When the Titanic sailed on its maiden voyage, there were three breeds of dog that survived that fateful day on April 14th, 1912 when the White Star Liner clashed with an iceberg. Two of these breeds were the Pomeranian and the Pekinese. These small dogs were allowed on the life boats very early in the evening together with their owners while the life boats were still very empty, and no one seemed to object. The third dog was a Newfoundland, owned by the first officer of the Titanic. The dog was found swimming in the icy waters and it assisted a life boat to locate human survivors.
The Pomeranian is a member of the family of dogs known unofficially as the "Spitz Group." This group of dogs was descended from the sled dogs of Iceland and Lapland, and they have a life span of about 15 years.
The Pomeranian was once a much larger dog that weighed about 35 pounds. The name can be traced back to the old province of Pomerania, Germany. However, Pomerania is not the present Pomeranian's point of origin but it is possible that the breed may have undergone the process of downsizing there.
The Pomeranian was not well known until 1870 when the Kennel Club of England recognized the so-called Spitz dog. In 1888, Queen Victoria fell in love with a Pomeranian in Florence, Italy. The dog's name was Marco and she brought him with her when she went back to England. This influenced the dramatic popularity of the Pomeranian. In fact, this dog was buried beside the Queen at her death bed.
Specimens of Pomeranians in the US can be traced as far back as 1892, but they were not officially classified until 1900. Finally in 1911, the first Pomeranian specialty show was held by the American Pomeranian Club.
There are many famous people who love Pomeranians. Some of the famous figures who are or have been Pomeranian owners include Sharon Osbourne, Elvis Presley, Leann Rimes, Fran Drescher, Nicole Richie, Rihanna, Maria Sharapova, Geri Halliwell, P. Diddy, Samantha Mamba, Bill Cosby, Mozart, Paris Hilton, Kate Hudson, Isaac Newton and Michelangelo. Queen Victoria had six Pomeranians which were named Marco, Gona, Sacha, Fluffy, Beppo and Turi.
Pomeranians are used for rescue missions and operations whenever a smaller breed of dog is needed. Their ancestors were used by the Nordic people as sled pulling dogs and reindeer herders. Of course, these early Pomeranians were much larger than our present day Poms.
The larger size Pomeranian that once pulled sleds in Iceland surely worked hard for its masters. Today, our little 6 pound Pomeranians are happy with more professional positions such as therapy dogs for the sick and the elderly.