What's A Good Small Lapdog?

Discussion in 'Other Pets & Livestock' started by Laurajean, Oct 31, 2010.

  1. Laurajean

    Laurajean Slightly Touched

    Apr 2, 2010
    New Hampshire
    I've been thinking about getting a dog for a while, but it's a big commitment, so I'm really taking my time with the decision as to whether to get one or not. I'd prefer to get one from a shelter or rescue, or private family as opposed to a breeder, although I would consider a breeder depending on the situation.

    I'm looking for specific characteristics in a dog however, because I really want one that's compatible with my lifestyle.

    Here are some of the characteristics I'm hoping to find in a dog:

    1. MELLOW. I'm a very mellow person, and I'm not terribly active. I go for leisurely walks, etc., but I'm a real homebody and do not want a dog that needs to run a lot or needs a ton of exercise.

    2. SMALL. I would prefer a smaller dog, one that is easy for me to handle and lift if needed.

    3. NOT A YAPPER: The problem I'm finding with a lot of small dog breeds are that they tend to bark a lot. Reasonable barking is one thing, but I really don't want one of those little hyper dogs that yap incessantly.

    4. ANIMAL FRIENDLY. I have cats, a house bunny and of course chickens. I'd like a dog that can fit in with that kind of family, not a hunting or snappy type dog.

    A typical ideal day would be in the house, with me, relaxing a lot and going outdoors for gentle play in the yard and leisurely walks & car rides. I am not looking for a guard dog, just a mellow, personal companion.

    Is there such a breed that fits this description? Or if you have a mixed breed that fits this description, please share what breeds your dog is. I've had several people tell me that Papillons fit this description, and I've met a few and do like them very much, but am having trouble finding any near me. Does anyone have a Papillon? Any other breed suggestions?

    Thanks for any input.
    Last edited: Oct 31, 2010
  2. I love my doxies, but they salivate when they get within 20' of my aviary.

    Of course, they're also fabulous possum killers... as long as your pen is secure (and if memory serves yours is) then any small dog should be okay... but if you're free ranging, totally different ball of wax.

    I don't think any of the traditional Livestock Guardian Breeds are small... not even close.
  3. Laurajean

    Laurajean Slightly Touched

    Apr 2, 2010
    New Hampshire
    Quote:No, I should have mentioned that. I'm NOT looking for any kind of guard dog. My chickens don't free range, and they're nice and safe, so I shouldn't really have even mentioned chickens. It's more the 2 cats and bunny I would want one to be friendly with.

    But I'm strictly looking for a mellow companion dog for myself, not any sort of guardian breed.
  4. Arcnadius

    Arcnadius Songster

    Aug 1, 2010
    Western WI
    I had a Boston when I was a kid, very friendly and not yappy. FIL has a pug that's rambuctious but quiet and friendly. We have a mixed breed beagle/corgie/?? (maybe some Irish setter) that's small, extremely friendly, and FULL of kisses. She's a rescue (more accurately, her pregnant mother was).

    My full-blood beagle believed in human chew toys her first two years (we nearly gave up on her) and I've heard others say the same about theirs, although a friend's beagle never did.

    I'd start with petfinder.com for your area. Many rescues/shelters will describe the personality of their animals so potential owners will know what to expect. If you get a puppy, watch the mom's temperment; often that's a great indicator of the pup's - 'though not always.

    Hope this helps.
  5. You want to find one that has a LOW prey instinct, so your kitties/bunny are safe... and one who even if they manage to get a grip on the HC of your coop don't have enough muscle to rip it open... hmmm... well here's what I've seen...

    Terriers (Mattie is 1/2) are great ratters... and pretty good at getting waterbugs too... I can guess what they'd do to a bunny. Had a cousin that bred that one breed of terrier... jumpy little buggers. They could just BOING right up from the ground... very odd. They didn't find it at all odd when a deer (Norman) was added to their pack.

    Doxies were bred to go into burrows and take on badgers face to face... can't imagine what they'd do to a bunny.

    Yorkies are yappy, but REALLY tiny, AJ was very loyal to Ol' Granny.. lap dog to the nth... but I bet he'd have run from a cat if he'd met one. Just a theory, but being so small it would make sense.

    Chihuahuas won't hesitate to attack full grown humans, wouldn't surprise me if they attacked a cat or bunny that was bigger than them. (Mattie's other half is theoretically chihuahua)

    Can't think of any other small ones I've actually had experience with so....
  6. justbugged

    justbugged Head of the Night Crew for WA State

    Jan 27, 2009
    I have Yorkies and I don't consider them to yappy. Yorkies are terriers and some have a high prey drive. I also have a couple of Yorkies that would never touch the chicken. Yorkies are very different, each one will have a different personality. I think that is true for any dog. I would recommend a Havanese. They were bred in Cuba originally. They there bred to be companion dogs. They are one of the only breeds that have been bred to be a companion. A lot of the terriers were bred to hunt mice and rats.
  7. callducklover20

    callducklover20 Songster

    May 5, 2010
    Bonner Springs, KS
    I meant Shih Tzu, dang it I always confuse those breeds though I do like the Lhasa Apsos I have met too
    -they are a great breed for what you want. The only down side is grooming but if you know how to handle trimmers you can do this pretty easy yourself-I did it for my friends for years, but the plus side is they dont shed-just grow that long hair that you have to brush or buzz. Taz is a great little dog, played wonderful with the kids and all their other animals. Didnt over bark too much but let you know if someone was outside or at the door but not obnoxiously (like my little cairn/jack russell mix). Lots of retiree age people get this breed to live in apartments, travel, etc with them. I have been around lots of them and I really like them. My friends daughter came down really sick and the Dr's told them they had to get rid of their animals-it really broke their heart but I had Taz here with me (I have 3 dogs of my own) til I placed him with one of the Vet tech I was working with at the time. She fell in love with him too and he did great there with her standard poodle, cats and various other creatures. They seem to be a very intelligent breed too-he knew so many adorable tricks. There are always some in rescue too if you are wanting to go that route-some loose their owners from the owners being old and passing or having to go to a nursing facility, and also with the economy right now their are tons of great dogs out their the owners had no choice but to put them into rescue groups
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2010
  8. callducklover20

    callducklover20 Songster

    May 5, 2010
    Bonner Springs, KS
    I love papillons too but I really havent seen any in rescue (but they might have a special group that does) You have to be careful with their health problems though, the ones that arent bred well can have a lot of issues-one adorable one with that came to the clinic I worked at had to have both knees done at about 2500.00 a knee, dental issues and then she had some other issues after that but I think I remember it being from a tick bite. She is a great little tiny dog but they can be a little yappy. The only trouble with rescue is that you dont know the breeders history most of the time and you dont know what problems might be in the line. All I can say is do your research on all the breeds you are considering so you know what might be an issue and what breeds are the healtiest , and you know what questions to be asking the person or group you are getting the dog from. Also little dogs can have some major dental issues so if you are getting one that is a few years old make sure these things are already taking care of, Ive seen root canals, teeth pulled etc plus they need their teeth cleaned at least once a year so they have less of a chance of getting the major issues
  9. Quote:I should have clarified... AJ was yappy any time anyone got within 5' of Ol Granny. That was HIS Granny. And he was older in my earliest memories of him. But boy was he SMART... he even learned out to SPELL bath... Granny had to start spelling it because if he heard the word he'd hide under the bed... so she started spelling and it got to the point where if he heard her say B-A he'd run like the wind. Clever, very clever. I'd totally forgotten that the full name for Yorkie is Yorkshire Terrier though... glad you thought of that!!
  10. ultasol

    ultasol Songster

    Apr 30, 2009
    SE Washington
    I would find an older retired laid back small dog at a pound. Each dog is individual, and I think almost all young dogs are going to have higher energy than you describe your ideal dog as having. You can save a life and gain a companion at the same time.

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