Being very portable, easily adaptable to different climates and more affordable in maintenance, it is no wonder that small breed dogs are growing in popularity.

Small breeds are also noted for being lively and energetic, but won't knock you down then they play.

They also make terrific pets for apartments as well as fantastic companion dogs as well. People living alone or the elderly especially prefer to have smaller breeds.

If you are thinking of choosing a small breed for your canine companion then the following small dogs are popular choices, and each will bring something a little different to your life...

Daschunds

Dachshund small breed

The Dachshund is a breed with a very unique look! This sausage like breed is hugely popular, and has many great traits, but you need to know a few things about them before you choose one...

  • The Dachshund is famously loyal to their owners, and is playful, funny and happy in the home.
  • It is usually very good with other pets in the home, and it is quite common to have 2 or more Dachshunds happily living together.
  • Socialization is key for the Dachshund. This breed is well known to be uncertain around strangers, and other dogs, but if properly socialized at an early age this can be prevented.
  • Ideal for older people, the Dachshund only needs moderate exercise, a hiking dog this is not!
 

Shih-Tzu

Shih-tzu little breed

With its variety of hair do options (see photo above) the Shih-Tzu is a very distinctive, and snazzy little breed. They are a very popular breed for senior citizens, and like other small breeds are ideal for apartment life. Here are a few facts that every potential Shih -Tzu owner should know...

  • While small, they are quite a sturdy and strong breed, and enjoy to play with people and dogs.
  • They are less barky and yappy than other small breeds. If you like it quiet the Shih-Tzu is well suited to you.
  • They are a low shedding breed, making them a better choice for those with allergies.
  • Be prepared for plenty of grooming. The Shih-Tzu requires regular brushing and combing, and there are many options for how you can 'fashion' their coat.
 

Yorkshire Terrier

Yorkshire Terrier little breed

The Yorkshire Terrier is arguably the most popular small breed. They come in two sizes, small or extra small, and are an elegant and graceful breed, but also playful and happy. A potential Yorkie owner needs to consider a few things before choosing this breed...

  • Though more energetic than most small breeds, the Yorkie does not require long walks, but a good play is important.
  • This is a slim and delicate breed, and is not ideally suited to rough play.
  • They are a low shedding breed, one of the best for allergy sufferers.
  • They are famed for their lush coat, with can be kept long or short. But either way it requires regular care.
 

Pug

Pug smallest breed

The Pug is famed for its funny face, happy nature, and chubby body. They bring a lot of happiness to their home, but they require more care than the average breed, and it is important to be prepared before you pick your Pug puppy....

  • While small, the Pug is a sturdy and solid breed, and enjoy play, bouncing about and being silly. They are well known for enjoying rough play with other dogs.
  • They bring a lot of laughter and joy to their homes with their silly, fun loving nature.
  • The Pug requires only moderate exercise, and it is important not to overly exercise in extreme weather, especially when very hot...
  • The Pug is prone to medical issues. Breathing difficulties are the most obvious. But it is important to know that while cute, the Pug is not a perfectly formed dog, and may require care, especially in later life.
  • The Pug's coat may be short, but they are a BIG and CONSTANT shedder.
 

Chihuahua

Chihuahua small breed

The Chihuahua is probably the most famous of the little dog breeds. And it is fair to say that is has developed a negative, and unfair reputation, by some. Here are the true facts about this breed.

  • The Chihuahua can be yappy, nippy and badly behaved. But ONLY if spoiled or badly bred or raised. A properly socialized Chihuahua, that isn't regularily carried around or pampered, should be much more even tempered.
  • The Chihuahua prefers a sunnier and warmer climate.
  • They are very loyal and affectionate with their owners.
  • In the home they are famous for their silly, quirky and happy nature. They are very much an entertaining breed.
  • They have a lower exercise need than most breeds.
 

Pros and Cons of Owning a Small Breed...

If you are considering having a little bundle of love in your home, then these are a few things you should think about first....

  • PRO Smaller dogs tend to have a longer life expectancy and not subjected to health concerns of big dogs such as hip dysplasia or arthritis.  The Chihuahua is a famous example of a famed healthy breed. However it doesn't mean they are problem free - Patella luxation and dental problems are 2 areas where small dogs tend to be more prone.
  • PRO - If you want to travel with your dog, a smaller breed is much more pratical.
   

  • CON Small Dog syndrome! - Don't treat you little furball like a VIP, carrying them about and allowing them to get their own way. They require proper training and socialization just like any other big breed.
  • CON - If you have kids a small breed can be an ideal companion. But they do tend to me more delicate than bigger dogs, so it is important that your children and taught to play gently with the dog.
   

The Reputed Smallest Dog Ever...

One of the claiments for the smallest dog in history was a tiny Yorkshire Terrier from Blackburn, England. At two years of age and fully grown this little Yprkie was an incredible 2.5 inches (6.35 cm) tall by 3.75 inches (9.5cm) long! He weighed only 4 ounces (113grams)! He was approximately the size of a matchbox.

Gotta love that face.... Yorkie

If there are any smaller dogs out there, they are going to be seriously tiny!