How can I choose the small dog that is right for me?
Amazing things most definitely come in small packages, and small dogs are one of them! This is a quick as well as convenient guide showcasing the main points to consider when selecting the right small dog for you!
Little, tiny, toy, small these are all terms used when typically talking about small dogs. They’re cute, cuddly and quiet (well some!). For what they lack in stature, they usually make up for in temperament! They all have different personalities much like we do, so it’s a good idea to do through research so you know what you are getting into!
A temperament similar to mine?
You should be looking for a dog that has a temperament similar to yours. Meaning if you live a rather sedentary lifestyle you shouldn’t choose a dog that is energetic as you are going to be in for a rude awakening and it won’t be fair for either of you.
So before you even start searching for a dog you, you need to figure out how much time you can and want to spend with it. Some will be at your feet every waking moment wanting to play or loved while others don’t mind be left alone as much and rather just chill out on the couch with you instead of going for a run at 6 am in the cold!
Do I have to exercise my dog?
Absolutely! It doesn’t matter on the size of the dog exercise is important for cardiovascular health much like for us! This goes back to the temperament of a dog that we spoke about earlier. Though for most smaller dogs (Not all of them!), a daily walk 15-20 minute walk is often enough for exercise. Depending on you and your dog and abilities to exercise joking, hiking, sprinting are all fun and healthy ways to hang out with your little pal. For example an American Eskimo or Jack Russell Terrier would be great for those types of endurance’s.
If you can’t manage to do that don’t worry, with some dogs you can even get their exercise by playing around in doors. Pugs or Shih Tzu are good examples of dogs that can get enough exercise from just that.
What size are you looking for in a small dog? One that fits in your purse, or maybe just your hand!
For a dog to be considered as a small dog breed they typically have to weigh less than 15, 20 or 25 lbs depending on the definition of the association at hand as they use different standards. The height of the dog is also considered as a requirement of a small dog, but by far associations seem to follow weight as a standard.
With that said, there are tons of different small dog breeds, for example we have the beagle that weighs in at 22-25 lbs with a height of 13″-16″. Some would consider this a mid size small dog. If you are looking for smaller dog you could take a look at the Australian Terrier which weights 6-7 lbs and stands between 9″-11″. Or if you prefer the opposite side of the spectrum in regards to size you could take a look at the English Cocker Spaniel weighing in at 26-34 lbs and a height between 14″-17″!
What about the trainability of small dogs?
All dogs can be trained to learn commands, though some dogs are faster than others. Depending on the type of small dog you get and the personality it has it may require quite a bit of patience!
Some of the more intelligent breeds can pick up on commands after five to six repetitions on average. Most also respond on the first time you call out the command, even if you don’t practice it all that often with them.
Don’t worry though even if you aren’t an amazing trainer these types of dogs can still learn fairly quickly. They can pick up in your mistakes in training and still learn commands. Depending on the amount of time you are willing to spend training your dog this might be a considerable factor in your selection.
A few great examples of dogs with known easily trainability includes breeds like the Dachshund, American Eskimo Dog, and the Border Terrier!
Many small dogs are known for having a low maintenance, learn why!
It doesn’t matter if you are a first time pet owner or a veteran, all dogs require some amount of maintenance. Taking in a new member to the family requires time, consideration and most of all care!
It is hard to give good examples on the maintenance levels of small dogs but studies show that ones that shed less typically require less overall care. So if you are looking for a dog that may require less overall maintenance you should check out some of the hypoallergenic dogs.
What about having small dog with children?
One of the most important questions we see people asking is how are small dogs around children? Well they are pretty much the same as any dog. Size isn’t really a factor as to how dogs act with children.
Though dogs can have a certain demeanor, most of the problems we tend to see happen with children are because of the children themselves not the dog! The fact is playing excessively rough and constantly teasing the dog is just giving a reason for the dog to snap back.
With that said the biggest obstacle with having children around small dogs is getting the child to understand what they can and what they cannot do when they are around it.
They can make great little watchdogs!
Maybe it is because of their statue, but most small dogs make amazing watchdogs. Through barking and growling you’ll know if someone is around your property that is for sure.
Most of the characteristics these dogs seem to have going for them are their intimidation factor (Yeah they can look scary when they want to!) and will to protect their family. Depending on where you live some people prefer to have these types of dogs around but remember they’ll be loud!
Though some breeds are better than others such as the American Eskimo Dog or the Jack Russell Terrier. When choosing a small dog this is typically one of the lesser important factors out of the bunch.
Small dogs in regards to shedding!
Many people don’t know that some dogs virtually don’t shed at all! While some shed like there is no tomorrow. If you hate vacuuming or using rollies on your clothes every time you leave the house maybe a dog with minimal shedding would be better for you.
For example the Bedlington Terrier would be an excellent choice for a dog with minimal shedding. While Boston Terrier would keep you very busy around the house cleaning once a day if you want to keep up with hair!
Sneezing? Allergies? Small dogs for the most part don’t cause them!
The biggest misconception people have about dogs in general is that dog hair causes allergies, but really it doesn’t. The problem is dog dander that create the problem. It is a small floating particle that we inhale or ends up landing in our eyes that causes the allergic affects.
Almost all dogs produce dander so there isn’t that much you can do about it unfortunately. Though the advantage of a smaller dog is they will produce less dander because of less skin area. Which in turn make the allergies more tolerable over a bigger dog.
It is now your turn!
Hopefully you have reviewed this comprehensive guide on how to choose a dog and you now have a better overall idea on what type of dog best matches your personality, needs and abilities. Take your time, write down the dogs that might be potentially for you and ask your self if you both have a similar temperament like we did in the beginning of this guide. If you think you too are similar, you might have a potential new little friend!
It is now your turn to take the next step. We wish you well on your dog searching journey and hope that our information here at Small Dog Breeds Information will guide you along you way!