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The Pomeranian

A Complete Breed Guide

LAST UPDATED 16 DECEMBER 2020

This article is written by Pet Circle's qualified veterinarian, Dr Michelle Wong, BVSc.

Sparkling with personality and energy, these dainty little dogs are the hardiest of all the toy breeds. Pomeranians are considered to be a miniature German Spitz. They are very intelligent and make excellent watch dogs - they are always on the alert when a stranger comes to knock on the door!

Pomeranians are easily distinguished by their luscious double coat and the extra fluff of hair surrounding their neck and chest. They are known for their foxy faces and pricked ears. Their bodies are square with a feathery tail that curls up over their backs.

Contents:
At a glance
History
Personality
Nutrition
Common health problems
Grooming
Further reading

Top toy and lifestyle recommendations for Pomeranians

Yours Droolly Muff Pup

Soft toys are perfect for Pom's play and nap times

Puppia Soft Harness

A well-fitted harness provides extra security and comfort during walks

FuzzYard Eskimo Bed

A luxurious bed that keeps your pup snuggled on the sides

At a glance

     

Breed size:

Place of origin:

Other names:

Toy

Germany

Deutscher Spitz, Zwergspitz, Dwarf Spitz

Breed group:

Energy level:

Weight range:

Toy Group, Companion Dog

High

1 - 3 kg

Life expectancy:

Tendency to bark:

Height range:

12 - 16 years

High

18 - 30 cm

Drool factor:

Social needs:

Coat length:

Low

High - love getting attention

Medium, double coat

Shedding factor:

Overall grooming needs:

Colours:

Moderate

High

Cream, orange sable, wolf sable, brown, chocolate, red, orange, black, blue, white or parti-colour

History

Pomeranians originated in the province of Pomerania, which is now split between Germany and Poland, a region of Northern Europe on the coast of the Baltic Sea. They are descended from the larger German Spitz, which can weigh up to 30kg, a good ten times heavier than the toy Pom! In the 18th century, the Queen of England fell in love with the breed and kept a particularly small sized Spitz. Over time, the size of the dogs was bred down to the miniature toy that we now know as the Pomeranian. Not only were English royals fascinated by this breed, many famous people including Sir Isaac Newton, Martin Luther, Michelangelo and Mozart all had a little Pom companion.

Personality

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The Pomeranian is a friendly, active and playful dog. They are also fiercely independent, curious, and quite headstrong which means they can easily develop 'small dog syndrome', thinking that they are the pack leader over their human.

Training is important to prevent serious behavioural problems. You do not want your Pomeranian to develop a habit of excessive barking and with extroverted personalities they easily become very vocal members of the household. They are intelligent dogs but can sometimes be stubborn with training. Diligence with training, being firm and patient, and focusing on positive reinforcement when your powder-puff displays good behaviour should mould your pet into a reasonable member of society.

Don’t forget about socialisation when they are young. Pomeranians are natural watchdogs and can be suspicious of strangers. Providing plenty of pleasant experiences with new humans and dogs as a puppy will help reduce anxiety and unwanted aggressive behaviours as an adult dog.

Nutrition

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Depending on which life stage your Pomeranian is at, their nutritional requirements can be very different. It's very important that you feed your Pomeranian a suitable diet that is age appropriate and meets all of their needs.

There are many brands that offer smaller kibble size to suit small and toy breeds. Small breed diets contain balanced levels of protein, fat and carbohydrate plus vitamins, minerals and antioxidants for health and wellbeing. Puppy food designed specifically for small breeds is also available.

To maintain the glossiness of that thick, luscious fur, you may wish to feed your Pomeranian a diet rich in Omega 3 oils, particularly EPA and DHA, which can support skin health and nourish the coat. Fish oils are good for promoting healthy joints, an important benefit for the active and playful pom.

Top food recommendations for Pomeranian Puppies

Top food recommendations for adult Pomeranians

Common Health Problems

Patella luxation

Frequent dislocation of the kneecap can cause locking of the leg and pain in the joint. Dog owners will often notice their dog skip or run around on three legs, holding up the leg with the problematic patella. Luxation occurs when there is a structural abnormality or when a traumatic injury has affected the joint.

Tracheal collapse

Most commonly occurring in middle aged toy and small breed dogs, collapsing of the windpipe happens because of weakening of the cartilage rings. When the rings cannot maintain its supportive structure, the airway tends to collapse as the dog breathes out. Coughing is a typical symptom and in worse cases, tracheal collapse can affect breathing.

Eye problems

Conditions of the eye which can affect Pomeranians include intraocular pressure (increased pressure in the eye), microphthalmia (small eyes), and colobomas (congenital lack of tissue in an eye structure).

Alopecia X

Commonly referred to as 'black skin disease', this is a combination of alopecia (hair loss) and hyperpigmentation (darkening of skin). The specific cause is unknown and research is ongoing to find out. It is possibly a hereditary condition with males affected more often than females, and typically occurs during puberty.

Grooming

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Daily brushing should keep that fluffy hair in top condition and reduce shedding. Regular bathing with a natural and soothing shampoo will help keep your puffball clean if they often come into the house and snuggle up on your bed. Don’t forget to trim their nails too!

Top health and grooming products for Pomeranians

Further Reading

Premium Pet Food: Is it Worth it?

New Puppy Guide

Which dog brush do you need?

3 Common New Pet Problems to Avoid