15 Best Small Dog Breeds for Indoor Pets ...

By Heather

15 Best Small Dog Breeds for Indoor Pets ...

When I began searching for the perfect pooch several years ago to keep me company, I researched all the best small dogs that are known to be good indoor pets. I knew as a single lady, that a small dog would be perfect for me to take care of, less expensive to feed, less troublesome to bathe, and most importantly, wouldn't hog all the bed space! Okay, and yes, I also wanted a small dog so I could easily tote it around with me anywhere I went. As I was on my search for the best small dogs out there, I learned a great deal about dog breeds. This information will help you find the best small dogs if you’re considering getting a pet, which I highly recommend!

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1 Maltese

Maltese Though these dogs don't come cheap, they are definitely one of the best small dogs you could own. I have a Maltese and she is a delight to take care of. Maltese dogs are really balanced dogs because though they enjoy being loved, cuddled with and need human contact, but they also aren't needy and can do their own thing if you’re busy. They also are easy to maintain in terms of grooming. My Maltese does not shed, and this was a critical aspect to me in terms of choosing a dog, along with how easy they are to house-train. Maltese dogs are easy to house-train after the initial few weeks or so, and adapt very quickly to other pets and routine bathroom breaks. They usually don’t weigh more than 7-8 pounds at most and are also inexpensive to feed since they don’t eat a lot at one serving. Though many have skin allergens, I find that by using an oatmeal based shampoo, my dog suffers no skin issues.

Updated on 5/23/2023

Maltese are one of the most popular small dog breeds for indoor pets. They are known for their intelligence, loyalty, and loving nature. Maltese dogs are hypoallergenic, meaning they do not shed or cause allergies. This makes them an ideal choice for people who suffer from allergies. They are also very easy to groom as they require minimal brushing and bathing.

Maltese dogs are also very easy to train and can quickly adapt to their owner’s routine. They are also very social and friendly, making them great companions for people of all ages. They usually weigh between 6-8 pounds and are very energetic. They enjoy playing and going on walks, but they also need plenty of rest and relaxation.

Maltese dogs are also very adaptable and can adjust to different living environments. They also do not require a lot of space, making them perfect for small homes and apartments. They are also very inexpensive to feed, as they do not require a lot of food at one time.

2 Boston Terrier

Boston Terrier Perhaps one of the most people-friendly dogs is the Boston Terrier. This is one of the best small dogs to own, in my opinion. My family had one for 12 years from the time I was 10 to 22 and she was the easiest, most loving and playful dog we ever had my entire life. Boston Terriers are great because they have a lot of energy, yet are small and loving. They also won’t tear your place apart while you’re gone to work. Boston Terriers house-train very easily and are excellent around children and other pets. Though they need occasional brushing to prevent shedding, they are overall easy to maintain and don’t need to be groomed. These dogs make fantastic indoor pets, yet also love to have a yard to run around and play in since they have extremely energetic personalities.

Embracing a new home is an exciting adventure, but it can also be filled with stress and confusion. One of the most daunting tasks is figuring out how to unpack after moving. By following a strategic plan, you can transition smoothly into your new space, creating an environment of comfort and style sooner than you think.

3 Papillon

Papillon Papillons are one of the most overlooked dogs in terms of making great house pets. These dogs are often used as therapy dogs and seizure alert dogs due to their high intelligence and compassion and sensitivity towards humans. They are very easy to train, which is why they are often used as show dogs. Though Papillons seem to require lots of upkeep due to their unique long hair, occasional grooming should be plenty. They do not suffer skin allergies too often and also do not shed.

4 Chihuahua

Chihuahua The Chihuahua is another great indoor breed to own due to their extreme loyalty, gentleness, and companionship. They also require almost no grooming and do not shed. Chihuahuas do not need a lot of exercise besides the occasional walk and plenty of bathroom breaks, though they do enjoy exercise, which makes them great city dogs. Because they are small, they are inexpensive to feed and don’t tend to get into mischief too often either, which is great if you’re away at the office all day. Just be sure to give them attention when you’re home since they love to be cuddled.

5 French Bulldog

French Bulldog Though most often called a “Frenchie,” this breed is a top pick for several reasons of all pets to own indoors. First, they require little grooming and exercise. Secondly, they make a great alert dog in case someone unexpected stops by, which is great for single gals out there! Thirdly, they love to play the role of a lap dog and are very loving, devoted dogs. They do need plenty of air conditioning in the summer since they tend to overheat quickly, but with plenty of cool air and water, they need no extra care in high heat. French Bulldogs make excellent apartment dogs since they are small, friendly, and require little entertaining.

6 Yorkshire Terrier

Yorkshire Terrier Yes, the Yorkie is perhaps one of the most popular small breed dogs out there. I am also the owner of a Yorkie and what a gem she is to take care of! Yorkies are excellent family dogs, and need attention and love. They don’t require too much other maintenance besides a good weekly brushing and bath. Their hair does grow fast however, so a trim is recommended bi-monthly to maintain their pretty coats. Yorkies get along great with other dogs and really love their owners. They also are extremely portable, making them excellent companions on-the-go.

7 Pekingese

Pekingese The Pekingese is such a great dog to own as an indoor pet! These dogs are extremely loving and require little exercise, but also love a great walk. They make fantastic lap dogs, yet are cool to do their own thing too. One of our previous dogs was a Pekingese mix and she was one of the best indoor pets we've ever had. Though their hair needs a good brushing once a month, they do not shed that often, unless they are nervous. They are very protective, loving and great with children as well. They may take a little longer to house-train than other breeds, but overall, they are very easy to care for and make one of the best breeds to own.

8 Pomeranian

Pomeranian If you've been dying to get a small dog, but aren't sure which one would work best for you, why not try a Pomeranian? I know what you are thinking -- they are yappy! That's simply not true all of the time nor for every single puppy! This particular breed is known for companionship, they are known to be active and also take to training extremely well!

9 Shih Tzu

Shih Tzu These dogs are so adorable! Not only is this particular dog incredible for a family, but they are ideal for someone that is alone too. They can be a companion to any age. They love to kiss and they don't need a ton of exercise, as they aren't a super high-energy dog.

10 American Eskimo Dog

Some small breed dogs have big-dog attitudes, and this little dog loves to entertain, loves to do anything that their family is doing and they are totally lively! The white coat will need some grooming but the sweet expression is one that you won't be able to deny!

11 Cardigan Welsh Corgi

Cardigan Welsh Corgi There are two different kinds of Welsh Corgi out there; the Pembroke and the Cardigan and both are adorable, playful, very intelligent and energetic. They typically weigh about 30 pounds and they are very easy to train and are eager to learn. They love kids and are the ideal family dog.The Queen of England is well-known for her love of Welsh Corgis and there's always a whole pack in the Royal Family.

12 Mini Dachshund

Mini Dachshund Mini daxies are a breed all their own! They are a little stubborn but a delight overall. Their personalities are all wrapped up in their tongue (they love to lick!) and they are so, so sweet. They need to be in a family that can wear them out, as they have a lot of energy, but they love to cuddle up too and are true companions!

13 Japanese Chin

Japanese Chin This amazing dog is a dainty, delicate and very regal. These are dogs that are quiet and reserved and almost have a cat-like attitude! They love to sit on the backs of chairs and couches and they are a beautiful breed that will fill your home with light and love.

14 Pug

Pug The pug is the ultimate family dog! Not only do these wriggly puppies love everything about children but they are packed with energy and are so, so easy to train! If you're in need of a dog that will be easy to have in your life, this is the small breed for you!

15 English Toy Spaniel

English Toy Spaniel Known as the King Charles Spaniel in the UK, these dogs are so, so adorable, so quiet and they are so mellow. If you want a dog that isn't going to be barking all of the time and that isn't going to be super stubborn this is an ideal breed. Unlike a lot of other spaniels, this particular one isn't as stubborn, so you shouldn't have a hard time housebreaking this particular breed!


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Where Thoughts and Opinions Converge

I have a Maltese and I love him!!!

I have a Boston terrier, he chews on everything, demands attention constantly, and sheds ALOT

I've got a mini schnauzer, he's is loved by my family. Easy to train, doesn't shed, hypoallergenic dog. A total darling

@Harlea *frise

Unfortunately chihuahuas do shed. Even short haired like my chihuahua. Nothing compared to my other two long haired cat, but still, her white hairs are pretty visible on my dark blue couch and black carpet. Anyhow is pretty easy to clean them up and not very time consuming.

#3 I'm looking for a papillon dog for my 10 year old daughter who has a disorder autism. Can you help 🆘 I live in oakparkd Michigan

Shih Tzus are the best!!! We have 2 1/2 & I love the breed--loyal, intelligent just wonderful !!!!

A Maltese should have a haircut every six to eight weeks. They should also be brushed for 30 every day if you're keeping their coat longer. People don't brush their dogs and they come into the salon all matted, it's not healthy for the dog.

Chihuahuas are the best dogs in the world I would never try a different breed !

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