Best small dog breeds

Best small dog breeds
May 15, 2019

Top 10 smallest dog breeds

In recent years, small breeds are in vogue, and that pretty much began because of the celebrities from different fields - artists, films, fashion. Many actresses and models wear them as ornaments in shiny bags or pockets, it’s highly trendy to give small dogs bizarre hairstyles and decorating them with different accessories. This fashion or "glamour" is already widespread among others because these puppies do not require special care, they do not need much space and bring a lot of joy to children and adults.

Toy size or small dog also make for the perfect travel companions. So, if you travel regularly, you won’t need to leave these little guys (or girls) at home, they can join you for the ride! 

Each small dog breed has their own distinctive personality, so, it is important that you consider this before just making the decision on a new pet based on how cute they are, how in trend they are, or how many Instagram followers they will get you!
 Often the small size of these dogs makes them look pretty fragile. But the truth is that these are really tough animals whose lifespan, often reaches fifteen years or more. There are cases of Bichon Frise or Chihuahuas who have lived up to 19-20 years. On the flip side, there are some small dog breeds which suffer from debilitating health conditions – such as pugs and French Bulldogs. 

Make sure you are fully aware of all of the potential genetic health conditions which your pets may face. 

1. Chihuahua


A champion among the smallest dogs in the world is without a doubt the Chihuahua, one of the oldest breeds in the world. It originates from the time of the Aztecs and was sacred to the Incas. Usually, these creatures do not exceed a weight of 3 kg, and their height is between 15 and 23 cm. There are also much smaller representatives, entered in the Guinness book of records, like the puppy Dhaka, weighing 621 grams and height 12 cm. This breed is a cheerful, playful, and does not leave anyone indifferent to its beauty. However, Chihuahuas can be slightly wayward but always strongly attached to their owners. You can expect chihuahuas to be very loyal and affectionate with their owners but testy if they don’t receive enough attention. Eventually, the lack of emotional stimulation and attention makes them jealous, but not malicious. Unlike other small breeds, the Chihuahua has a much stronger psyche. They may need some convincing ot to challenge much larger dogs!

The smallest dog in the world by height is Milly, Chihuahua dog breed, her height is 9.65 Cm

2. Yorkshire Terrier

Yorkshire Terrier

According to most popularity rankings, second place in popularity and lovability belongs to the Yorkshire terrier. The Yorkie reaches a weight of 3.1 kg and an average height of 22 cm. This breed is a favourite of many celebrities and is particularly popular. They are gentle and smart, but with plenty of characters – after you spend a fair bit of time with this breed you will understand just why they are so popular. Just because they are small, that doesn’t mean that they don’t have plenty of energy to burn. They need exercise and if you have a yard, do not be surprised if they dig a hole in your garden! With that in mind, paved gardens are best when you have a Yorkie around. But could you ever be mad at that face?  These dogs are energetic, inquisitive and bold. Thanks to the ingenuity and intelligence, the Yorkshire terrier easily and quickly learns commands. This breed was created in the late 19th century by workers in the mines in Yorkshire, Nottingham, to catch mice and rats. But thanks to its small size, cute appearance, cheerful disposition and quick wit, it charmed the British and became a member of the wealthy families. The coat of a York looks like human hair in its structure. It is constantly growing but rarely falls which is good news for anyone who doesn’t want to find hair around the house. These tiny dogs have excellent hearing and are very courageous, always ready to guard their masters – even if their masters are significantly bigger than them. When it comes to other dogs, they can be temperamental and often throw themselves against much larger dogs – they seriously take protecting their owners very seriously. The smallest specimen of this breed is Lucy from New Jersey, whose weight was only 1.14 kg!

3. German Spitz

German Spitz

Most often in third place in the top 10 smallest breeds is placed the Pomeranian Spitz with its height of 18-22 cm and weight 3.5 kg. The name of the breed comes from the field Pomerania in Germany. In 1870 Spitz arrived in England and people began to develop the mini format of the breed. Pomeranian Spitz is the smallest representative of the breed Spitz while others are large enough to pull sledges in the Arctic! These dogs were the favourite of Queen Victoria and the aristocracy in general – so you can imagine that their behaviour is fitting for royalty!  The breed is clever, benevolent, sociable and truly brave and ready to defend their owners. Because it is very intelligent, this dog is easily amenable to training unlike most of the other Spitz breeds. This makes them perfect for dog owners who do not have all too much experience with dog training. The Pomeranian Spitz has a very strong sense of self-worth, so you’ll always need to ensure that you treat the breed with the utmost respect. In general, the breed is friendly and fun, strongly attached to its master and therefore suspicious of strangers. This makes it not only a good companion but a reliable guard. The appearance of the breed seems larger than its given size, due to the fluffy fur. They are real feather toys! Pomeranian Spitz coexists well with other animals but manifests a desire to be a leader among them.

4. Japanese Chin

Japanese Chin

The Japanese Chin is a decorative breed that was once very popular in Chinese and Japanese imperial yards and was considered a talisman of the emperors. It was forbidden to be sold to foreigners – thankfully it isn’t just the elite who can own this bred now. On average the Japanese Chin weighs between 1.8 and 4 kg, and its height ranges from 20 to 27 centimetres. This is a playful, sociable and cheerful dog with a calm temperament and excellent character. Easy to train, quickly learns even complex commands without much effort. It is believed that this breed has appeared 3000 years ago in China. A couple of years later, these dogs were imported to Japan, where they were crossed with Tibetan Spaniel. It is charming, loving and devoted to their owners. This breed is very suitable for single people and is ideal for an apartment. The Japanese Chin is cheerful, unassuming, quiet and did not need much space. It never bites nor barks. This is a faithful animal that act friendly with other pets of the family.

5. Continental Toy Spaniel

Continental Toy Spaniel

The Papillon (French - Butterfly) is an elegant breed with thin bones. The size is 20-28 cm and weight 2 to 4.5 kg. These flattering dogs are strongly attached to people. They do not tolerate yelling or harsh treatment. During the training, it’s enough to praise them and encourage them – if you have a strong and loud personality, this dog may not be for you. For the first time, this breed is mentioned in XI-XII centuries, and its bloom is associated with the reign of King Louis XIV, Marie Antoinette and Madame de Pompadour. The coat is beautiful, straight, silky and abundant falling. There are two types Papillon - with falling and with protruding ears. These dogs are resourceful, playful, gentle and do not bite, even to defend themselves. They are strongly attached to the 

6. American fox terrier

Toy Fox Terrier, also called American fox terrier has two types of breed  Fox Terrier (Wire) and Fox Terrier (Smooth)

Fox Terrier (Wire)

 Fox Terrier Wire

Fox Terrier (Smooth)


This breed is the result of crosses between Italian Greyhound, Chihuahua, Smooth Fox Terrier and English toy terrier. Representatives of this breed can weigh between 1.5 and 3.5 kilograms and their height varies between 16 and 25 centimetres. The Toy fox terrier is a smart and active dog that succumbs to training and can respond to a large number of commands. They are cheerful, loving and infinitely loyal animals, excellent companions. This breed is a perfect helper if you want to get rid of rodents in your home. The representatives of the breed can easily be grown in small homes and apartments but need daily walks to keep the good mental and physical shape. These dogs do not like water nor cold weather, their fur does not need special care and is maintained very easily. So, if you are looking for a low maintenance dog which will be hardy enough to take on adventures, you won’t go far wrong with a terrier – just make sure that those adventures don’t spill into the water! 

7. Maltese


The Maltese have a small body covered with long, soft fur, coloured white or cream. The height is about 22-25 cm and weight of 3-4 kg. The representatives of the breed are kind, intelligent and playful. They love to be the centre of attention and build a strong relationship with a person of the family. Cynologists believe that this is one of the oldest breeds. A feature of this little dog is its snow white colour and soft fur. Once Maltese was popular among hunters, but after hundreds of years in the hands of kings and aristocrats, this dog became purely decorative. The Maltese is especially popular in recent years and is fashionable to walk with it in your hands. It looks like a small fluffy toy, but its long beautiful hair really does not need special care.

8. Shih-Tzu

Shih Tzu

Shih-Tzu is probably one of the best dogs for owning if you live in a small flat. It is an ancient Tibetan breed which has an incredibly long history and plenty of notoriety amongst royals. The breed is clever, loving and easily trained – this makes breed perfect for first-time owners. It is also proud and bold, independent dog with high self-esteem. Its height is between 22 and 27 cm and weighs between 4 and 7 kg. Until the early 20th century, this breed was “reserved” for Chinese officials. Now everyone can possess a Shih-Tzu. The dog is charming and cheerful, it loves people and always seeks their attention.

9. Bichon Frise

Bichon Frise

This white ball of fur is 23 and 30 cm high and weighs between 2.5 and 5.5 kg. It is a charming, friendly and smart dog that will be an excellent companion for you kids, the whole family and other animals. You should not ignore this cub because it will suffer and wither. Bichon frize is always fun and enjoy life. This is a healthy dog with a pleasant voice. The coat is long and curly. There is an opinion that Spanish sailors brought this breed of Tenerife. Other cynologists do think that Phoenician sailors brought them to Europe.

10. Russian Toy Terrier

Russkiy Toy

The Russian Toy Terrier is also an ornamental dog that weighs not more than 3 kg. The height is slightly bigger than that of Chihuahua - 20-28 cm. This breed is divided into two types: long and short haired. In the last century, the Russian toy terrier was a very popular decorative dog. This noble dog likes to sleep in the arms of its master but also needs short but active games. It has a strong character, a lot of energy and bright temperament. This is a bold puppy ready to protect its owner, regardless of its small size.

According to the dimensions and weight in the top 10 of the smallest breeds of dogs could be included also  Chinese crested dog,  Brussels griffon,  Boston terrier,  Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Pekingese and more.