Home Dog Breeds 15 Popular Teacup Dog Breeds

15 Popular Teacup Dog Breeds

15 Popular Teacup Dog Breeds
Teacup dog breeds are the smallest of the small.

People love them because they retain that cute puppy size their whole lives.

If you have been thinking of getting one of these best teacup dog breeds, one of the adorable pups on the list may be the perfect new addition to your family.

However, there are a few things future adopters need to know about teacup dogs.

Not officially. Teacup dogs are not the same as toy dog breeds and are always smaller.

When it comes to Teacup breeds, there are a lot of controversies, too.

The AKC does not classify or register Teacup dog breeds at all.

Teacups are the smallest puppies from a litter of Toy breed dogs. For this reason, many say they are just the unhealthy runt of the litter.

The best teacup dog breedsEven some vets state you should avoid anything classified as a “Teacup” breed.

Because Teacup dog breeds weigh less than the AKC standard for a toy breed, you can technically have any breed called a teacup.

Most breeders consider a Teacup dog that weighs less than 4 pounds and stands less than 17 inches tall.

By these standards, there are only 6 true Teacup breeds.

We'll now go over the traits of the true Teacup dog breeds and learn more about the fake pseudo Teacups.

Teacup Dog Breeds

The many disadvantages of Teacup dog breeds

Adopting a Teacup dog means you'll need to treat it like a baby toddler, and unfortunately, there are many disadvantages to caring for a Teacup dog breed.

I recommend you review the below information and consider whether a Teacup dog breed is right for you.

Teacup puppies and even adults are very fragile. They can easily die from a fall that other dog breeds wouldn’t even blink at.

They are hard to see and easy to step on. These fur babies should not be left alone and should never be left unsupervised with kids.

best teacup dog breedsTeacup breeds are known to suffer from various illnesses and have higher rates of broken bones than any other breed.

The smallest of the small also cannot go outside alone, as they make easy prey for owls, hawks, other dogs, and “predators.”

Teacup dog breeds have tiny stomachs and tiny bladders.

They can’t be healthy just being fed twice a day like larger breeds.

These tiny pups need to be fed 4-5 small meals a day, and they need to be let out for potty breaks a couple of times every hour.

Housebreaking may often be very difficult with Teacup dog breeds.

If you get one of these dogs, house training using the best puppy pee pads may be the best way to go.

For all of these reasons, it's easy to see that Teacup dog breeds are not the right fit for every owner.

It would help if you were not considered one of these dogs unless you can care for it virtually every minute of the day.

Unless you work from home or for a dog-friendly company, these smallest dog breeds are likely too high maintenance for you.

READ THIS: 25 Best Dog Breeds for Small Apartments

Irresponsible Breeding of Teacup Dogs

Teacup dog breeds are prevalent right now because they're cute and adorable, so breeders are trying to make a quick buck on this.

They will breed small, sickly animals to try to get smaller animals.

Irresponsible Breeding of Teacup DogsThese breeders don’t care about the health and happiness of the pups they bring into the world – they only care about selling a high number of them.

We must not support these types of breeders and be extra vigilant when adopting Teacup dog breeds from reputable breeders.

It's our responsibility to ensure we follow the necessary steps to find a reputable breeder and follow the process.

Some simple things you can do to be sure the breeder is reputable include:

  • Visiting the breeding facility
  • Check out the mother and father dogs
  • Ask lots of questions about the breeders' history and the history of the pups.
  • Ask for veterinary records on both parents and the pups
  • Ask for references from other clients that have adopted puppies from the breeder in the past, and be sure to call them to ask if they would recommend the breeder.

Teacup Dog Breeds: FAQs

Before you take the plunge to get one of the Teacup dog breeds, make sure you are informed. The following questions can help you: 

Which Teacup Dog Is the Best?

There is no answer to which Teacup dog is the best.

The best one for you will depend on the attention you can give the dog, your preferences, where you live, and your lifestyle.

We go into more detail about all the Teacup dog breeds so that you can make a good decision.

Why Are Teacup Dogs Bad?

Teacup dogs are not bad per se, BUT they tend to be too small to very healthy and are prone to a range of problems.

This is particularly true when they are bred from smaller dogs that are runt or sick.

Some common issues include easily broken bones, heart issues, collapsing trachea, liver shunts, hypoglycemia, and more. 

What Is the Smallest Teacup Dog Breed?

The smallest of the Teacup dog breeds is the Teacup Chihuahua.

This is also one of the “true Teacup breeds,” according to the AKC definition. 

How Long Do Teacup Dogs Live?

As long as you care for your pup carefully and monitor him, a Teacup dog can live for as long as 15 years.

However, this is only if your Teacup avoids the serious health issues common in many tiny dogs. 

How Much Does a Teacup Puppy Cost?

Teacups can be very expensive, costing a few thousand dollars.

If you decide to get a Teacup, pay a little extra to buy it from a reputable breeder or adopt it from a shelter.

If you've researched and still believe one of the best teacup dog breeds is right for you, it's time to choose which one will best meet your needs.

Below in this article, I'll discuss the advantages and disadvantages of some of the most popular teacup dog breeds globally and why you should and shouldn't adopt them.

RECOMMENDED: 13 Helpful Tips for Rescuing a Dog from a Shelter

15 Popular Teacup Dog Breeds in the World
(the real ones, and the fake ones)

Teacup Dog Breeds


6 True Teacup Dog Breeds

While Googling, you can find many lists of Teacup dog breeds online. Bear in mind that there are only six dog breeds that can actually be classified as Teacup dogs.

1. Teacup Chihuahua

Teacup Chihuahuas are one of the most popular Teacup dogs today.

Teacup Chihuahuas are adorable but also one of the most nervous breeds out there.

They do pretty well with cats but not with other dogs or kids.

This is the puppy purse dog. They are extremely affectionate and hate to be alone.

These intelligent dogs are fairly easy to train and make great dogs for apartments but require a lot of care and attention, making them a good “to go” small dog.

2. Teacup Maltese

Teacup MalteseTeacup Maltese is less common, but they make a great watchdog because they really don’t like strangers.

However, Teacup Maltese dogs may need training to curb their excessive barking.

The teacup Maltese is also known to be gentle and attentive.

They are sensitive dogs who need encouragement, not fussing.

They have lots of energy and love to play. It is a great breed for households with older children.

3. Teacup Poodle

Teacup PoodleNo matter the size (Teacup, Toy, Standard, Giant), the Poodle breed is well-known to be one of the smartest dog breeds that walk the earth today.

They are very adaptable and do well with any house or household makeup.

These easy-to-train dogs are great for first-time dog owners.

In fact, the only drawback of Teacup Poodles is that they need frequent grooming from someone who knows what they're doing.

Also, they have all of the drawbacks associated with the fact of being a small dog breed, including being fragile and having many health problems common among small dogs.

4. Teacup Pomeranian

4. Teacup PomeranianAnother breed that may need anti-bark training, Teacup Pomeranian dogs, are alert and curious about the world around them.

While they are one of the most popular teacup dog breeds, they will not hesitate to tell you when something isn’t right.

Teacup Pomeranians have less energy and playfulness than the average dog, so they will do best in a more laid-back household.

As with all teacup dog breeds, it's best if these dogs are in a home with only adults and older children.

They also make great purse dogs due to their calmness and are often considered one of the best breeds for women.

5. Teacup Yorkie

Teacup YorkieRight there with the Chihuahuas, Teacup Yorkie is another super popular dog breed.

The Yorkie is a brave and confident dog with a lot of personality.

They are very loving and adaptable, except for kids and other animals. Teacup Yorkies don’t like them.

They can live in almost any situation – the city, the country, in apartments, and with no yard.

Yorkshire Terriers are an active breed that needs lots of play and exercise.

They will need training to reduce barking as well.

Therefore, a dog owner willing to dedicate themselves to this pet is usually the best fit.

6. Teacup Shih Tzu

Teacup Shih TzuFinally, the last true Teacup dog breed is the Teacup Shih Tzu.

If you want a little dog that can wear bows in his hair, then this breed is for you.

The Teacup Shih Tzu has a long, beautiful coat that you can style in many fashions.

They're among the cutest dogs alive, so they often get adopted.

These dogs usually have low energy levels and a low desire to bark.

This makes them great for apartments.

These little pups are also very good with kids and other pets as well, which is very unlike most Teacup dog breeds on this list.

READ: 30 Most Quiet Dog Breeds Perfect for Apartments or Condos

Teacup Dog Breeds

Honorable Mentions – The “Mini” Breeds

The below Mini dog breeds are often listed alongside Teacup dogs but aren't real Teacups according to the AKC's classification. Yet, they're also smaller than Toy breeds.

1. Miniature Dachshund

Miniature Dachshunds are small pups that are bold and brave despite their small stature.

They have lots of energy and love to play, and when fed appropriately, Dachshund dog food is very healthy.

However, this breed doesn’t usually do well around kids or other pets.

Miniature Dachshunds are shy dogs and make excellent watchdogs.

Because of their long backs, they should not live where they will have to do a lot of stair climbing and are generally susceptible to many illnesses.

2. Teacup Beagle

Teacup BeagleThe Teacup Beagle breed is great with kids and other pets. As a close relative to standard Beagles – one of the best hunting dogs – Teacup Beagles still have hunting instincts and must be trained not to bark and chase other furry animals.

Pups from this breed are active and playful.

All Beagles, in general, need lots of attention, or they can become destructive.

Although these small stubborn dogs are hard to train at times, they remain one of the most popular teacup dog breeds due to their winning personality, cute looks, and positive demeanor.

They can also live a long time if exercised and fed proper Beagle dog food.

3. Teacup Boston Terrier

Teacup Boston TerrierWith short hair and low shedding, the Teacup Boston Terrier is one of the lowest maintenance breeds there is, and even Boston Terrier dog food costs less.

The larger versions can tolerate temperature changes well, but the smaller ones will need a steady, mild climate.

Teacup Boston Terriers are sturdy little dogs and like to play a lot.

They do well in houses with kids and other pets.

However, remember that as one of the teacup dog breeds, they are more fragile than traditional small breeds, and even though they look sturdy, you can actually harm them without trying too hard.

RELATED: 20 Best Short Hair Dog Breeds That Are Easy to Groom

4. Miniature Labrador

Miniature LabradorNot many people are aware of the Miniature Labrador because they're larger than standard miniature breeds.

Labs are hunting dogs that are very rowdy and rambunctious.

Since this “mini” breed is still pretty big, they are not as fragile.

Miniature Labradors are easy to train, too.

Like their close relative, the standard Labrador Retriever, this lovable breed is a favorite with the outdoors family.

These dogs tolerate hot and cold weather well and need lots of exercise.

Technically, they are not made for apartment living, but you'll see many dog owners adopting them anyway.

5. Miniature Schnauzer

Miniature SchnauzerThis isn’t a needy breed. Miniature Schnauzers tolerate being alone very well.

They also tolerate hot and cold weather better than most other miniature dog breeds on this list.

These are good dogs for busy owners.

However, their independence makes them one of the most stubborn dogs.

This means they need a strong and experienced dog trainer.

Miniature Schnauzers also have lots of energy and will need walks and complex dog toys to keep them from being destructive.

Just like most other Miniature dog breeds and small dogs in general, they have a longer lifespan.

RELATED: 15 Dog Breeds That Have the Longest Lifespan

6. Teacup Brussels Griffon

Teacup Brussels GriffonTeacup Brussels Griffon is a well-rounded and easy-to-train dog that could be perfect for most dog owners.

They get along well with kids and other dogs.

Teacup Brussels is a clever, happy breed in general.

All teacup dog breeds should be supervised almost constantly, but this is one of the needier breeds.

They don’t like being left alone at all.

Left alone will lead to problem behaviors like whining and chewing.

7. Teacup Pekingese

Teacup PekingeseKnown as “the princess” dog small dog breeds, Teacup Pekingese live up to that stereotype in a way.

The best thing about this breed is that they are not known to be destructive, but Teacup Pekingese do not like sharing the house with kids or other animals.

They eat very little and require minimal exercise.

This makes them great for apartment living.

These little fur babies are known to be a little aloof and stubborn and will need an experienced trainer and an owner who can give them enough attention.

RELATED: 30 Breeds That Are Good House Dogs

8. Teacup Fox Terrier

Teacup Fox TerrierThe Teacup Fox Terrier has a calmer personality than the standard breed variation, especially regarding Teacup dog breeds.

These little dynamites are active and agile, and they need a lot of exercise regularly.

This breed is like all of the best teacup dog breeds on the list – they can easily get severe injuries and are very fragile.

Foxies are lovable with adults but don’t like kids and other pets and prefer to be the only dog in the house.

9. Miniature Collie

Miniature Collie – Shetland SheepdogArguably one of the most beautiful Teacup dog breeds, Miniature Collies are social, intelligent dogs that are easy to train.

They are agile and athletic, making them perfect for the active family.

These dogs are lovable and will do fine with kids and other pets.

Miniature Collies do have long coats that shed, so make sure you are up to the maintenance.

They need regular brushing and trims to keep out mats and tangles.

Miniature Collies do not bark excessively and are not destructive, and they're also known as one of the most expensive dog breeds to adopt and care for.

Teacup Dog Breeds: Before You Go

Teacup dog breeds are too adorable in their own right! In addition to being easy to exercise with and clean up after, they make excellent traveling companions.

They are smaller than is common for their breed. Other names, such as micro dogs and pocket dogs, are given to these puppies.

Remember that these puppies' faulty breeding may result in health issues.

So, you better consider a little dog that meets the breed standard if you wish to bring a teacup puppy home.

Find a trustworthy dog breeder. Before bringing your dog home, have the vet examine it.


Amy is a writer who lives with her husband and daughter on the United States Gulf Coast. She has a BA in Behavioral Sciences, and volunteered for shelters through various activities, as well as fostering animals. Amy currently has 3 dogs and 5 cats.