According to the Samoyed Club of America, there is no real miniature Samoyed. The actual breed of dog that is often mistakenly called the "miniature Samoyed" is the Japanese Spitz. While some claim the Japanese Spitz is a descendant of the Samoyed, this belief is controversial. The Japanese Spitz was first attested to in the late 1800s.
The Japanese Spitz is indeed a small dog, reaching a height of 12 to 15 inches and a weight of 11 to 20 pounds. The Japanese Spitz has very similar traits to the Samoyed, but it has a very strong-willed character, so a firm hand is needed to teach it who the "leader of the pack" is. The Japanese Spitz is also a good watchdog just like the Samoyed. It is also very eager to please its masters. On the other hand, it can be rather wary of strangers, so people must approach it gently on their first encounter.
The coat of the Japanese Spitz doesn't have an unpleasant odor; it is easily maintained, and it sheds less than the coat of the Samoyed. A Samoyed dog needs to live in a home with a yard, but the Japanese Spitz is happy in an apartment as long as it gets opportunities to run off-leash.