What Is Small Dog Syndrome And How To Fix It

By Alberto Roy

Updated on:

Do you Understand Miniature dogs That Are yappy, abrasive, prima donnas? Called “Small Dog Syndrome,” this can be a learned behaviour. Learn what things to be on the watch for, and the way to stop your small dog from turning into a very small terror.

How the Doggy Napoleon Complex Makes Little Dogs a Big Challenge


Little dogs tend to be stigmatized as being yappy, hard, Bothersome puppies, and while a lot of small dogs do display those kinds of behaviours, it isn’t due to their breed or size, but instead, a learned set of behaviours.

This can be called “Little Dog Infection.” Due to their size, small dogs tend to be permitted to display dominant behaviour , because they are not as imposing as bigger dogs.

Small Dog Syndrome

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The Fact of the matter is, however, a little Dog does not observe any difference between a larger dog, therefore although we view their own efforts at becoming dominant as adorable, by enabling this kind of behaviour to go ashore, we’re tacitly agreeing to the assertion of the dominance.

A Simple way to Consider how this functions is “could a larger dog be permitted to do this?” Otherwise, than it’s most likely a problem behaviour.

If you’re terrified your small pet could possibly be led down the path to Small Dog Syndrome, then here are a couple of things to be on the lookout for, and easy techniques to break up these problem behaviours.


If a very Small dog jumps up in your leg, then It’s often seen as an Adorable show of affection. It is not — a puppy leaping up is the manner of saying “I have you,” that is not any good. While it can look adorable, if you’d like your puppy to become well corrected, leaping can’t be permitted .

Same thing is for scaling up in your lap. In case they can just waltz into your lap each time they desire, they believe they are in charge.

You want to make it understood that it’s you letting them be in your lap, and otherwise they will begin to believe they’re the alpha and begin to show more prominent behaviours.


In case your Doberman growled in your guest, then Odds Are you would Reprimand them since growling isn’t proper behaviour. But, normally when a French Bulldog growls, that the guest is only told to prevent the puppy and it’s chalked up to dimmed dog behaviour.

There’s not any way that type of mindset would fly using a larger dog. If your little dog growls in a guest, then you ought to make it very clear they are not behaving nicely, as you would using a bigger dog.


A big part of training any dog to act is ensuring they’re Secure in the leash, particularly for larger dogs that may otherwise bowl folks over.

But simply because your Dachshund can not knock over you, does not mean that they ought to be permitted to pull on the direct wherever they need. Again, this reveals a kind of dominance that is only likely to strengthen in the thought they are in control.

They ought never to be permitted to pull on the leash. When on walks, then you ought to be facing leading the way, together with your puppy together or marginally behind you.

Educating the heel control is a excellent method to make sure that walks are a fun experience, rather than a competition.


Small dogs that see themselves as the chief of the Home frequently Become yappy, and that’s basically their way of attempting to offer commands.

A few of those dogs are considered to suffer from separation anxiety, and it can be a dominance problem all of its own, since the chief isn’t to be left alone.

A little dog with separation anxiety generally believes they’re the alpha and is very mad about being abandoned with their “followers” Should you make it crystal clear they are not the dominant force from the home, the incessant yapping must calm down.

The “talk” and”silent” controls really are a terrific means to regain control over the pet’s vocalizations, which may also cause an alteration in character.

Small Dog Syndrome Fix – WHAT YOU CAN DO?

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If you notice that your pet displaying them, or other notable form Behaviours, the most appropriate plan of action would be to reveal that you’re in control. Consult with a dog behaviorist or a dog trainer to get assistance.

Keep in Mind, submissive behaviour should Never be mistaken with despair. Your puppy will probably begin to carry themselves otherwise (ears back( head ), but this is as they’re no more hard you for direction. It’s a great thing.

Small Dog Syndrome

· Small Dog Syndrome is the title given to a selection of behaviors displayed by little dogs, behaviors having the effect of beating any shortages due to being small in height. Normal behaviors displayed comprise:

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Excitable behavior

· Jumping on owners, other dogs or people

· Growling in people or other dogs

· Lunging or ripping at perceived dangers

· Avoidance or dread of bigger dogs, normally hiding behind or Attempting to be picked up by proprietor

· Reluctance to go off beds and sofas

· Attempting to obey controls

· This doesn’t indicate that each little dog will exhibit these behaviors, or each one of these behaviors is due to little dog syndrome. Together, however, these behaviors make life with little dogs challenging for owners and also for others and creatures around them.

If your little dogs is fearful or Even competitive towards bigger puppies, this might be because they’re fearful. Therefore we view exactly the lunging, barking or swiping larger dogs.

This behavior provides the belief that little dogs perceive themselves to become larger than they really are.

Additionally, there are ways of enhancing that behaviour. Shifting dog behavior generally involves altering owner behavior also and, in actuality, this syndrome might have to do with all the proprietor’s behavior than their puppies!

Knowing dog behavior, and how people influence it, would be your very first step in enhancing little puppy syndrome.

How People Affect Dog Behavior

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There’s no doubt That Lots of Tiny dogs Get off with behaviors that owners of big dogs wouldn’t allow. Jumping us up, as an example. A huge dog are more inclined to knock us more than a little dog may frequently be invited by owners.

Inadvertently, owners frequently benefit the very behaviors we dislike. If your little puppy runs for you and ought to be picked up whenever they experience a massive dog and you also oblige, you’ve reinforced this behavior and your puppy will continue to respond this way every time they experience a massive dog.

Little dog owners are not as inclined to train their pet compared to owners of bigger dogs. Trained dogs are more inclined to obey orders; hence, this might be why that smaller puppies seem so disobedient. It’s because they’ve not been educated.

Enhancing Little Dog Syndrome

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Negative behaviors in Tiny dogs, Like excitability and inadequate angling, are regarded as directly linked to proprietor behavior. These suggestions may boost their behavior

Be consistent in relation to interactions. Establish the boundaries and rules and make sure all household members adhere to them.

Engage frequently in drama sessions with Your puppy and permit your puppy to play with other people in an proper fashion, particularly those of their size.

Should they dislike bigger puppies, introduce Them to people you know are gentle and friendly.

You’ll have to gradually introduce your puppy to other dogs also do not let them openly socialize, because this might come in demanding play or competitive behavior.

Introduce them at a neutral place like the neighborhood dog park, then walk past one another in a distance and gradually get nearer, ask your puppy to sit so often, this strengthens your pet’s good behavior and keeps you in charge of this circumstance.

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Do some training with your puppy Including attending faculty courses. Request controls to be obeyed, such as a ‘sit’ before feeding on them. The very best method to prepare your puppy and keep their attention during those sessions would be to benefit with praise and treats.

If You’re worried about some of your Dog’s behavior, we then suggest talking with a skilled animal behaviourist.

Welcome to This Napoleon Complex of little puppies, the nightmare situation for any little pet owner. It’s easy to believe you could stay away from establishing you are the alpha due to physical dominance. But little dog syndrome is still a struggle of psychological dominance.

What is Small Dog Syndrome?

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Do not worry little dog syndrome is a Frequent behaviour in little dogs. Little dog syndrome creates smalls dogs capable of emotionally controlling larger animals.

This syndrome frequently makes your pet more competitive to control physically bigger creatures.

This is an issue because when You’re not viewed as the Alpha your puppy will determine what they need and if they desire it. Your orders will probably fall upon deaf ears along with your little puppy will probably be out of hands.

Why Is This Happening?

There are many causes of little dog syndrome along with many of Them are because of fear. Stress is likely to make dogs competitive since they do not understand how to take care of situations.

What do you do this builds up anxiety and little puppy syndrome? Below are a few specific ways you could possibly be causing little dog syndrome.

Carrying Your furry friend

They’re little like a kid, but they should not always be Treated like you. If you choose a stroll, carrying out your puppy protects them from resolving scenarios by themselves.

Afterward, your little dog will acquire competitive by default only because they fear that the unknown.

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Your Dog Will Be Your Leader (Alpha)

Do not worry, this may be fixed. This has occurred because Your puppy has required some thing and you listened. This seems strange but bare with me.

If your dog barks at you for some thing and you do exactly what They state your puppy is taught to bark and you’ll submit.

Your dog thinks they’re the alpha. They replicate poor action Since they believe that’s how your connection works.

Your Dog Can Be Compensating For Actual Size

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Size Is Something Which you Can’t control, your pet is Obviously likely to be little if they’re a little breed. As they’re smaller compared to most other creatures and people, little dogs feel that they must act hard to endure.

Humans possess an identical syndrome Named Napoleon Sophisticated, or Little Man Syndrome. Which originates in the famed French leader Napoleon. A brief, but competitive and dominant pioneer in a number of battles.

How Can I Know Dog Has Small Dog Syndrome?

If your pet has little dog syndrome that they have several Behavior issues for this. A few of those issues include excess barking, growling, disobeying controls, etc..

Normally, You may know that your dog has got this syndrome since Of alpha behaviour. Should you truly feel just like you can not restrain your little puppy as a grownup and you truly feel like the beta, then that’s a significant sign.

If your little dog has these behaviours It’s very Potential they might have little puppy syndrome. A fantastic method to verify this would be to speak to a skilled and obtain their identification and guidance.

Small Dog Syndrome Fix – How Can I Fix It? 

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Enough gloom and despair, Though your dog has been educated This behaviour it could be solved. Now, it’s time to go one via every trigger and assign it a alternative .

No Longer penalizing On Walks

Set your puppy on the floor and do not pick them up. Publish a Leash for your pet’s collar and allow your puppy learn to address every situation independently. This may dissolve your pet’s anxieties with time and instruct them assurance.

The your puppy anxieties, the your puppy will induce Dominance from fear of unfamiliar scenarios.

Establish Dominance And Direction

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This is done by dismissing your pet’s competitive needs and Teaching them how to behave correctly.

This is done by repairing the Undesirable behaviors your pet has learned. Like biting at you to find meals, barking at one to have picked up on walks, even biting you for care, etc.,.

This DOES NOT mean dismissing your pet’s needs. This means becoming more proactive and educating your puppy better behaviours.

By Way of Example, your puppy should not have to inform you if they Need water or food. You ought to have a daily regimen according to your dog’s necessary daily food and water consumption. Create a schedule and adhere with it, and your puppy won’t need to bark.

If a dog is barking to Receive your attention, prevent this by Blowing them when they’re barking . This teaches your pet they can not require your attention any time they desire it.

If You Would like to prevent your pet requiring attention, provide them Some until they request it. Put aside at least 15 minutes daily to play with your pet and they’ll be fulfilled.

Plenty Of Positive Reinforcement

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You should use this along with other approaches to benefit your dog For doing exactly what you request. If you do it this way your pet will acquire a positive connection with the right behaviours.

They may also Learn How to carry your orders and Provide you the Leadership role. Since they’re getting something that they need in exchange for listening to you.

Favorable Reinforcement is worthwhile your pet whenever they do something appropriate. By way of instance, as soon as your pet is walking by a different dog and they do not become competitive, give them a cure.

Wrap Up : 

That is all there’s to it! Never give up on your puppy they Are very intelligent animals and will learn new behaviours if you place at the moment.

Small Dog Syndrome is more common than you believe, you are not alone. The puppy community is filled with men and women that will willingly provide information, just ask.

But Keep in Mind, If You Would like to Fix little dog syndrome, then attempt These measures. Stop carrying out your puppy, begin establishing direction, and Reinforce decent behaviour.

"Passionate dog trainer with years of experience. Transforming pups into well-behaved companions through positive reinforcement and love. 🐾🐶"