1. What is my relationship with the breed? (ie breeder, first time owner etc)
2. Where and why was the breed first developed?
The Pomeranian is believed to have descended from wolf-spitz type dogs which at a very early period in history migrated to Pomerania from the north of Russia and Siberia. Queen Victoria was responsible for the popularity of the Pom and it was she who bred them down to a smaller size. The earlier spitz, type dogs were used to work as guard and sled animals, however the smallest were often kept as companions.
3. How common is it in Australia?
They are quite common in Australia and very popular. Because they only have small litters (1 or 2 puppies) demand usually exceeds supply of quality Poms. Unscrupulous back yard breeders regularly advertise inferior cross-breeds as purebred and should be avoided at all costs.
4. What is the average lifespan?
The average life-span is around 12 years but its not unusual for them to live well into their teens.
5. What is the general temperament/personality?
Extroverted, lively and very, very intelligent. Must be a part of their family.
6. How much daily exercise is needed for the average adult?
They do not need a huge amount of exercise but do benefit from a daily walk as their minds and bodies like to keep active.
7. Is it a breed that a first time dog owner could easily cope with?
Yes, although they are not recommended for families with small children.
8. Can solo dogs of this breed easily occupy themselves for long periods?
Poms prefer to be part of a pack, whether this consists of humans or other dogs. They dont like being left alone for long periods.
9. How much grooming is required?
A good brush once a week combined with daily checking for matts is recommended. Trimming of hair around the anus is also a very good idea. Shampoo with good quality product when necessary.
10. Is it too boisterous for very small children or for infirm people (unless the dog is well trained)?
Small children and Pomeranians do not mix well unless the child is very quiet and careful not to drop or hurt the Pom. They make fantastic companions for elderly people once they are past the energetic puppy stage.
11. Are there any common hereditary problems a puppy buyer should be aware of?
Poms can have problems with Patellas, collapsing Tracheas, coat loss and Hypoglycemia. Problems are less common if you buy from a reputable breeder.
12. When buying a puppy, what are the things you should ask of the breeder? (eg what health tests have been done (if applicable) and what is an acceptable result to those tests so the buyer has an idea of what the result should be)
It is always best to be able to view the parents, siblings or other relatives if possible to see if any health problems are evident. Some problems cannot be seen of course. Find a reputable breeder.