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What Is a Throwback Pomeranian?

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Throwback Pomeranians

Pomeranians come in a variety of sizes, colors, cuteness, personalities and styles. This adorably tiny dog is loved because he can usually watch the world go by from the safety of his mother’s handbag or father’s pocket.

The American Kennel Club (AKC) has officially designated a purebred Pomeranian’s size as being between three and seven pounds. However, it’s easy to find a Pom that is much bigger than the norm.

The term throwback Pomeranian is often used incorrectly to describe these big Pomeranian breed dogs. I personally don’t like the gimmicky terms “throwback Pomeranian” and “teacup Pomeranian” being used in association with my beloved breed.  Another name for these bigger Pom dogs is Victorian Pomeranian.

These are the only three reasons why a dog might be large breed Pomeranian compared to the Pom breed standard:

  1. He’s overweight. It’s a normal problem for the Pomeranian breed of dog, and is even more likely in Poms that have bigger bones.
  2. He might be a mixed dog breed. You may own what looks like a purebred Pom but he could actually be part Pomeranian and the other part could be a bigger Spitz dog such as the Samoyed, Chow-Chow or Japanese Spitz, just to mention a few examples.
  3. Genetics. Big Pomeranian puppies are often observed in color breeding programs. Puppies from backyard breeders and puppy mills are often larger than the Pomeranian breed standard, owing to poor breeding practices.

What is a Throwback Pomeranian?

Technically speaking, this term (or a breed of dog by this name) does not exist. Owners and non-preservation breeders seem to have latched onto this term to describe their big Pomeranian breed dogs. What some refer to as a throwback Pomeranian is merely a Pom that is larger than the Pomeranian breed standard size. The dog’s natural body structure is up to four times bigger than what is expected.

Throwback Pomeranian Dog
Throwback Pomeranian Dog

If you own a big Pomeranian, he may very well be a throwback. Any Pomeranian that’s defined as a throwback needs to be an adult that’s fully grown, is NOT overweight but is still heavier than 10 to 14 pounds.  Large Pomeranians or Throwback Pomeranian dogs are still considered to be purebred Poms; they’re simply bigger than the breed standard Pomeranians.

Throwback Pomeranian Size

There have been throwback Pomeranians that have been weighed at between 18 and 20 pounds… and that’s certainly big.

The term “throwback Pomeranian” is a very modern invention, which attempts to describe dogs similar to the Pom’s bigger ancestors that used to pull sleds. Those dogs were a Spitz-like variety and would weigh around 30 pounds. They’re related to both the Siberian Husky and the American Eskimo dog breeds.

When various breeds of dogs underwent genetic testing, one discovery was that many of Spitz dog breeds directly belonged to a group regarded as being the closest relatives to wolves and it’s assumed that they’re the oldest type of dogs known. This may be the explanation for the Pomeranian’s feisty demeanor.

Toward the end of the late 1880s, Queen Victoria herself loved the Spitz dog breed. However, she desired the dog to be a smaller version because of the incredible popularity among members of Royalty to own very small lap dogs. She decided to devise a breeding program that would decrease the size of the dogs in that time, and so they eventually turned into the cute little Poms we love and adore today.

The Queen has been given double credit for:

  1. Vastly increasing the breed’s popularity.
  2. Creating and pushing the popular trend toward owning small Pomeranians.

However, not every Pom is a tiny, fluffy ball of fur…and this is how throwbacks have become part of the Pomeranian breed of dog. While throwbacks are not common, they can pop up as a random member of a litter.

Some of the throwbacks will have flat coats, instead of the fluffy double coat of the dogs bred by preservation breeders.  Throwbacks also often have bigger ears and a nose that’s longer and more like a fox, instead of a short, teddy-bear-style nose. They usually occur in Poms bred by breeders who do not show their dogs.  

Large Breed Pomeranian Temperament

The large Pomeranians usually have the same temperament and behavior and hardly ever vary. A typical Pom already has some behavior that is like a throwback: behaving independently and always being alert to his surroundings.

What Is a Throwback Pomeranian?
What Is a Throwback Pomeranian?

You’ll find that most Poms love traveling and are very adaptable when they’re in new and different situations; a typical behavior demonstrated by the bigger Spitz dogs. The Throwback Pomeranians are just as adorable, sweet and loving as any other Pomeranian.

Health Problems of the Bigger Size Pomeranian

It’s widely believed that the bigger Pomeranian dogs don’t have issues with their health because of their body is bigger than that of normal Poms. Being a bigger dog often proves to be advantageous. Small Poms can easily suffer from injuries after they jump off the bed or couch because the floor is a long distance for them.

A large Pom dog will have a more solid body and often stronger legs which helps protect them from having such injuries. They usually enjoy activities that include jumping from heights, among others. The bigger Poms are a better dog for parents with young children because the dog can endure whatever the child does.

How To Know If a Big Pomeranian is a Purebred?

If you are concerned about your large Pom dog being a purebred or not, ask your vet about doing DNA testing to work out your large Pom dog’s lineage.

Final Thoughts About Throwback Pomeranians

All of this just proves that the love of a Pomeranian breed of dog, regardless of whether he’s a throwback or a normal size and shape, is easy to see because his tail will wag, his face will smile and his eyes will watch you to see what you’re doing. It doesn’t take a lot for a dog to love a person.

Whatever size, shape, demeanor or personality Pomeranians may possess, they have the incredibly magical ability to look deep into your soul and melt your heart so completely that you couldn’t imagine life continuing on without this canine becoming a member of your family.

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References and Further Reading:
[1] Denise Leo “The Pomeranian Handbook”.
[2] Milo G. Denlinger “The Complete Pomeranian”.
[3] Kimbering Pomeranians “1891-1991”.
[4] E. Parker “The Popular Pomeranian”.
[5] Official Standard of the Pomeranian (AKC). American Kennel Club, 2011.
[6] Official English Kennel Club Pomeranian Breed Standard , 2017.

The Pomeranian Handbook

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