New Addition to The Team – Mullum Road Clinic’s First Arctic Breed

My name is Kathleen, I am a psychologist who is looking forward to starting at Mullum Road Clinic in February 2020. I am excited to be completing the Animal Assisted Therapy training with my Samoyed, Luna-Bell.

Samoyeds are known for their soft white fluffy coats and look a little like clouds with paws. As they are an arctic breed, their fluff keeps them warm in the snow. Originating from Siberia in Russia, the Samoyede people bred Samoyeds to help pull sleds in the snow and herd reindeer. Samoyeds are lively, friendly and intelligent family dogs and are famous for their happy expression and trademark “Sammy smile”.

Now you may be thinking, how on earth do you keep an arctic breed cool in a hot place like Australia?

Don’t worry, we use air conditioning! The Samoyed coat is double layered, the inner layer of fur keeps them warm during the winter, and the outside layer keeps the cold snow away from their skin. Their outer coat also protects them from the heat of the sun, allowing their skin to stay cool. It is important with such a fluffy coat, that Samoyeds are regularly combed and groomed.

During harsh summer days, Luna-Bell is known to hide out in the bathrooms and lay on the floor of the dry shower on the cool tiles. She enjoys eating small blocks of ice and licking frozen pupsicles made of a mixture of greek yogurt and manuka honey. In the summer evenings while watering the garden, Luna-Bell has been spotted chasing and jumping at the stream of water intended for the plants. On perfect summer days, she also enjoys visiting the beach to make new friends and go for a swim in the ocean.

Luna-Bell is 18 months old, loves being around people and usually greets everyone she meets with her beautiful Sammy-smile. She enjoys making new friends (humans and animals alike) and loves giving high fives. Luna-bell and I delight in exploring on walks together in local reserves and will often visit our local Bunnings and pet shop. We are looking forward to joining the team, I am sure we will both be smiling when we meet!