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A red Pomeranian
A red Pomeranian
Alternative names
Deutscher Zwergspitz
Toy German Spitz
Country of origin
Poland and Germany
Common nicknames
Classification and breed standards
FCI: Group 5 Section 4 #97  
AKC: Toy  
ANKC: Group 1 (Toys)  
CKC: Group 5 - Toys  
KC (UK): Toy  
NZKC: Toy  
UKC: Companion Breeds  
Not recognized by any major kennel club
This breed of dog is extinct

The Pomeranian is a breed of dog in the spitz family, named for the Pomerania region of Poland and East Germany, and classed as a toy dog breed because of its small size.


Sable Pom's face Sable Pom's face

At an average of 3 to 7 lb (1.4 to 3.2 kg) according to AKC standards, the Pomeranian (Pom) is the most diminutive of the northern breeds.

The head of the Pomeranian is wedge-shaped, making it somewhat foxy in appearance. The ears are large and pointed. Its tail is characterstic of the breed and should be turned over the back and carried flat, set high.

The Pom's coat is its glory, two coats, an undercoat and a top coat; the first is soft, thick, and fluffy; the latter is a long, perfectly straight and glistening coat covering the whole body. The undercoat is shed during warm weather conditions.

The AKC recognizes thirteen colors or color combinations: black, black & tan, blue, blue & tan, chocolate, chocolate & tan, cream, cream sable, orange, orange sable, red, red sable, and sable. The AKC also recognizes five "alternative" colors: Beaver, brindle, chocolate sable, white, and wolf sable.

At least one breed standard calls for a cobby, balanced dog. A cobby dog is a long or shorter than he is tall; try to picture him as a circle in a square. A balanced Pomeranian fits together logically and in proportion. For instance, a small, delicately boned Pom with a large head looks unbalanced because his head type doesn't match his body type. A balanced Pom displays legs in proportion to his body: neither so short as to make him appear dumpy nor so long as to make him look like he is walking on stilts.

The standard also calls for an expression that imparts great intelligence, showing that the Pom has an alert character and that he behaves accordingly. The pom's alertness makes it a superb watchdog.


The Pom is an active dog who is intelligent, courageous, and a loyal companion. The Pomeranian may not interact well with small children, and due to its small size can suffer abuse from children.

Pomeranians have proven themselves to be excellent watchdogs by announcing intruders with loud, sharp barks.

The Pomeranian easily adapts to life in the city, and is an excellent dog for country living with its strong hunting instincts from its wild ancestors.


The Pomeranian originated from the sled dogs of Iceland and Lapland, which were eventually brought into Europe. The Germans improved the coat and bred the dogs down for city living, but they were still 20 pounds or more when they reached England.

An orange-sable Pomeranian An orange-sable Pomeranian

English breeders, through trial and error and Mendelian theories, are credited for reducing the dog's size and developing the many colors. The Pomeranian of today is small due to selective breeding, but the breed still retains the hardy disposition and thick coat typical of dogs in cold climates.

The Pomeranian became internationally popular when Queen Victoria returned from vacation in Florence, Italy with a Pomeranian named Marco.

The closest relatives of the Pomeranian are the Norwegian Elkhound, the Samoyed, the Schipperke, and the whole Spitz group.


Pomeranians are generally a healthy, hardy, and long-lived breed—often, Poms live 15 or 16 years.

The teeth of the Pomeranian can be the cause of serious health concerns for the breed. The teeth must be meticulously cared for through frequent cleaning to prevent the teeth from falling out at a rather early age. Problems with the teeth can cause heart problems which may lead to an early death.

Pomeranians are known to have a higher likelihood of suffering from seizures either from idiopathic epilepsy or hypoglycemia

Another common ailment is a dislocated patella.


Famous Pomeranians

  • Fran Drescher's Pomeranians, Esther Drescher and Chester Drescher
  • Sharon Osbourne's Pomeranian, Minnie
  • Nicole Richie's Pomeranian, Foxxy Cleopatra


  • [[|Spirer, Louise Ziegler; & Spirer, Herbert F., ]],  () ( 1965). ""  [ This is the Pomeranian], , , TFH Publications. ISBN 0-87666-354-4..
  • [[|Liebers, Arthur; & Sheppard, Georgia M., ]],  () ( 1959). ""  [ How to Raise and Train the Pomeranian], , , TFH Publications. ISBN 0-87666-352-8..

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