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The Most Popular Teacup Dog Breeds
Does it get much cuter than a fluffy puppy? Well, what if that fluffy puppy was small enough to fit in your purse—or even your shirt pocket?
Teacup dogs, or dogs that are smaller than the standard breed size, have become increasingly popular over the last several years. And the reason they've become so popular is no surprise—from their tiny ears, to their tiny tails and toes, they're pretty dang adorable!
Whether you already have a teacup dog or are considering adding one to the family, read on to learn more about the most popular teacup breeds, so you can choose the right pooch for your family.Continue to 2 of 12 below.
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What Does "Teacup" Mean, Exactly?
Before we get into the cute pictures, let's cover what actually qualifies a doggy as teacup.
There's no single teacup breed, and the American Kennel Club doesn't officially recognize "teacup" as a breed denominator. Rather, many different breeds, including Yorkshire Terriers, Pomeranians, and Beagles can be considered "teacup" if they weigh between two and five pounds and measure fewer than 17 inches in length when fully grown. What's more, "toy" breeds include any pooches weighing less than 15 pounds, so teacups can be considered toy dogs, as well.
It's important to mention: There's a lot of controversy around teacups—especially the breeding techniques used to produce such tiny pups and how these breeding techniques can affect their health. Because teacups are so itty-bitty, they can sometimes experience a host of health issues, including problems with their skeletal and immune systems. What's more, unscrupulous breeders often breed runts of litters to produce tiny—but unhealthy—dogs.
If you're considering adding a teacup to the family, be sure to do your research and work with a reputable, ethical breeder. Doing a little bit of research can be the difference between a healthy, happy dog and an unhealthy dog.Continue to 3 of 12 below.
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Although today's tiny Pomeranians have a reputation as lap dogs or purse dogs, they were originally bred to herd animals and pull sleds across snowy terrain. Believe it or not, these early Pomeranians weighed around 30 pounds—nearly 10 times more than today's teacup Poms, which typically weigh between three and four pounds.
It's believed that sometime during the 19th century Pomeranians were bred to a smaller size, so they could be kept as companion dogs, rather than working dogs. Since then, they've only gotten smaller and smaller.Continue to 4 of 12 below.
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Known for their intelligence, energy, and sweet personalities, teacup Poodles make amazing family dogs. And what better family mascot than a downright adorable, pocket-sized pup?
Teacup poodles usually weigh between two and four pounds, and measure eight inches or shorter when fully grown, while their standard-sized counterparts typically weigh between 45 and 70 pounds. The best part of a Poodle pup, though? Their nearly hypoallergenic coats. Because their coats are tightly curled, they shed way less than other dogs—which is great news for your allergies and your vacuum cleaner.Continue to 5 of 12 below.
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What they lack in size, teacup Beagles—otherwise known as pocket Beagles—definitely make up for in smarts. Just like their standard-sized companions, teacup Beagles are incredibly intelligent and easy to train, as long as the puppy parent is willing to put in the work.
Teacup Beagles aren't just smart, either—they're basically tiny rebels, too. Because teacup Beagles generally weigh 15 pounds or less, they don't totally adhere to the "teacup guidelines" of three to four pounds, but we say they're still pretty dang cute, right?Continue to 6 of 12 below.
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Believe it or not, these tiny dogs have a major history. Not only are Maltese dogs considered one of the world's oldest breeds—originating almost 3,000 years ago—but they were often considered royalty back in the day, too. They've been spotted in artwork from ancient Greece and Egypt, as well as paintings and poetry throughout history.
A standard Maltese usually weighs between four and seven pounds, so the teacup varieties are teeny-tiny—and generally weigh between two and four pounds fully grown. Because of their small size and low energy levels, teacup Malteses are considered the perfect pooch for apartment dwellers and pet parents looking for a cuddle buddy.Continue to 7 of 12 below.
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What's a Pomsky, you ask? These fluffy pups are the absolutely adorable result of breeding a Siberian Husky with a Pomeranian.
Like teacup Beagles, Pomskies tend to weigh more than other teacup varieties, reaching 20 to 30 pounds when fully grown. That's a stark contrast from a full-sized Husky, however, which tends to clock in between 40 and 60 pounds. Both teacup and standard varieties are super high energy, so if you're adding one to the family. be prepared for lots of walks and exercise.Continue to 8 of 12 below.
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Teacup Yorkshire Terriers
It's no secret that Yorkshire Terriers, otherwise known as Yorkies, are super popular doggos—they snagged a spot in the AKC's top 10 dog breeds for the last five years!
So, it should come as no surprise that Yorkies are one of the most popular teacup types, too. Their Chewbacca-esque faces and small statures (teacup Yorkies weigh two to three pounds) make them downright adorable, while their Napoleonic personalities keep things, um, exciting.Continue to 9 of 12 below.
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Teacup Bichon Frises
Did you know Bichon Frise roughly translates to "curly lapdog" in French? Teacup Bichon Frises definitely live up to their name—they're curly (duh) and were basically bred to be companion lapdogs!
Because standard Bichon Frises are considered a very small breed, "teacup" refers to the smallest Bichon Frise of its litter. Accordingly, a teacup Bichon Frise breeder cannot guarantee the full-grown size of his or her "teacup" pups.Continue to 10 of 12 below.
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Between starring in fast food commercials and being toted around in celebrities' purses, teacup Chihuahuas have definitely had their share of fame. But it's not all glamour for these pocket-sized doggies—Chihuahuas are incredibly intelligent and easy to train, too. Their brain-to-body-size ratio actually makes their brains larger than any other dog's.Continue to 11 of 12 below.
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Like teacup Bichon Frises, teacup Pugs are basically the perfect apartment dog. Why? Their small stature, chill demeanor, and low exercise requirements make them ideal for people living in apartments or other small spaces. Plus, weighing a mere three to seven pounds, they're absolutely adorable, too.Continue to 12 of 12 below.
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Teacup Shih Tzus
Teacup Shih Tzus are generally regarded as the divas of the dog world, but believe it or not, these glam-looking pooches are incredibly athletic. Underneath all of their long, silky hair, Shih Tzus have super muscular bodies—and were basically built for agility courses.