How are teacup dogs so small? Get Your Pet Thinking

How Small is a Teacup Dog?

Unofficially, a teacup dog is a dog that is at least a year old and measures at 17 inches or less. They generally weigh 4 pounds or less at maturity. However, there is no one mandatory size since teacup dogs are not a regulated or official breed.

When Is a Dog Considered “Teacup” Size?

Before we dive into the details, its important to understand the characteristics that actually define a “teacup” dog.

Although theres no single breed of teacup dogs—rather, a number of breeds like Pomeranians, Chihuahuas, and Maltese can be bred as micros—there is a weight range that can qualify a pooch as a teacup. Teacup dogs may way as little as two pounds, and measure fewer than 17 inches when fully grown. Whats more, “toy” breeds include any dogs that weigh less than 15 pounds, so teacup dogs can be considered part of the “toy” classification, too.

How Are “Teacup” Dogs Bred?

Theres a lot of controversy around the breeding techniques breeders use to produce such tiny dogs. Its difficult to hear, but many of these techniques can be extremely detrimental to the dogs health and happiness. Unscrupulous or unethical breeders may use techniques such as:

  • Inbreeding runts with other runts in the hopes of producing an entire litter of smaller-than-average dogs. Inbreeding can increase the risk of inheriting a genetic disorder, like blindness or epilepsy.
  • Stunting the growth of their puppies by malnourishing them, which can result in failure to thrive, as well as serious issues with the skeletal, digestive, and nervous systems.
  • Whats more, an unethical breeder may simply market normal-sized, smaller breeds as “teacup.”

    Its incredibly important to do your research before bringing any dog into your home. Be sure to find an ethical, reputable breeder, or consider adopting from your local animal shelter. Not only are teacup dogs extremely expensive, but adding an unhealthy pet to the family can have serious consequences for your family members, other pets, and the dog.

    Is It Cruel to Breed Teacup Dogs? | This Morning

    If you love small dogs, you may well fall in love with the idea of micro and teacup puppies. Due to their recent boom in popularity for being the perfect ‘purse dogs’, it’s important that prospective owners understand exactly what they are, the difference between micro and teacup puppies, and how they differ from other dogs.

    Let’s explore everything you need to know including the answers to the most frequently asked questions about micro vs teacup puppies.

    Teacup puppies are extremely miniature versions of small and toy dog breeds. Whilst they are not currently a recognized breed, unofficially, they measure 17 inches at most and weigh no more than 5-6 lbs at maturity. Dogs that are typically bred to create Teacup pups include Chihuahuas, Pugs, Poodles, and Shih Tzus. They are typically sweet-natured, energetic, and playful – although they only need around 30 minutes of exercise a day. Teacup dogs were originally, and still can be, the result of two naturally very small dogs breeding. Whilst they may sound cute, the boom in popularity has lead to many breeders resorting to breeding runts of litters, inbreeding, and/or malnourishment in order to breed them as small as possible.

    All of these things can cause serious health issues as well as unhappiness and a short lifespan. Runts are often smaller because of birth defects. This means that the puppies of two runts are also likely to be unhealthy. Inbreeding increases the risk of passing on genetic disorders and malformations occurring. Whilst malnourishment stunts skeletal growth and the development of organ systems within the body. Some breeders also mislead prospective owners. They claim their litter to be Teacup pups and charge extortionate prices when they’re just regular small breeds. There is no way to regulate it as Teacups aren’t an official breed.

    For these reasons, many dog lovers advocate against buying Teacup pups as to not contribute to the fad and encourage bad breeding. That said, with proper breeding and the right owners – these dogs can live for up to 15 years and lead very happy, healthy lives! To avoid heartache and expensive vet bills, always research reputable breeders.

    Micro puppies are even smaller than Teacup dogs, weighing around 2-3 lbs. They are the result of breeding two Teacup puppies together. This can be very hard on the mothers’ tiny bodies and there are often complications. So, again, we must reiterate the importance of buying from ethical breeders. Whilst all dogs are deserving of love, it’s worth noting that owning a Micro dog is a big commitment that requires a lot of caution. For example, because of their size, Micro dogs can become hypoglycemic after missing as little as one meal. This affects a dog’s energy and mood but eventually can cause seizures, unconsciousness, and even death.

    They are also far less likely to survive things like attacks from other dogs, traffic accidents, even falling off of furniture can be deadly because of their tiny bones. Tragically, it is not that uncommon for owners of Micro pups to accidentally kill their beloved pets by dropping or stepping on them at home. For this reason, they’re not well suited to families with small children.

    Those looking to own a Micro pup must Micro-proof their homes and make them as safe as possible. Owners must also be able to commit to providing regular meals throughout the day. Rather than just breakfast and dinner, these dogs should eat little and often, because of their proneness to low blood sugar and digestive issues. To further combat this, look for foods that are high in fiber and contain Karo syrup. Their food also needs to be very small to prevent choking and owners should attend regular vet check-ups.