Are Pomeranians Good With Kids?
Are Pomeranians Good With Kids?
Pomeranians: Fluffy. Tiny. Full of energy. They might even be a part of stuffed animals. But are Pomeranians good with kids? If you are looking for a family dog, you might be considering a Pomeranian. As with any commitment and life-changing event, it is important to review all relevant information before you make a decision. The AKC recommends Pomeranians for “children old enough to know the difference between a toy dog and a toy.” Why is this the recommendation? It has to do with many factors, including size and temperament.
Poms and Kids- How Old is Old Enough?
Denise Leo, Pomeranian breeder and expert recommends that if you have children younger than age 10 in your home, you should not get a puppy under six months of age, due to the fragility of the puppy and the unpredictability of a child. She believes older children and Pomeranians do well together.
Alternatively, Tara Luckey-Castellano, who runs pommymommy.com, recommends starting with a puppy and does not specify any child age recommendations. She believes Pomeranians are good with kids. Her rationale for starting with a puppy as opposed to an older dog will help the puppy adjust to the dynamics of the children within the household. Pomeranians are strong-willed dogs, and if they were not properly trained, bringing an adopted older dog into your household with children may not be the best course of action as you cannot anticipate its already established temperament.
First, consider the Pomeranian’s size of the Pomeranian when asking if Pomeranians are good with kids. A typical Pomeranian weighs between 7-9lbs and is about 8-14″ tall. The appeal of having a small dog that is easy to handle is understandable. Small dogs -especially puppies- are delicate. A child must know how to interact with a small dog and be gentle with it. Holding a dog, walking it, playing with it, and cuddling it all have the potential to hurt the dog if done too roughly.
Pomeranians are very friendly, loyal, and bond well with their owners. They’re intelligent and active. These charming features make them very appealing pets, but that doesn’t necessarily mean Pomeranians are good with kids.
It is not uncommon for Poms to be skittish if they feel insecure due to chaos or loud sounds. This skittishness can lead to nipping as a defense mechanism. Historically, Pomeranians began as large dogs. They were bred to be smaller in size during Queen Victoria’s reign. There are many aspects of the Pom’s personality that derive from their larger ancestors. Poms have very independent personalities and are unaware of their small size.
Due to this, they often believe children are their peers or lower than them in the pack hierarchy. They do not enjoy rough play and may defend their territory, property, or themselves, as they have a possessive nature. If they have not been properly trained on their status in the family, they might often nip or growl at children. Some children are too young to participate in training, and this makes it difficult to teach the Pom to view the child as an authority figure.
You Have a Pomeranian and Also Have Kids – Now What?
Training children to interact with your dog is just as important as training your dog to interact with your children. Teach children that due to the Pom’s small size, they must be extra careful when playing with it. Rough handling can result in an injured dog. The dog might also become fearful and bite, resulting in an injured child.
Denise Leo, the Pomeranian breeder, and expert, advises against allowing children younger than four years from playing with Pom puppies without any type of supervision. Neither the puppy or children have learned to respect boundaries, which can result in the injury of the dog or child. She recommends children under age 10 to handle Pomeranian puppies only if the child is on the floor and does not hold the puppy. Puppies can jump out of someone’s arms quickly and fall. A fall from that height might cause them to hurt themselves.
Are Kids Good With Pomeranians?
As parents, we often wonder how a new situation will affect our children. While you may wonder if a Pomeranian is good with kids, another question to ask is if your child will be a good fit for a Pomeranian. If you have older children or mellow children, a Pomeranian might be a good mix in your family. However, if you have small children or energetic children who have not yet mastered direction following, another dog choice might be better for your family.
Loud, rambunctious play may frighten a puppy. This will result in a defensive dog that will
R-E-S-P-E-C-T: Set Ground Rules
When introducing a Pomeranian to your children, explain to them that the dog:
- is fragile and requires gentle handling.
- might be frightened of sudden movements
- could be scared of loud sounds
- might test its boundaries with them
When playing with the Pomeranian, teach your children to:
- Handle the dog gently.
- Approach the dog slowly
- Let the dog see them coming
- Don’t make sudden movements like running, which might elicit a game of chase and consequently, a puppy bite
If your children are aware of these simple rules and can follow them, the dog will trust and respect your child. A harmonious and loving relationship will bloom. Showing the dog disrespect will result in a defensive dog that will be on guard, growl, or even bites the kids.
So Are Pomeranians Good With Kids?
Ultimately, only you can decide what is best for your family. Most advice indicates that it is too difficult to manage small children and Pomeranians. In an ideal world, we would be able to supervise children and dogs all of the time, our children would follow all of the established rules, and our dogs would be the perfect fluff-bundles we expect them to be. Any parent will tell you this isn’t as realistic as dogs, kids, and life, in general, are unpredictable.
If your heart is set on a Pomeranian, it might be best until your kids are older and have established the impulse control and critical thinking skills needed to handle a Pom. Both dogs and humans need to be happy with the family dynamic. If you want a dog for your family and can’t wait it out for your kids to get older, another type of dog might be a better fit for your family.