The Pomeranian is a toy breed that has seen increased popularity for people who don’t have the space for a larger dog or time for exercising a large breed. The breed originally came from a region called Pomerania, which now encompasses parts of Germany and Poland. Much of their personality comes from having been sized down from sledding and herding breeds.
Poms are small, generally 3 to 7 pounds, with a compact body, upright ears and fluffy coat. Their faces have a decidedly foxy quality. They can be found in many colors such as red, orange, cream, brown, black, sable, black-and-tan, parti-colored and brindle. The most common colors produced are orange and red.
The Pom’s head has a wedge shape, with a short muzzle and well-pronounced stop. The dog’s eyes are dark and have a slight almond shape. The tail is feathered and lies across the dog’s back. Pomeranians have a thick, double coat. The outer coat is coarse and straight while the inner coat is thick, soft and short. The neck and chest area is fluffier than the rest of the body.
The Pomeranian has a winning personality that most people enjoy. Poms are lively, bold and curious, with an alert manner that gives them the reputation of being big dogs in small packages. However, they can be suspicious of unfamiliar people and become very attached to their owners. Their alertness makes the Pomeranian a good watchdog. However, this tendency can lead to excessive barking, so early training to limit their vocalizations is important. They love to play and interact but have an independent spirit. Strong leadership from puppyhood can keep the Pom’s self-confident nature in check.
Their coats need daily brushing to stay attractive, and stray hair must be cut to keep them tidy. Pomeranians are one of the heaviest shedding breeds, so you should be prepared to run the vacuum frequently.
Poms can be fussy eaters. Because of their tiny size and high activity levels, puppies require more frequent meals. You can keep dry food available at all times, which will help keep tartar from depositing on your Pom’s teeth. This is a common problem with Pomeranians and can lead to early tooth loss. Ensure that your dog gets the proper nutrition by choosing a high quality dog food that contains the right vitamins and minerals for maintaining good health. Avoid being manipulated into relying on table foods.
Daily brushing will help to remove hair and keep the coat in good condition. Pommies need a daily walk to burn off energy but will adapt well to apartment life. A daily playtime with their owners will keep them happy and well adjusted.
Like many small breeds, Pomeranians frequently suffer from subluxated patella, in which the kneecap becomes dislocated. Surgery is sometimes necessary. They may also be vulnerable to skin eruptions, eye infections and heart problems. Puppies may require delivery by cesarean section.
The Down Side of the Pomeranian Breed
Many people breed Pomeranians without care for producing dogs with stable temperaments. Always find a reputable breeder or choose an adult adoptee so that you can accurately assess his temperament.
Pomeranians need strong leadership or they become bossy and manipulative. You must provide strong pack leadership and early socialization to avoid excessive barking problems and snapping at unfamiliar people. Because of their small size, they may not do well with small children. Without regular exercise, they can become neurotic, developing problems such as separation anxiety, biting and aggressiveness with other animals. They must be kept on leash or may get into spats with other dogs.
Pomeranians can be difficult to housebreak. Owners must keep them in restricted areas until their physical maturity allows them better control.