Small dogs have charm and personality. Over the course of time more and more new breeds have been created by selectively breeding dogs with a certain external appearance and certain character traits. Small dog breeds came into our existence for various reasons. Some small dogs, like the dachshunds and Yorkshire terriers performed specific tasks by hunters. Other small dogs like the Pekingese, Shih Tzu and Maltese were created especially as companions for the well-to-do and the noble. Every land in the world has produced its own breed of small dogs. These small dogs as a result of trade became known in countries all over the world.
The Chihuahua comes from Mexico. The Pekingese and Shih Tzu originated in Tibet and China. Many types of terriers were bred in the Scottish Highlands. It is possible that the ancestors of the petit chien lion and of the poodle were from ancient Greece. The Chinese crested hairless dog is a descendant of the Aztec kingdom and China.
In earlier times to own an expensive purebred dog such as the Pekingese or the Shih Tzu was reserved only for the wealthy and privileged individuals. The situation changed, however, with the French Revolution when privilege based on social class was called into question. The middle class began to own expensive pedigreed dogs that were easily distinguished from a mutt. The popularity of the purebred dogs began to soar.
Breed standards in every breed describe from head to toe, height, weight, general appearance and character traits. A breed standard specifies how the ideal representative of each breed should look. Nature does not permit complete uniformity to these breed standards set by “people.” A standard only represents a goal to which breeders are suppose to come as close as possible of creating. Unfortunately, these rigid standards call for things that have created unnecessary health problems and unnatural characteristics for a dog. For example, noses that have been bred to be excessively short hindering the dog’s breathing and can cause pinched nostrils, which can lead to heart problems. Some breed standards call for legs so short that the dogs can no longer walk normally. It is the goal of responsible dog clubs and associations to work against excesses of this kind.
Small dogs differ from large dogs only in terms of their size. It does not need to be overly protected. It is untrue that small dogs are more susceptible to disease just because they are small. On the contrary, small dog’s life expectancy is even higher than larger dogs.
One of the added enjoyments of the smaller dogs is dressing them up in cute tiny dog clothes and accessories. Larger dogs can be dressed up as well, but there is just something extra sweet and cute about the teacup dog clothes, to see a cute little Yorkie in dog clothes is eye opening, and the Chihuahua dog clothes sometimes are the cutest of all.
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Connie Limon is a Shih Tzu breeder. She offers Designer Dog Clothes at: www.littleguysdogclothesshop.com
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