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Form and Function

The Pomeranian is a small, square-proportioned, miniature spitz with a cobby, rounded body. This breed shares the spitz characteristics of small ears, double coat, and curled tail. The expression is alert and fox-like, and the gait is smooth and free with good reach and drive. The soft thick undercoat combined with the longer harsh outer coat, standing off from the body, combine to give the dog a unique puffy appearance. This look is further accentuated by the thick ruff and a head carriage that is naturally upgazing.


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Breed Traits

Energy Level

4 out of 5

Exercise Requirements

1 out of 5


4 out of 5

Affection Level

1 out of 5

Friendliness To Dogs

1 out of 5

Friendliness To Other Pets

3 out of 5

Friendliness To Strangers

1 out of 5


1 out of 5

Ease of Training

1 out of 5

Grooming Requirements

3 out of 5

Heat Sensitivity

3 out of 5


5 out of 5

Breed Attributes




3-7 lb





Area of Origin


Date of Origin



The smallest member of the spitz family, the Pomeranian boasts tough sledding dog ancestors. Exactly when the dog began to be bred down in size is not known; nor is it known exactly where this miniaturization took place, although Germany, and specifically, Pomerania, is the most likely locale. The breed’s likely ancestor was the Deutscher Spitz. Only when the breed was taken to England was it dubbed the Pomeranian, but these early dogs were not the “Poms” known today. They weighed as much as 30 pounds and were often white. In fact, the Japanese Spitz closely resembles these early Pomeranians and very likely descends from them. Although the Pomeranian was recognized by the English Kennel Club in 1870, it was not until Queen Victoria brought a Pomeranian from Italy that popularity grew. The queen’s Pomeranians were rather large gray dogs. By 1900, Poms had been recognized by the AKC, and dogs were being shown in both England and America in an array of colors. This miniature sled dog always attracts admirers and is a very popular pet and show dog.


Bouncy, bold, and busy, the Pomeranian makes the most of every day. This breed is curious, playful, self-confident (even cocky), and attentive, ever ready for a game or adventure. Reserved toward strangers, some can be territorial toward other dogs, and some enjoy a good barking session.


The Pomeranian is active but diminutive, needing daily exercise but able to meet activity needs with indoor games or short walks. The double coat needs brushing twice weekly, more when shedding.


  • Major concerns: patellar luxation
  • Minor concerns: open fontanel, hypoglycemia, shoulder luxation, PRA, entropion
  • Occasionally seen: tracheal collapse, PDA, Legg-Perthes
  • Suggested tests: knee, eye, cardiac, hip
  • Life span: 12–16 years


Note: While the characteristics mentioned here may frequently represent this breed, dogs are individuals whose personalities and appearances will vary. Please consult the adoption organization for details on a specific pet.

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