Get to know the Pomeranian
All you need to know about the breed
Packing a punch way above their size, Pomeranians may be a whole lot smaller than their sled-pulling ancestors, but they still retain that same mentality. Bold, brash and fearless, they also have an insatiable curiosity for everything around them. They therefore make excellent watchdogs.
On the flipside, Pomeranians can be a bit of a barky breed. So, if you like peace and quiet, or have sensitive neighbours, they may not be the one for you.
That aside, there is so much to love about the Pomeranian personality. Intelligent and attentive, they are always up for interaction with their owners, so are a lot of fun to have around. Also, with a maximum height of just 12 inches, the Pomeranian doesn’t need tons of exercise and will adapt well to most home set-ups.
The smallest member of the German Spitz family of dogs, which includes the Samoyed, Alaskan Malamute, and Norwegian Elkhound, the Pomeranian is known in some countries as the ‘Toy Spitz’. The breed that we know today was developed in Germany, probably in the 1700’s, but was gradually bred to be smaller.
Before long, the Pomeranian had become very in-demand with a host of distinguished fans. Perhaps most notably, Queen Victoria was a huge devotee of the breed and helped to cement their popularity (see more on this part of the Pomeranian’s story in our History of the Breed section).
With a cheeky charm about them, the Pomeranian certainly has a lovely temperament and are a real pleasure to have as a pet. Also, if you’re wondering how long Pomeranians live for, they have an unusually long lifespan, often going strong well into their teens.
No wonder then that the Pomeranian is one of the most popular of the toy breeds. They are also a regular in lists of the top 20 favourite dogs in the world.
2 facts about Pomeranians
Things to look out for
From specific breed traits to a general health overview, here are some interesting facts about your Pomeranian
Favour a harness instead of a leash
Like other small-breed dogs, Pomeranians can be susceptible to a progressive condition called ‘tracheal collapse’ – which combines the degeneration of the tracheal cartilage with a weakening of the tracheal membrane leading to a potential narrowing of the airways. Although the condition is inherited, it can be exacerbated by a collar and leash – especially if your Pomeranian lunges forward or the owner pulls back too hard. Symptoms can include a honking noise, coughing, wheezing or trouble breathing, and, in serious cases, they may also faint. For that reason, it’s always best to opt for a harness-style lead. If the condition is severe, surgery can be an option.
Looking after their little legs is important too
Another common problem for the Pomeranian breed is something called patellar luxation. Known as ‘trick knee’ in humans, this is a condition where the kneecap in the hind leg pops out of position. Though it usually goes back into place itself, each time this happens, it damages the lining of the joint. This causes inflammation, and can be quite painful, with symptoms such as limping or an odd ‘skipping’ walk. To keep a check on things, orthopaedic examinations are recommended twice a year, especially as the condition can lead to arthritis in later life. Ensuring your Pomeranian stays at their ideal weight can be a good preventative measure. In more serious cases, pain medication can be prescribed or surgery performed if needed.
Owners will also need to watch out for eye health
One of the other traits to be aware of with Pomeranians is that they can also be prone to some optical issues. These can include cataracts, dry eye and tear-duct problems, among others. As these complaints may affect their sight if left untreated, it’s important to seek professional advice. So, if you spot any symptoms such as redness, scarring or excessive tearing, or if your dog starts rubbing their eyes, contact your vet right away. That way, appropriate steps can be taken in good time. Regular eye checks are also highly recommended.
Caring for your Pomeranian
Grooming, training and exercise tips