Small Dog Breeds: Top Choices for Pet Lovers

When it comes to small dog breeds, there are plenty of options to choose from. Whether you live in an apartment, have a family, or are a first-time owner, there’s a small dog breed that’s perfect for you. In this article, we’ll explore some of the best small dog breeds that are popular among pet lovers in Australia. From hypoallergenic breeds to those with long lifespans and minimal shedding, we’ll help you find your ideal furry companion.

Alaskan Klee Kai

The Alaskan Klee Kai is a small dog breed that resembles a husky but weighs only up to 15 pounds. This breed is perfect for those who love huskies but have limited space for a larger dog. It’s worth noting that Sophie Turner, the famous actress, has an adorable Alaskan Klee Kai as her pet.

Chihuahua: Loyal and Energetic Small Dog Breed

When it comes to small dog breeds, the Chihuahua is an undeniable star. Named after the Mexican state of Chihuahua, these pint-sized pups have stolen the hearts of dog lovers around the world. Despite their tiny stature, Chihuahuas possess a larger-than-life personality and an abundance of energy. Weighing in at around five pounds, they may be small in size, but they make up for it with their fierce loyalty and spirited nature.

The Chihuahua’s distinctive appearance is characterized by its delicate frame, prominent eyes, and erect ears. They come in a variety of coat colors and patterns, including smooth-coated and long-haired varieties. In addition to their adorable looks, Chihuahuas are known for their confident and fearless demeanor.

“Chihuahuas may be small, but their personalities are anything but. They are fiercely devoted to their owners and often form a close bond with one person.”

Despite their small size, Chihuahuas are not afraid to voice their opinions. They are known for their bold and sometimes vocal nature, which makes them excellent watchdogs. Their alertness and quickness to react to any potential threats or intruders make them an invaluable addition to any home.

While Chihuahuas may have a reputation for being fragile, they are actually quite resilient and adaptable. They can thrive in various living situations, whether it’s a small apartment or a spacious house. However, their small size does require extra care and caution, especially when it comes to handling and interacting with them.

If you’re considering adding a Chihuahua to your family, it’s important to provide them with regular exercise and mental stimulation. Despite their small stature, they have plenty of energy to burn. Daily walks, playtime, and interactive toys can help keep them physically and mentally stimulated.

Chihuahuas are also known for their long lifespans, with some living up to 15 years or more with proper care and nutrition. However, like all dog breeds, they are susceptible to certain health issues, such as dental problems, heart conditions, and patellar luxation. Regular vet check-ups and a balanced diet can help prevent or address these potential issues.

Grooming and Care Tips for Chihuahuas:

  • Regularly brush their coat to prevent matting and tangles.
  • Clean their ears regularly to prevent infections.
  • Trim their nails regularly to maintain their paw health.
  • Provide them with dental care, such as regular teeth brushing or dental treats, to prevent dental issues.

If you’re ready to welcome a Chihuahua into your life, consider adoption from a local shelter or rescue organization. By adopting a Chihuahua, you not only provide a loving home for a deserving dog but also contribute to the fight against puppy mills and promote responsible pet ownership.

Chihuahua Description
Size Small (around 5 pounds)
Personality Loyal, Energetic
Appearance Delicate frame, prominent eyes, erect ears
Coat Smooth-coated or long-haired
Temperament Confident, Fearless
Daily Exercise Regular walks, playtime, interactive toys
Lifespan Average of 15 years
Health Concerns Dental problems, heart conditions, patellar luxation

Whether you’re looking for a loyal companion, a spirited playmate, or an adorable lapdog, the Chihuahua has it all. Their small size and big personality make them an ideal choice for any dog lover. So, if you’re ready to embark on an exciting adventure with a Chihuahua by your side, get ready to experience a world of love, laughter, and endless joy.

Pembroke Welsh Corgi

The Pembroke Welsh Corgi is a popular small dog breed that is known for its playful nature and high intelligence. These adorable dogs are a great choice for families with children, as they are gentle and good-natured.

Corgis are easy to train and quickly pick up commands, making them an ideal companion for both first-time and experienced dog owners. They are highly intelligent and love to learn new tricks and tasks.

Despite their small size, Pembroke Welsh Corgis have a lot of energy and require regular exercise to keep them happy and healthy. They enjoy outdoor activities such as walks and playtime in the park. Their short legs don’t hinder their agility, and they can keep up with more active breeds.

One of the remarkable qualities of Pembroke Welsh Corgis is their strong sense of loyalty and protective instinct. They make excellent watchdogs and will alert their owners to any potential dangers or intruders.

If you’re looking for a small dog breed that is good with children, intelligent, and full of energy, the Pembroke Welsh Corgi is an excellent choice.

Pembroke Welsh Corgi

They will bring joy and laughter to your family with their playful antics and affectionate nature. Whether going on adventures or snuggling on the couch, your Pembroke Welsh Corgi will always be by your side, providing love and companionship.

Jack Russell Terrier

Jack Russell Terriers are small, lively, and intelligent dogs that have gained recognition through their appearances in popular movies and TV shows like Wishbone, The Artist, and My Dog Skip. Although they are not officially recognized by the American Kennel Club, they have become beloved by many pet owners for their charming and energetic personalities.

These small dog breeds may be pint-sized, but they make up for it with their big hearts and playful nature. Jack Russell Terriers are known for their intelligence, which can sometimes translate into stubbornness. However, their lively and energetic demeanor makes them excellent companions for individuals and families who are active and have the time to engage in regular play and exercise.

Jack Russell Terrier

Famous Jack Russell Terriers in Movies and TV Shows

“Wishbone,” a popular children’s TV show that aired in the late 1990s, starred a Jack Russell Terrier named “Wishbone.” This clever and imaginative dog would transport viewers into the pages of classic literature, entertaining and educating children in a fun and interactive way.

In the critically acclaimed silent film “The Artist,” a Jack Russell Terrier named “Uggie” stole the show with his adorable antics. Uggie’s performance in the film earned him the prestigious Palm Dog Award at the 2011 Cannes Film Festival.

Another famous Jack Russell Terrier is “Skip,” the lovable companion of the main character in the heartwarming film “My Dog Skip.” This film tells the story of a young boy and his adventures with his faithful and beloved Jack Russell Terrier.

Whether they’re chasing balls, digging holes, or showing off their impressive agility, Jack Russell Terriers are always full of energy and excitement. They thrive when given tasks to complete or challenges to overcome, making them excellent candidates for dog sports and activities that stimulate both their bodies and minds.

Characteristics Details
Size Small
Weight Range 13-17 pounds (5.9-7.7 kg)
Height Range 10-12 inches (25-30 cm)
Life Expectancy Average of 13-16 years
Temperament Intelligent, energetic, and sometimes stubborn
Coat Smooth or rough, requiring occasional grooming
Exercise Needs High. Regular play and exercise are important to prevent behavioral issues.
Trainability High. Jack Russell Terriers are intelligent and respond well to consistent and positive training methods.


Pomeranians are small fluff balls with long fur. They are known for their loyalty and quick attachment to their families. Pomeranians can grow up to 7 to 12 inches tall and weigh between 3 to 7 pounds. They are also considered hypoallergenic, making them a great choice for those with allergies.


If you’re looking for a small dog breed that is both adorable and hypoallergenic, the Pomeranian is an excellent choice. These little furballs are known for their vibrant and thick coats, which make them stand out from the crowd. Despite their small size, Pomeranians have a big personality and are full of energy. They are always ready for adventure and love to spend quality time with their owners.

“Pomeranians are small but mighty. They may be petite in stature, but their loyalty and devotion to their families are unmatched. They make great companions for individuals and families alike.”

Pomeranians are highly intelligent and can be easily trained. They respond well to positive reinforcement and enjoy learning new tricks. With their outgoing and friendly nature, Pomeranians get along well with people of all ages, including children. They make wonderful family pets and thrive in an environment where they receive plenty of love and attention.

In addition to their hypoallergenic qualities, Pomeranians are generally healthy dogs with a long lifespan of around 12 to 16 years. However, they may be prone to certain health conditions, such as dental problems and patellar luxation. Regular vet check-ups and a balanced diet are essential for maintaining their overall well-being.

Overall, if you’re looking for a small dog breed that is not only hypoallergenic but also full of personality, the Pomeranian is an excellent choice. Their small size and adorable appearance combined with their loyalty and affectionate nature make them a perfect companion for any dog lover.

Yorkshire Terrier

Yorkshire Terriers, or Yorkies, are popular small dog breeds that pack a lot of energy into their small bodies. They weigh around seven pounds and are known for their gorgeous, silky fur, which is hypoallergenic.

If you’re looking for a small dog with a big personality, the Yorkshire Terrier is a perfect choice. Despite their tiny size, these pint-sized pups are full of life and spunk. Yorkshire Terriers are beloved by many dog owners in Australia for their intelligence, loyalty, and charming nature.

Yorkshire Terrier


The Maltese is one of the oldest small dog breeds, with a rich history dating back thousands of years. These adorable small white dogs have been entertaining and charming their owners for centuries. Known for their lovable nature and non-shedding coats, Maltese dogs make wonderful companions for individuals and families alike.


In ancient Greece, Maltese dogs were held in such high regard that tombs were built in their honor. They were believed to bring good fortune and protection to their owners, and their loyal and affectionate nature made them cherished pets.

“The Maltese is a beautiful ancient breed that has captured the hearts of dog lovers throughout history. Their small size, silky white coat, and playful personality make them a popular choice for those seeking a small dog with a big heart.”

One of the most distinctive features of the Maltese breed is their luxurious, non-shedding coat. This makes them an excellent choice for individuals with allergies or those who prefer a dog that doesn’t leave behind a trail of fur. Their hypoallergenic qualities allow more people to enjoy the love and companionship of a small dog without worrying about allergic reactions.

Ancient Breed and Modern Appeal

The Maltese may have ancient origins, but they have not lost their charm and appeal to this day. Their small size, typically weighing between 4 to 7 pounds, makes them well-suited for apartment living or homes with limited space. Despite their tiny stature, Maltese dogs are known for their lively and playful temperament.

Their intelligence and eagerness to please their owners make them highly trainable and adaptable to various lifestyles. Whether you’re looking for a lap dog or a furry playmate, the Maltese is sure to bring joy and laughter into your home.

Maltese Characteristics:

  • Size: Small, typically weighing between 4 to 7 pounds
  • Coat: Long, silky, and non-shedding
  • Temperament: Lively, affectionate, and playful
  • Trainability: Intelligent and responsive to training

Here’s a comparison table highlighting some key characteristics of the Maltese breed:

Characteristics Maltese Yorkshire Terrier Chihuahua
Average Weight 4-7 pounds 4-7 pounds 2-6 pounds
Coat Type Long, silky, non-shedding Long, silky, non-shedding Short, smooth
Temperament Affectionate, playful Confident, energetic Alert, spirited
Trainability Intelligent, responsive Intelligent, responsive Intelligent, stubborn

Rat Terrier

Rat Terriers are small dogs that are excellent exterminators, making them ideal for city-dwellers. With their keen hunting instincts and high energy levels, Rat Terriers are skilled at keeping rodent populations in check. They possess a loyal and cheerful temperament, making them wonderful companions for individuals and families alike. Rat Terriers have a smooth, silky coat that requires minimal grooming, adding to their appeal as low-maintenance pets.

If you’re looking for a small dog breed that combines intelligence, agility, and a strong drive to hunt, the Rat Terrier is an excellent choice. Despite their small stature, they have a big personality and are always up for adventures. In addition to their exterminating skills, Rat Terriers are known for their ability to learn quickly and excel in various dog sports and activities.

Rat Terrier Characteristics:

  • Size: Small
  • Weight: 10 to 25 pounds
  • Temperament: Loyal, Cheerful, Energetic
  • Coat: Smooth, Silky

Whether you live in a bustling city or a suburban area, Rat Terriers can adapt to various living environments as long as they receive regular exercise and mental stimulation. These small dogs thrive on human companionship and make devoted family pets.

“Rat Terriers are not only excellent exterminators, but they are also loyal and cheerful companions. Their small size and versatile nature make them a great choice for city-dwellers.”- Dog Lover Magazine

If you’re considering adding a Rat Terrier to your family, it’s important to provide them with proper training and socialization from a young age. This will help them develop into well-behaved and well-rounded adult dogs.

Characteristics Description
Size Small
Weight 10 to 25 pounds
Temperament Loyal, Cheerful, Energetic
Coat Smooth, Silky


In conclusion, small dog breeds are a popular choice among pet lovers in Australia. Whether you live in an apartment, have a family, or are a first-time owner, there is a small dog breed that can suit your lifestyle. From the playful Alaskan Klee Kai to the energetic Rat Terrier, each breed has its own unique qualities and characteristics.

When choosing the best small dog breed for you, it is important to consider factors such as size, energy level, and compatibility with children and allergies. Whether you prefer a hypoallergenic breed with minimal shedding or a small dog with a long lifespan, there is a perfect furry companion waiting to bring love and joy to your life.

Remember, adopting from a shelter is always a better option than buying from a pet store or breeder. Not only does it help fight against puppy mills, but it also helps control the dog population. So, take the time to find your perfect small dog breed and make a positive impact on the lives of these adorable animals.


Are small dog breeds suitable for apartment living?

Yes, many small dog breeds are well-suited for apartment living. Their small size means they require less space to roam and can adapt easily to confined living spaces.

Which small dog breeds are best for families?

Small dog breeds that are known for their friendliness and good temperament with children include the Pembroke Welsh Corgi, Pomeranian, and Yorkshire Terrier.

What small dog breeds are recommended for first-time owners?

Small dog breeds that are known for being easy to train and handle for first-time owners include the Chihuahua, Maltese, and Yorkshire Terrier.

Are there hypoallergenic small dog breeds?

Yes, there are small dog breeds that are considered hypoallergenic, such as the Pomeranian and Yorkshire Terrier. These breeds produce fewer allergens, making them suitable for individuals with allergies.

Which small dog breeds have long lifespans?

Small dog breeds that are known for their long lifespans include the Chihuahua, Pomeranian, and Maltese. Proper care and regular veterinary check-ups can help them live longer, healthier lives.

Do small dog breeds shed a lot?

Not all small dog breeds shed a lot. If you are looking for small dog breeds with minimal shedding, consider breeds like the Alaskan Klee Kai and Pomeranian, which have long, non-shedding coats.

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