Purebred Breeders looks at the generally accepted Top Ten small dogs for families in a two-part series. Below are numbers one through five.
Besides not having an odor, only medium shedding, and drooling, a beagle makes a great pet because of its tendency to adapt to any environment. Small homes are no problem so long as they get their walks, so apartment owners are in luck. Beagles are also friendly dogs who are great with kids, get along well with other dogs, and can befriend other animals as long as they are acquainted with them when the beagle is a pup. They tend to have a calm demeanor, yet are playful. They also warm up to people quickly, are gentle and very affectionate. Beagles can be hard to train because they love sniffing around a lot, and tend to resist being deterred. You also do not want to leave food unattended since they can work up quite an appetite, and love our food!
2. Yorkshire Terrier
This breed is considered a “people pleaser.” Yorkies are high-energy, attention-loving, loyal dogs with a Napoleonic complex. They will confront bigger dogs if left unattended, as well as hunt or chase smaller animals. Therefore, they should either be in an enclosed area when outdoors, or on a leash. They are great with older children, but are not suited for younger ones, especially if they are rough since a Yorkie does not appreciate rough playing. However, Purebred Breeders wishes to note that they are good with little ones are taught the proper way to handle them, and are supervised. They make excellent watchdogs, do not shed, and only require a little bit of exercise from their owners if allowed to romp around on their own. They also love cuddling as well.
3. Miniature Poodle
A true family dog, miniature poodles can easily become attached to everyone in the home, not just its owner. These are energetic dogs who love attention, are affectionate, sensitive, and very playful. Be warned though, because this is not the type of dog to be ignored for hours as they crave human-interaction, and can become restless as well as destructive if neglected. They love cuddling however, they also require a great deal of exercise, whether as walks or alone playtime. Shedding is almost non-existent, they love dog sports, adores swimming, are easy to train, and are naturally protective of their families.
4. Smooth Dachshund
Dachshunds mix tenacity, playfulness, plus being sociable and outgoing, with boldness. They are high-energy, love to be involved in everything going on around them, and are avid-attention seekers. They are not yard dogs despite being so intense and playful. They are prone to digging, chewing or chasing smaller animals when left unattended or when they become bored, so Purebred Breeders recommends that they be leashed during walks. They are medium shedders, and can be stubborn during training as well as while being housebroken. However, they are also devoted dogs with a natural tendency to be protective of owners. They make great, dependable watchdogs.
5. Shih Tzu
Shih Tzu are house dogs who demand a lot of attention from their owners and give just as much. They are fun-loving, playful, gently dogs who befriend the whole family, are loyal, rarely ever get aggressive, and require patience. Purebred Breeders warns that they can be difficult to train if their owners are harsh, or demanding since they can be stubborn. Overall though, they do not need a lot of training if owners know how to interact with this breed. It is best not to spoil them since this can make them easily jealous. They are low shedding dogs who may sneeze, wheeze, or snore. They are also best with older children who have been taught how to treat them, since they do not respond well to rough playing that often comes from toddlers. Overfeeding can quickly cause weight gains, so refrain from doing so.