A small dog barking and is getting ready to attack.

10 Small Dogs That Bite (Don’t Let Their Size Fool You!)

Most people think that small dogs don’t bite as often as bigger dogs, but that’s not always the case. In fact, any dog can bite if it feels threatened or frightened. To help you avoid being bitten by a small dog, we’ve put together a complete guide.

This guide includes information on the most common small dogs that bite, as well as tips on how to prevent your dog from biting in the first place.

Small Dogs That Bite

Lhasa Apso

A Lhasa Apso on a leash going for walk.
Image by dandaviddesigns from Pixabay

The Lhasa Apso is a small Tibetan dog breed that is known for its long, luxurious coat. Despite their small size, Lhasas are actually quite sturdy little dogs with a lot of personality. They can be reserved around strangers but are incredibly loyal to their family and make great watchdogs.

Although they are not known to be aggressive, Lhasas can sometimes get snippy with other animals and have been known nip at people they don’t know, or  if they feel threatened. Overall, these lovely little dogs make great companions and are relatively easy to care for, just be sure to give them plenty of love and attention. 

If you’re considering adding a Lhasa to your family, it’s important to do your research and be prepared to provide them with the training, exercise, and socialization they need to be happy and well-adjusted dogs.

Jack Russell Terrier

A Jack Russell Terrier waiting for its owner.
Image by Christiane from Pixabay

Jack Russell Terrier is a very small terrier that originated in England in the 1800s. The breed was named after a man named Jack Russell, who was a parson who developed the breed. The Jack Russell Terrier was bred to be a working dog, and they are known for their high energy and intelligence. They can be loyal and compassionate towards their owners.

The Jack Russell Terrier is a very popular breed, and they make excellent pets. However, they can also be strong-willed and stubborn, which means they require consistent training and socialization. They can also be territorial and may bite, nip or bark excessively if they feel threatened.

Additionally, Jack Russell Terriers are known for being escape artists, so it is important to keep them well-exercised and mentally stimulated to prevent them from becoming bored or destructive.


A Pomeranian dog posing for a photo in the park.
Image by Nick Stafford from Pixabay

Pomeranians, often called Poms, are a small dog breed that originates from the Pomerania region in north-central Europe. They are known for their fluffy coats and cute, fox-like faces. Pomeranians are lively dogs that make great companions. They are intelligent and can be easy to train, but they can also be willful and stubborn.

Pomeranians are also one of the most popular breeds of dogs, thanks to their small size and friendly dispositions. Even though they are typically gentle and loving dogs, Pomeranians can sometimes bite people. This is usually due to fear or excitement, but it can also happen if they feel threatened or uncomfortable around someone.

If you’re thinking about getting a Pomeranian, it’s important to do your research and make sure that you’re prepared to provide them with the care and attention they need.


A pekingese dog staring at its owner.
Image by No-longer-here from Pixabay

Pekingese are a small toy dog breed originating in, you guessed it, China. They are Chow Chow and Pekingese mixes. The name “Pekingese” comes from the city of Beijing, where they were once bred as royal palace dogs.Today, Pekingese are still popular pets, known for their independent spirit and loyal nature.

They can be stubborn, and training them requires patience and perseverance. However, they make excellent companion animals for those who can provide them with the love and attention they need.

Pekingese are not typically aggressive, but like any dog, they may bite if provoked or feeling threatened. It is important to socialize and train your Pekingese properly to prevent any potential aggression issues. With the right care, a Pekingese can make a wonderful addition to your family.


A Papillon dog playing with a wood stick.
Image by Reijo Telaranta from Pixabay

Papillon is a dog breed with erect ears and a long, silky coat. They are confident and playful, but can also be reserved around strangers. Papillons are known to be good watchdogs, as they will bark to alert their owner of any unusual activity.

Despite their small size, Papillons are relatively active dogs and need daily exercise.They are rational and easy to train, making them a popular choice with families with small children.

While Papillons are generally gentle and good-natured dogs, they may sometimes bite if they feel threatened or uncomfortable. It is important to socialize them from an early age so that they learn to trust and interact with different types of people and animals.

Shih Tzu

A Shih Tzu staring and waiting for its owner.
Image by carlosleucipo from Pixabay

The Shih Tzu is a small, sturdy dog with a short muzzle and large, dark eyes. The breed originated in China and is thought to have been developed from the Pekingese and other small lap dogs. The Shih Tzu was once known as the Tibetan Lion Dog because of its lion-like appearance. The breed was brought to Europe in the 1930s and to the United States in the 1950s.

Shih Tzus are loyal, affectionate dogs that make great companions. They are playful and good with children, but can be stubborn and require patience when training. Shih Tzus do not require a lot of exercise, but do need daily walks. The breed is prone to health problems such as obesity, respiratory difficulties, eye problems, and back problems.

However, because they are small dogs, they can sometimes be snippy or nippy when they feel threatened or scared. It is important to socialize Shih Tzus from a young age so that they learn how to interact appropriately with people and other animals.


A Dachshund staring at its owner and waiting for a command.
Image by Brigitte Werner from Pixabay

Dachshunds are a type of hound that is bred to hunt badgers. They have long bodies and short legs, which makes them excellent at digging. Dachshunds come in a number of coat types. These include smooth, longhaired, and wirehaired. They are also available in a variety of colors, including black, tan, cream, brindle, and red.

Although they were originally bred to be hunting dogs, today they are mostly kept as pets. Dachshunds are friendly dogs that make great companions. However, they can also be stubborn and aggressive if not properly trained.

They are known for being protective of their owners and may bite if they feel threatened. It is important to socialize dachshunds from a young age so that they learn to trust people and understand that not everyone is a threat.

Cocker Spaniel

A Cocker Spaniel sitting down, waiting for its owner's command.
Image by Dave Francis from Pixabay

Cocker spaniels are a type of gun dog typically used for hunting birds. They were originally bred in England in the mid-19th century, and are descendants of the spaniel family. Cocker spaniels are relatively small dogs, with males reaching heights of around 15 inches (38 cm), and females around 14 inches (36 cm).

They have a sturdy build, with long bodies and short legs. They have a silky coat which can be either straight or curly, and comes in a variety of colors including black, brown, white, and tan.

Cocker spaniels are known for being gentle, affectionate dogs that make great companions. However, they can also be very excitable, and may bite if they become overly excited or feel threatened.


A beagle in the park off leash with its owner.
Image by Daniel Albany from Pixabay

Beagles are a type of small hound that is similar in appearance to a foxhound. They are very loving, extremely gentle, and smart house pets that maintain good ties with their family members.

Beagles have a strong hunting instinct, so they need plenty of exercise and stimulation to prevent them from becoming bored and destructive.

Beagles are generally good-natured and easy to train, but they can be stubborn at times. They are also prone to barking and howling. Beagles do not usually bite, but they may nip if they feel threatened or scared.


A Chihuahua on a leash.
Image by Kenji Ogusu from Pixabay

Chihuahuas are one of the smallest breed of dogs, and are known for their charming personalities. They originated in Mexico and were named after the Mexican state of Chihuahua. Chihuahuas come in two coat types, long and short, and many different colors. They typically weigh between 2 and 6 pounds.

Chihuahuas are loyal dogs that make great companions, but they can also be protective of their owners. Because of their small size, they are not good guard dogs but they will bark at strangers. Chihuahuas can be good with children if they are properly socialized, but because of their size, they should always be supervised around young children.

One downside to owning a Chihuahua is that they are known to bite people more often than other breeds of dogs. This is likely due to their small size and fearfulness around strangers.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is it normal for small dogs to bite?

There are a number of factors that can contribute to biting behavior in small dogs, including fear, anxiety, and even boredom. If your dog is biting out of fear or anxiety, it’s important to work with a professional trainer or behaviorist to help them learn to cope with their emotions.

If your dog is biting out of boredom, you’ll need to make sure they have plenty of toys and activities to keep them occupied. In some cases, biting may also be part of your dog’s natural predatory instincts.

While this isn’t necessarily a bad thing, it’s important to make sure your dog understands that humans are not prey. This can be done through proper socialization and training.

How do I stop my small dog from biting?

As a dog owner, it’s important to nip biting in the bud before it becomes a bigger problem. There are a few things you can do to stop your small dog from biting.

First, provide your dog with plenty of chew toys and bones to gnaw on. This will also help satisfy their natural desire to bite.

Once it begins biting, immediately deliver a “no!” and redirect its focus to a toy.

Third, keep up with regular training and obedience sessions. A well-trained dog is less likely to bite out of frustration or excitement.

With patience and consistency, you can stop your small dog from biting for good.

Why do little dogs bite more?

There are a number of reasons why little dogs bite more. For one, they may feel threatened more easily than bigger dogs. They may also be more prone to anxiety and fearfulness, which can lead to aggression.

Additionally, small breeds of dogs tend to have a higher prey drive, which means they’re more likely to chase and bite smaller animals. Whatever the reason, it’s important to be aware that small dogs can pack a powerful punch and should be treated with caution and respect.

Can a dog be cured of biting?

It’s common for dogs to bite out of fear or excitement, but this behavior can be dangerous for both the dog and the owner. While it might seem like an impossible feat, there are ways to train a dog not to bite. With patience and consistency, most dogs can be cured of their biting habits.

One of the first steps in curbing a dog’s biting is to figure out what is causing the behavior. Is the dog anxious? Excited? Afraid? Once the root of the problem is identified, it will be easier to address. If the dog is biting out of excitement or fear, owners should avoid using punishment as a corrective measure.

This will only aggravate the problem and could make the dog more likely to bite in future situations. Instead, positive reinforcement techniques should be used to encourage desired behaviors.

Why do small dogs snap at you?

Small dogs may snap out of fear or excitement, or because they’re trying to protect their owners from what they perceive as a threat. Fear is the most common reason behind snapping behavior in small dogs.

They may be afraid of other people or animals, loud noises, or unfamiliar environments. Excitement can also lead to snapping, especially if a small dog isn’t used to being around people.

Sometimes, small dogs snap because they’re trying to protect their owners from what they see as a threat. This is more likely to happen if the dog has been poorly socialized or if it has had negative experiences with people in the past.

Is a small dog bite harmful?

Many people believe that a small dog bite is not harmful. However, this is not always the case. A small dog bite can actually be quite dangerous.

One reason why a small dog bite can be dangerous is because of the bacteria that lives in their mouths. This bacteria can cause infections and other health problems in humans. Additionally, small dogs have sharp teeth that can puncture skin and cause bleeding.

Another reason why a small dog bite can be harmful is because of the size of their mouths. Small dogs have smaller mouths than larger dogs, so their bites are more likely to break skin and cause serious damage.

If you are ever bitten by a small dog, it is important to seek medical attention immediately. Even if the bite does not seem serious, it could still be very dangerous.

Why do dogs bite without warning?

There are a number of reasons why dogs might bite without warning. They might feel intimidated, threatened or afraid. Another reason might be if they’re in pain, and they lash out in response.

It’s also possible that a dog has been poorly trained and doesn’t know how to appropriately respond to people or other animals.

Whatever the reason, it’s important to be careful around dogs that you don’t know and to never approach a dog that is barking or growling – even if it doesn’t appear to be aggressive, it could still bite.

What to do when a dog bites you?

If you are unfortunate enough to be bitten by a dog, there are some important steps you should take. First, cleanse the wound with water and soap. Then, apply a sterile gauze or even a bandage to the wound. It is important to seek medical attention as soon as possible, even if the wound does not appear to be serious.

If the pet’s owner is there, get their contact information. If not, try to find out who the dog belongs to so that you can get in touch with them. It is important to find out if the dog has been vaccinated against rabies.

Even if the dog appears healthy, it is possible for them to be carrying the disease and it can be passed on to humans through a bite.

Finally, make sure to report the incident to your local animal control or police department.

Do smaller dogs bite less often than bigger dogs?

According to experts, the size of the dog doesn’t necessarily have anything to do with how often they bite. There are a number of factors that can affect how often a dog bites, including breed, socialization, and training.

For example, breeds that were originally bred for fighting or watchdogs are more likely to bite than those that weren’t. And dogs that haven’t been properly socialized – meaning they haven’t had positive experiences with people – are also more likely to bite.

So if you’re looking for a dog that’s less likely to bite, it’s important to consider all of these factors – not just size.

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  • Karin S

    Welcome to All About My Small Dog, where my love for small dogs and years of hands-on experience meet your need for trusted information. As a dedicated small dog enthusiast and pet parent, I'm deeply committed to sharing expert insights, reliable advice, and a community of support. Every blog you read here is crafted with the utmost care, guided by my passion and expertise. You can trust that you're in the right place for valuable insights and a warm community that understands the unique joys and challenges of small dog ownership. Together, we'll make sure your small dog's world is filled with love, care, and knowledge.