Small Dog Breeds



Tight on space in a condo or apartment, limited by weight restrictions, or just enjoy a smaller companion? Search our list of small breeds to find a dog that is just your size. Whether it’s a Chihuahua, Jack Rusell or a Havanese, these petite pups fit on your lap, under a plane seat and are easily portable. Don’t be fooled by their small stature thought, pint size doesn’t mean small personality.

Dachshund, Standard

SMALL DOG BREED

Dachshund, Standard

Short-legged dogs of the Dachshund type were once used in Europe to hunt badger and fox, as well as larger game. The dogs worked in packs and are reported to have been tenacious and keen-nosed in pursuit of their quarry.

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English Toy Spaniel

SMALL DOG BREED

English Toy Spaniel

After William of Orange ascended the British throne, the popularity of the King Charles Spaniel that had been the court favorite during the reign of Charles II waned, and little was heard of the breed until the mid-19th century.

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French Bulldog

SMALL DOG BREED

French Bulldog

Speculation is plentiful, but in all likelihood the French Bulldog originated from small Bulldogs brought to France by English lace workers. The Frenchie quickly became popular with both the upper and lower classes, and allegedly Parisian call girls, as well.

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Havana Silk Dog

Havana Silk Dog

In 2000, a small group of Havanese breeders in the United States set out to selectively breed dogs in order to “recreate” what they believed was the true native Cuban breed of old that was popular about 150 years ago.

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Havanese

SMALL DOG BREED

Havanese

The Havanese or Bichon Habanero, is a member of the bichon family of small companion-dog breeds, which are neither spaniels nor terriers. Native to Cuba, the Havanese likely arrived via trading ships.

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Italian Greyhound

SMALL DOG BREED

Italian Greyhound

The smallest of the sighthound breeds, the Italian Greyhound probably originated in Greece and Turkey some 2,000 years ago. An elegant toy breed measuring 13 to 15 inches at the shoulder, the Italian Greyhound is slender and graceful.

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Jack Russell Terrier

SMALL DOG BREED

Jack Russell Terrier

Fearless, happy and active aptly describe the Jack Russell Terrier. A working dog through and through, this tough, lively terrier is always on its toes, looking for the next activity or adventure. Its dark, almond-shaped eyes sparkle with life and intelligence.

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Japanese Chin

SMALL DOG BREED

Japanese Chin

Playful, agile and friendly, with a wonderful sense of humor, this breed makes a charming pet. A beautiful long-coated toy breed, the Japanese Chin was a favorite of the Japanese imperial family and was distinguished from other dogs by its royal status.

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Kyi-Leo

SMALL DOG BREED

Kyi-Leo

Although its heritage comes from dogs of Asian origin, the Kyi-Leo was made in the United Sates, resulting from crosses between Maltese and Lhasa Apso. This sturdy, shaggy little dog is active, alert and agile.

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Lakeland Terrier

SMALL DOG BREED

Lakeland Terrier

Typical of terriers everywhere, the stylish Lakeland has a confident, cock-of-the-walk attitude, not surprising in a descendant of working terriers bred to kill fox and other vermin that preyed on farmers' lambs and poultry in Britain's border county of Cumberland.

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Lhasa Apso

SMALL DOG BREED

Lhasa Apso

The Lhasa Apso, originating in the lonely and isolated reaches of the Himalayan mountains, reflects its Tibetan heritage in many characteristic ways. These sturdy little mountain dogs, relatively unchanged over the years, are fastidious by nature and are natural watchdogs.

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Longhaired Whippet

Longhaired Whippet

Longhaired Whippets came about when a Whippet breeder named Walter A. Wheeler Jr. set out to bring out a recessive longhaired gene lurking in the Whippet breed. He found success and introduced his new dogs to the public in the 1970s.

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Lowchen

SMALL DOG BREED

Lowchen

The Lowchen was once the cherished companion of nobility, as far back as the 15th century. The dogs are readily identified in European artworks, stylized and clipped to resemble a miniature lion.

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Maltese

SMALL DOG BREED

Maltese

The Maltese is among the gentlest mannered of all little dogs, and its trust and responsiveness are appealing. Art objects dating back 3,000 years depict this beautiful little dog, whose breed name may derive from the island of Malta or the Sicilian town of Melita.

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Manchester Terrier

SMALL DOG BREED

Manchester Terrier

Manchester, England, is a working man's town, and this breed was developed as a working man's terrier, pitted against rabbits and other vermin on the farm and against rats in the fights.

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Mi-Ki

SMALL DOG BREED

Mi-Ki

A fairly new breed developed in the 1980s, the Mi-Ki incorporates aspects of the Papillon, Maltese and Japanese Chin. A lap-loving companion, this tiny toy breed usually doesn't grow much taller than 11 inches at the shoulders.

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Miniature Pinscher

SMALL DOG BREED

Miniature Pinscher

Contrary to popular belief, this is not the miniaturized version of the Doberman Pinscher but a much older German breed that has been known in that country for at least 300 years.

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Miniature Schnauzer

SMALL DOG BREED

Miniature Schnauzer

The Miniature Schnauzer has bounced its way into the hearts and lives of thousands of admirers who love it for its engaging personality.

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Norfolk Terrier

SMALL DOG BREED

Norfolk Terrier

This drop-eared version of the Norwich Terrier, the Norfolk is a small, active teddy bear of a dog that is an amusing companion, easy to care for, and a good watchdog. Its background is identical to that of the Norwich.

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Norwich Terrier

SMALL DOG BREED

Norwich Terrier

Like its drop-eared sibling the Norfolk, the Norwich Terrier is game and hardy, a fun-loving family pet. This working terrier of East Anglia originated during the 19th century and was probably developed by crossing small specimens of the Irish Terrier with other short-legged terrier breeds.

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