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Size

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Pomeranian
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Pomeranian Size

Overview

The Pomeranian is a toy sized breed. There are 21 breeds in the AKC toy group, and the Pomeranian is one of the smaller breeds.
This said, there are some Poms that are smaller than average, and quite a few that are larger than average.

Here, we'll:
  • Take a look at the size standards from around the world
  • See where the Pom lands in regard to size of other toy dogs
  • Discuss those that are both smaller and larger than the standard
  • Talk about having a Pom that ends up much larger than you expected

Pomeranian Breed Standard Sizes

There are 4 top canine clubs that dominate the standards of purebreds:
  • The AKC
  • The KC
  • The CKC (Canadian Kennel Club)
  • The FCI (Fédération Cynologique Internationale)
cute little Pomeranian
Cuzco, 2.5 years old
Photo courtesy of owner: Nathalie Orrego 
Per the AKC (American Kennel Club), the range for the Pomeranian breed standard is 3 - 7 lbs ( 1.36 - 3.175 kg). For show, 4 to 6 lbs. is preferred. While many Poms will indeed fall into the 3 to 7 lb. range, some will be smaller than this, and quite a few will be a bit larger. We'll discuss this more ahead. 

A height is not given; however, most Poms that are 3 - 7 pounds will be  8 - 11 inches (20.32 - 27.94 cm), and this is measured from floor to withers (top of the shoulder blades). 

The Kennel Club (KC) standard stipulates a more narrow range without much room for variation: 4 - 5.5 lbs. (2 to 2.5 kg) for females and 4 - 4.5 for males (1.8 to 2 kg). Pomeranians of this size would fit into the AKC's standard.  

The Canadian Kennel Club (CKC) not to be confused with the American Continental Kennel Club, sets a standard size that is the same as AKC: 3-7 lb (1.36 -3.17 kg) with 4-6 lbs. (1.81 -2.72 kg) being considered ideal.

Per the FCI, Fédération Cynologique Internationale, which consists of over 80 member countries, weight is not included in the standard; however, height is. Pomeranians are to be 20 cm (+ or - 2 cm) from floor to shoulders (withers). 

The 20 cm is a tad shorter than the expected height of AKC Pomeranians. Per the FCI, Pomeranians are actually referred to as Toy Spitz, and those that are taller than 22 cm are then classified as Miniature Spitz.
Want to hear something neat? For 5 years we followed the growth rates of 247 Pomeranian puppies. These were Poms from both at-home breeders and those living with families across the US, Canada and the UK. We checked in at 8 weeks, 4 months, 6 months and at 10 months old. 

At those time frames, we estimated the Pom's adult weight. We were accurate between 85 & 90% of the time within a 1/2 lb. range. We finally compiled all of our data, exported it into charts and have this in the new, improved Print Edition of the PetPom Book.

Growth Spurts

Pomeranian puppies are just mere ounces when born. They double in size within a day or two. And from that point, growth is rapid. Those who have a litter are urged to mark the pups as to not confuse them if they are of similar color and to check them each day to ensure there is indeed a daily gain. Usually this is done using a small kitchen scale. 

The majority of growth will occur from birth to 9 months of age. From 9 months to 1 year, there may be a slight increase of weight, perhaps a pound or so, and Pomeranians can continue to grow in height until just about 1 year. 

When weight begins to steady out, but the Pom still gains a bit in height and length, this lends to the adult Pomeranian having a sleeker appearance than his younger counterparts. 

Pomeranian Size Compared to Other Breeds

When you compare the Pomeranian to the other 20 toy breeds, he is towards the smaller end in size. Those toward the smaller end include:

Chihuahua 3.3 – 6.6 lbs.
Yorkshire Terrier 7 lbs. or less (usually 3-7)
Pomeranian 3-7 lbs.
English Toy Spaniel 7.9 – 14 lbs.
Japanese Chin 3-15 lbs.
Maltese 6.6–8.8 lbs.
Papillon 7.1 – 9.9 lbs.

Smaller than Average Poms

Body structure and bone structure does vary, and some dogs will be less than the low end of the standard of 3 pounds (1.36 kg). 

While there are some Pomeranians in the 2 pound range, it is very rare for an adult Pom to be in the 1 pound range. 

It is very important to note that having a Pom that is smaller than 3 pounds (fully grown) does not make that dog a 'teacup'.
A miniature, toy, teacup Pomeranian is not a recognized breed nor an accepted variation. Any Poms purposefully bred to be much smaller than the standard are often much more prone to health issues. This includes but is not limited to collapsed trachea and patella luxation. 

Issues such as hypoglycemia may develop more often. And if a Pomeranian is exceptionally tiny, he may have troubling maintaining his core body temperature. 
While it is normal for reputable breeders to have a smaller Pom every now and then, if someone is purposefully trying to breed for tiny Poms this is troubling. It is known that unnaturally tiny dogs have more health issues, and therefore it is unethical to have the goal of producing them. 
If you have a Pomeranian that is less than 3 lbs. you will want to take extra care in regard to elements that are applicable for all Poms. This includes using a harness instead of a collar to help prevent collapsed trachea.
Undersized Pomeranian 2 lbs. 14 oz.
Pooh, 1 year old, and just 2 lbs. 14 oz.
Photo courtesy of Tammie 
If the puppy or dog has troubling tolerating chilly days or even is sensitive to drafts in the house, placing clothes on him such as a shirt when inside, and a lined vest when outside. 

Be particularly diligent in regard to dental care which involves brushing the teeth at home and offering a daily dental chew. 

With trauma being a major concern for this breed and more so for smaller Pomeranians, any time that you have your Pom in your car, be sure to use certified canine car seat, supervise children that handle the dog, and you'll want to think twice about having the Pom sleep in your bed. 

Larger than Average Pomeranians

Slightly larger: Just as some litters will sometimes produce a pup that is smaller than average, some will produce Pomeranians that are larger than average. And some breeders do prefer to aim toward the higher end of the expected weight range, because this produces sturdier, and often healthier dogs.

It is not unusual at all for Pomeranians to be a tad larger than the AKC standard; 8 and 9 lb. Poms are quite common. 

Significantly larger: If a Pomeranian is between 10 and 13 lbs. this is often due to a heavier bone set which is a genetic factor passed down through generations. 

If a Pomeranian is 14 lbs. or more, this may be a matter of throwback Pomeranians, or in some cases, the dog may be a mixed breed of a Pomeranian and another Spitz dog. 

In regard to throwbacks, the Pomeranian's ancestors were much larger Spitz dogs. One in a great while, a gene from many generations can appear, which produces a Pomeranian that is double or triple the size of today's modern Pom. 
15 pound Pomeranian
Leo, 15.5 pounds at 1 year, 8 months
Photo courtesy of Eleni Elias
20 pound Pomeranian
Seamus, 20 pounds at 10 months
Photo courtesy of Anna Marrs

Worrying About Size

Those who purchase this breed do so for many reasons, and one of those reasons is to have a small, toy breed dog. There are some owners who can become dismayed as they realize that their Pomeranian is passing the expected weight. 

Do keep in mind that it is completely normal for there to be rapid growth spurts from birth to 6 months; late bloomers may have big jumps up to 9 months old. 

A Pom's growth slows around 10 months. When a Pom reaching the age of 1 year, his is at or very close to his adult size. 

If a Pomeranian is genetically destined to be larger than average, say in the 12 lb. to 15+ range, he may continue to gain until the 15 or even 18 month mark.

While it can be a bit surprising to see that your Pom is growing into a much larger dog than expected, once the initial surprise ebbs down, you will see that having a sturdier dog does have its advantages. Larger dogs are often easier to take care of in some respects, and being sturdier they are less prone to injury and issues related to a dog's small size.

If you are thinking about purchasing a Pom puppy, doing so from a reputable breeder will help ensure that you have a dog that fits into the 3-7 pound size range. Asking to see both dam and sire can give you a good idea of a pup's predicted adult size. 
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