The Prague Ratter: The Smallest Dog in the World

The Prague Ratter: The Smallest Dog in the World

Last update: 24 June, 2018

We’re not talking about a rodent who roams the capitol of the Czech Republic; we’re talking about a very small, interesting breed of dog. In this article, we’ll tell you about the Prague Ratter, the smallest dog in the world.

A brief history of the Prague Ratter

The origin of this animal dates back to the Middle Ages. In the palaces and the royal castles of the Bohemian region (currently the Czech Republic), it was a very popular breed. The little dog was a guest at all the parties of the aristocracy.

It’s said that the name comes from its main job: catching rats and other rodents around farms. It’s also believed to be a cross between a Pinscher and a Chihuahua. However, some breeders claim that the original breed of the Prague Ratter was the English Toy Terrier.

The king, princes, and other important officials saw it as a status symbol. In fact, Prince Vladislav II gave the Prague Ratter as a gift to the monarchy and nobility in different parts of Europe.

Other members of the court who loved the Prague Ratter were Karel IV of the Czech Republic and Boleslav II of Poland. The dog was certainly very popular in royal homes. It was also a popular dog in the homes of “common” citizens or “commoners”.

The popularity of the Prague Ratter fell with the World Wars. It was even rejected from dog shows for being “too small.” However, for decades this little dog lived on and mysteriously survived. In 1980, and after pressure from fans of the breed, it reemerged after a new crossbreed was made: this time with the Russian Terrier. Today, you can find the breed in any part of the world.

Characteristics of the Prague Ratter

The Prague Ratter 2

The Prague Ratter is considered the smallest dog in the world, in terms of maximum height. Chihuahuas, on the other hand, are measured by weight. It is often confused with the Miniature Pinscher (2 cm taller than the Prague Ratter).

Its coat consists of very short, glossy, black hair. Some have brown fur around the nose, legs, and torso. They have a pear-shaped head, slightly protruding cheeks, and dark brown, somewhat bulging eyes. The body is short, firm, muscular, and straight. The ears are always erect as if they’re attentive and alert.

The average height is 20 to 22 cm and the weight ranges between 1.5 and 3.5 kg. However, the ideal weight is 2.6 kg. The Prague Ratter’s life expectancy is 13 years.

The personality of the Prague Ratter

The personality of this breed is very lively and active. They have a lot of energy, they’re brave, and they’re always willing to play. In addition, the Prague Ratter is very sociable (especially with people) and bonds well with their owners.

The breed is also extremely intelligent. They can learn tricks very quickly, follow orders, and play games. It is essential to take them for a walk every day. It is also necessary to train them responsibly and keep them active.

The Prague Ratter is very obedient, loving, and attached to their family. Therefore, they’re not recommended for places where there is no one home for several hours at a time, because they easily get depressed. As they grow, they develop into a calm, relaxed, and quiet adult, but still social and loving.

Since they’re so small, great care should be taken when playing or walking with them. If there are children at home, they must be careful to avoid stepping on the animal or playing rough with them. In fact, the Prague Ratter is prone to broken bones and dislocated kneecaps due to their fragile build.

The dog’s teeth are another issue and should be examined regularly by a veterinarian because when their teeth start to grow, they sometimes have trouble losing their “baby” teeth.  With regards to other types of care, it’s similar to any other small breed and food should be in proportion to its size.

The contents of My Animals are written for informational purposes. They can't replace the diagnosis, advice, or treatment from a professional. In the case of any doubt, it's best to consult a trusted specialist.