The Pomeranian (often known as a Pom or a Toy Pom) is of the Spitz family in the Arctic region and is thought to have acquired its name by association with the area known as Pomerania in Central Europe. Pomerania is today part of Poland and Eastern Germany. Although this small dog is now classified as a toy dog, they descended from the larger Spitz type dogs, specifically the German Spitz. In many countries they are known as the Zwergspitz. In its larger form, the Pomeranian served as a sheepherder.
Although Pomerania is not the origin of the breed, this area is credited with the breeding which led to the original Pomeranian. Proper documentation was lacking until the breeds introduction into the United Kingdom. The breed has been made popular by a number of royal owners since the 18th century, but mostly by the enthusiast, Queen Victoria who established a large breeding kennel. The size of the breed has decreased by 50% during Queen Victoria's lifetime. One of her favourites was Windor's Marco, a comparatively small red sable weighing 5.4kg whom many believe was the inspiration to breeding smaller Pomeranians.
The first Breed club was set up in England in 1891 and the first breed standard was written shortly afterwards. The first member of the breed was registered in America to the American Kennel Club in 1898 and it was recognized in 1900. The first Pomeranian to win in the toy group at the Westminster Kennel Club Dog Show in 1926 was Glen Rose Flashaway. And in 1988, the first Pomeranian, Great Elms Prince Charming II, won the Best in Show prize at the Westminster Kennel Club.
Great Elms Prince Charming II
Today, this miniaturized sled dog continues to attract dog fanciers and is ranked as one of the top 20 favourite dog breeds over the world.