What Is the Littlest Dog?

by Naomi Millburn
    "I'm small, sure, but that doesn't mean I'm not sassy."

    "I'm small, sure, but that doesn't mean I'm not sassy."

    Duncan Smith/Photodisc/Getty Images

    Many tiny dogs roam our vast planet, from Yorkshire terriers to Pomeranians and beyond. All of these canines are diminutive, and it's pretty hard to deny their cuteness. However, in terms of sheer smallness, no other breeds can compete with the littlest dogs around -- the Chihuahuas of Mexico.

    Littlest Dogs

    Chihuahuas are the smallest breed of canines on Earth, says DogChannel.com. These toy doggies usually weigh a maximum of 6 pounds, according to the American Kennel Club. Pomeranians are another extremely tiny breed, similar to Chihuahuas; these furry guys, however, usually weigh somewhere between 3 and 7 pounds.

    World Record

    World records for the littlest dogs are often held by Chihuahuas. A specific example involves Boo Boo, who was given the distinction of being the planet's smallest pooch by Guinness World Records in 2008. The Kentucky-based long-haired Chihuahua is a mere 4 inches in height -- significantly shorter than the majority of other members of her wee breed. Most Chihuahuas achieve heights between 6 and 9 inches, according to the "Animal Planet" website. Males and females of the breed generally grow to similar heights.

    Chihuahua Basics

    The dainty physical size isn't the only noteworthy factor of Chis. These cuties pack a lot of charm into their small physiques, with typically vigilant, smart, friendly and sweet temperaments. Because they're so little, their physical fitness needs aren't as high as those of many other canine breeds. However, they are lively creatures and still need regular walks once per day. Urban life is often a suitable fit for these wee pooches. Chihuahuas exist with two distinct varieties of coats -- some have long hair, others have short. Longevity is a strong suit for the breed, as with many other small breeds; Chihuahuas often live anywhere from 14 to 18 years.

    Other Little Dogs

    Chihuahuas, Pomeranians and Yorkshire terriers aren't the only little dogs around. Other examples of especially tiny breeds and types include Maltese, papillons, Lhasa apsos, toy poodles, shih tzus, Pekingese, pugs and Japanese chins. If you live in a small apartment or condominium, a smaller dog might be more appropriate for your home environment. Always carefully take your living circumstances into consideration before bringing a dog into your life, whether a Chihuahua, golden retriever or anything else.

    Photo Credits

    • Duncan Smith/Photodisc/Getty Images

    About the Author

    Naomi Millburn has been a freelance writer since 2011. Her areas of writing expertise include arts and crafts, literature, linguistics, traveling, fashion and European and East Asian cultures. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in American literature from Aoyama Gakuin University in Tokyo.

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