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Best Small House Dogs: Big Personalities, Low Maintenance, Shed-Free & More (2024)

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best small house dogsLooking for a pint-sized pooch with a huge personality?

Small dogs make excellent companions for apartment living and busy lifestyles. They’re easy to handle and transport, with minimal exercise needs.

But don’t let their tiny packages fool you – little dogs have huge hearts and lively spirits.

The perfect pet comes in all shapes and sizes, so let’s explore some best small house dogs, like the sassy Chihuahua or the endlessly amusing Yorkie.

You’re sure to find a furry friend to match your lifestyle.

Key Takeaways

  • Lively, affectionate small dogs like Chihuahuas and French Bulldogs make wonderful companions despite their tiny statures.
  • Low maintenance small breeds such as Toy Poodles and Bichon Frises are perfect for busy owners seeking hassle-free, playful pets.
  • Tiny toy breeds that weigh under 10 lbs, like Cavalier King Charles Spaniels and Shih Tzus, have huge personalities packed into pint-sized packages.
  • Non-shedding small dog breeds like the Yorkshire Terrier and Maltese are great hypoallergenic options for those sensitive to pet hair and dander.

Small Dogs With Big Personalities

Small Dogs With Big Personalities
Small dogs with big personalities, like Chihuahuas and Jack Russell Terriers, pack tons of sass and energy into petite packages.

These lively companions and charming pooches may be energetic minis, but they’ve tons of personality packed into their tiny canine bodies.

From the ever-alert poodle to the tenacious dachshund, small marvels like the spunky corgi and vocal beagle prove that good things come in small packages.

Though tiny, these canines have huge hearts and dynamic spirits, showing their zest for life fits right alongside larger dogs like the French Bulldog.

Despite their diminutive size, small dogs boast lively and affectionate personalities that make them wonderful companions.

Low Maintenance Small Breeds

Low Maintenance Small Breeds
You’ll appreciate breeds like the Toy Poodle and Bichon Frise that require little grooming but provide plenty of playful company.

These loyal, low-maintenance small dogs are effortless canine companions perfect for apartments.

Their hassle-free care and grooming make them easy-care pups.

Though small in stature, their playful personalities provide big fun.

These simple small breeds are the ultimate low-maintenance companions for those seeking hassle-free pets.

Their easygoing natures and minimal grooming needs make them ideal for busy owners.

Still, they remain lively and engaged, providing delightful and devoted companionship.

Opt for these fuss-free small dogs when you want a faithful friend without the grooming grind.

Tiny Toy Dog Breeds

Tiny Toy Dog Breeds
After considering low-maintenance small breeds, you’ll find some of the tiniest toy breeds are under 10 pounds.

Tiny toy breeds weigh less than 10 pounds yet have lapdog charms ideal for shedding-free apartment companions.

With playful pint-sized personalities, toy breeds like the miniature poodle, Boston Terrier, Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, toy poodle, and Shih Tzu make delightful, apartment-sized companions.

Despite their miniature proportions, toy breeds have huge hearts and dynamic spirits, providing endless affection and entertainment.

While requiring extra care due to their petite size, toy breeds reward owners with their unwavering devotion, shedding-free delights, and little live-in fun.

If seeking a small yet mighty canine companion under 10 pounds, explore the unique charms of toy breeds.

Small Dogs That Don’t Shed

Small Dogs That Don
Not shedding being a priority, you’ll want to consider these hypoallergenic small breeds:

  • Yorkshire Terrier
  • Maltese

Their hair continuously grows rather than shedding, so they require frequent brushing and grooming.

Additionally, the miniature schnauzer and bichon frise are allergy-friendly picks, boasting minimal shedding.

Don’t assume all small dogs are low maintenance – do your homework first.

With consistent grooming, these shed-free pups make ideal companions for those wanting a pet without aggravating allergies or cleaning up excess fur.

Cute and Cuddly Lapdogs

Cute and Cuddly Lapdogs
If you’re looking for a small dog that will melt your heart with their cuteness and provide endless snuggles, cute and cuddly lapdogs are the perfect choice.

From Pembroke Welsh Corgis to Japanese Chins, mini Pinschers to Yorkies, lapdogs make cozy companions.

Though small, they require proper etiquette as lapdogs, not handbag dogs. Provide training, grooming, and playtime tailored to their petite stature.

These affectionate breeds thrive on intimacy and close bonded relationships with their pet parents.

Let them cuddle up on your lap after their daily exercise for mutual enjoyment of affection.

Active and Playful Small Dogs

Active and Playful Small Dogs
When looking for a small dog that will keep you on your toes, which energetic breeds can match your lifestyle with their zest for adventure?

Playful Pomeranians and lively Dachshunds are bursting with enthusiasm.

Energetic Yorkipoos have the lively spirit of a terrier crossed with the intelligence of a poodle.

Feisty Jack Russell Terriers are tireless athletes that need plenty of stimulation.

For those seeking affectionate cuddle bugs that enjoy brisk walks or playtime, Boston Terriers and Maltese fit the bill.

With their bold attitudes packed into petite frames, these diminutive dynamos deliver big fun in small packages.

Best Small Dogs for Apartments

Best Small Dogs for Apartments
You’re looking for a small dog breed to live comfortably in tight quarters, right?

Pugs are compact, affectionate apartment dogs.

Maltese thrive in cozy urban spaces and bond tightly with their families.

The diminutive Yorkie adapts well to apartment living with minimal outdoor requirements.

Miniature poodles are highly trainable companions eager to please in limited spaces.

Cavalier King Charles spaniels remain calm indoors and love napping on laps in small homes.

Small apartment-friendly pups like these make ideal intimate comrades for urban dwellers seeking loyal canine companionship within confined spaces. Their petite statures and agreeable temperaments allow them to thrive in modest quarters where their enduring affection shines.

Easiest Small Dogs to Train

Easiest Small Dogs to Train
Big Personalities, Low Maintenance, Shed-Free & More:

These bright pups will catch onto commands and routines quickly once you start working with them.

Intelligent and eager to please, breeds like poodles, papillons, and Shetland sheepdogs are quick learners perfect for mastering obedience basics.

Their smarts allow for success when training them on commands, tricks, and other behaviors.

Channeling their energy and curly hair into training sessions will have these responsive pups mastering clever tricks and skills in no time.

Keep things positive and be consistent when working with these fast learners for best results.

Small Dogs That Get Along With Kids

Small Dogs That Get Along With Kids
After reviewing some of the easiest pint-sized pups to train, let’s explore wonderful wee companions for households with little ones.

Certain affectionate breeds make playful pooch pals and joyful canine playmates for kids.

Bouncy Boston Terriers, patient Pugs, and trusting Shih Tzus often bond beautifully with tiny tots.

These adaptable house dogs typically have friendly, gentle dispositions perfect for growing families.

Smart, lively breeds like Havanese and Cavalier King Charles Spaniels also tend to be trusting, patient partners for young children.

With proper socialization and supervision, many petite breeds can become delightful little buddies for kids, bringing years of fun and friendship.

Small but Mighty Watchdogs

Small but Mighty Watchdogs
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Despite their petite frames, these loyal pups will alert you if strangers approach your home.

Consider adding a Welsh Terrier to your family if you seek a fearless watchdog under 20 pounds.

For an even smaller option under 10 pounds, the Norfolk Terrier makes an ideal tiny watchdog. Their affectionate yet plucky attitude epitomizes small but mighty when protecting their loved ones.

Though diminutive, these breeds have gigantic hearts and make stalwart guardians.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What are some of the health issues common in small dogs?

Unfortunately, some health issues are common in small dogs.

Small breeds may be prone to:

  • Dental problems
  • Heart murmurs
  • Luxating patellas
  • Collapsed tracheas

Providing regular veterinary care and following your vet’s advice can help detect and manage these conditions.

Giving a high-quality diet, daily exercise, and maintaining a healthy weight are also important preventative measures.

With attentive care, small dogs can live happy, healthy lives.

How much exercise do small dogs need each day?

Small dogs need about 30-60 minutes of total exercise daily.

A couple of 10-15 minutes walks or play sessions will meet their needs.

Make sure they get both physical and mental stimulation through interactive games and training.

The amount can vary by breed, so check with your vet.

Stay attentive to signs they need more or less.

What should I feed my small dog?

When feeding your small dog, focus first on quality ingredients.

Seek foods with identifiable meats, wholesome carbohydrates, and digestible fats.

Balance treats, avoiding excess.

Monitor portions prudently per pup; their tiny tummies telescope titbits.

Overall, an ounce of prevention outweighs pounds of cure.

How often should I groom my small dog?

Groom your small dog at least once a week.

Use a soft brush to gently remove loose hair and dirt.

Check their skin, ears, eyes, and nails for issues while grooming.

More frequent brushing keeps their coat clean and healthy.

Professional grooming every 4-6 weeks also helps maintain their coat.

How can I best socialize my small dog?

Take your small dog to positive, controlled interactions with other calm dogs and friendly people.

Reward good behavior.

Sign up for a puppy kindergarten class.

Socialization builds confidence and prevents fearfulness.

Stay relaxed and upbeat during exposures to introduce new things gradually.


Amazingly, over 30% of U.S. households have a small dog.

If you’re considering a pint-sized pup, there are many great options for apartment and city living.

From low maintenance breeds like the Havanese to active and playful pups like the Pomeranian, small dogs make wonderful companions.

Their compact size belies their huge personalities.

With minimal exercise needs and low-shed coats, the best small house dogs offer big fun in small packages.

Whichever little furball you choose, they’re sure to fill your home with joy.

Avatar for Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim Sweileh

Mutasim is the founder and editor-in-chief with a team of qualified veterinarians, their goal? Simple. Break the jargon and help you make the right decisions for your furry four-legged friends.