For big-dog people, toy breeds might all seem the same. But just like other pet parents, people with small dogs spend a lot of time picking out the right breed for them. And that choice says a lot about them. So settle in for a laugh and find out what your toy breed says about you.
Pomeranians are perky little puffballs whose legs always seem to be moving a mile a minute. The AKC calls them “lively, bold, and inquisitive — the prototypical personality breed.” And anyone who has ever lived next door to one knows they are spunky little dogs who know how to use their voices. What they might not know is just how smart Pomeranians are.
Yes, Pomeranians are smart and not afraid to assert themselves, even with bigger dogs. You might be tempted to think your neighbor who walks the prancing Pomeranian is a pushover who likes prissy little dogs, but you’d be wrong. Don’t be fooled by their good looks — Pomeranians are tougher than they look, and their owners probably are, too.
Few dogs are more widely recognized than the Chihuahua. From fast-food commercials to Paris Hilton’s purse, these little guys are everywhere, and they have a reputation for being full of ‘tude. Even Chihuahua lovers know these dogs seem to be confused about their size.
“They have a Napoleon-like attitude and often get themselves in a bind because they don’t believe that they are as small as they really are,” says Kyle Potts, the president of the Chihuahua Club of America.
He adds, “They are inquisitive, highly intelligent, and deeply devoted to their people. They tend to be quite snobbish to strangers, however.”
From the outside, though, Chihuahuas are often seen as nervous, snappish little dogs. (You’d probably be nervous, too, if even the family cat was bigger than you!) And their tiny bladders can be hard to house train. It’s no wonder that if you are “owned by a Chihuahua,” as Potts puts it, some people might think you’re just as nervous and high-strung as your dog. So if you find your neighbors are guarding their ankles around you and your dog, just assure them that you’ve both been raised right.
Described by the American Kennel Club as “proud, active, and very smart,” the Poodle — in this case the Toy size — is full of surprises. Upon initially meeting one, the Toy Poodle may seem like just another pretty face, but they rank right up there with Border Collies and German Shepherds in the brain department.
But let’s be honest, nothing says “elegance” quite like a Poodle, possibly because we’ve all had years of being conditioned by cartoons to associate Poodles with high-class women and fancy haircuts. So don’t be surprised if your neighbors tend to mind their manners around you. With a Poodle by your side, you can’t blame people for thinking you need to be impressed.
Everyone loves a Pug, with their squished little faces and curly tails. Described by the AKC as “even-tempered, charming, mischievous, and loving,” the Pug is a fun little pooch, whose snoring might keep owners up at night. To outsiders, Pugs seem a bit like smaller versions of Bulldogs, but owners know they’re a breed unto themselves.
No matter what breed we’re talking about, a wrinkly face just begs to be squeezed like the rosy cheeks of a chubby kid. Their spunky demeanor also lends a bit of a clownish aura to everyone around them. So don’t be surprised if your neighbors hang around your hedgerow looking for a laugh.
If you’re anything like me, you probably can’t tell as Shih Tzu from a Lhasa Apso, but the people who love these little dogs are especially enthusiastic about them. (You can tell this because of the bumper stickers on their cars.) But I do know that they look a lot like the “GoGo My Walkin’ Pup” toy I had as a kid. According to Jo Ann White from the American Shih Tzu Club, the dogs are “affectionate, friendly, very sturdy for their size, and sometimes a tad stubborn.”
Shih Tzus, though, are most notable for their luxurious, often high-maintenance coats and the cute little topknots on their head. With a coat like that, you can’t blame strangers for assuming you might be quite fastidious, not only because Shih Tzus don’t shed much and help keep your house relatively hair-free, but because keeping that little topknot in place takes a kind of dedication the rest of us just don’t have.