How did the Teddy Bear Pomeranian name come about?

Have you ever heard someone refer to a Pomeranian as a Teddy Bear Pomeranian and wondered what that meant?

The American Kennel Association (AKC) dictates that Pomeranians require a “fox shaped face” in order to most accurately reflect the external traits of their breed. Though they are not all officially registered by show Pomeranian breeders, three prominent facial structures dominate the Pomeranian market today: Fox, Teddy Bear and Baby Doll. Before delving into these differences, clarification should be made that there are no other physical discrepancies between them.

Pomeranians, nicknamed Pom-Poms, are descendant of the larger Spitz from the regions of Northern Poland and Eastern Germany today—once known as the Pomeria Region.

Though their ancestry is attributed to Germany, Pomeranians originate from the Wolfspitz (“sharp point” in German, referencing the formation of their nose and muzzle); large breed working dogs from the Arctic.

The first Pomeranians weighed between thirty and fifty pounds. As the breed increased in popularity, beginning as early as the seventeenth century with Queen Victoria’s “Windsor’s Marco” weighing in at only twelve pounds, breeders decreased this size by nearly fifty percent during her reign (1837-1901) to meet the supply and demand of the public.

Other well-known Pomeranian owners include Josephine, the wife of Napoleon the First, of France, and King George the Fourth, of England. They even traveled among the rich and famous aboard the Titanic (1912); two out of the three dogs rescued—one on boat number six, owned by Elizabeth Rothschild, and the other, on boat number seven, owned by Margaret Hays, were Pomeranians.

All of this leads to the present day norms for a breed that is anything but average. Though Pomeranians retain popularity throughout the world, consistently ranking among the Top 20 Most Popular Breeds in the United States, their sizes and appearance can vary significantly.

These three to seven pound, seven to twelve inch height toy breeds are both sturdy and compact. Their life spans from twelve to sixteen years, and they enjoy resistance from most diseases. There are also smaller versions of the Pomeranian, also known as teacup Pomeranians. They can weigh as little as two pounds.

Their personality is friendly, outgoing and lively; protective, ultra aware of their environment and highly intelligent. They are trainable, extroverted, and prefer to be the center of attention. Pomeranians also specialize in manipulation of any unsuspecting owner. If they maneuver into the dominant position of the household (alpha), they will eagerly take control over all they feel is theirs, including their owner.

With adequate training as a puppy and consistent discipline as an adult, assertive tendencies within the household should be minimal.

Because of the Pomeranian’s close bond to their humans, they are prone to separation anxiety and, at times, believed to be a nervous breed. However, they respond well to praise from their owners and territorial instincts make them into excellent watchdogs, as long as barking doesn’t become excessive.

Size is one of their most convenient attributes. Though they are not ideal housemates for young children, they are the perfect size for apartments, needing less space for both living and exercise.

Though these attention cravers adore their homes, many of them tout “big dog” attitudes without awareness of their size in comparison to other dogs, which leads to a wide variety of dilemmas. To avoid this situation, supervision and proper socialization as a puppy, is a “must”. Also, proactive prevention is key to keeping their active minds occupied, or owners will also add “mischievous” to any list of misgivings.

Pomeranians are lookers, though, sporting flashy double layer coats: long course outer coat with dense, short undercoat. The hair on their hindquarters feathers, as they proudly show off their plumed tail. Though they shed all year–similar to other breeds that live in the Arctic, they ring in seasonal changes with two predominant periods of shedding.

The three main variances in face shape evolve from irregularities within the Fox Faces of the breed. Pomeranians born with a shorter snout and eyes that appear closer to the nose and cheeks, are called Teddy Bear Pomeranians.  When they are paired with mates sharing this same appearance, consistency results. Baby Doll Pomeranians resemble the Teddy Bears, but they have a flatter snout, with eyes set higher back on the face.

Another reason why the Teddy Bear Pomeranian name caught on was due to what is known as the “Teddy Bear Trim”. Care needs to be taken, however, whenever their double coat is shaved down or guard hairs clipped. If trimming removes the outer coat, the under coat may changepermanently, making its grooming into a life-long commitment.

And so we come to the question: why would someone choose a Teddy Bear Pomeranian? Which leads to the next question: why not? The breed’s appeal stands on its own, yet, similar to choosing color or size over alternatives in other aspects of our lives, we enjoy choices–leading to a personal experience that embellish the seed of future relationship.

Regardless whether the shape of the Pomeranian’s face resembles a fox, a teddy bear, or a baby doll, these popular household companions include their own source of energy, frivolity and charisma. Though humanity sometimes kids itself into thinking that they open their doors simply to shelter an animal, seldom foreseen is the intertwining facets of each other’s lives from that point on: entertaining, healing, and building each other up into what often develops into long-term idyllic camaraderie.

References:

http://www.petpom.com/Teddy_Bear_Poms.html (As of 12-1-13, 1:19 p.m. CST).

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pomeranian_(dog)  (As of 12-1-13, 1:23 p.m. CST).