Close this search box.

PetDogTrainingToday is supported by readers. When you purchase through links on this site, we may earn a small commission. Learn more.

16 Popular Small and Fluffy Dog Breeds

Shih Tzu

Small, fluffy dog breeds are loved for their cute looks and fun personalities. They’re great for families, singles, and seniors, offering companionship and affection in a small package. This guide covers the most popular small and fluffy dog breeds to help you find your perfect furry buddy.

Why Small and Fluffy Dogs?

Small dogs are perfect for people with limited space or busy lives. They need less exercise, are easier to transport, and are usually cheaper to feed and care for. Plus, their cute and friendly nature makes them great companions.

Popular Small and Fluffy Dog Breeds

Below, we’ve compiled a list of some of the most beloved small and fluffy dog breeds. Each breed has unique characteristics and qualities that make them stand out.

Whether you’re looking for a playful pup or a snuggly companion, there’s a small, fluffy dog out there that’s perfect for you. Let’s take a closer look at these adorable breeds.

1. Affenpinscher


Affenpinschers are lively and loyal, sporting a distinctive monkey-like expression. Their wiry coats need regular grooming to avoid matting. These little dogs have big personalities and benefit from early socialization and training to stay well-behaved.

2. American Eskimo

American Eskimo

American Eskimo dogs are known for their fluffy white coats and smarts. They come in different sizes but are generally active and need regular mental and physical stimulation. Their thick fur needs regular grooming to keep them looking great.

3. Bichon Frise

Bichon Frise

Bichon Frises are playful and social, making them awesome companions. Known for their curly, hypoallergenic coats that need regular grooming, these dogs love human interaction. They’re best for owners who are home a lot, as they can get separation anxiety.

4. Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

Cavalier King Charles Spaniels are gentle and loving, making them great lap dogs. They have long, silky coats that need regular grooming to maintain their luxurious appearance. They get along well with children and other pets and make great therapy dogs.

5. Coton De Tulear

Coton De Tulear

The Coton De Tulear, hailing from Madagascar, is famous for its soft, cotton-like white coat. Standing about 10 inches tall, they’re great for small living spaces. These affectionate and sociable dogs love human interaction.

They’re hypoallergenic and low-shedding, but their coats need regular grooming to stay beautiful. With their cheerful personalities, Coton de Tulears are perfect for apartment living and adore being around people, making them ideal companions.

6. Havanese


Havanese dogs have a long, silky coat in varying colors. They’re known for their friendly and outgoing nature, making them great family pets. Their coats need regular grooming to avoid matting, and they do shed lightly. Havanese are highly trainable and excel in activities such as agility and obedience.

7. Japanese Chin

Japanese Chin

Japanese Chins are small dogs with long, flowing coats. They form strong bonds with their owners and can get anxious if left alone too long. You’ll need to groom them regularly to keep their coats looking good.

8. Lhasa Apso

Japanese Chin

Lhasa Apsos were originally bred in Tibet to be alert dogs. They’re loyal but independent, perfect for owners who prefer a dog that’s not too clingy. Their long, dense coats need regular grooming to keep mats at bay.

9. Maltese


Maltese dogs are known for their long, silky, white coats and friendly nature. They’re perfect for apartment living because of their small size and low-shedding fur. Regular grooming is a must to keep their coats looking great, and they love being the center of attention.

10. Papillon


Papillons are easy to spot with their big, butterfly-like ears and long, silky coats. They’re energetic, smart, and need moderate grooming. Even though they’re small, they’re pretty active and love agility training and playtime.

11. Pekingese


Pekingese dogs are known for their regal look and long, flowing coats. They’re loyal and affectionate but can also be independent and stubborn. Regular grooming is a must to keep their luxurious coats in shape, and they need patient training.

12. Pomeranian


Pomeranians are small, fluffy, and full of personality. They’re confident and lively, making awesome companions, but you’ll need to train them to manage their small dog syndrome. Plus, their thick double coats need daily grooming.

They can really love the sound of their own voices and might bark a lot if not trained early on.

13. Shih Tzu

Shih Tzu

Shih Tzus, once bred for Chinese royalty, are super affectionate with their luxurious, flowing coats. They need regular grooming and love being around people. These laid-back dogs are perfect if you’re looking for a lapdog that enjoys plenty of attention.

14. Toy Poodle

3 toy poodles

Toy Poodles are super smart and easy to train. Their curly, hypoallergenic coats need regular brushing to avoid tangles. These intelligent dogs require a lot of mental stimulation to keep boredom at bay and are known for being affectionate.

Check out our article on Toy Poodle pros and cons for a more in-depth look at this breed. And take a look at our article on poodle mixes, also known as Doodle dogs, for more info on crossbreeds.

15. West Highland Terrier

West Highland Terrier

West Highland Terriers, or Westies, sport fluffy, curly white coats. They’re energetic and smart, perfect for active families. Regular grooming keeps their coats in top shape, and they’re known for being super friendly.

They have a high prey drive and love chasing small animals, so it’s important to keep them on a leash or in a fenced-in area during walks.

Westies are less popular than they once were but remain a beloved breed due to their affectionate nature and playful personalities. They make great companions for families, singles, and seniors alike.

Take a look at our article on Westie pros and cons for a more in-depth look at this sturdy little dog.

16. Yorkshire Terrier

Yorkshire Terrier

Yorkshire Terriers have long, silky coats that need regular grooming. They’re loyal and can get anxious if left alone too long. Yorkies are energetic and love being the center of attention, making them great companions.

Yorkies are another breed that have dropped in popularity but still remain a beloved breed among dog lovers. They may be small, but they have big personalities and will quickly steal your heart.

These pups thrive on attention and love being pampered, making them great lap dogs. Due to their size, they do well in apartments or smaller living spaces.

Yorkies are known for their intelligence and can be easy to train with consistency and positive reinforcement. They also make great therapy dogs due to their small size and loving nature.

In addition to regular grooming, Yorkies need daily exercise to keep them healthy both physically and mentally. A short walk or play session is enough to keep these little dogs happy.

Challenges of Small Dog Breeds

While small dogs are often beloved for their cute and compact size, they come with their own set of challenges. They are more prone to injuries due to their small size and delicate bones.

They may also be more susceptible to health issues and can be challenging to train due to their perceived harmlessness.

Many small breeds require daily grooming to prevent matting and tangles, and their small size can limit certain activities.

Small Fluffy Dogs FAQs


Choosing the right small fluffy dog can bring lots of joy but also comes with its own set of questions.

In this section, we address some of the most frequently asked questions to help you navigate the pros and cons, grooming needs, and lifestyle adjustments when adopting one of these adorable companions.

What is the best small fluffy dog?

The best small fluffy dog for you will depend on your lifestyle and preferences. Some popular options include Bichon Frise, Havanese, Maltese, and Pomeranian.

It’s important to research each breed and consider their needs before making a decision.

What is the most well-behaved small dog breed?


The most well-behaved small dog breed will often be the one you spend the most time training! Although genetics play a role in how easily trained a dog is, consistent training and socialization can greatly impact a dog’s behavior.

Some small breeds that are easy to train include Cavalier King Charles Spaniels, Papillons, and Miniature Poodles, thanks to their smarts. The downside of having an intelligent dog is they get bored easily and need plenty of stimulation to prevent destructive behavior.

How often should I groom my small fluffy dog?

Small fluffy dogs typically require daily grooming to keep their coat free of matting and tangles. This grooming routine will also help maintain the shine and health of their coat.

Regular brushing and combing of your small fluffy dog are super important. Make sure to use a comb that reaches the skin, not just the top fur, to avoid painful matting.

Also, schedule professional grooming appointments every 4-8 weeks, depending on how much maintenance your dog’s coat needs. This can be quite a hit to the wallet when owning a small, fluffy dog!

Specific grooming needs will vary depending on the breed, but it’s important to establish a routine early on to keep your dog looking and feeling their best.

What miniature dog looks like a teddy bear?


The breed that most resembles a teddy bear is the Pomeranian. With their fluffy coats and small size, they often resemble a walking stuffed animal.

Other breeds that can have a teddy bear-like appearance include Shih Tzus, Havanese, and Bichon Frises.

However, it’s important to keep in mind that grooming styles can greatly impact a dog’s appearance, so make sure to research the breed standard for each before choosing one solely based on looks.

Are small fluffy dogs good with children?

Small, fluffy dogs can be fantastic companions for kids if they’re well-trained and socialized.

Teaching kids how to properly handle and interact with a small dog is essential for the safety of both the child and the dog.

But it’s crucial to keep an eye on interactions between young children and small dogs because the dog’s tiny size makes them more vulnerable to accidental harm from rough play.

Also, some breeds might have a higher prey drive or be less tolerant of young kids, so it’s important to research each breed’s temperament before adding a small fluffy dog to a family with children.

Always consider the breed’s original purpose, as this will influence many of their personality traits.

With the right training and supervision on both sides, many small fluffy dogs can become loving and loyal companions for kids.


bichon frise

Picking the perfect small and fluffy dog means thinking about your lifestyle and what the breed needs. From grooming to energy levels, each breed has its own quirks.

Make a smart choice to ensure a happy, healthy life for you and your new furry buddy.

Whether you’re bringing home a new puppy, dealing with reactivity issues, or just looking to improve your dog’s obedience, SpiritDog Training offers a variety of online courses to suit your needs.

These courses provide lifetime access to expert video lessons designed to help your dog become the amazing companion you know they can be. With a money-back guarantee, you can start training with confidence.

Latest Dog Training and Behavior Articles