The question of the most popular small dog breed is one that dog owners had debated since long before the internet existed for us to debate it on. In many ways, this is a subjective topic, but I want to throw my hat into the ring of this discussion and give you my opinion. So here is what I believe to be the definitive list of the most popular small dog breeds. We all love our dogs and think they are the best breed, but the truth is that not everyone agrees with us. Some breeds are more loved and popular than others, leaving many of us curious as to why everyone doesn’t love our preferred breed.
This is not as simple a question as you may at first think. I mean, how do you define popular? Is it as straight forward as how many of each breed are owned? Or should you consider the fervency of the owners about their breed as a mark of popularity. Frankly, I prefer to address the latter, since the former is a simple statistical fact and does not leave room for opinions or debate. So in my list here (and you are either going to love this or hate this) I am considering the level of passion of the breed owners as the primary measure.
I would have to say that this is arguably the most pleasant dog on this list ( now I know that this statement will cause debate!). Not the puppy Shih Tzu, which is prone to nip and can be a pain with small children, but the fully grown dog is a gentle and placid animal which is a real joy to have around the house. That being said, your rugged outdoors type who likes nothing more than to take his or her dog our on country treks will be disappointed with the Shih Tzu. In saying that, they would probably be disappointed with any dog on this list.
But for all the Shih Tzus wonderful personality traits and cute looks, they only make the last spot on this list. People like these dogs a lot. But its rare to find people overtly passionate about them.
In another recent list, this breed won the contest for the best small breed for kids. I won’t go into the ins and outs of it here; you can read the article here if you want. These suffer from the same problems as the Shih Tzu, however, as they are great animals, but their owners are not fervent in their love of their dogs. They sit back, quietly happy that they have a fantastic breed as a pet.
Probably more than any other breeds on this list, the Chihuahua is a real ‘love or hate’ breed. People that dislike them, really dislike them. But those that love them, they are passionate about their dogs. I have heard people refer to them as ‘ugly little ankle biters’ and others say they are a gorgeous little dogs. It goes to show that beauty is in the eye of the beholder.
Pugs have a real cult following. People only get pugs as pets if they are outrageously obsessed by them. Which is why they make it to the second spot on the list. They have the most distinctive look, which certainly adds to their charm. It also helps that they seem to be very popular with younger owners, who are perhaps naturally more excitable than the rest of us.
Dachshunds may not be the most commonly owned dogs, but I have never known a breed of dog to be so enthusiastically loved by their owners. Dachshund owners go nuts for any dachshund themed product or memorabilia. Owning a Dachshund seems to be more a way of life than just owning a dog. Their comical shape and personality no doubt add to their charm. I can see why people are so passionate about them.