- The name of the breed comes from Pomerania, which is the region of Northern Europe where they originated.
- They are also known affectionately as Poms or Pom Poms.
- These small dogs typically weigh around 7 to 10 pounds, but they’re descended from big sled dogs. Hard to believe, right?
- Pomeranians weren’t always so little. They used to weigh as much as 20 to 30 pounds before being bred down in size by Queen Victoria of England.
- Despite their small stature, they are famous for thinking they can take on big dogs with their little bark. This makes socializing a Pomeranian with other dogs important in order to avoid aggressive behavior.
- Martin Luther, a leader of the Protestant Reformation, had a Pomeranian named Belferlein who he often mentioned in his writing.
- Mozart dedicated an aria to Pimperl who was his beloved Pomeranian.v
- Michelangelo had a Pomeranian by his side as he painted the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel.
- Pomeranians can make wonderful therapy dogs. They are also trained as hearing assistance dogs.
- Despite their furry coat, they don’t require a lot of grooming other than regular brushing, which can help reduce shedding.
As mentioned, Pomeranians originated in the province of Pomerania, which is a region of Northern Europe on the coast of the Baltic Sea. They can trace their roots back to large sled dogs and are close relatives to breeds such as the American Eskimo Dog, Alaskan Malamute, Siberian Husky, Norwegian Elkhound, and Samoyed. The first Pomeranians could weigh between 20 to 30 pounds.
Queen Victoria of England is responsible for the small size of these dogs today. She brought one home from a vacation in Florence, Italy and went to work breeding them to become a little lapdog. Queen Victoria isn’t the only famous person to fall for this breed. Sir Isaac Newton, Martin Luther, Michelangelo, and Mozart all had Pom Poms.
These dogs are probably best known for their small statures. They typically stand around 7 to 12 inches tall and can weigh between 3 to 7 pounds. There are some Pomeranians who are larger like their ancestors and have been known to weigh up to around 14 pounds.
Another distinctive characteristic of the Pomeranian is the luxurious puff of fur around their chest and neck. They actually have a double coat of fur with a harsh outer coat and a soft undercoat. They can shed quite a bit, but their coat is relatively easy to maintain with regular brushing and an occasional bath.
Pomeranians are also known for their foxlike faces, triangle ears that point straight up, and feathered tails that arch over their backs. They have dark, almond-shaped eyes and coats that come in a variety of colors, including red, orange, white, blue, brown, and black.
Pomeranians are known for being smart, curious, energetic, feisty, and bold. They are typically very playful and love to be the center of attention. They can make great pets for families but may not be the best choice for those who have small children. Although they look like toys, they don’t make good play pals for youngsters who might accidentally step on them or handle them too roughly and cause an injury.
These dogs are famous for their yappy bark, which can be excessive at times. If you get a Pomeranian, you will want to teach them the “Quiet” command early on. You will also need to socialize them early with plenty of supervised and pleasant experiences with other humans and dogs. This can help reduce their natural suspicion of strangers and prevent aggressive behavior toward other dogs.
Pomeranians can be very headstrong, which can make them tough to train. Clicker training, where you use the positive reinforcement of a clicking sound to train your dog, can be helpful. It’s also recommended that you crate train your Pomeranian, which will give your little puffball a safe and cozy space to unwind. This can support your housetraining efforts as well.
Owning a Pomeranian
These tips can help you keep your Pomeranian happy and healthy:
- Take care on hot days.
Pomeranians can be very sensitive to heat, so limit time outside when the temperature is soaring and look for signs of heatstroke, such as panting, a bright red tongue, or pale gums.
- Be careful in the cold too.
Although they have a thick coat, they can get cold easily and might resist going outside on bad weather days. It can be useful to paper train your Pomeranian for times like this.
- Offer them dog safe toys.
These dogs are typically very active and love to bark. Giving them chew toys or treat-filled puzzle toys can help focus their energy and quiet them down.
- Make sure they exercise.
Although they can get a good workout just by running around your home or apartment, you still need to make sure they are getting enough activity to stay healthy.
- Brush them daily.
A daily brushing will help reduce shedding and keep that puffy fur in top shape. You should also bathe your dog occasionally with a mild dog shampoo and keep their nails trimmed.
- Clean their teeth.
Be sure to brush your dog’s teeth regularly and take them for a professional cleaning and exam at your veterinarian’s office at least once a year.
Your Pomeranian will also need regular check-ups and wellness care, such as vaccines, flea and heartworm prevention, and spaying/neutering. You can add preventive care coverage to an ASPCA Pet Health Insurance plan for a low additional cost to get reimbursed for those expenses. See your options.
Top 10 Illness Claims
The Pomeranian is a relatively healthy breed, but they can be prone to certain conditions. Here are 10 of the most common illness claims* ASPCA Pet Health Insurance customers submit for their Pomeranians:
- Coughing – This can be a sign of canine influenza or other illness.
- Diabetes – Be careful not to overfeed these little dogs to help prevent obesity, which can lead to diabetes and health problems like joint pain.
- Stomach Issues – Make sure you keep chocolate, raisins, onions and other harmful things out of paw’s reach to help avoid tummy upset or worse.
- Seizures – If your dog has a seizure, seek help immediately. They can be caused by heatstroke, exposure to a toxic substance, or even epilepsy.
- Hypothyroidism – This condition occurs when the thyroid gland does not produce enough hormones to properly regulate metabolism.
- Elevated Liver Enzymes – Higher than normal liver enzymes can indicate liver disease or other conditions such as diabetes, pancreatitis, or Cushing’s Disease.
- Diarrhea – Diarrhea can be caused by a number of things including eating spoiled food out of the garbage, food allergies, parasites, or illnesses.
- Collapsed Trachea – This problem is prevalent in toy dogs and happens when the cartilage in the trachea weakens and causes it to collapse. Signs of a collapsed trachea include excessive coughing or a cough that sounds like a goose honking.
- Eye Conditions – Pomeranians can be prone to a number of eye issues, such as cataracts, progressive retinal atrophy, tear duct problems and conjunctivitis.
- Skin Irritation – These dogs can suffer from various skin issues, including one