10 Small Dog Breeds That Make Perfect Companions

If you're looking for a dog to curl up on your lap or want a dog that won't overwhelm your home, small breeds may be perfect for your new pet. Balancing personality with a smaller size means these small dogs are likely to be more submissive, gentle, and kind than their larger counterparts.

Whether you're a first-time or experienced pet parent, check out the list below to learn about our top 10 small dog breeds that make perfect companions.

1. Bichon Frise

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This goofy canine is one of the most affectionate little dogs and a great fit for someone who enjoys playing with a furry friend.

They are adored for their curly, hypo-allergic hair coat, which requires daily brushing. Plus, bichon frises don't shed and won't spoil your furniture.

Another great thing about this little dame is that it's very playful and loves to be in the backyard chasing a tennis ball. Since they're quickly bored with a lack of structure, ensure you provide lots of opportunities for physical exercise.

The Bichon Frise is suitable for children and has a sweet disposition but despises solitude. So try not to leave this baby-doll dog alone for too long.

2. Pug

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Unlike a dachshund bred mostly for hunting, pugs are best suited for companionship, a role they play better than any other dogs as they're ridiculously adorable.

These little pups are housebroken, sweet, and exude cuteness. With their wrinkly skin and soft, silky coats, pugs are unsurpassed in cuddling and their bond with humans. Don't count on them waking you up for work as they love to sleep as long as three to five hours at a time.

Well-bred pugs have become the beacons of all sorts of fashion trends and have been the stars in movies and TV commercials. Their life expectancy is about 12-15 years.

3. Dachshund

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Dachshunds are super handsome, confident dogs that take great pride in their appearance. They have a lot of energy and are constantly busy playing, hunting, or digging holes in your garden. Despite their athletic and energetic nature, they're not bred for strenuous exercise.

Dachshunds make strong bonds with their owners and are generally good with kids. Their loud bark makes them an excellent fit for a watchdog. Dachshunds enjoy a leisurely walk or a romp around in the yard and love to snuggle and draw your attention to themselves.

4. Chinese Crested

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Exotic-looking, partially-haired dogs, Cresteds are known for being quiet, loyal, and affectionate companions. They love to spend time indoors and are perfect for apartment living. This breed is highly intelligent and can quickly adapt to almost any household situation.

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Due to their sensitive skin, Cresteds are prone to dryness, skin irritation, and even sunburn.

5. Chihuahua

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If you see a dog chilling in a purse, it's probably a Chihuahua.

On average, Chihuahuas don't exceed eight inches or six pounds. They're good-natured and friendly with other dogs and even other animals. They're also beloved lap dogs but can exhibit signs of overprotectiveness. If rejected rudely, they may even nip the culprit.

This playful puppy loves to play fetch and cuddle up with its owner. It is a rare breed that might prefer to sleep on a bed rather than the floor. Since everything must go in a Chihuahua's mouth, don't be surprised if you even find your keys there.

One of the best things about Chihuahuas is that they don't need a lot of exercise, so they're perfect for apartment living.

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6. Papillon

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Wing-like, alert ears that will melt your heart every time you look at them are a trademark of the Papillon breed.

Like all the other breeds on the list, the Papillon is friendly, curious, and eager to please. Its outgoing and fun personality and intelligence are excellent choices for the young and senior family members.

This breed also has an exuberant spirit that makes play-time a pleasure for even the busiest dog owner. A family-oriented personality and low maintenance needs make it a perfect option for any home.

7. Pomeranian

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Have you seen a small dog going after a big dog in the park without either thinking twice about their respective sizes? If you have, one of them must have been a Pomeranian.

Fluffy coat, small paws, a short tail, and doggie fashion help them cover a lot of ground in a short time. Pomeranians are great with all family members and thrive with exercise, so you must keep them busy by all means.

However, since they are big shedders, they require a lot of grooming and brushing.

8. Maltese

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Intruder alert! That's what a Maltese bark often means. It is also a big reason for their popularity since the bark will scare off any unwelcome guests.

Nevertheless, a Maltese is a friendly dog that loves to cuddle and wags its tail in appreciation when praised. They are one of the most adaptable breeds in any situation, so they will adjust to any living situation, including long-term boarding. Plus, they do not shed much.

9. Poodle

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This list would be incomplete without the most recognizable dog breed- a poodle. The Lassie look-alike companion is friendly, intelligent, and pretty energetic. In addition, poodles are easy to teach, even the most challenging tricks.

Along with Bichon Fraise, it is an ideal fit for people suffering from allergies since they have a hypoallergenic coat. Nevertheless, its curly coat needs regular brushing. They are also ideal for first-time owners.

10. Shih Tzu

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Individuals with a busy work schedule and limited time can benefit from the companionship of a Shih Tzu.

These small dogs are also excellent for people who love to do indoor activities like reading, watching TV, or playing board games. They love to be with their owners and don't require much exercise or a huge commitment to have a loving, caring relationship. But they require daily brushing if you decide to keep their coat long.


If you're thinking about getting a small dog for yourself or your family, these ten breeds are right up your alley!

They are lovable dogs that make great companions for children and seniors alike. They come in various colors and personalities and have a gentle, loving temperament. Able to live in small apartments, these breeds are perfect for apartment dwellers and those who want a small lapdog.


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