Toy Dogs, World's Cutest Small Dog Breeds
Toy dogs are very popular in the USA. The term "Toy" refers exclusively to the size of dog. These breeds are feisty with a lot of personality wrapped up in a small package. They tend to rule the roost and are not afraid to stand up to larger dogs and are good at controlling people too! Small dog breeds are very loyal and protective of their surroundings but they do make ideal pets for apartments and condominims where space is limited.
Life Span of the Toy Dogs
Your toy dog puppy will be your companion for a great many years. The average life span for small dog breeds like the Pomeranians, Miniature and Toy Poodles, Shih Tzu and Yorkshire Terriers is around 15 years. So make sure your dog has a happy, healthy life.
List of Toy Dog Breeds
The Affenpinscher is thought to be related to the Brussels Griffon and the terrier but no one knows exactly where the breed originated. The affenpinscher grows to a maximum of 15 inches (38 cms) high and weighs approximately 8 lbs (3.6 kgs).Its facial features and ruffled hair imitates that of a monkey. It's coat is long and coarse but does not need excessive grooming. This toy dog was originally a hunter of mice, it's authoritarian and aggressive nature makes it an excellent guard dog. Not the best choice for families with small children.
As the name suggests this toy breed originated in Australia. Now considered as an affectionate companion dog it was once used as a hunter of small game. The puppies are born black and change color after 2 or 3 months. Their hair is straight and comes in blue-black or silver-gray with light sand or reddish-sand on the paws and muzzle. This toy dog is very active despite its short legs. The average height of the Australian Terrier is 10 inches (25 cms) and it weighs 10 - 11 pounds (4.5-5 kgs). This lively, affectionate dog is good with children and would be a great addition to an active family.
AUSTRALIAN SILKY TERRIER
This toy dog breed was developed in Australia by crossing the Yorkshire terrier and the Australian terrier. This lovable dog is always active and very affectionate. Its long hair, which is blue or silver-gray in color with areas of bright tan, is silky to the touch and beautiful, but can be hard work to maintain, so this dog needs frequent grooming. The Australian Silky Terrier is about 10 inches (25 cms) high and weighs about 10-11 lbs (4.5-5 kgs).
The Bichon Frisé was derived from the Maltese back in the 15th century. This toy breed is popular in Europe and America but had its hey day back in the Renaissance period where it was immortalized in several of Goya's paintings. This ball of fluff has a scissor bite, dark, round, intelligent eyes and floppy ears. It's long hair is fine and silky, usually all white in color but you may occasionally see brown or grey markings. The Bichon Frisé grows to a maximum height of 12 inches (30 cms) and weighs approximately 7 to 12 lbs (3-5 kgs). This toy breed has a strong temperment but is intelligent and affectionate. This dog would be a wonderful addition to any family.
BLACK AND TAN TOY TERRIER
The black and tan toy terrier was derived from breeding of the Manchester terrier in the 1800s. This active, affectionate, intelligent toy breed is a great companion dog as well as a terrific mouser. Measuring 10-12 inches (25-30 cms) in height and 6 to 8 lbs (2.7-3.6 kgs) in weight this dog's fur is thick and shiny and, as it's name suggest, black and tan in color.
The Brussels Griffon differs from the Belgian Griffon primarily due to its hair which is coarse, long and disheveled. It's coat which is red in color requires daily brushing and stripping twice a year. This toy dog breed is an avid mouser and will defend his home with incessant barking. A companion dog who is affectionate, lively, and intelligent.
COTTON DE TULEAR
This breed is similar to the Maltese and is named after the region it originates from in Tulear in Southern Madagascar. It was first brought to America in 1971. It's coat consists of long, heavy cottonlike hair which is white in color. This toy dog is an affectionate, loyal companion dog which is very attached to its owner and home surroundings. The bitches are a little smaller than the male dogs who weigh 8-9 lbs (4 kgs) and measure 12 inches (31 cms) in height. They have tireless energy and love wide open spaces and swimming.
The Chihuahua is the oldest breed in North America and the smallest breed in the world. As the name suggests, this toy breed originated in Mexico but is believed to have been introduced by the Chinese. The Chihuahua stands from six to nine inches(16-22 cm) high and weighs approximately two to six pounds(1-2.6 kg). The smaller dogs are the most popular.
This toy dog has an apple shaped head with a short pointed nose. It's distinctive eyes are round and black and it's ears are oversized for it's stature. There are two varieties of Chihuahua: a short haired variety and a long wavy haired variety. The most common colors are fawn, sand,chestnut, silver, or steel blue. Chihuahuas are very brave for their size, have lots of energy, and are extremely loyal and affectionate to their owners making them one of the favorite among toy dog lovers. This toy breed is a companion dog who likes to be the center of attention!
CHINESE CRESTED DOG
There is little known about the Chinese Crested Dog including it's origin. Although it has Chinese in its name it is not thought to have come from China. This virtually hairless dog has a tuft of hair on its skull and at the end of its tail and comes in a any color, some plain and others spotted. It weighs less than 10 lbs (4.5 kgs) and is about 12 inches (30 cm)high. Due to its lack of fur this companion dog prefers a warm environment. It is a good breed to choose if you have children as it is quiet and non aggressive.
CHINESE IMPERIAL CH'IN
As its name suggests the Chineses Imperial Ch'in was the exclusive property of the Chinese Imperial family until the early 1900s. The last empress of China kept 50 of these toy dogs in the throne room. Its origins come from the Chinese Temple dog, the Pekingese, and the Japanese spaniel. A companion dog by nature, it is the most regal, intelligent, sensitive dog that is very high maintenance. There are 4 sizes of Chinese Imperial Ch'in, the giant being the largest and the sleeve the smallest.
- The giant Chinese Imperial Ch'in measures 9-10 ins (23-25 cms) high and weighs 15 lbs (7kgs)
- The classic Chinese Imperial Ch'in measures 4-6 ins (10-15 cms) high and weighs 4-5 lbs (1.8-2.5 kgs)
- The miniature Chinese Imperial Ch'in measures 4 ins (10 cms) high and weighs 3-4 lbs (1.4-1.8 kgs)
- The sleeve Chinese Imperial Ch'in measures 3 ins (8 cms) high and weighs 1.5-2 lbs (.7-.9 kgs)
This is a very small dog indeed! It has a thick coat of cottony fur and comes in black and white, solid black, and on the rare occasion you might see a red one.
CHINESE TEMPLE DOG
Chinese Temple Dogs were so named because they were used for centuries as guardians of the temples. This dog belongs to the same family as the Ch'in. On one hand it is a gentle companion dog, and on the other, a barking watchdog if anyone approaches the door. Its large head, pug nose and strong teeth give it a distinctivly ferocious appearance. The Chinese Temple dog has long silky hair which is usually black and white in color. As with the Chinese Imperial Ch'in, there are 4 sizes of Chinese temple dogs, the giant being the largest and the sleeve the smallest.
- The giant Chinese Temple dog measures 12-14 ins (30-36 cms) high and weighs 20 lbs (9kgs)
- The classic Chinese Temple dog measures 10-12 ins (25-30 cms) high and weighs 10-15 lbs (4.5-6.8 kgs)
- The miniature Chinese Temple dog measures 4-5 ins (10-13 cms) high and weighs 4 lbs (1.8 kgs)
- The sleeve Chinese Temple dog measures 3 ins (7.6 cms) high and weighs 1.5-2 lbs (.7-.9 kgs)
ENGLISH TOY SPANIEL
Also known as the King Charles Spaniel after King Charles II, who promoted the popularity of the breed. There are four varieties of King Charles Spaniel, the true King Charles, which is black with areas of light fawn; the ruby,which is chestnut red; the Prince Charles, which is white, tan, and black, and the Blenheim which is red and white.
It is easy to fall in love with their large dark eyes and sweet expression. This toy breed measures 10 ins (25 cm) high and weighs 9 to 12 lbs (4.1 - 5.4 kgs) and is considered a companion dog that is somewhat timid in nature and does not require a lot of exercise.
It is thought that the Japanese spaniel is actually native to Korea and was only developed in Japan at a later date. It's popularity peaked in 1853 when a Japanese spaniel was given as a gift to Queen Victoria. This small companion dog is extremely devoted to its master, its almond shaped, dark expressive eyes are to die for and you'll easily fall in love with one of these puppies. The adult dog measures only 9 inches(30 cms) high and weighs 7 lbs(3.2 kg). Its long fur is white with black or red markings and will require some grooming to keep it in tip top shape. Unfortunately, this breed is known to be susceptible to distemper which is a serious viral illness that has no known cure.
The Lhasa Apso toy dog is named after the sacred city of Lhasa in Tibet. This furball has straight hard fur cascading from its head over its eyes, heavily feathered ears and tail, and a scarf of hair around its neck. The lhasa apso measures 10 to 11 inches(25-28 cms) in height and weighs 13 to 15 lbs (5.9-6.8 kgs). Female dogs are a little smaller than their male counterparts. This toy breed is affectionate with its master but does not tolerate rambunctious children who are rough and misbehaved. Its acute sense of hearing makes this breed a great guard dog as it will give an early warning if any strangers approach the property.
This toy breed was developed in Italy and its claim to fame is it's beautiful coat which is generally pure white. It's shiny, thick hair touches the ground and requires daily combing to keep it in tip top condition. The Maltese are approximately 8 to 10 ins (21-25 cms) high and weigh about 6-9 lbs (3-4 kgs). The Maltese is playful and intelligent, a classical companion dog who is devoted to his owner. This dog breed will give you many years of love and companionship often living as long as 18 years old.
MEXICAN HAIRLESS DOG
This toy dog breed is aptly named because it is native to Mexico and it does not have a coat, hence the name "Mexican Hairless Dog". It's skin in reddish gray in color and the puppies are born pink. One of the larger toy dog breeds the Mexican Hairless Dog can weigh up to 20-30 lbs (9.1-13.6 kgs) and measure 20 inches (50 cm) high. It's batlike ears stand upright and are about 4 inches long. This very intelligent dog is known for its ability to bark and therefore, makes the perfect watchdog which is very protective of its owner and surroundings.
The name papillon in French means butterfly. This toy breed gets its name from its fringed ears which stand erect, wide open, and turned to the sides giving the impression of butterfly wings. The papillon, also called a Continental Toy Spaniel, is an elegant dog that makes a quiet, obedient companion. This toy dog breed is good with children. The Papillon is strong despite its small stature and requires more exercise than the average companion breed. It measures about 11 inches (28 cms) high and weighs 9 to 10 lbs (4.1-4.5 kgs). This toy dog comes in variations of black, white and brown and requires careful grooming to keep them looking their best.
The Pekingese was the favorite dog of the imperial family in Peking and was brought to Europe in 1860 by the British and French soldiers who found them in the ruins of the Summer Palace. Pekingese measure 6-9 inches (30-45 cms) in height and weighs approximately 8-10 lbs (3.6-4.5 kgs). This small dog breed is recognisable for its wide set, slightly prominent eyes and wrinkled muzzle. Its hair is long and thick with lots of feathering. The Pekingese is extremely affectionate but sensitive with its owner and suspicious of strangers. Popular among apartment dwellers, the Pekingese are both fiercely loyal and obedient. They are very courageous for their size and will bark loudly when visitors come to the door.
When Pomeranian puppies are first born they are very tiny and delicate. The breed was first developed in a region in Prussia called Pomerania, hence their name. They are very protective of their owners and home and will bark at strangers making them very efficient guard dogs. Full grown dogs grow to a maximum height of 12 inches(30 cm) and an average weight of 11 pounds(5 kg). Pomeranians come in a variety of colours including black, white,red,orange or grey. Their fur is long and thick and requires a great deal of brushing to keep it looking its best. These lively, cheerful pomeranians make excellent companion dogs and will let you know when strangers come knocking at your door!
Originally from Tibet and brought to Peking in the 17th century. Its thick beard and mustache gives it a lionine appearance. Shih-Tzus grow to a maximum height of 10.5 inches (27 cms), weigh up to 14 pounds (6.4 kgs) and have a lifespan of about 15 years. It's coat, which can be any color, is comprised of long thick hair that requires daily grooming. The Shih-Tzu is a typical companion dog that wants to be treated like royalty. This breed is gentle with children as long as they are not too rambunctious.
This toy dog breed is also known as the Sidney terrier. The silky terrier is named for it's hair which is 5 to 6 inches long and fine as silk which needs to be brushed regularly to keep it looking beautiful. The silky terrier measures 9 inches (22.5 cms) high and weighs from 9-11 lbs (4-5 kgs) and comes in blue and fire red, or grey blue and fire red. Considered a companion dog even though it has the natural instict for catching mice, this toy breed is lively, intelligent and loves to be around people.
SMALL CONTINENTAL SPANIEL
The small continental spaniel originated from Italy during the Renaissance period. This elegant lively toy breed is a great companion dog who loves to travel with its owner. The small continental spaniel measures up to 11 inches (28cms) high and should weigh anywhere from 5.5 to 10 lbs (2.5 - 4.5 kgs). Fall in love with its dark, expressive almond shaped eyes and long ears. These dogs come in a variety of colors including red, yellow, bicolor and tricolor.
The toy terrier is a result of repeated crossings amongst the smallest Manchester terriers. This tiny dog is small enough to fit in the pocker of a woman's fur coat. The toy terrier grows to a maximum height of 10 inches (25 cms) and weighs approximately 5.5 lbs (2.5 kgs). This toy dog has a thick, smooth shiny coat that is all black, or black and tan in color. The toy terrier is bold despite its diminutive size, affectionate with its owner but suspicious of strangers. This companion dog, however, has maintained its hunting instincts and is no friend of the mouse population!
TOY FOX TERRIER
The toy fox terrier is a direct descendent of the English fox terrier. Although it is considered a companion dog it has not forgotten its terrier instincts and will attack mice and small animals. The toy fox terrier is curious by nature and has an intelligent, pleasant, and sensitive personality. Their coats are white with black or chestnut markings. This terrier is approximately 10 inches high (25 cms) and weighs 3.5 to 7 lbs (1.5 to 3 kgs).
One of the most popular of the Toy breeds. Originally bred by miners in Yorkshire, England to address the over population of rats in the mine shafts.
The Yorkshire Terrier or Yorkie, as it is often called, which measures 9 inches high and weighs at most 8 lbs, is an excellent watch dog despite it's small size. The Yorkie requires plenty of exercise and likes to go on brisk walks with their owner, keep the dog on leash, though, as it can be aggressive towards other small animals.
It's coat is composed of long, straight, shiny, silky, hair that is steel blue in color with golden areas on the head, chest and legs. This toy dog needs regular grooming to keep it looking its best. They do feel the cold in winter so bundle them up in a nice woolen jacket to keep them warm.
Yorkshire terriers are considered loyal and trustworthy, protective of their owners and leary of strangers. This toy dog is easy to take care of due to their small size and hypo allergenic coat. Yorkshire terriers are often used as companion and show dogs.