KUSA Member Number: 1023765
Now this is more like it!
Please buy me from a reputable breeder!
Will you be there for me 24/7?
This isn't what I should look like!
Think you've got what it takes to take care of me?
is a real puppy? Guess again!
this just adorable? Who doesn't want a cute little puppy like this?
When people wonder about accurate Pomeranian size and comparison, you will find that many resources only list the standards of the AKC. While this is an excellent, reputable and well recognised kennel club, their standards are not the only accepted nor expected size standards. If you look at the world as a whole, there are 4 top canine clubs that dominate the standards of purebreds. The AKC (American Kennel Club), KC (Kennel Club standard of England), CKC (Canadian Kennel Club) and FCI (Federation Cynologique Internationale). For those in South Africa (KUSA), we look to the KC for established expectations for all conformations including colour, temperament, size and more.
The AKC: According to the AKC, the range for the Pomeranian breed standard is 3-7lbs (1.36-3.175kg). This is for a full size adult Pomeranians that is done growing (after 1 year of age). Some Poms will weigh less than this and some will weigh more.
The CKC: Do not confuse this club with the AKC, although they follow the same standards, but find 4-6lbs (1.81-2.72kg) to be the ideal weight.
The KC: The standard of England stipulates a smaller range without much room for variation, only 4- 5.5lbs (2-2.5kg) for females and 4-4.5lbs (1.8-2kg) for males. But as you can see the AKC and CKC makes room for both smaller and bigger Poms. KUSA (Kennel Union of South-Africa) is to follow the standards of the KC.
The FCI: This club has over 80 countries as members from all over the world. Per the FCI, it is not the weight that sets the standard, it is simply the height: 20cm (+ or - 2cm) from the floor to the shoulders (withers). The 20cm is a tad shorter than the low number on the range of the AKC's 8- 11 inches (20.32-27.94cm). Pomeranians are actually referred to as Toy Spitz per the FCI, and those that are taller than the 18 to 22 cm are then classified as a miniature Spitz. South-Africa is also a member of the FCI.
There is no such recognized breed as the Miniature, Teacup, Pocket Sized or Toy Pomeranian or any other name that implies that there is a separate and distinct dog breed, smaller than the standard Pomeranian, which is “special”. There is only one Pomeranian breed in all of the countries in the world. The word “Toypom” is used by the general public, but this breed is actually called Pomeranian. “Miniature”, “Teacup” or “Pocket size” in regard to Pomeranians is a marketing term created and used by puppy mills and backyard breeders – and if the dog is truly undersized, it refers to a dangerously tiny dog. Be aware of breeders that use this term when selling a puppy, as this could be a scam or a under aged puppy. However, this name may be used by breeders as a verb to describe a Pomeranian that falls on the low end of the accepted weight scale. The only real and recognised breed is simply the “Pomeranian”. And they are small enough, as they are one of the smallest of the Toy sized breeds. Visit the KUSA webpage to view the Pomeranian standard.
Many believe that a “Miniature” or “Teacup” is a new trend in dogs. They believe a tiny puppy is such a novelty, rare and adorable that they will pay grand amounts to own one. They want attention and will use a dog to get it. Many buy without thinking first and most puppy mills depend on this desire. This desire is what makes you an easy target! So be careful and educate yourself!
Still think there is a difference between a "Miniature" Pom and a standard Pom?
Still under the impression that Miniatures, Teacups and Pocket sized Pomeranians differs? Read On...
There is no difference! These terms was created by puppy mills to lure impulsive people into buying a tiny cute little puppy. They make believe that any puppy they sell you will remain tiny as an adult so you will buy from them.
Still want to know if true miniatures exists?
These puppies should be 1 to 1.8kg Pomeranians as adults. Most ethical breeders do not breed for such high health risk puppies. However, since we are not all powerful and we can’t manipulate the gene pool to perfection as we may wish, we do occasionally get Miniatures from time to time that occurs
Still in doubt about the ethicality behind deliberate miniature breeding?
Aren't normal Poms small & cute enough for you?
While it is true that this breed was bred down in size during its development, this is a change that happened over many generations, with only the strongest dogs utilized for developmental breeding programs. It is not acceptable for a breeder
to breed miniatures purposefully and to produce dogs that are smaller in size than the established standard that is considered safe. Unethical breeders will go to great lengths to produce smaller dogs by pairing two tiny dogs (“runt” dogs) or by inbreeding, or even deliberately stunting a puppy’s growth through starvation to produce a so-called miniature. Breeding “miniatures” is extra risky for both the mother and the puppies. How small must a dog be before people realise that there is no need for a “Miniature Pomeranian”. Also, any breeder who shows would not try to produce smaller than the standard Pomeranian, as they would not be accepted into the show ring.
Want to know about the risks involved in owning a miniature?
A Puppy who is under 450g by the age of 8 weeks old may not survive to adulthood.
These small puppies may not grow properly.
A tiny puppy needs 100% supervision until they are at least 6 months old or longer as they need to be fed several times a day to prevent hypoglycemia and they need to be monitored carefully for digestive problems.
This breed is prone to injury and has already trauma as the worlds 3rd leading cause of death and these “miniatures” will be much more prone to injury, especially when jumping or dropped from heights.
Like all small dogs, miniatures have a tendency to get underfoot and you’re less likely to see them and more likely to cause serious damage when you kick or step on them.
They are also more likely to be prone to health problems, especially if they are bred to be small or bred in overpopulated puppy mills, so they may need special or extra vet care, even as an adult.
Miniatures may be at a higher risk in surgical procedures due to size and may not survive surgeries as anaesthesia is too risky.
Miniatures are more prone to have common illnesses become fatal.
Health issues! How bad can it be?
Every breed is prone to certain diseases and disorders, but the list of issues for a miniature is long and severe. These health issues can directly be related to their size or the problems can come from inbreeding if the puppy comes from a sketchy backyard breeder. And thanks to all of
these issues, miniatures normally don’t live as long as their normal-sized fellows, especially if the new owner is not made aware of defects the puppy may have. Most puppies that are not 450g to 900g at 8 weeks are at a higher risk to not reach adulthood. A Pomeranian that falls under the accepted weight will most likely have many health issues like: Respiratory problems, Heart Murmur, Enlarged Heart, Open Fontanel, Epilepsy, Hypoglycemia (even as an adult), Hydrocephalus, Heat stress, Trouble maintaining body temperature, Liver Shunts, Diabetes, thyroid problems, Fragile or underdeveloped bones, Guardia or Cocci, act. These conditions may be harder to fight off for such a tiny puppy and what may be harmless to a normal sized puppy could be fatal to a miniature. This page is put together to educate the people so that they can understand the risks involved in owning a true miniature. I want to say that all miniatures have lived a full happy life without any problems and with no extra health issues, but I cannot. For the majority of them was a result of selfish breeding for money. The ones that was born naturally as a miniature (“runt”), there is a reason why this puppy didn’t grow and this reason is almost always health related. However, I can say that there is a few that does not have health related issues. So educate yourself and make informed decisions so that you won’t get taken for advantage and by from trustable reputable breeders. Please also understand that not all health issues a dog has, or may develop in its life, is the fault of the breeder. For this issues could be genetic inherited and that can’t be controlled or predicted. Unethical breeders make many honest breeders, which raise Poms because they love and enjoy them, look bad.
Still sure a miniature will fit into your busy lifestyle?
Are you sure you can live up to the demands a miniature will have! Will you be able to take care of him 24/7, handle the stress of the extra care and fit him into your lifestyle? Will you be able to change your plans if the puppy needs you? Do you have a babysitter you can trust for the puppy should you need one? Can you afford the for higher-than-normal vet bills – not tomention all the frustration and heartbreak that comes with owning a chronically ill pet. Is your family ready
for a new addition that will change things, as a “miniature” is a horrible choice for families with young children, who will naturally want to carry around the puppy (a tragedy waiting to happen)? Do you own other larger dogs that can also inadvertently harm a miniature? Will you still love this puppy even if they get bigger than expected? If any of your answers is a negative to these questions or you are a first time dog owner, you should not consider a miniature as this will end up in a disastrous situation!
Still convinced that a miniature is for you and you're sure you know a scam when you see one?
Because these “miniatures” are so high in demand and can sell for thousands, there’s a huge incentive for unethical breeders to produce these dogs in any way they can. To make sure that you obtain a healthy, well purebred Pomeranian, go to a reputable, honest Pomeranian breeder so that you do not fall
into the trap of purchasing a dog that was bred down in size at the cost of the dog’s health. Fraud is another issue because there is no guarantee that the tiny puppy you get from the breeder won’t grow up to be a standard sized dog. Ethical breeders can’t be 100% correct in predicting exact adult sizes of their puppies. So how can these other breeders know all their puppies will mature to be miniatures? Many puppy mills will breed huge females to get more puppies per litter and sell them of as “miniatures”, so many of those so called “miniatures” might not even be the standard size, but larger! Most know this, but they lie about it. Now add to this that it is all too easy for someone to pass a puppy off as a bonafide “miniature”, when it’s really a few weeks younger than advertised, that leaves his mother before he should and you have a puppy set up and sold to die for profit. In order to avoid a scam, you must know what to look for and what to ask the breeder.
Every day I am bombarded by one line questions: “Do you sell tiny miniature?”, “How big is the parents, are they also miniatures?”, “How big will the puppy be as an adult?”, “Will the puppy stay a miniature?” What is more important, getting a healthy puppy or a small one? Why doesn’t anyone ask me about the puppy’s health or vaccinations or the health history of the parents? This is the type of questions the puppy mills and back yard breeders are waiting for! They LOVE this! It is an easy sale to make. They leave with your money and you leave with heartache. Please save yourself, STOP puppy mills and by from a trustworthy reputable breeder!
If you have a large Pomeranian, this may be due to their genes being throwback genes. Do not confuse overweight or obesity with Throwback genes. Also keep in mind that the American Kennel Club’s standard already allows for bigger dogs than the Kennel Union Of South-Africa. So if the dog is from an American imported blood line, there could be bigger Pomeranians in his history.
Let’s discuss why a Pomeranian may be a throwback, how this happens and if health issues may be relevant.
The Pomeranian that we know today, descended from the ancient Spitz dog. The Spitz dogs were solid white and weighed on average 13.6kg. When a throwback occurs, the Pomeranians will have genes that cause his size to be closer to his ancestors and will therefore be much larger than the standard. While not common, this does happen from time to time and it’s all due to the dogs genes mutating or altering back to those of its ancestors. Therefore, it is possible for a purebred Pomeranian to weigh up to 8kg. Read more about the History of the Pom on my About Poms page.
So how do you know you have a Throwback?
The standard size weight for a purebred Pomeranian is a maximum of 2.5kg. As with any dog breed, there will be smaller than average and larger than average dogs. A Pom of let say 2.8kg, for example, can not clearly classified as a throwback as this dog would simple be a dog that is a bit larger than the standard. And then I would want to remind you that dogs in America’s weight standard is allowed up to 3.6kg.
A Pomeranian having partial throwback genes is a full grown adult Pom, which is not overweight, and is larger than 4.5kg but smaller than 6.3kg. A Pomeranian that is considered to be a clearly classified throwback would be a full grown adult, that is not overweight, that is larger than 6.3kg and purebred, without any other breed types in the bloodline that caused the dog to be over-sized. Therefore, if you have a large Pomeranian, this doesn’t mean that it is not a purebred, but more likely it is due to genetics that are out of the breeder’s control.
Does this effect behaviour?
The modern Pomeranian may already poses certain behaviours that are considered to be throwback behaviour such as being alert, independent and they are very adaptable to new situations… all this is theorised characteristics of the Spitz dog. Studies have shown in some cases, a throwback Pomeranian may also have throwback behaviours of a deeper nature, such as a pom of this size showing signs of not conforming to domestic life… the dog may have instinctual urges to “be out in the wild”. They may actually have instincts to “hunt” while outdoors and so forth. Do keep in mind that a loving home, with proper care and socialization, a large Pomeranian who is a throwback can be just as adoring, lovable, cuddly and well mannered as any other standard sized Pomeranian.
Does this effect health?
Studies show that when this does occur, it doesn’t have any effect on health issues above what a standard sized Pomeranian would have. Being sturdier, larger size can actually be an asset in regard to small Pomeranians having the possibility of being injured by jumping from heights, being stepped on, etc and a sturdier throwback can handle more activities like jumping.
Can a throwback Pomeranian come from the same litter?
Yes, a throwback Pomeranian will more often than not, have siblings that is standard or slightly above average size.
For those few people who owns a throwback Pomeranian, you have a very special dog… a dog that allows us a glimpse in to the past… one that shows characteristics of the noble ancestor of the Pomeranian!
naturally as “runts of the litter”, just as we may occasionally get one who will be larger. So yes, you do get true miniatures. Most ethical breeders however will tell you the same thing, that the smaller the dog, the higher the risk may be for health problems. True miniatures are very rare and it is not common to have a whole litter of them, let alone, litter after litter.