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27 Dog Breeds That Stay Small You’ll Love (With Pictures)

There’s no doubt that dogs are amazing. Whether big or small, they all find a way to crawl into our hearts and set up shop there. However, tiny dog breeds hold a special spot for a lot of people due to their ability to look like a forever puppy.

Small dogs tend to be more sassy. They usually have a lot of personality and will turn your house upside down and rule it like they’ve been king the whole time. These little dogs also make the perfect snugglers (if they allow you).

So, if you’re looking dog breeds that stay small forever, look no further. Let’s dive into 27 of the best pups that stay small forever.

Tip: If you want to know more about specifically furry pups, read about fluffy small dog breeds here.

27 Dog Breeds That Stay Small Forever

From the weird-looking American Hairless Terrier to the adorably fluffy Yorkshire Terrier, here are 27 dog breeds that stay small forever.

1. American Hairless Terrier


Photo on Pxhere

The American Hairless Terrier is a bald dog breed with a loving personality that will make your life worth living. They usually weigh between 12 and 16 pounds and can reach heights up to 16 inches. These pups are intelligent and curious dogs who love playing with toys or their humans. 

They also come in coated varieties, so not all are entirely hairless (although the naked ones are still adorable). The AHT has a terrier attitude, being quite stubborn and ready to hunt anything in their way. 

2. Australian Terrier


Photo on Pxhere

These fluffy pups are incredibly spirited dogs who love learning new things and playing with humans. They usually weigh between 15 and 20 pounds and can reach about 11 inches tall. Australian Terriers are plucky pups who approach life with the classic terrier qualities of curiosity and stubbornness. 

Bred to be a working dog, the Australian Terrier loves to dig and chase small animals. They can also be trained efficiently and learn tricks very quickly. These furballs are not a good choice for a house with more than one pet, as they love to be the center of attention.

3. Bichon Frise


Photo by Matt Briney on Unsplash

The Bichon Frise, or Curly Lapdog, is a ball of fluff that parades itself as a dog. These adorable babies weigh between 12 and 18 pounds and can grow around 11 inches tall, although most of their mass is their fur. It’s rare, but not impossible, to see another color other than white on a Bichon Frise. 

Just like any other white dog, they love mud puddles, so bathing and grooming them is a must. If you have allergies, there’s no need to worry, as the Bichon Frise is hypoallergenic. They’re affectionate companions who love to cuddle with you on the couch.

4. Brussels Griffon


Photo by Abbie Love on Unsplash

The Brussels Griffon looks a little like a Miniature Schnauzer but slightly more confused and grumpy. They’re super sweet pups, though, despite their unimpressed appearance. Griffs can weigh between seven and 12 pounds and reach heights of only eight inches, making them one of the smallest dog breeds.

These furballs can be demanding and assertive – they’re not afraid to let you know how they feel. They also believe they’re the most important in the room. Regardless of their cute arrogance, they’re actually sweet little pups who love being close to you.

5. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel


Photo by Izabelly Marques on Unsplash

If you’re looking for a mild-mannered pup that loves to comfort you, look no further than the Cavalier King Charles Spaniel. These pups weigh between 13 and 18 pounds and can grow up to 13 inches tall. 

They’re incredibly affectionate cuddle bugs and will spend hours trying to cheer you up when you’re sad. They’re the perfect balance between a family dog and a therapy companion and are known to easily adapt to their owner’s lifestyle. Just be sure to give them enough exercise.

6. Chihuahua


Photo by Jairo Alzate on Unsplash

Chihuahuas are unique dogs. Usually, there’s a general guideline for how the dog will behave, but when it comes to these tiny pups, all rules go out the window. Some are incredibly sweet, and some have the Chihuahua grumpy gene (like most of these dogs on TikTok). 

They might be tiny, weighing only between two and six pounds and reaching heights of only nine inches, but they pack quite a punch. These pups are feisty and saucy with big personalities with more mood swings than any other dog breed.

7. Chinese Crested


Photo by Kanashi on Unsplash

The Chinese Crested is an adorably ugly dog breed known for its quirky appearance, consisting of pink-spotted skin and a spiky hairdo that makes them look a little crazy. However, even though they look like they just woke up from a long nap, they’re incredibly intelligent and sweet dogs. 

Chinese Cresteds weigh between eight and 12 pounds and can grow up to 13 inches. They’re super affectionate and love playing with toys and their owners. These pups are lively and alert and enjoy running outside in the grass. 

You might enjoy reading my article on dog breeds that fit under airplane seats.

8. French Bulldog


Photo by Angelos Michalopoulos on Unsplash

In 2022, the American Kennel Club declared French Bulldogs as the number one most popular dog breed – and it’s not hard to see why. Frenchies can weigh between 16 and 28 pounds while only reaching a height of 12 inches. They’re absolute sweethearts with very affectionate demeanors and an incredible loyalty to their owners. 

They don’t have a high energy level, which makes them well-suited for small spaces, such as tiny homes or apartments. These furballs are velcro dogs, though, meaning they love spending time with you so much that they struggle to be alone. They only have a short coat. 

So, if you welcome a Frenchie into your home, be sure to give them plenty of affection.

9. Havanese


Photo by Kanashi on Unsplash

Havanese pups are the extroverts of the dog world – they simply cannot get enough of human interaction. These silly pups can weigh between seven and 13 pounds and grow t up to 11 inches. Havanese dogs love performing, learning tricks, playing with toys, and being silly little clowns – you certainly won’t have a dull day with this pup in your house. 

They can be excellent watchdogs and usually only bark when they hear something alarming. Havanese are happy pups who just want to play with their toys and spend time with their owners. These teacup dogs also don’t shed much but need daily brushing to keep their hair silky smooth.

10. Italian Greyhound


Photo by Brian Gerry on Unsplash

Italian Greyhounds are sensitive pups known for shaking and making good decorative couch cushions. They usually weigh between seven and 14 pounds and can reach heights up to 15 inches. These pups are the miniature version of the Greyhound but with more sensitivities. They love to run and be active, so they need a lot of exercise. 

They were bred to be companions and jesters and still fulfil that role to this day. Come nighttime, you can find them curled up on the couch or chilling on your bed, waiting for you to join them.

11. Japanese Chin


Image sourced from Canva

These cute dogs enchant any room they walk into. With their self-confident swagger, the Japanese Chin will melt your heart within seconds of meeting them. These adorable pups weigh between seven and 11 pounds and can reach up to 11 inches in height. 

This smaller dog has a coat that is the envy of dogs around them, as these furballs have long, luscious locks that feather around their legs, ears, and backside. They’ll easily rack up thousands of Instagram followers and make millions selling hair gummies even though it’s all-natural. 

12. Maltese


Photo by FLOUFFY on Unsplash

The Maltese is a small, intelligent dog breed. These pups can be easily trained and love to learn and perform new tricks. They’re eager to please and will be your best friend for life. 

Maltese dogs usually weigh around seven pounds or less and can be up to 10 inches tall. They don’t shed much, but grooming them can be pretty tricky due to their sensitive skin. Despite their angelic appearance, these dogs love any opportunity to get dirty. 

13. Miniature Dachshund


Photo by Sarah ( animal photography ) on Unsplash

Miniature Dachshunds might be small in stature, but they’re big in personality. Some say that their stubborn streak is even longer than their bodies, as these pups have a lot of opinions and will make sure you hear every single one. 

Miniature Dachshunds can weigh between four and 11 pounds and reach an average height of around six inches. They are incredibly clever and easy to train (if you can get them to listen to you). This energetic breed is also very affectionate and love a good cuddle with their human.

14. Miniature Pinscher


Photo by Claudio Schwarz on Unsplash

You might think the Miniature Pinscher is a pint-sized version of the Doberman Pinscher, and who would blame you? However, this tiny pup is believed to be a mix between the Italian Greyhound and the Dachshund. It’s unclear why they were named Miniature Pinschers, but it may be due to their coloring. 

These pups weigh between eight and 11 pounds and can grow up to 12 inches tall. They’re known as the King of Toys, which has nothing to do with their affinity for squeaky toys. With their high perched ears and expressive eyes, they can come across as intimidating (until you remember they’re barely a foot tall).

15. Miniature Schnauzer

miniature-schnauzer dog breeds that stay small forever

Photo by Sebastian Coman Travel on Unsplash

The Miniature Schnauzer is probably the most human-looking dog on this list. From their bushy eyebrows to their empathetic eyes, they get closer to the uncanny valley than some dolls do. These pups usually weigh between 11 and 20 pounds and can reach up to 14 inches tall. 

They have a stocky body and are known for their beard and mustache, contributing to their human looks. These pups are quite outgoing and love spending time with people, children, and other dogs. They don’t shed a lot, but they’re high maintenance when it comes to grooming due to all their fluff.

16. Papillon


Photo by Anna Dudkova on Unsplash

Papillons live up to their name, as these butterfly dogs have ears resembling wings. These majestic pups are tiny, usually weighing between four and nine pounds and reaching heights of only 11 inches (although most of this is their ears). 

They are affectionate, loyal dogs and also get along well with cats and most other small pets. In fact, they’re pretty submissive, so your cat will probably have them trained within a few days of meeting. This can be dangerous for your mental health, as now you have Pinky and the Brain on your hands. 

Read Next: For more dogs that get along well with cats, here’s a list of small dog breeds for cats.

17. Pekingese


Photo by Vianney CAHEN on Unsplash

These unique-looking pups have had a resurgence in popularity thanks to the celebrity world and TV shows such as All Creatures Great and Small. Pekingese are tiny dogs that weigh between seven and 15 pounds and grow up to nine inches tall.

This Chinese dog breed is incredibly faithful and loving. They are protective of their owners, even though they can barely do any damage. Although endearing, the protective nature of the Pekingese can translate to aggressive behavior, including nipping or biting. 

18. Pomeranian


Photo by Tom Radetzki on Unsplash

Originally from Pomerania itself, Pomeranian pups can weigh between three and seven pounds and reach 12 inches tall. They are little clowns with a silky coat that love to play around and make you laugh. 

Since these pups love to play, investing in interactive toys is a good idea. Unfortunately, even though these furballs are lively and energetic, they don’t get along well with other dogs and children.

19. Pug


Photo by Mink Mingle on Unsplash

Another pup with a distinctively weird look, this breed is known for its brachycephalic face. However, these furballs are still very cute in their own way. They can weigh between 14 and 18 pounds and usually reach heights up to 14 inches. 

Pugs are very affectionate and gentle pups who get along well with almost everyone. Although they have short coats and don’t need much grooming, they shed more than other small dogs. Investing in a good quality lint roller is a great idea if you’re the proud owner of a pug.

20. Schipperke


Photo by Roxann Shepard on Unsplash

The Schipperke is a bear-like dog breed that looks like a baby cub and acts like a mama bear. Their average weight is between 10 and 16 pounds and can grow up to 13 inches in height. Known in Belgium as the little captain, the Schipperke was bred to be a working dog and is known for their powerful appearance packed into a tiny body. 

These pups are curious and lively, and you’ll never have a dull moment with one of them in your life. However, beware, they can also be mischievous and have a catlike hunting style -birds and squirrels.

21. Shih Tzu


Photo by Edson Torres on Unsplash

The stubborn and independent Shih Tzu’s name means little lion in Mandarin, and it definitely shows in their personalities. These pups weigh between nine and 16 pounds and can reach up to 10 inches in height. However, don’t let their small stature fool you. 

These furballs are incredibly stubborn, which only emphasizes their cuteness. They don’t like being trained and will put up a fight when you try to teach them new commands or tricks. Shih Tzus enjoy making friends at the dog park, so perhaps skip the schooling and rather head out on adventures with them.

22. Toy American Eskimo


Photo on pxfuel

Eskies don’t come from the frozen tundras of Alaska. Don’t be disappointed, though, as these German-based pups still look like they’ll blend in perfectly with fresh snow. Toy American Eskimos can weigh between six and 10 pounds and reach heights up to 12 inches. 

Most of their weight is just fur, though, as they are quite literally little balls of hair. These pups are playful and super clever, so they’re able to learn tricks quite easily. They also have herding instincts and can be protective of their owners. 

23. Toy Poodle


Photo by Alison Pang on Unsplash

When it comes to the many sizes of poodles, toy poodles are the smallest. They usually weigh between four and six pounds and don’t grow taller than 10 inches. However, just like their counterparts, they’re incredibly clever dogs who love to be silly. It’s been known for poodles to be accidentally absurd, as sometimes they’ll do something to make you laugh that wasn’t even intended. 

These pups have lots of energy and love to play and run outside. They need a lot of exercise and will benefit from a big box of dog toys. Although Poodles are hypoallergenic, they need a lot of extensive grooming.

24. Volpino Italiano


Photo by Paola F on Unsplash

Here’s another pup that’s more fluff than it is dog. The Volpino Italiano is a small dog breed with lots of energy and agility. They weigh between eight and 16 pounds and can be up to 12 inches tall. These pups love to run around and play with their family and other dogs. 

They’re super loving and enjoy curling up on your lap after a full day of being active. Volpinos have been reported as existing around ancient times but almost went extinct when Italians lost interest in them. 

25. Welsh Corgi


Photo by Florencia Potter on Unsplash

Who doesn’t love a cute corgi butt? When it comes to small dogs, there’s a reason the Welsh corgi is a royal favorite. These pups are incredibly friendly and very playful. They love spending time around people, but having a corgi friend is recommended to keep them entertained. 

They can weigh up to 30 pounds and usually grow around 12 inches in height. Despite their small size, they’re pretty active pups, and one of their favorite activities is wrestling with their corgi buddies. 

26. Wire Fox Terrier


Photo by H Liu on Unsplash

The Wire Fox Terrier looks like the Miniature Schnauzer with their human-like features. However, where the Schnauzer looks like an American man from the 1930s, the Wire Fox Terrier stays true to their roots by looking like a British man from the 1940s. 

These pups weigh between 15 and 18 pounds and are usually 15 inches tall. They were bred to hunt foxes but have become a classic show dog small breeds in modern times. These toy fox terriers have dark eyes that peer into your soul, and their appearance is very noble as if they are a royal family member. 

27. Yorkshire Terrier


Photo by Crystal Huff on Unsplash

The Yorkie is a favorite when it comes to small dog breeds, and it’s easy to see why. The teacup yorkie usually weighs between three and seven pounds and reaches up to nine inches in height. They’re very tiny but incredibly mighty pups that are particularly active and need a lot of exercise to be happy and healthy. 

If they’re not mentally and physically stimulated, they will show their boredom through chewing (which means your couch will be in danger). These pups get lonely quite easily, so it’s best to adopt them in pairs. 

Final Thoughts on Tiny Toy Dog Breeds

When it comes to dog breeds that stay small forever, this list contains only the finest pups out there. From active furballs who chew your rugs to lazy couch potatoes who eat your dinner, there are many small dog breeds out there. It may be true that the best things come in small packages.

If you want to learn more, here are some interesting facts about dogs.

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