Written by Vet Tech

Teacup Dogs What You Need to Know

Amber LaRock
Written by: Amber LaRock, Vet Tech
Yes, teacup dogs are cute, but are they perfect pets? And how healthy are they? Discover this and much more in this ultimate guide on teacup dogs.

Teacup breeds have taken the dog world by storm with their adorable features and tiny frame. Since they made their big debut in the early 2000s with celebrity exposure, it seems like everyone wants the companionship of a teacup dog!

In this article, we’ll discuss the details of what makes a breed fit the teacup criteria, and mention the most well-known teacup breeds in the dog world currently.

What Is A Teacup Breed?

A teacup or toy dog is a breed that has been bred to be a smaller version of their standard size.

This is done by breeding the smallest puppies of the litter until the breeder has achieved the ideal teacup size. With teacup and toy breeds usually being under 7 pounds, these dogs are incredibly tiny.

The breeding process for a teacup breed should be handled with care, as it’s important to make sure the breeder is not passing on any undesirable traits.

Since teacup dogs are created by combining the smallest dogs of a litter, it’s possible to pass along health conditions if their small size is related to any defects or medical conditions.

An ideal breeder will have each dog medically cleared before breeding and aims to ensure that their small size is never detrimental to their health.

Teacup Yorkie

One of the most popular pups in the teacup category is the Teacup Yorkie. This pocket-sized version of the Yorkshire Terrier is spunky, energetic, and quite sassy. This small breed is known for having a lot to say, and a ball of energy to express it.

The Teacup Yorkie is incredibly small. With weighing in at around 3 to 5 pounds as an adult, you will definitely need to practice caution when bringing a teacup Yorkie into your home.

Though they may be small, it’s as if they have no idea. This breed is known for their bravery and willingness to rumble with any other canine friends, no matter how large.

Though this breed is adorable, it does come with a list of health problems. Since this breed is in such high demand, overbreeding has led to the passing down of undesirable health traits.

Some of the most common yet serious medical conditions that these small pups face are liver complications, heart problems, and severe hypoglycemia if not fed multiple times a day due to not being able to store as much food as a larger dog.

While they may come with a special set of requirements, they would still make a wonderful addition to a prepared home!

Teacup Maltese

The Maltese breed links back to ancient Malta where they were considered the breed of royalty. They were known for resting in the laps of kings and queens, and have been treasured ever since. With their snow-white fur and small features, it’s no wonder they have gained so much popularity.

This breed is known for being a ball of energy, as they will play all day if they had their way. They’re often referred to as the perpetual puppy for their puppy behavior that lasts through life.

While this trait may sound ideal for children and young pet owners, please exercise caution with children due to their small size of 5-8 pounds.

Like many other teacup breeds, there are a few health conditions you should be aware of. Due to their small size, they can experience hypoglycemia, liver complications, heart problems, and seizures.

As long as you are prepared to provide your Teacup Maltese with the love and care they require, they can be a wonderful companion.

Toy Chiweenie

If you wanted the perfect combination of sass, you’ve got it with the toy Chiweenie. With the sass of the dachshund and the sheer bravery of the chihuahua, this toy breed is quite mighty despite their size.

Though they may have a bit of an attitude, they are incredibly loyal to their favorite people. If a Chiweenie has chosen you, then get ready for the cuddles that are coming your way.

With an average size of anywhere from 5-10 pounds and their long frame, this breed has been stealing hearts since they made their debut in the dog world. Though their adorable stature is one for the books, you should be aware of the possible health complications that come along with the body shape of this nature.

Chiweenies are prone to spinal complications, joint problems, and dental problems as they age. Just be prepared to keep an eye out for these complications with your veterinarian’s assistance, and you can enjoy this wonderful breed’s presence in your life.

Teacup Poodle

There are many adorable variations to the standard poodle these days. You have the original standard poodle, the mini poodle, and now the teacup poodle.

With the same curly cuteness squeezed into a compact size, the teacup poodle has made its way into homes around the world.

Due to this breed’s sweet nature, they are the most popular toy option for families with children in their homes. Though you should still exercise caution due to their small size, this breed does quite well with children.

With weighing anywhere from 5 to 8 pounds as adults, you will have the perfect lap dog when you adopt a teacup poodle.

Since the teacup poodle is so small, the same health conditions apply to this breed as the other common teacup breed complications. Make sure to monitor for dental problems, heart conditions, liver disorders or hypoglycemia. With the help of your vet, you can be prepared for any of these complications if they come your way.

Teacup Chihuahua

The teacup Chihuahua is likely the most popular of all teacup breeds as they have been featured in the spotlight for quite some time.

With being carried around in the arms of celebrities since the early 2000s, they are in high demand. Their popularity is not only due to their incredibly small size, but also their feisty attitude!

This breed has absolutely no idea how small they are. Though they only weigh up to 6 pounds as adults, they have no problem standing up to a challenge.

This breed is known to yip and come after dogs six times their size, so expect a huge ball of attitude if you choose to welcome a teacup chihuahua into your life.

Though they may think they are tough, their bodies are actually quite fragile. With such a tiny frame they are at risk of injury and several health conditions linked to small size.

Some common health conditions this breed faces are broken limbs, seizures, hypoglycemia, liver complications, heart problems, and dental disease. Though some of these conditions are daunting, a teacup chihuahua can be an irreplaceable companion as long as you are aware of what to look for.

Due to their small size and limited desire for physical activity, this breed does well in an adult home or elderly home. Though they may require extra medical attention at some point, this breed is generally low maintenance in day to day life.

Teacup Pomeranian

With their puffy fur and tiny features, the Teacup Pomeranian is quite possibly the most adorable breed on this list. When you lay eyes on a Teacup Pomeranian, it’s like looking at a small, fluffy toy. They are so cute they don’t even look real.

With weighing anywhere from 3 to 7 pounds as adults, this breed can be incredibly small.

With becoming so attached to their owners, this tiny pup is the perfect lap dog for any home. Though this breed can be feisty at times, they are known for their sweet nature and love of cuddling.

Though the Teacup Pomeranian loves to spend their time laying beside their favorite humans, they are also ready to play at any point. With a generally high energy level, be ready to set aside at least 15-20 minutes of playtime each day.

With being so small, they are again at risk for health conditions linked to small size. Teacup Pomeranian can experience dental problems, hypoglycemia, seizures, liver disorders, and heart problems. Just make sure to monitor this breed closely as they age, and you can have a healthy and happy companion.


It’s no wonder these breeds have stolen the hearts of dog lovers everywhere with their adorable features and lovable personalities.

If you choose to welcome any of the Teacup breeds into your home, there’s no doubt that you will be gaining a spunky companion that you will never forget!

Make sure to be fully prepared for any of their possible health complications, and you are ready for an adorable addition to your family!