The Pomchi is what you get when you cross a Pomeranian with a Chihuahua. These two dogs are very cute, so creating this Pomeranian Chihuahua mix might seem like a surefire win.
Unfortunately, there are some definite health issues facing both breeds that cannot be ignored.
Learn more about the details and what to look out for in this in-depth guide to the Pomchi.
What’s In This Guide
Our readers’ most popular and frequently asked questions about the Pomchi.
- Do Pomchi dogs shed?
- How big does a Pomchi get?
- Are Pomchis good family dogs
- Are Pomchis hypoallergenic?
Pomchi: Breed At A Glance
- Popularity: According to the AKC, Pomeranians are the 22nd most popular breed in the US, and Chihuahuas are the 32nd.
- Purpose: Companion.
- Weight: 5-12 pounds.
- Temperament: Excitable and active.
Pomchi Breed Review: Contents
- History and original purpose of the Pomchi
- Fun facts about the Pomchi
- Pomchi appearance
- Pomchi temperament
- Training and exercising your Pomchi
- Pomchi health and care
- Do Pomchis make good family pets
- Rescuing a Pomchi
- Finding a Pomchi puppy
- Raising a Pomchi puppy
- Pomchi products and accessories
History And Original Purpose Of The Pomchi
What exactly is a Pomchi?
It’s a great question to start us off with.
As you’ve read above, it’s a mixture of two breeds.
Sweet, loyal and friendly, Pomeranian Chihuahua mixes are as affectionate as they are cute.
Pomchi dogs are very small, but what they lack in size they more than make up for in character.
We’re talking huge personalities in tiny packages! These sweet little things look like miniature foxes and are almost guaranteed to capture your heart.
Which of their parent breeds will the average Pomchi take after? It’s impossible to say. Each and every dog is slightly different.
So let’s take a closer look at those breeds and their origins.
Origins Of The Pomeranian
Descended from the German Spitz dogs originally found in Pomerania, a region of northern Germany and Poland, these dogs’ ancient ancestors were originally large working sled-pulling dogs working in the Arctic Circle.
Their unique looks made them popular among European aristocracy from the 16th Century onward. Pomeranians made good companion dogs for many a royal.
The first official breeding club for Pomeranians was established in Britain back in 1891.
Some two decades later, three Poms actually ended up being the only surviving animals from the Titanic disaster.
Pomeranians continued their rise to fame, slowly spreading across the world.
They quickly established themselves as American favorites.
Origins Of The Chihuahua
Chihuahuas come from Mexico.
There are no prizes for guessing which state of Mexico, either.
Yep, that’s right. The state of Chihuahua!
Experts disagree slightly on just how far back the breed goes, but it’s widely believed that Chihuahuas are descended from a breed of dog since bred out of existence, called Techichis.
The Techichi breed is no longer found but was a companion dog to tribesmen in the ancient Toltec civilization in Mexico.
Techichis, and later Chihuahuas, were thought to be favored as pets because they were so small they made for great little hot water bottles.
Another theory goes that Chihuahuas were introduced to Central America by Spanish traders from, of all places, China.
Origins Of The Pomchi
The Pomeranian and Chihuahua mix is just that: a mix.
Being a cross breed, the Pomchi is not recognized as ‘real’ breed of dog.
Because they are not formally acknowledged as a pure breed, their history isn’t documented all that well.
For instance, it’s not know precisely when the first Pomchi was intentionally bred.
Fun Facts About The Pomchi
How often do you hear about the Pomeranian Chihuahua mix? Perhaps more than you realize. They’re popular teddy bear dogs.
They’re not only known as Pomchis or Chipoms, either.
If you’ve ever seen a Pom Chihuahua mix, you’ll still remember what they look like now, no doubt. They’re distinctive to say the least.
Now, of course, they look like a hybrid of a Pomeranian and a Chihuahua, but will yours be a 50/50 split, appearance-wise? Well, it’s unlikely.
Most Pomchis will look like smaller Poms in body, but with more Chihuahua-esque faces. So you can expect small rounded heads and large eyes.
Like we’ve said, there is an almost fox-like appearance to many Pomchis and their erect and furry little ears certainly help create that illusion. Their legs are short but strong, their torso long and their paws are rounded.
However, you could end up with a dog that looks mainly Chihuahua or more Pomeranian in form.
Adult Pomchis will grow anywhere up to six to ten inches tall. The males tend to be a tiny bit taller.
Weight-wise, again, there’s some variation. Expect your Pomchi to be anywhere from 5 pounds to around 10 pounds for a female and 6 pounds to 12 pounds for a male.
Pomchis full grown can range anywhere between these heights and weights, though. So do be aware that your Pomchi might grow a little bigger than you’re expecting!
Pomeranian Chihuahua mixes come in a wide array of different color coats. The most common, though? Light brown.
You can also find Pomchis in:
- Dark brown
Black Pomchis are less common, but still very much sought after.
Most of these dogs will be just one color, but a mixture of more than one is not terribly unusual.
The color(s) of the dog will be determined by whichever parent carries dominant genes.
Crosses can have either of the two original breed’s coats or a mixture between the two.
In Pomchis, it really can depend on the genetic influence of the dominant parent.
Coats can be long or short, single or double. But they’ll always be shiny and soft in a healthy dog.
Pomchi haircuts can be necessary to keep them looking their best.
Especially if they have an undercoat, meaning they’re likely to have a very thick and fluffy coat.
Pomchi shedding will depend on the type of coat they inherit. You can examine the shedding and grooming requirements of Pomeranians and Chihuahuas for a better idea of what to expect.
Pomchis have their own unique little character and temperament. But, of course, they’re very similar in nature to the two breeds that go into making them.
It’s worth noting however that – as with temperament – it’s impossible to know if your Pomchi will end up ‘more Pomeranian’ or ‘more Chihuahua-y’. The science is never exact with cross breeding.
Chihuahuas are lively, energetic and alert. But it doesn’t take much to make them nervous or aggressive.
Pomeranians are often very curious, fun and bright. They’re also obedient, perky and almost always friendly and approachable.
So, as you’d expect, the Pomchi temperament will be a mixture of the behavioral characteristics of each breed. But they could be 100% like Mom or Dad, and you won’t know until they are an adult which way it could go.
Smaller dogs like Pomchis do tend become quite vocal when left alone and do often suffer from separation anxiety if those periods are more than just a few hours.
Ask someone at random their thoughts on Chihuahuas and similar dogs and chances are they’ll say they are yappy, aggressive, annoying and prone to biting. And that can be true…
Chihuahuas are amongst the dogs most likely to have serious aggression problems towards strangers as well as their owners.
Training And Exercising Your Pomchi
Because of that, socialization is incredibly important for these dogs.
To reduce the chances of aggression in your Chihuahua mixed Pomchi you will need to make sure that the Chihuahua parent is very friendly and that your puppy sees visitors to the home every day from 8 to 14 weeks old. Visit lots of new places and meet lots of new people.
A Chihuahua Pomeranian mix full grown, like most dogs, requires exercise. But, unlike larger dogs, they don’t require huge amounts of it.
Pomchis will get plenty of stimulation and exert a fair amount of energy inside, provided you have enough toys for them to play with.
But just because they don’t need daily five mile walks, they will still need to get out and about in the fresh air. The sights, sounds and smells are vital to keeping your dog active, alert and happy.
These toy dogs might only have small brains, but they’re smart. They learn quickly and enjoy picking up tricks and training in general. Pomeranians and Chihuahuas are inquisitive by nature.
Pomchi Health And Care
Extremely small dogs tend to suffer from conformational problems, leading to major health issues.
For this reason, it is absolutely vital that a potential owner do their research and know what they are getting into before they choose a Pomchi or a similar mix.
The parent breeds are known to potentially suffer with a plethora of medical afflictions. These include:
- Legg-Calve-Perthes disease
- heart problems
- open fontanel (small holes in the skull)
- collapsed trachea
- hydrocephalus (fluid on the brain)
- eye problems
- dental problems
- patellar luxation (floating kneecap).
Also recorded – but less common – are:
- skin issues
- hip dysplasia
Mixed Breed Health
Being cross bred, Pomchis should be slightly healthier than purebred Pomeranians or Chihuahuas, though it’s possible that Pomchis can suffer from any number of issues associated with their ancestors.
Breeding any dog, be they pedigree or so-called ‘designer’ requires research, ethics, hard work, knowledge and love.
Smaller dogs are particularly sensitive to genetic defects through unethical breeding practices. Toy breeds can very easily inherit heart, respiratory, nerve or skeletal problems through bad breeding practices.
So the breeding of smaller toy cross breeds such as the Teacup Pomchi is not without its risks. Breeders need to be very careful indeed.
Each parent must be health tested for conditions related to their breed, and have no family history of related medical problems.
Pomeranians have a worryingly small gene pool, so in this respect outcrossing to a Chihuahua is a great thing for their genetic health.
However, mixing a small breed with dental problems with another with dental problems is likely to create a puppy who will need dental care at some point in their lives.
The median lifespan of a Pomeranian is around 9 years. However, they have been known to live up to 17 years.
The Chihuahua lives on average anywhere from 7 to 12 years, but has been recorded as living in excess of 19 years. So there is quite a range there.
Owners who buy a pup from health tested parents can hope to see their dogs living to a ripe old age.
The Chihuahua parent must have no history of dental issues, epilepsy, hypoglycaemia or family history of tracheal collapse repair or fatalities.
The Pomeranian parent must have no history of knee problems, ear problems, skin complaints or dental problems.
They should have a clear eye test of less than a year old and no family history of hydrocephalus or syringomyelia.
Mixed breed dogs do live longer on average than their purebred cousins, and if you avoid the fatal pitfalls of heart disease and tracheal collapse then you’ve got a better chance of having a long lived Pomchi pup.
Pomchi Grooming And Care
Pomeranian cross Chihuahua grooming can be very important, particularly to those dogs with longer, fuller coats.
Shorter-haired pets won’t need as much brushing, but they shouldn’t be neglected.
Matted hair is unpleasant for any dog, so make sure grooming and brushing becomes part of your regular weekly routine if you own a Pomchi.
One thing that is quite important to bear in mind especially with the long-haired Chihuahua Pomeranian mix is that they often have quite sensitive skin.
Dogs with potential skin complaints should be brushed with care and only with a soft-bristled brush. Metal brushes can cause irritation and discomfort.
Some owners like to bathe their Pomchis every so often using mild shampoo. And most will take their pet to a local groomer semi-regularly for nail clipping and hair trims.
Do Pomchis Make Good Family Pets?
Do Pomchi dogs make good pets? They can, if the setting is right and the pup is from friendly, health tested parents.
The most suitable home will be child free (due to the delicate size of the dog). The owner should be around for most of the day and happy to spend time grooming.
The main problem with choosing a Pomeranian Chihuahua mix for your family pet is the potential for health problems due to conformational issues.
Apart from that, Pomchis are also not fans of being left home alone for too long. They also require early, thorough socialization and training.
Because of their size, Pomchis often appeal to people who live in urban environments and live in apartments or flats.
Toy dogs are not particularly weather hardy, so their homes are most certainly ‘inside’. Walkies are good, but smaller dogs cannot be left outside for extended periods.
Rescuing A Pomchi
Rescuing a Pomchi solves a few problems for the potential owner.
Adopting an adult Pomchi gives you a better idea of what health problems you may be dealing with.
Rescuing a dog from a shelter is usually cheaper than buying from a breeder.
Shelters also do health check-ups on their animals, and often will chip them.
And, last but not least, you’ll have the satisfaction of knowing that you’ve given a good home to a dog who was truly in need.
For some links to available rescues, jump to this section.
Finding A Pomchi puppy
If, however, you are absolutely set on finding Chihuahua Pomeranian puppies, here are some tips on how to go about doing so.
Avoid puppy mills and pet stores at all costs! These are disreputable breeders who put money ahead of the well-being of their animals.
Pomeranian Chihuahua mix puppies that are sold by people who love dogs are out there. Look online, read some reviews, don’t be afraid to speak to the people before arranging to meet.
To ensure you’re getting a happy and healthy dog, make sure you visit the breeder’s premises.
Once you’re in a breeder’s home, ask to see the whole litter – or what’s left of the litter – of Pomeranian Chihuahua puppies. Do they all look well, are they friendly and healthy?
Does the breeder have an emotional connection to the dogs? If it doesn’t appear so, then they may be just in it for the money. Always meet the mother, and if the Chihuahua parent is the father, make sure you meet him too. Ask for proof that the puppy’s parents have been health checked.
Don’t be afraid to ask other questions of the breeder you’re talking to, either. You need to make sure you’re dealing with legitimate breeders who have the best interests of the dogs at heart. For more information, take a look at our puppy search guide.
The amount of money you’d be expected to part with for a happy and healthy Pomchi puppy will vary.
Where you’re buying from, how serious the breeder is about making money, the rarity of the coat, even just how cute the little thing is – they’re all factors that play a part.
Raising A Pomchi puppy
Caring for a vulnerable Pomchi puppy is a big responsibility. There are some great guides to help you with all aspects of puppy care and training.
You’ll find them listed on our Pomchi puppy page.
Pomchi Products And Accessories
For even more recommendations for products and accessories for Chihuahua Pomeranian puppies and Pomchi adults, take a look at our review pages.
Pros And Cons of Getting A Pomchi
- Both parents are prone to conformational problems
- Parent breeds both tend to have dental issues, among others
- Long list of potential health problems
- Needs extensive socialization and training
- Small dogs are good for apartment living
- Small dogs generally have longer life expectancy
- Mix breed may mitigate some of the parent breeds’ health issues
Comparing The Pomchi With Other Breeds
As mentioned above, the Pomchi has some significant health issues that could potentially cause problems.
It’s definitely a good idea to compare the Pomchi with some other breeds that may be healthier in the long run.
Perhaps you like a lot of the details about the Pomchi, but the health problems are giving you pause.
This is completely understandable.
Here are some similar mix breed dogs which have a lot in common with the Pomchi, but which may avoid some of the health issues.
Pomchi Breed Rescues
- Chihuahua Rescue
- Texas Chihuahua Rescue
- Chihuahua Rescue UK
- Chihuahua Rescue Australia
- Pawsitively Pom
- Recycled Poms
- Pomeranian And Small Breed Rescue Canada
Have you come across any other rescues that help rehome Chihuahuas, Pomeranians, or mixes of either breed? Let us know in the comments!
References And Resources
- Gough A, Thomas A, O’Neill D. 2018 Breed Predispositions to Disease In Dogs and Cats. Wiley Blackwell
- O’Neill et al. 2013. Longevity and Mortality of Dogs Owned In England. The Veterinary Journal
- Schalamon et al. 2006. Analysis of Dog Bites In Children Who Are Younger Than 17 Years. Pediatrics
- Duffy D et al. Breed differences in canine aggression. Applied Animal Behavior Science 2008
- Strain G. Deafness prevalence and pigmentation and gender associations in dog breeds at risk. The Veterinary Journal 2004
- Packer et al. 2015. Impact of Facial Conformation On Canine Health. PlosOne
- Adams and Evans. 2010. Methods and mortality results ofa health survey of purebred dogs in the UK. Journal of Small Animal Practice.
- Oliveira et al. 2011. Retrospective review of congenital heart disease in 976 dogs. Journal of Veterinary Internal Medicine.
- Tangner and Hobson. 1982. A retrospective study of 20 surgically managed cases of collapsed trachea. Veterinary Surgery.
- Ackermann, L. 1999. Pomchi: The Ultimate Pomchi Dog Manual. Pomchi Care, Costs, Feeding, Grooming, Health and Training
- Stahlkuppe, J. 2010. Pomeranians: Everything about Purchase, Care, Nutrition, Breeding & Behavior
- Institute of Canine Biology
- Chihuahua Hydrocephalus. Universities Federation for Animal Welfare
- Pomeranian Distal Fractures. Universities Federation for Animal Welfare
This article has been extensively revised and updated for 2019.