Teacup dogs aren’t just popular pets because of their cute smiles and aesthetically pleasing body frames; their small size means that they can fit in a small space. Moreover, small breed dogs won’t produce as much slobber as larger breeds would, and they’re so light, you can take them anywhere. There are many different Teacup-sized dogs and breeds that are small enough to be considered one, but how do you choose from them?
In this blog post, we discuss the 14 best Teacup dog breeds, and how you can care for such small dogs to ensure they get as much happiness as they give to you.
Caring for the Smallest Dog Breeds
Because these little dogs can be fragile and frail, they will need special care and attention that you wouldn’t normally give other dogs. Here are a few things you can do to prepare ahead of time for your new teacup puppy.
Do Research on Toy Breeds
Every breed will have a different set of characteristics, temperament, needs, and appearance. The best place to get started is the American Kennel Club, where you can find out more about the different toy dogs available to you. Doing a bit of research ahead of time can save you from worrying about different symptoms that your dog may exhibit from time to time.
Teacup-Proof the House
Unfortunately, because toy dog breeds are so small, they’re vulnerable to almost anything. Walking on an uneven surface or swallowing even a tiny amount of a toxic substance may put them in harm’s way. Be sure to rid your yard and home of any dangerous items, such as:
- All food that may be dangerous when consumed by the Teacup variety
- Remove all objects that could possibly fall onto your pup since these could result in serious injury
- Block any holes and small spaces they can get into such as cabinets, dryers, and washers
- Hide all items that may become a choking hard for curious Teacup puppies
- Ensure that all the plants in your garden are safe for your pup
- Block off all paths that can take your puppy to higher areas where it could jump off and hurt itself
Schedule Veterinarian Visits Regularly
It will also help to make regular visits to the vet because Teacup dogs will have a higher risk of developing illness compared to their larger counterparts. Going to a veterinarian will provide your dog with a full physical and they will be able to monitor any changes in their heartbeat, blood pressure, weight, and more. Much like humans, your small dog will also need regular check-ups for their health.
Most of these little guys need a minimum of 30 minutes of activity every day because they are very active. While the best way to do this is to take your Teacup dog to a dog park, it’s best not to let them play with bigger dogs to keep them away from injuries. After a day of play, it’s best to let your puppy sleep at least 12 to 14 hours in order to recharge.
The Best Teacup Dog Breeds
Now that you’re ready for your first tiny dog, here are a few popular Teacup dog breeds that you could take to their new fur-ever home.
1. Teacup Poodle
Also called the Toy Poodle, this miniature version of the Standard Poodle is one of the cutest dogs anywhere in the world and is also one of the rarest. Standing at no more than 15 inches tall as a fully grown adult, these teacup-size dogs look just like their bigger counterparts. These pups are playful, outgoing, affectionate, and interactive dogs that fit right in with families.
2. Teacup Chihuahua
No matter their size, a Chihuahua will always be rambunctious and loud but also attentive and loving towards their humans. This small dog breed is so tiny that it can fit snugly in your hand and weigh just 7 pounds when fully grown. Some will have long hair which may curl up in their tail and ears while others have short hair.
3. Teacup Bichon Frise
At just 12 inches tall, Bichon Frises are hypoallergenic dogs that are also energetic and fun-loving. Featuring big eyes, cute round heads, and a fluffy double coat, these teacup dogs can be hard to resist. When socialized early in their life, they can get along very well with other pets and other dogs.
4. Teacup Shih Tzu
This dog breed was first developed in Tibet and has since become popular all over the world. Also called the “little lion,” Shih Tzus are full of personality, yet good-natured and have a silky coat that will need regular grooming or occasional trimming. Because they’re so loud and adventurous, they can quickly become the life of the party, which is probably why they are one of the most popular breeds today.
5. Teacup Maltese
Maltese dogs are known for their bright eyes and silky hair — weighing under 7 pounds and standing no more than 10 inches as an adult, these micro dogs are practically puppies their entire lives. They also spend a lot of their time as lap dogs who love to kiss and snuggle all family members. The Teacup Maltese can be good friends with cats and dogs, and will also get along with older children.
6. Teacup Yorkshire Terrier
Typically trimmed to maintain their long hair, the Teacup Yorkie can actually produce beautiful, silky hair that can easily reach the ground. However, these dogs are known for their playful and rambunctious nature and can cause trouble every now and then. They also love spending time with their families but can become too bossy when playing with young children.
7. Teacup Pomeranian
These tiny pups have huge personalities and loud voices, which is why they tend to get yappy. Even so, they are soft and cuddly, as well as patient and smart, making them easy to train and highly popular. Because they’re independent and can think outside the box, they can be great watchdogs for small apartments and bigger homes.
8. Teacup Beagle
As the Teacup version of the Beagle, this pooch still has the hunting instincts that make them chase after small furry animals. While they can be hard to train sometimes, they’re still one of the most popular Teacup breeds as a result of their cute looks and positive personality. Be sure to provide them with plenty of attention because they may become destructive when left alone for too long.
9. Teacup Japanese Chin
The Teacup Japanese Chin is a sensitive and shy breed at first but can quickly become bonded to their humans. While they may snore while asleep, these lap dogs will rarely bark when they’re awake. With a short snout, cute ears, and a broad head, this small pup is an ideal pet for first-time dog owners.
10. Teacup Boston Terrier
These cute little dogs have a scrunchy and flat faces along with a soft, short coat that’s soft to the touch. While the regular Boston Terrier comes in at 20 pounds once fully grown, this version is just half of that. These small dogs have earned the nickname “American Gentlemen” since they’re so good and well-behaved inside a house.
11. Teacup Pug
Popular throughout the United States and Europe, these are smaller dogs with stubby legs, wrinkled faces, and tails that curl upwards. Because they have short snouts, the Teacup Pug can be susceptible to health issues linked to overeating. Even so, they are affectionate, loyal, smart, and snuggly dogs that have a low-shedding coat, which makes them easy to care for.
12. Teacup Brussels Griffon
The Teacup Brussels Griffon loves to play and run all day long and is always ready for a game of fetch or tug-of-war. They weigh around 10 pounds and won’t get any taller than 10 inches when they reach adulthood. These little dogs have alert eyes, a smooth and curly coat at times, and a heart that always wants to be close to their favorite human and their family.
13. Teacup Bedlington Terriers
The Bedlington Terrier looks like it’s wearing sheep’s clothing and is known for its grace and energy. They are alert watchdogs, cuddly companions, and fun housemates, which is why they’re often the center of attention. While they’re not as small as the rest of the dogs in this list, they are still quite small and will be more energetic and lively which makes them perfect for active families.
14. Teacup Morkie
This toy-sized dog is very affectionate — it loves to snuggle and play with its favorite humans and has the energy and confidence of a Siberian Husky. Because they are overprotective of their family, Teacup Morkies tend to bark, making it difficult for new people to enter the household. But giving them socialization and exercise in their early years should lead to a well-behaved and carefree dog that will be adored by everyone.
Teacup Dog Breed FAQs
While it sounds like a good idea to dive right in and get a Teacup dog right away, make sure that you know all you need to know about these miniature canines.
Which is the Best Teacup Dog?
There’s no right answer to this question because the best dogs for you will depend on several factors. These include your preferences, the amount of time and attention you can give them, your lifestyle, and where you live. The Teacup dogs mentioned above are just a few of the most popular choices available, but any dog that can tick all your boxes will be a good match for you.
What is the Smallest Teacup Dog?
The smallest breed of dog is the Teacup Chihuahua, which generally stands at less than 6 inches tall and weighs just 4 pounds. According to the AKC, it is also among the true Teacup breeds, along with the Teacup Maltese, Teacup Yorkie, Teacup Poodle, Teacup Shih Tzu, and Pomeranian Teacup dogs.
How Long Do They Live?
When given proper care, monitoring, and attention, Teacup pups can live up to 15 years old. However, they will first need to avoid the many serious health problems associated with many small dogs as a result of their genes.
How Much Does a Teacup Dog Cost?
Unfortunately, because of their rising popularity, Teacup dogs can be expensive and will cost upwards of a thousand dollars. If you choose to buy one of these pups, be sure to look for a reputable breeder, or you may look for one in shelters. Once you’ve done your research and are confident in the breeder of your choice, then be sure that you’re also happy with the Teacup you wish to purchase.
How are Teacup Dogs Bred?
If you’re wondering how teacup dogs get their small stature, the answer lies in breeding the runt of a litter, which means the smallest puppies. These runts are smaller compared to their siblings because they will usually have some form of birth defect, are malnourished, or suffer from a different medical condition. Breeders will often pair all the runts in a litter of toy breed dogs to produce versions that are smaller than a regular dog.
Unscrupulous breeders are the reason why these dogs are so small and will use these techniques over and over to get the desired results. However, it’s not just the small size that they inherit — according to research, purebred dogs have a higher risk of carrying illnesses. This is the main reason why you need to find responsible breeders that implement ethical practices.
Does this Mean Teacup Dogs are Bad?
No, they aren’t “bad” but they do tend to be smaller than what is considered to be normal and will be prone to different health issues compared to big dogs. This is especially true for Teacup breeds that have been bred from a sick parent or a runt. Some common problems include respiratory problems, fragile bones, hypoglycemia, liver shunts, heart issues, and more.
Choose Your Teacup Breed Wisely
While there are plenty of considerations to be made before you choose the newest member of your family, remember that this breed will have specific care requirements. No matter what you choose, know that they will all need attention and time from you and your family, so make sure that you’re ready for such a commitment.