The World's Smallest Dog Breeds

A Brussels Griffon.
A Brussels Griffon.

Domestic dogs come in different sizes, some as big as a small horse and others are so small in size that they could fit in a hand. Most of the smaller dogs are kept for companionship while the bigger dogs provide security as guard dogs for their owners. Small dog breeds may also be called toy dog breeds. 

12. Chihuahua

This is the smallest dog breed in the world, weighing between 4 to 6 pounds with a height of between 6 to 10 inches.

There only exists one breed of the dog with a lot of variations within thee breed. Differences have been observed in the types of coats, for instance, the color, texture, and length differ. There is also a difference in the shape of the heads, with some having a deer-shaped head while others have apple-shaped heads.

The dog requires very little care when it comes to grooming, but they need a lot of effort put into their training. The dog gets attached to one person, thus becoming very protective of that person. This trait makes them hostile to other people hence not appropriate for a family setting.

11. Brussels Griffon

This dog breed originates from Brussels in Belgium. The dog originally bred as a rodent hunting terrier is characterized by long legs and a short face. The dog weighs between 7-12 pounds and measures between 7-8 inches tall. The Brussels’ coat is either rough or smooth and occurs in different colors.

Regarding relationships, the dog connects with one person and does not like children. They, however, coexist peacefully with other animals making them ideal for a home with pets. The Brussel griffon smart, sensitive and stubborn a common trait among terriers.

10. Pomeranian

The Pomeranian is a joyful dog of the Spitz type variety. Pomeranians have the most coat colors of dog breeds;18 in total. The shades range from a common tan to black, white and other shades in between. Some of the breeds occur with a mixture of colors. This ball of fur has two layers of coats, an undercoat that is soft, dense, and short and an outercoat that is long, straight and coarse. With an undercoat that falls off twice in a year, the dog requires a lot of grooming.

Despite the work that goes into caring for the dog, it has a lot of perks that make the work worthwhile. The dog is smart, alert and extroverted which translates to being trainable. The Pomeranian if not trained, can be territorial and aggressive towards other dogs.

9. Yorkshire Terrier

The Yorkshire terrier originated in Yorkshire England as a ratter; it has however become popular as a companion dog. It is the sixth most popular companion dog breed and the most common toy breed.

The dog mostly weighs 7 pounds or under and measures about 6-9 inches in height. They have very long and luxurious coats which are hypoallergenic because they do not shed as much as other dogs. Even with the shading of less hair, the dogs require adequate grooming.

Despite being low-energy, the Yorkshire breed loves training. They thrive well with a few walks in a day and long cuddles on the couch. As is common with other terrier dogs, the Yorkshire doesn’t like other dogs, strangers, and children, something that can be easily changed with the right amount of training.

8. Russian Toy

The dog originated from Russia and was unknown outside this country until 1990. The dog has similarities with the Chihuahua, weighing between 2-6 pounds with a height of 7-11 inches. The other similarity is that it has two types of coats, smooth and long. It looks like the Papillon with the big ears that have feathered linings.

The Russian toy was intended for ratting which makes them very vocal. They are however very loyal and playful proving to be loving to children. These dogs are very smart and are known to enjoy being read to.

7. Miniature Pinscher

This dog that originates in Germany is an old breed that came about from interbreeding the Italian Greyhound, the dachshund and other breeds. The dog weighs anywhere between 8-10 pounds and stands at a height of 10-12 inches.

The dog is strong outgoing and assertive. Their athletic build and high energy makes them perfect for active owners. Because of its alertness it acts as a good watchdog.

6. Toy Fox Terrier

The Toy Fox terrier became a breed in 2003. The dog weighs between 3.5-9 pounds and stands at the height of 8.5-11 inches.

This dog is very energetic making them good companions for hiking activities, exploration and playing. The dog can also be described as speedy, bold, smart and highly trainable which is conducive for apartment dwellers.

5. Chinese Crested

This breed has very distinctive physical features. It appears to be naked, with no fur on its body except for the head, legs, and the tail. The dog stands about 11-12 inches tall and weighs between 10-1 pounds.Some dogs of this species have a full body of fur due to a recessive gene; such mutants are called powder puffs.

Despite the dog being athletic, it is low energy with a preference to cuddling. They are described as velcro dogs because of their immense bonding with the owners. The dogs are both social and needy of both attention and warmth.

4. Papillon

Also called phalène, the Papillon is a dog breed with ears that assume the shape of a butterfly. The ears are mostly upright but appear droopy in some dogs. They weigh about 7-10 pounds with a height of 8-12 inches.

If well socialized the Papillon interacts well with children, pets, and new people.

The dog is quiet vocal, intelligent and energetic. They enjoy being engaged in speed activities and intelligence tests.

3. English Toy Spaniel

The English Toy Spaniel (also called the King Charles spaniel) is a result of the interbreeding with dogs like the Japanese chin and the pug. The dog has long hair, a flat snout, and measures 10-11 inches and weighs 8-14 pounds.

This dog is playful, gentle good-natured and loyal to the owner to an extent where separation causes anxiety. They are low-energy dogs that prefer cuddling.

2. Affenpinscher

The Affenpinscher is a breed that originated from Germany whose name means “monkey-looking terrier” or the small mustached devil according to the French. Originally bred for rodent curbing, the dog weighs about 7-13 pounds and stands at 9-12 inches tall.

The Affenpinscher is a high energy dog which prefers daily walks. They are very curious and protective. Because of their stubbornness, they require proper training. The dog is highly territorial and does not do well with dogs.

1. Japanese Chin

This dog has existed for more than 1000 years as a companion dog, because of its friendly joyful nature. It weighs between 3-15 pounds and stands about 8-11 inches.

The dog bears resemblance to cats by its disposition, independence and posing in high places to get a view. The Japanese chin also washes its face with its paws just like the cat.

The breed is a loving family dog that is conserved around strangers but very cordial. They are known to mimic their owners’ personalities. They are a highly interested in learning new things and training.


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