Top 11 Small Brown Dog Breeds (With Photos) Fluffy Athletic

Nothing is more adorable than watching your fluffy, brown dog zooming across the lawn. However, it can be challenging for some potential dog owners to find the right dog breed for them and their families. Thankfully, there are dozens of dog breeds to browse.

Although it may take time, you can find plenty of dog breeds that can make a perfect addition to your home. 

small brown dog breeds
Top 11 Small Brown Dog Breeds Fluffy Athletic

Whether you are looking for a toy dog breed or a dog breed that will fit comfortably on your lap, these 11 small brown dog breeds will offer you plenty of love and affection. Not only are all these dog breeds loving, but they are perfect candidates for outdoor adventures, hikes, and water sports.

Some of these small brown dog breeds may also have a desire to hunt and can be ideal for keeping pesky lizards and critters from breaking your furniture or causing chaos within your home.


Dachshunds can come in many stunning colors, but they most often come in brown shades. These dogs are often fluffy, and because they are small, they frequently chase lizards, ants, and other tiny pests. Dachshunds are excellent hunters and often dig holes in the backyard to lure out their prey.

Long-Haired Dachshund sitting
A Long-Haired Dachshund sits comfortably.

These dogs may be vicious to other little pests, but they are curious dogs who are lovable and friendly. Dachshunds adore making friends and are so small that they don’t pose a threat to any other dogs they cross paths with. Dachshunds grow no taller than 9 inches and weigh no more than 32 pounds, making them perfect for adventures, travel, and outdoor activities.


Chihuahuas are spunky dogs who have a penchant for mischief when they aren’t getting the attention they require. These charming dogs are also graceful and sassy. Having a small frame means that Chihuahuas have no problem using their voice to make others aware of their presence and are experts at avoiding feet.

Brown Chihuahua
Brown Chihuahua standing in front of a pink wall.

Chihuahuas are toy dogs and grow no taller than 8 inches. These dogs usually weigh no more than 6 pounds, but this small size doesn’t stop them from zooming around the house. These dogs thrive on love and playtime, but you must stay out of their way because they don’t mind slamming right into your ankles.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel

A Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is characterized by many colors but usually has golden and deep brown tones. This dog breed will also have patches of white in stripe-like shapes around its body. This dog breed is affectionate, gentle, and loving but remains utterly graceful.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniel tongue out
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel sitting in front of a camera while tongue is out.

Cavalier King Charles Spaniels prefer gentle playtime and will not roughhouse, even with small children.

This dog breed is in the toy group. This dog breed grows no taller than 13 inches and weighs no more than 18 pounds. Because of its small size, a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel is a perfect companion for families who are frequent travelers and road trippers.


Basenjis are independent dogs who will thrive in an environment where they are tasked with watching out for danger instead of playing with others. Basenjis will have moments where they enjoy playtime, but this is infrequent. Basenjis will be happy to monitor their surroundings and ensure that everything is safe for their family and home.

curly tailed basenji
There is no mistaking a curly tailed Basenji

Basenjis are famous for their quietness. Often dubbed the African Barkless Dog, Basenjis find it uncomfortable to bark due to their short larynx. Instead, Basenjis will howl, scream, and yodel when they need something.

However, Basenjis are low-maintenance dogs and don’t often need anything. Typically, Basenjis are happy to roam as they please and curl up for quiet time often.

This dog breed is small and usually grows to 16 inches and weighs no more than 24 pounds. This dog is ideal for travelers and those who adore time outdoors.

Australian Terrier

Australian Terriers are courageous dogs who love affection and can use their vast amount of energy at any time. This dog breed is very small and usually only grows about 11 inches tall and weighs no more than 20 pounds. Australian Terriers have a stunning golden brown and dark brown coat that mingles colors to create a vibrant display of hair.

Australian Terrier with a leash
Australian Terrier with a leash and harness.

This dog breed thrives in a home with small children to play with and will gladly give your children companionship and cuddles.

Basset Hound

Basset Hounds are charming dogs who have angelic-like patience, especially with children and other dogs. These dogs will gladly sit through nearly anything, including dress-up and playtime. Basset Hounds are doting dogs who enjoy training but will need plenty of breaks.

Basset Hound fluffy ears
Cute Basset Hound sits with fluffy ears.

Basset Hounds usually grow no taller than 15 inches and weigh nearly 40 pounds, making them short and dense. These small dogs usually have a coat of short brown hair that has patches of white on the chest and underbelly. This dog breed prefers calmer environments and will need plenty of alone time.

Shih Tzu

Shih Tzus are playful dogs who love children and will have you making friends with anyone in no time. This dog breed is a toy dog that grows no taller than 10 inches and will weigh no more than 16 pounds. Shih Tzus can come in many different colors, but they famously have a dark brown tinge to their coat.

This dog breed has a stunning coat of hair that can be grown out and manicured however its owner desires.


Pomeranians are curious dogs who thrive on being bold and lively. This dog breed will have no issue alerting you to its presence, likely because of its small size. Pomeranians are only about 7 inches tall and weigh no more than 7 pounds, meaning they must alert others to their presence often so that they don’t get hurt by those who don’t know they’re there.

Pomeranians are loving dogs who will gladly spend all their time in your lap if you let them. These dogs have a stunning golden brown coat that mingles with just a splash of white.

Chow Chow

Chow Chows are stunning dogs with fluffy hair. This dignified dog is highly intelligent and serious. Chow Chows aren’t big fans of playtime and prefer a home without small children or rambunctious dogs to manage. Instead, a Chow Chow will gladly reside in a home with two calm owners who enjoy outdoor time just as much as they enjoy cuddling on the couch.

a chow chow with a curly tail
A Chow Chow with a curly tail. What a beautiful dog!

Chow Chows can sometimes be aggressive with other animals and children who aren’t familiar with boundaries. Consider adopting a Chow Chow if you have no other pets or children in the home.

They can sometimes grow as tall as 20 inches, but they stay rather lean, making them ideal for cuddling. Chow Chows are famous for their luxurious coats of hair that range from deep brown to golden tan.

Shiba Inu

Shiba Inus are active dogs who are constantly alert and attentive to everything going on around them. These dogs are a golden brown color that makes their coat a stunning shade. Usually, Shiba Inus have white on their chest, face, and underbelly.

curly tailed shiba inu at the beach
A curly tailed Shiba Inu having the time of its life at the beach

This dog breed is very independent but gets easily attached to someone in the home. Shiba Inus are intensely loyal and will gladly follow their favorite person around all day, every day. Shiba Inus usually grow no taller than 16 inches and weigh no more than 23 pounds.

However, some Shiba Inus only weigh around 17 pounds, meaning this dog breed is usually on the small side.


Maltese are playful dogs who have no problem getting a little vocal to alert others of their presence. This dog is notoriously gentle, but they are so small they can easily be forgotten or mistaken for pillows.

brown Maltese sits on the road
A brown Maltese sits on the road.

Maltese grow no taller than 9 inches and weigh no more than 7 pounds, making them perfect travel partners for overseas excursions and road trips. Maltese are deeply affectionate and will gladly spend all day in the lap of their owners or playing with children.

However, this dog’s size means that small children must be supervised when playing with Maltese. This supervision will prevent anyone from getting hurt and ensure everyone is safe.

Final Thoughts

These 11 small brown dog breeds can make a perfect addition to any home and family. Not only are these dogs loving, but many of them are low-maintenance and don’t require much work to keep them comfortable and happy. For example, Basenjis are stunning brown dogs who need plenty of exercise, but they remain calm and gentle even during play.

These dogs are also very quiet and stay to themselves most of the time.

Other dogs are ideal for keeping your home free of other critters and harmful pests that may break your things or cause general chaos. Dachshunds, for example, are hunters who thrive on chasing down stray lizards, squirrels, and other pests.

Choosing the right small brown dog breed for you and your family may be challenging, but these dog breeds can offer you all the love, activity, and adventure your family needs.