small dog looking up


What You Should Know About Small Dogs

When my husband and I met, I knew it would be a match made in heaven. At least it would seem that way if you were judging by first appearances. On our very first date we both brought a guest. He brought his male yellow Lab and I brought my female yellow Lab. And the rest, as they say, is history!

Clearly both of us are Labrador dog lovers and are comfortable with larger dogs. And this fits in nicely with the other activities we share like hiking and fitness. But what if I had brought a toy poodle or a chihuahua? Would it really have made a difference?

It’s really amazing at the range of dog breeds and physical characteristics that come from a small number of genes. I’ve often wondered how dogs who are descended from wolves ended up in such a different place from where they started. How does a Yorkshire Terrier and a Great Dane both come from the same gene pool? And how is either one related to their wolf ancestors?

Whether a dog is large or small all dogs are the same species…right? They all like to go on walks, run off leash, explore new “smells”, play with other dogs and fetch balls. So where did all the stereotypes come from? One friend is convinced that big dogs will destroy your house if you buy one as a puppy and dig holes in your back yard. Another friend thinks small dogs bark too much at strangers and only prefer their owners.  

If you’re someone who wants a small dog for a pet. Here are a few things you should know.


The American Veterinary Society commissioned a study into the differences between larger and smaller dogs and found that small dogs were less obedient and harder to train. However, the reason for this will surprise you. Small dogs aren’t less obedient because they’re wired that way but rather because small dog owners take training less seriously. The key to training small dogs is consistency. Dog owners in the study would discourage a behavior one day and allow it on another.