These Are the Smallest Dog Breeds in the World

There’s nothing cuter than a dog so small it can fit in your favorite bag, or the pocket of your sweatshirt. Thankfully for small dog lovers, we’ve compiled a list of the world’s smallest dog breeds. Did your little pal make the list?  

1. Yorkshire terrier

Beautiful yorkshire terrier playing with a ball on a grass
They might be small, but they have huge personalities. | yevgenromanenko/iStock/Getty Images

Yorkshire terriers may be one of the smallest dogs in the world, but they pack a big punch when it comes to their personalities. Yorkshires are brave, determined, and energetic dogs, always ready for adventure. According to the American Kennel Club, they are members of the toy group, which is why they are so small in stature. Their personalities can be described as sprightly and affectionate.

Next: Another member of the toy group

2. Shih Tzu

Shih Tzu in nature, colorful springtime image
They weigh between 9 and 16 pounds. | elenasendler/iStock/Getty Images

Shih Tzus are another breed that belongs to the toy group. They weigh between nine and 16 pounds and are between 8 and 11 inches tall at the shoulder. They were originally bred to be companion dogs, so Shih Tzus are typically friendly, trusting, and lively. They live anywhere between 10 and 16 years.

Next: These little smushed-face cuties certainly know how to steal hearts.

3. Pug

They’re only about 10 to 13 inches tall. | LexiTheMonster/iStock/Getty Images

Pugs are friendly, mischievous little dogs. They weigh between 14 and 18 pounds and are typically 10 to 13 inches tall. Pugs aren’t particularly active, but they do need regular exercise. They’re especially loved for their squished faces, and big, curious bug-eyes.

Next: A little dog with a big personality

4. Pomeranian

A pretty pomeranian female dog on a blurry grass background
They have huge personalities. | Tsik/Getty Images

Pomeranians also belong to the toy group, but you wouldn’t know it thanks to their huge personalities — the AKC says they’re a prototypical personality breed. They only weigh between three and seven pounds and grow to be between six and seven inches tall.

Next: These little guys make lovable companions.

5. Toy fox terrier

Toy fox terrier
These are active dogs. | betyarlaca/iStock/Getty Images

Another toy group member, toy fox terriers make lovable, loyal pets. They’re active and love to run around and play — if you have your own TFT, you’ll be kept plenty busy. They weigh between three and seven pounds and grow to be between eight and 11 inches tall.

Next: An elegant, fancy little dog

6. Papillon

Papillon breed lying on pillows
These pups often weigh less than10 pounds. | Mallivan/iStock/Getty Images

Papillons are beautiful, regal little dogs. They only weigh between five and 10 pounds and grow to be between eight and 11 inches tall. “The Papillon is a small, friendly, elegant toy dog with a fine boned structure. He is light and dainty, yet still lively, and is distinguished from other breeds by his beautiful, butterfly-like ears,” says the AKC. “They are known to be happy and alert little dogs that are not shy or aggressive.”

Next: A breed that’s known as active, fearless, and independent, despite its size.

7. Miniature pinscher

Miniature pinschers belong to the toy group. | Sebastian Wallin/Wikimedia Commons

As is the case for many of the dogs on this list, the miniature pinscher is also in the toy group. Weighing in at about nine pounds and reaching a height of roughly 11 inches, they’re known as skinny, short little dogs. As far as their temperament goes, they’re active, fearless, and independent.  

Next: This breed barely reaches a foot tall.

8. Italian greyhound

Portrait of a female Italian Greyhound dog in a home setting.
Italian greyhounds are barely a foot tall. | Rauluminate/iStock/Getty Images

Italian greyhounds are skinny, wiry little dogs. They also belong to the toy group. Though very small, barely reaching a foot tall, they’re graceful, sweet pets. Though they make dainty house dogs, they are still pretty active and love to dash around the yard.

Next: This dog breed was once thought of as sacred in China.

9. Pekingese

dog breed Pekingese
These are regal little dogs. |

Pekingese are long-haired, beautiful little dogs. Once held sacred in ancient China, it’s no surprise that the Pekingese are regal in nature. They can weigh up to 14 pounds and grow to be about 7 inches tall. Though, with all that hair, they require grooming at least weekly.

Next: The token small dog

10. Chihuahua

A Chihuahua dog owner presents his dressed up pet during the 'Run of the Chihuahuas' annual race in Washington on May 4, 2013. The annual Chihuahua race marks the Mexican holiday Cinco de Mayo celebrated on May 5. (Photo by Mladen Antonov/AFP/Getty Images)
They’re only about 3 to 6 pounds. | Mladen Antonov/AFP/Getty Images

You can’t have a list of the smallest dog breeds in the world without including the token small dog, the Chihuahua. Chihuahuas weigh in anywhere between three and six pounds and can grow to be about seven inches tall. Due to their size and intelligence, they make great apartment dogs.

Next: This dog weighs less than seven pounds.

11. Maltese

White maltese dog lies on carpet and looking ahead
These are tough little dogs. | baloon111/Getty Images

Maltese are toy dogs that weigh less than seven pounds. With their long, beautiful hair, they make the prettiest of lap dogs. “Don’t let the showy looks fool you: These are hearty, adaptable pets. It takes a whole lot of dog to survive three millennia,” says the AKC.

Next: An interesting face that only a mother could love

12. Brussels griffon

brussels griffon dog outdoors
These little dogs have very expressive faces. | onetouchspark/iStock/Getty Images

Brussels griffons weigh only about nine pounds and grow to be roughly eight inches tall. They’re intelligent, happy dogs known for their almost human-like expressions. With their funny little faces and messy hair, they’re adorable little bundles of personality.  

Next: This dog breed is considered a “true aristocrat.”

13. Japanese Chin

Family of Japanese chin
They make for great lap dogs. | asiafoto/iStock/Getty Images

Japanese Chins are described as “true aristocrats.” They’re charming, loving, and agile. They’re also very small. Japanese Chins weigh only about nine pounds and grow to be about nine inches tall. Though small in stature, they’re not the most active dogs. They enjoy their occasional walks, but mostly like to cuddle up on their best friend’s lap.

Next: A curious little dog  

14. English toy spaniel

toy spaniel
They’re similar to the rest of the spaniel family. | Page Light Studios/iStock/Getty Images

English toy spaniels aren’t too different from the rest of the spaniel family in that they’re known for being affectionate, alert, and merry. English toy spaniels generally weigh less than 14 pounds and don’t get taller than 10 inches. They’re very curious little dogs who get along with both children and other animals.   

Next: This dog loves to please his owners.

15. Chinese crested

Chinese Crested dog
They’re amusing little dogs. |

The Chinese crested is another toy breed. They come in two varieties: hairless and powderpuff. “They are funny little dogs that like to please their owners, and upon finding something that amuses you, are likely to do it again to get your attention,” says the AKC. “Chinese Cresteds are said to be “cat-like” and enjoy sitting in high places, the back of a couch or arm of a chair.”

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