wear a true fur coat only weaved not underlined, you will notice that the coat is breathable and can cope in many conditions, and be comfortable wearing it, not saying they are too happy when the temperature is above 30’s as not even a human without cloths is happy, but they have the coat that is suitable for all conditions.
    Again However The samoyed was one of the first dogs as a new pure breed to see in sanctuaries needing a home. Today, they are rarely seen and only bred to the few good healthy dogs we have to the owners choice of achieving his dream dog, others are sold of abroad. It is when you sell to buyers that are not dedicate that the problem starts, in your case, you were a great owner to admire. Hope he lives on to his ripe old age, in the less pain he has to.


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