9 Perfect Purse Dogs That Fit In Your Bag
(Under 10 lbs / 4.5 kg)
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Whether we’re relaxing at home or going out on a shopping trip, some of us want our little dogs with us through it all. There are many reasons to never leave home without your pup — after all, spending time with our dogs can be just as good for us as it is for them.
For many dog owners, being together more often means more security and happiness all around. This constant companionship can deepen the bond between you and your dog.
What Is A Purse Dog?
A purse dog is any dog small enough to fit in a handbag. This commonly includes dog breeds that weigh under 10 – 15 lbs (4.5 – 2.3 kg).
If your pup is small enough to fit in a purse, you can bring them with you to many dog-friendly environments without even breaking a sweat.
Cute Purse Dogs Under 10lbs
Someone who goes out often and is willing to bring their dog is definitely recommended to do so. That’s why we’ve compiled this list of the smallest, cutest dogs that fit in a purse.
The best purse dogs are compact, lightweight, and of course — adorable. These 9 tiny breeds check all the boxes.
1. Biewer Terrier
4 – 8 lbs (1.8 – 3.6 kg)
The rare Biewer Terrier is a soft, elegant choice for your bag and your companionship. This breed features a great affectionate temperament and a fierce loyalty to its family.
Biewer Terrier is intelligent and active, a dog who will definitely want to accompany you when you go outside. Its light weight and small size makes it suitable to be held for hours at a time.
Carrying a Biewer Terrier is perhaps the biggest statement of all purse sized dogs, as the rarest breed in the list.
3 – 7 lbs (1.7 – 3.2 kg)
Of all the small dog breeds that fit in a purse, Chihuahua is without a doubt the most popular.
The lively and devoted Chihuahua can be so tiny even as a full-grown adult that you may even forget you’re carrying them. Having a dog this small shouldn’t change your daily life much, other than taking frequent breaks for their “doggy business” as well as frequent meals to keep blood sugar stable.
Chihuahuas may have short or long hair. Both versions of this breed have a tendency to run cold and shake. Bundle your Chihuahua in a coat or a little blanket when bringing them outside in cold temperatures.
3 – 8 lbs (1.4 – 3.6 kg)
Maltese is an adorable and loving lap dog, historically very popular among aristocrats and royalty.
Today the breed is still highly beloved, consistently ranking among the top 10 and even 1st place in some lists of the best small dog breeds.
Their long, silky white coat needs regular maintenance to prevent tear stains yellowing. Keep the fur bright and healthy by bathing them using special shampoo made for white dogs.
Even with this long elegant coat, Maltese sheds so little that it’s considered hypoallergenic. This means that even if you have dog allergies, you don’t have to be limited to only short-haired dogs! Maltese is a great choice for people who have allergies but still want a fluffy white dog.
Additionally, Maltese can weigh as little as the standard Chihuahua — making it a great contender for your perfect purse dog.
7 – 10 lbs (3.2 – 4.5 kg)
This large-eared breed was named using the French word for “butterfly.” Can you see the resemblance?
Papillons are known to be smart and playful, though they can be bossy. They’re a great choice if you’re looking for a tiny dog with a big attitude. A Papillon will tell it like it is and isn’t afraid to get face-to-face with unfamiliar things.
This breed is almost never shy or aggressive, especially when socialized from a young age. Take your Papillon outside a lot to meet people and other animals.
Similar to the Maltese, the Papillon’s long-haired coat may appear high maintenance, but it is surprisingly easy to tend to. This breed’s soft fur can be groomed easily even at home, requiring only light trimming of the hair on their back as well as a weekly brushing and bathing session.
3 – 7 lbs (1.7 – 3.2 kg)
Perhaps the fluffiest of all small dog breeds, the Pomeranian is a dog show and celebrity favorite. This intelligent and loyal puff ball is known for its fox- or bear-like face and thick hair on the chest, similar to a lion’s mane.
They’re likely to form a very deep connection to their family and will be thrilled at the prospect of joining you wherever you may go. This is a breed that has lots of energy for playing and giving you sass, but will also like to curl up on top of you for a relaxing evening at home.
Keep in mind that the Pomeranian does, in fact, require all the high maintenance that it appears to. They need to be brushed at least every other day, though daily is best. During shedding seasons, daily brushing is a must!
Additionally, the Pomeranian’s long, thick hair is prone to tangles and mats. Their sanitary area must be trimmed regularly, as well as the areas around their ears, legs, and paws.
If dog hair is a big problem, the double-coated Pom may not be the breed for you. They shed heavily twice per year, and continue to shed moderately through the rest of the year.
6. Silky Terrier
8 – 10 lbs (3.6 – 4.5 kg)
This friendly pup may be on the bigger side of these purse dogs, but carrying them around is still do-able and very worth it if you love hair this luxurious.
The Silky Terrier is a dog who has been bred to fit the role of a great, loving companion who is happiest spending time with their family. They’ll be satisfied to be with you even just to run errands.
Silky Terrier’s coat should be misted with water before their daily brushing. Luckily, this breed is another that doesn’t shed their long hair much. Keep it soft and silky by using a specially-formulated dog shampoo and conditioner during their weekly bath.
7. Toy Fox Terrier
3.5 – 7 lbs (1.6 – 3.2 kg)
This breed was intentionally bred down from the Smooth Fox Terrier into this brave and adorable pup. The Toy Fox Terrier is the perfect high-energy, low-maintenance dog small enough to fit in a purse.
Carrying the big personality of a true terrier, the Toy Fox Terrier is most suitable for a single-dog household where they can be the center of attention. This pup loves to give and receive affection with their family, but may become territorial and scrappy with other dogs.
This active, alert dog can be a great playmate for good-natured children who will treat it with respect. However, they are not recommended for households with very small or clumsy children, as they are easily injured and some Toy Fox Terriers may retaliate when faced with rough handling.
8. Toy Poodle
5 – 10 lbs (2.3 – 4.5 kg)
An intelligent and versatile companion for many different types of households, the Poodle has been one of humanity’s favorites for hundreds of years. They come in a variety of sizes, of course including the purse-sized Toy Poodle.
No matter the size, Poodles are among the brightest of all dog breeds, quickly mastering new tricks and household rules (with consistency from family).
These sensitive dogs are very loving and get their feelings hurt easily, so it’s important to keep up with positive reinforcement and pay attention to your dog’s reactions to their environment.
Additionally, they tend to become more fearful of strangers than some of the other purse dogs. Early socialization with plenty of new people and other dogs can go a long way for your Toy Poodle. Consider starting your Poodle’s socialization by playing desensitization sounds at home while eating or playing.
9. Yorkshire Terrier
4 – 7 lbs (1.8 – 3.2 kg)
The soft Yorkshire Terrier is a timeless choice for a purse dog. Yorkies are often seen in designer bags with little bows decorating the hair on the top of their heads.
Generally, pups of this breed vary in temperament from laid-back and gentle to self-assured and snippy. When looking for certain personality traits, ask your breeder about the temperament of the puppy’s parents and their past litters.
Yorkshire Terriers shed moderately. They do best with daily brushing and a weekly bath, as well as regular cleaning of their large ears using dog ear wipes.
Taking Care of Your Purse Dog
Tending to a small dog’s needs can be quick and simple as long as the most important things are covered.
Socialization — You Can Start At Home
Get your dog used to the sounds of traffic, children playing, and more using YouTube videos made for dogs.
Play these at a low volume while your dog is eating, playing, or otherwise in a relaxed or happy state. You can gradually increase the volume over several days or weeks depending on your dog’s reactions. The goal is for your dog to completely ignore these sounds.
Consider videos with normal daily noises such as vacuums and door bells, as well as seasonal sounds like fireworks and thunderstorms.
Find out whether your dog runs hot, cold, or somewhere in between.
For example, a Chihuahua will run cold and need extra help to stay warm, but a Pomeranian who weighs the same amount will overheat easily and need help to cool down.
Being too hot or too cold can be dangerous for any dog, and a purse dog won’t be able to handle it for very long.
Research what temperature your breed tends to prefer and pay attention to your dog’s reactions in different weather.
Have blankets and insulated coats ready for a cold dog and portable fans and lots of water for a dog that tends to overheat. Keep clothes off of warm dogs like Pomeranians during summer and avoid leaving them in bags without ventilation.
A puppy who hasn’t finished their puppy shots can go out with you as long as they stay off the ground, benches, and other public surfaces. Keep their nose and mouth away from any object that may have been touched by other dogs.
Your vet will tell you when it is safe to put your puppy on the ground. There is a very important series of shots that every dog gets as a puppy to keep them safe from a dangerous disease called Parvovirus (Parvo). Parvo is transferred dog-to-dog, even through the ground and other surfaces, and is often fatal.
Socializing And Behavior
Meeting new animals and people as a puppy can help keep your dog from developing a fear of strangers later in life.
Carrying them in public with a purse is one perfect way to show them that new things are totally safe.
The more time your dog spends with you, the more likely they are to develop canine separation anxiety. This will lead them to feeling highly stressed when left alone or even just without you.
If you think this could become a problem in the future, practice leaving your dog alone for very short periods of time at home with a slow-feeding toy like a Kong. TV or relaxing music can be a good addition to time with the slow-feeding toy.
Avoid leaving your dog alone with plush toys or pillows filled with stuffing. Even if your dog has never broken a toy before, stress can cause a dog to rip things open and ingest the stuffing. This can quickly lead to intestinal impaction in a small dog.
Gradually increase the time your dog is left alone with their toys until they are more comfortable.
In extreme circumstances, consider enlisting the help of a vet or professional dog trainer for separation anxiety.
When Nature Calls - Bathroom Breaks
A purse dog’s bladder and organs are very tiny, so these pups will need more frequent “potty breaks” than other dogs. Especially as puppies, small purse dogs can only hold themselves for a short amount of time. Before 6 months of age, take your dog to a place where they can empty their bladder every 1 or 2 hours.
Pay attention to your dog’s normal schedule at home and always offer a bathroom break after food and water.
Food And Water
Your dog should have access to water as often as possible.
Feeding small meals 3-4 times per day is recommended. Do not overfeed, as obesity can lead to joint and organ damage in toy dog breeds, including heart failure.
At the same time, many small and purse sized dogs are prone to hypoglycemia if they go too long without eating, which is very scary and can be fatal.
It is highly recommended to always keep Nutri-Cal on hand to administer to your dog in emergency situations.
When uncertain, ask a vet how much and how often to feed your dog.
Your vet can help you develop a personalized feeding schedule, but it is up to you at home to monitor your dog’s changes in weight and report anything new to your vet.
It is recommended to always know where your closest emergency vet / animal hospital is, even while traveling.
Small dogs are sensitive to any sort of impact, stress, chemicals, temperature changes, and hypoglycemia.
Yes, you can keep your tiny dog with you while still living your day-to-day life normally!
Keep your pup safe from falls and big dogs, ensure that they get enough food, water, and bathroom breaks, and always be prepared for emergencies.
All in all, these 9 perfect dogs that are small enough to fit in a purse will keep you great company no matter where you go.