A day in the life of the world’s shortest dog, Pearl

By Sanj Atwal
split image of Pearl

On Sunday 9 April, the world’s shortest dog living was unveiled on the set of Lo Show Dei Record in Milan, Italy.

Two-year-old female Chihuahua Pearl (USA; b. 1 September 2020) is just 9.14 cm (3.59 in) tall and measures 12.7 cm (5.0 in) from nose to tail, which is the exact same length as the longest tongue on a living dog.

At 553 g (1.22 lb), she weighs less than a basketball.

Pearl is owned by Vanesa Semler, a lawyer and property manager who lives in Orlando, Florida with her partner Edwin.

They own several other dogs, although all the others are “normal” sizes, Vanesa said. Edwin and Vanesa see their dogs as their children, and they treat them accordingly.

And of all the dogs, none receive as much special attention as “prima donna” Pearl.

In fact, the couple employ two dog-sitters dedicated exclusively to Pearl’s needs, of which she has many.

“She has a very busy schedule and a true diva character,” Vanesa said.

Pearl walking in grass

Pearl is a creature of habit, waking up every day at 7 a.m. to go on a short walk. Pearl must be constantly supervised, especially when she’s taken outside.

According to Vanesa, Pearl likes to pick out her own outfit each day.

Pearl’s carers then make her breakfast. She is fed four times per day and is particularly fond of salmon and chicken.

Pearl eating

After eating, Pearl enjoys watching TV or listening to classical music. She is taken out every two to three hours, with Starbucks being one of her favourite spots.

“She likes to bark in front of the various cafes until they give her some cream,” Vanesa said.

“She is very intelligent and knows how to get noticed and get what she wants.”

Pearl lying on her bed

According to Vanesa, when Pearl’s routine is broken and things don’t go according to plan, she begins to complain by barking, “flaunting all her disappointment and annoyance.”

Just like any family, sometimes the siblings fight. And even though Pearl is small, she knows how to stand up for herself. “Pearl hates sharing toys and food,” Vanesa revealed.

Shortest dog standing on chair

Vanesa is no stranger to dealing with diva dogs, as she also owned the previous shortest dog living, Miracle Milly (9.65 cm; 3.8 in). Milly participated in several TV shows before she passed away in 2020, aged nine.

Pearl is the daughter of one of Miracle Milly’s identical sisters, and she is following in her ancestor’s pawsteps by becoming a TV star in her own right. Pearl seemed at home when she appeared in front of the live studio audience on the set of Lo Show Dei Record.

“While Milly was very helpful and lent herself to various filming and stage needs, Pearl is a prima donna in all respects,” Vanesa said.

“She loves people and being the centre of attention.”

Pearl next to her GWR certificate

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