How Small Is Small?
Since there really is no official definition of “small” when it comes to canine companions, the designation must be a subjective one. For the purposes of this book, small means under twenty-five pounds and no taller than sixteen inches at the withers (shoulders). Of course, small dogs don't have to be purebred. Countless varieties of mixed-breed small dogs are among the most appealing and unique pets you could find.
As millions of devotees will attest, small is indeed beautiful. When it comes to the size of your dog, there is absolutely no correlation between its height and weight and the love and joy it will bring to your life.
For the prospective dog owner, the world of small dogs offers a delightful smorgasbord of sizes, personalities, coat types, and activity levels. There is amazing variety in this small world, from energetic sleek-coated beauties like the miniature pinscher to the scissor-sculpted bichon frise, which looks like it was plucked off the shelf at the toy store. Looking for the right small dog is a lot like choosing a mate: It all boils down to the looks and traits that you find appealing, plus that indefinable something that lights a spark in your heart.