The diminutive size, adorable features and delightful antics of some dogs can charm you into believing they would make the perfect pet, but not all small dogs are low-maintenance. If your lifestyle demands an easy-care pup, you have many small breeds to choose from.
One disadvantage of living with dogs is the constant battle with dog hair. It clings to furniture, coats and clothing, and clogs the vacuum; not to mention the havoc it plays on some people’s respiratory systems. Even the smallest dog’s fur can invade your home like a snowstorm. If you find fighting fur frustrating, it would be wise to consider one of the many small breeds that are very light shedders. These include the bichon frise, Havanese, Polish lowland sheepdog, miniature poodle and wire fox terrier. In addition to being light shedders, these breeds are also noted for being easy to groom, and very trainable.
If you are looking for a low-maintenance companion who is also a living alarm, the Cardigan Welsh corgi, Pembroke Welsh corgi, American Eskimo standard and toy, and puli are all excellent choices. These four-legged burglar alarms are alert and courageous. While their bark is undoubtedly bigger than their bite, the noise they create is generally enough to scare away lowlifes who are looking for an easy target. These small dog breeds are also generally laid back, do not need a lot of exercise and are easy to train. Their coats are easy to groom, too.
If you prefer your alarm system to be mounted on the wall and not running around on four feet, and you seek only quiet companionship from your four-legged friend, consider getting an Italian greyhound, Tibetan spaniel, Boston terrier, whippet or French bulldog. These small dogs have calm personalities and are not easily excited. They are also people pleasers, which makes them pretty easy to train and great low-fuss companions.
Excellent Apartment Companions
While some apartments allow pets, many landlords have size and temperament restrictions. Dogs that bark excessively, pace, whine or need lots of exercise are not suited for apartment life, no matter how small they are. Some small dog breeds, however, are well suited for a life confined to small spaces. These include the toy fox terrier, cavalier King Charles spaniel, Australian terrier, smooth fox terrier and Dandie Dinmont terrier. Their unflappable personalities and low energy levels make them well suited for apartment life, and they are easy to groom and train.
Jenny Newberry, a former teacher with 25 years of experience, is a professional writer and photographer and holds a B.S. and a M.Ed. in elementary and special education from the University of South Alabama. She is also a history buff, praise and worship pianist, pet enthusiast, avid crafter and hobby gardener.