Toy dogs or play dogs are traditionally tiny dog breeds. The dogs are kept in the house for playing or as a companion animal. They are very active, friendly, playful, and well-tempered. Different dog breed types are considered toy dogs, like terriers, spaniels, and pinchers. The dogs were initially called lapdogs.
Most Popular Toy Dog Breeds
There are hundreds of dog breeds that may be considered toy dogs. All of the dog breeds are not equally popular and known to all. I shall briefly discuss the most popular toy dog breeds with pictures in my article.
The Affenpinscher is one of the most miniature dogs developed by crossbreeding pinschers and schnauzers. This appealing, naturally scruffy-looking toy dog has a keen intelligence and is exceedingly affectionate. Its thick coat benefits from being brushed daily. It makes a good watchdog, and terrier-like is not opposed to rabbiting.
2. Toy Dog: Maltese
The Maltese dog is a member of the bichon dog family; this small, white dog is one of the oldest European breeds; it has existed on the island of Malta for centuries and found its way to China and the Philipines via Maltese Traders. The long-established Maltese seems to have been overtaken in popularity by other toys and is now seldom seen outside the show ring.
The Lowchen dog of Tibet is also known as the Little Lion Dog because it was traditionally given a lion clip, similar to that sported by the exhibition poodle. Complete with mane and tufted tail, the Lowchen does look like a lion in miniature. The Lion dog breed is also a member of the Bichon family and is thought to have originated in the Mediterranean area.
4. Brussels Griffon
An early example of the Brussels Griffon is depicted in a painting of 1434 by the Flemish painter Jan Van Eyck. Once kept by hansom cab drivers of 17th-century Brussels to rid their stables of vermin, the Brussels Griffon became a companion breed under its appealing character. The Griffon has never suffered from the over-popularity of some breeds and is a good family choice.
5. English Toy Terrier
The English Toy Terrier was bred from the Manchester Terrier. This more giant but similar breed was developed from the now extinct rough-haired Black and Tan Terrier and other breeds. Surprisingly rare outside the show ring today, the English Toy Terrier still retains the ability to hunt vermin and makes an affectionate and intelligent companion.
6. Yorkshire Terrier
The Yorkshire Terrier or Yorkie is a comparatively recent breed developed in Yorkshire, England, within the last hundred years through the crossing of a Skye Terrier and the extinct Black and Tan, a forerunner of the Manchester Terrier. The Yorkie is suited to town or country living, and like most small terriers, is utterly fearless.
7. Australian Silky Terrier
The Australian Silky Terrier, or Silky Terrier, was initially known as the Sydney Silky, and the progeny was registered under that name as recently as 1945. It owes its existence to the crossbreeding of Skye and Yorkshire Terriers and the Yorkshire and Australian Terriers. The dog is a typical terrier in temperament. It is not averse to a spot of vermin hunting but offers its owners much affection.
8. Toy Dog Breeds: Pug
The Pug likely originated in China, and it may be a significantly scaled-down relative of the Tibetan Mastiff. This happy, intelligent little dog is good with children and requires only modest exercise, but the Pug should not be exercised in scorching weather. Daily grooming with a brush and a rub-down with a silk handkerchief will make its coat shine.
9. Pomeranian Toy Dog
The small dog is a member of the spitz family, and like another spitz, originated in the Arctic Circle. The Pomeranian derives from white spitz in Pomerania, northern Germany, from about 1700. This affectionate and faithful dog is good with children and makes a delightful pet.
The Papillon dog is also known as the Continental Toy Spaniel. French for ‘butterfly, Papillon comes from the breed’s erect ears. The Papillon is intelligent, usually healthy, and has proved ab able a contender in obedience competitions. The papillon dog is relatively easy to look after, needing only a daily brushing to keep the coat shining.
11. Toy Dog Breed: Pekingese
The origins of the Pekingese may trace back some 1,500 years. The breed is believed to be a close relative of the Lhasa Apso and Shih Tzu; the Peking was said to combine the nobility of the lion with the grace and sweetness of the marmoset. The dog is a thick-set, dignified little dog with a mind of its own and is good with adults and children.
12. Japanese Chin
There are two thoughts on the origin and development of the Japanese Chin or Japanese Spaniel. One theory is that it derives from Pekingese-like dogs brought to Japan by Zen Buddhist monks in the AD 500s, and the other that it descends from a lapdog sent as a present in AD 732 to the Emperor of Japan from Korea. Bearing some resemblance to King Charles Spaniel, the Chin is a famous show dog but less often kept as a pet. This attractive and hardy little dog is good with children.
13. King Charles Spaniel
In North America, King Charles Spaniel’s dog breed is known as the English Toy Spaniel, and the name “King Charles” is given to the Black and Tan variety only. This little spaniel makes a delightful pet, being good with children, full of fun, and able to adapt its exercise requirements to its owner’s capabilities.
The Mexican Chihuahua dog breed is one of the cutest dogs in the world. The dog was named after the state of Chihuahua in Mexico and is believed to have been a sacred dog of the Aztecs. The dog is exceedingly intelligent, affectionate, possessive, and makes a good watchdog in miniature. Despite being generally thought of as a lapdog, it can walk as far as most owners wish.
15. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel
The dog originated in Japan, and there is a resemblance between it and the Japanese Chin. The Cavalier is very similar to King Charles Spaniel, but while King Charles has an apple-domed head, the slightly larger Cavalier is almost flat between the ears, and its stop is shallower. This breed is an admirable choice of the family pet, being good-natured and fond of children.
16. Italian Greyhound
There is little doubt that the Italian Greyhound is a descendant of the Greyhound, but there appears to be no record of how and when it was reduced in size. It is one of the most ancient breeds globally and is a delightful, affectionate house pet that is easy to train, rarely molts, and odorless.
17. Miniature Pinscher
The Miniature Pinscher, or Min Pin as it is commonly called, is not, as many believe, a miniature Doberman. Its ancestor is the German Pinscher to which Italian Greyhound and, it is thought, Dachshund blood was added. It has an attractive hackney gait. They make an ideal pet for town or country, affectionate and intelligent, and rarely molting.
18. Chinese Crested Dog
The almost hairless Chinese Crested is said to have originated in China and been introduced to South America in Chinese sailing ships many centuries ago. It has no coat except a flowing crest or mane, hair on its feet, and a gaily carried, plumed tail. The crested dog is an affectionate little dog breed that makes an excellent pet dog for those who appreciate its loving nature and are not put off by its vitality.
Final Talk on Toy Dog Breeds
The above dog breeds are well known as toy dogs. Toy dogs are popular in homes and small apartments. The owner can prepare any dog breeds as toy dogs. The article highlighted the most common play dogs only.