#12: Pomeranian

The Pomeranian is a small beautiful dog, which is descended from the Spitz sled dogs. These dogs have wonderful coats, boundless energy, and are quite intelligent and curious. Originally, the breed was a sled puller and then it was better known as a herder. Eventually, the little spitz-type dogs were bred into the small companion dog we have today. The Pomeranian has been the favorite of Kings and Queens as well as the common dog lover. Queen Victoria so loved her Pom "Turi" that she asked for the dog to be with her on her death bed.

The Pomeranian is a compact toy dog, with a soft undercoat and a long outer coat. The coat is designed to protect the dog from the elements and is now a distinctive part of the breed's appearance. The little fluffy tail is held across the back and waves like a flag. The breed comes in several colors and all are equally judged in competition. The little dog weighs only three to seven pounds and should feel quite sturdy when he is picked up.

The Pomeranian has a very intelligent and inquisitive nature and expression. Its face is often described as "foxy". That, combined with its warm fluffy coat and happy nature, can make the image of the fox complete.

Some lines of the Pomeranian have not been bred for temperament and, thus, they have become aggressive, noisy, and intolerant of strangers or children. The original "spitz-dogs" were known for their spirit and this makes some breeds bred from that line like the Schipperkes prone to biting.

Other health oriented problems are a tendency towards bad knees. The breeder needs to have the animals evaluated at an early age and investigate the parents to see if they have a history of health problems in the line. Even a moderate case of luxating patellas is likely to need surgery. Another problem is hypothyroidism. This is very common in the breed and requires immediate attention. Another serious life threatening problem is a collapsing trachea. If a Pomeranian sounds odd or behaves as if he is choking or having trouble breathing, get him to a veterinarian immediately.

The Pomeranian is a handsome little dog with a big heart and the brave disposition of its sled-pulling forbearers. If you want a little bundle of sweetness and a loyal companion, you could not ask for a better dog than a Pomeranian.

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