Whether it’s because your apartment is small, you live in a crowded city, or you love the idea of having a lap dog, small dogs have always had a place in the hearts and homes of many pet owners. When I lived in NYC, I saw a lot of french bulldogs and pugs. I live in Portland, OR now and I don’t see as many small dogs but of the small breeds that I do see walking around, boston terriers seem to be the most common. I did some homework to find out which small breeds are popular among pet owners and, for lack of a better word, “trendy.” Here they are:
1: Bichon Frise – Generally this dog is about 9 to 12 inches tall, weighs around 10 pounds, and can live up to 15 years. The Bichon is a happy, charming, and independent dog. They are affectionate, playful, and energetic. They need to be groomed regularly and are prone to having tear stains due to discharge from the eyes. Bichons make good family pets and have enough energy to keep up with the kids in the house.
2: Boston Terrier – These tough pups grow to be about 12 to 14 inches tall, weigh anywhere between 12 to 20 pounds, and live up to 15 years. They have been popular since their creation and are “American Made.” They are very intelligent, tenacious, energetic, lovable, and stubborn. Training a Boston Terrier can be tough because so consistency is necessary. Their fur is short, sleek, and doesn’t require a lot of maintenance. They do shed and sometimes have skin problems and are sensitive to extreme temperatures. A winter jacket is a good investment as well as watching for sunburn and overheating during the summer months.
3: Chihuahua – The chihuahua is charming, tiny, and weighs between 3 to 6 pounds. They can live up to 17 years. They have a lot of personality, are fun loving, intelligent, and bold. Chihuahuas can fit into small spaces so it’s important to make sure your yard is secure. They are agile and athletic but also fragile. Chihuahuas tend to bond strongly with one person and tend to be reserved when meeting new people. Socialization at an early age will help them become more open and well-rounded.
4: Papillon – The papillon fits on your lap but is also extroverted and romps around making new friends. They are about 8 to 11 inches tall, weigh between 4 to 10 pounds, and can live up to 16 years. They are a happy, alert, and friendly. Generally, these dogs have been known to have a big attitude and will readily guard and rid your home of unwanted rodents. If you like taking long walks, jogging, and want a little friend to accompany you, a papillon can be a great choice. They require regular grooming to prevent tangles and mats.
5: Pug – “Big dog in a little body.” Pugs grow to about 12 inches tall, weigh between 14 to 20 pounds, and can live up to 15 years. The compact, sturdy body and wrinkled face is comical to some people and the dogs seem to have a sense of humor. They are playful and love games but they are also affectionate and like to be close to their humans. They love to be the center of attention and stubborn. Some may find a pug challenging to train and housebreak. They also shed a lot despite their small body and short fur. A good routine of exercise, high quality food, and wiping in between the wrinkles on their face will keep them happy and healthy.
Photos courtesy of Dogsonline.com