Popularly known for its adorable appearance and tiny size, the Teacup Poodle is a fluffy lap dog that demands consistent attention. Similar to a full-grown poodle, this dog is not pre bred and is the unofficial offspring of Toy Poodles. Owing to its small size, they are extremely delicate pets and come with peculiar responsibilities.
Popular in the US and bred to be lovable companion dogs, these little fellas crave attention and care and are friendly with almost everyone. As suggested with all Teacup breeds, you must keep a close eye on your pet, not only to ensure he stays healthy but to also prevent mishaps and injuries due to their small size.
Table of Contents
- What is a Teacup Poodle?
- Teacup Poodle Personality and Temperament
- Caring for a Teacup Poodle
- Quick Breed Summary Table
What is a Teacup Poodle?
This miniature dog may be small in size, as its name would suggest, but it possesses a huge personality that would win the hearts of everyone it comes in contact with. Mainly kept as companion dogs, they are overly loyal and this could result in them being good watchdogs.
They might look soft, cute, and irresistible, but this pleasing look needs to be maintained by a ton of care and regular grooming. Like all dogs, these pups should be trained at an early age to ensure they won’t get aggressive and stubborn as they grow.
They should be fed healthy food but in small quantities to make sure they do not gain weight. They tend to suffer from a series of different illnesses which means you would need to monitor them from the day they enter your home.
Similar to young toddlers, not only in size but also in nature, Teacup Poodles are friendly, loving, and loyal animals that are extremely energetic and intelligent.
Considered to be very cute pups by all means, Teacup Poodles with their forever puppy-dog eyes are tiny creatures that could instantly capture your heart on account of their looks alone. Resembling the standard poodle but a shrunken version, they have thick curly hair with small dark bold eyes that would make you melt.
Their ears are floppy and extra furry and hang down flat and close to the head and they have a long muzzle with the most adorable nose. With feet that are small and oval-shaped, they feature tiny toes that are slightly arched.
All this is undeniably cute and charming, but if you want your pup to look its best, you have to engage in regular grooming and cleaning to keep him from looking shabby and uninviting.
Height and Weight
Just like any other teacup pooch, this one too stands at a 6 to 9 inches high, while weighing 2 to 5 lbs. Big enough to fit in the palm of your hands, they might be super easy to carry and can also be placed in your handbag if they can sit still while outdoors.
Their legs, both front, and back are perfectly proportioned and their body is square in shape because of their almost matching height and length.
Considering their tiny size, these pups might not require much space while sleeping, but definitely need quite a bit of roaming space to explore and work off that extra energy.
Coat and Colors
Coat and color and indeed some of the main factors considered when it comes to getting a pup. Available in an array of many colors including grey, white, silver, red, black, apricot and silver, these dogs usually come in solid colors, unlike other mixed poodle mixes. The color of a Teacup poodle makes it easy to distinguish whether the dog is a purebred or not, so keep that in mind!
As for their coat, in particular, they have medium length curls that are similar to that of a poodle. Sometimes silky or dense, it is difficult to maintain their locks which could turn into stubborn knots if neglected and not brushed regularly.
With that being said, one of the plus points in owning a Teacup Poodle is the fact that they do not shed. Not only is this great for people who suffer from allergies, but it is also great for your furniture. Yes, they do shed their dead fur, but that stays intact within their rounded curls only to fall off when being brushed.
Teacup Poodle Personality and Temperament
Similar to all types of Poodles, the Teacup poodle is just as smart and friendly. Although, many choose the poodle due to their playful and cuddly side. These little pups may be smaller than other dogs but they tend to have bigger personalities that aim at charming their owners to get their attention.
Commonly known to suffer from separation anxiety, it is not recommended that you leave your little ball of fur alone at home for long periods of time. This could cause, as you may obviously guess – incessant barking and destruction of your furniture and your prized possessions – your branded shoes. Extreme attachment and being the center or your attention 24/7, makes this little furry friend a loyal companion.
Most toy breed dogs tend to have an excessive amount of energy, but this poodle, although playful, only possess a moderate amount of energy. So for those of you who are not active, this little fella would be the perfect lazy match.
Social, friendly, and responsive to new tricks, the Teacup Poodle loves entertaining people and requires its owner’s 100% devotion. Being a little wary at the beginning, they may bark at strangers but gradually warm up to them if they are around them often.
Ensure you socialize them well without spoiling them too much, as this could lead to them getting “Small Dog Syndrome” which is where they think they’re boss and get too snappy.
They are easy to train and need to be taken for short walks and played with at intervals to keep them cheerful and happy. If not properly trained they tend to bark on hearing any sound and sometimes portray the characteristics of a large watchdog – which clearly they are not. Teaching them a specific command to stop this could work well as they pick up things quickly.
Furthermore, these dogs tend to get along with other pets and children when properly socialized but it is advised to always keep an eye on them as their fragile bodies are a bit too delicate and could get injured with ease.
As mentioned above, these little pups are loyal animals, they tend to get too attached to their owners, which might make them protective and in turn aggressive. This needs to be dealt with firstly by socializing the dog as much as you can, secondly by not leaving him alone for too long, and thirdly by allowing them to release their energy by allowing them regular playtimes with an adequate amount of space to run around.
Rough play is not a good idea when it comes to this tiny pooch. Not only can they break their small delicate bones, but just jumping off a low-lying couch could cause organ injuries. Keep in mind, these dogs don’t do well around small children and should be kept away. If you have a baby at home, or small children, it is necessary to be present at all times.
Is A Teacup Poodle A Good Family Dog?
One distinctive difference between a standard Poodle and a Teacup Poodle is their patience level. It should be said that a Teacup Poodle has less patience than a regular Poodle and this is not a good factor when surrounded by small children and other pets.
Perfect only for families with older children, this dog requires extra care and attention and is entirely dependent on you. Being around children tends to make the pup nervous which could lead to aggression.
Also, small children are not aware of how to deal with these tiny fragile creatures, and what could or could not hurt them, so it’s best to keep them far.
Caring for a Teacup Poodle
Do not let their tiny size fool you, these little pooches require more care and attention than you can imagine. I would definitely not recommend a Teacup Poodle to a first-time dog owner as taking care of this dog requires a lot of knowledge and supervision.
From their coats and regular grooming to medical issues and diet restrictions, they are definitely a handful. A fair warning – these dogs are a huge responsibility and taking care of them is quite time-consuming.
Physical and social development is extremely important and it should be managed with care. These dogs achieve full maturity in about 12 months and during this time you need to closely monitor their eating habits, their exercise, nutritional needs, and more. Yet lucky for you, they don’t really require too much exercise on a daily basis.
Regular exercise for a Teacup Poodle would include short walks and playtime that help them burn their extra energy. This not only solidifies the bond you share with your pup but also helps in socializing and exposing them to the outdoors while enhancing their mental stimulation.
Considering the fact that they have short and stumpy legs, they might not be able to walk for more than 10 minutes – combine this with about 20 minutes of playtime and they are good to go. Always try to change your walking location, as this could help your pooch experience new surroundings.
Another important fact to take account of is these pups have very small necks and using a leash would cause unnecessary injuries, so a simple harness would be perfect. During your walks, remember to keep a close eye on them as they could squeeze through a tiny fence or jump off the sidewalk and injure their tiny bodies.
Grooming and Shedding
One of the most daunting aspects of taking care of a Teacup Poodle is grooming them. Yes, they do not shed, but that doesn’t mean it’s easy to clip and cut their springy curls. However, thanks to the thickness of their coats, you can clip and cut in different ways to change the style of their hair – which adds to their adorable appeal.
When it comes to brushing, you must brush this pup’s hair on a daily basis to ensure there aren’t any knots and tangles. Brushing also helps remove dead hair and it is advised that you first wet their hair with the help of a spray bottle to aid in minimizing the pain.
Another important part of your grooming sessions with your Teacup is checking on their tear stains which is gunk below their eyes. This can be prevented by using a tear stain remover which you can get from your local pet store. Other grooming essentials also include daily brushing of their teeth along with nail clipping.
Feeding and Diet
Overfeeding is a common issue when it comes to these tiny dogs. Remember, it is important to feed them at regular intervals during the day to keep their blood sugar in control but you should monitor their weight and ensure they do not get too chunky.
A teacup poodle requires up to 250 calories a day it is recommended that you purchase wet or dry dog food for small breed dogs. These foods are tailor-made to maintain their weight while giving them the required nutrients and proteins to boost their energy and playfulness.
Just like all humans, we are usually tempted to feed our dogs human scraps and the leftovers from our dinner. Please resist this urge as it could be harmful to your little pal and obviously lead to health issues including obesity.
Known Health Problems
Just like their ancestors, a Teacup Poodle carries a variety of health problems. One of the most common health issues is hypoglycemia which is low blood sugar, which can be caused if you do not follow a strict diet with regular feeds.
Common genetic health problems include progressive retinal atrophy and hip elbow dysplasia which is a condition that is due to joint instability. Owing to their miniature size, these dogs can also suffer from patella luxation, which is slipped kneecaps which can be caused if they jump off platforms and sofas.
They also suffer from a number of issues relating to their adrenal glands which can be pretty serious if neglected. Therefore, close monitoring and regular check-ups are a must. As cute as they may look, they can hide other illnesses like diabetes, blindness, ear infections, epilepsy, skin allergies, and heart murmurs, which is why selective breeding of these pooches are unpredictable.
How to Train a Teacup Poodle
The best training routine to follow when it comes to a Teacup Poodle is positive reinforcement. Since they are quick at picking up new things and are easy to train, you need not use negative reinforcement like shouting and punishments, as that would only make things worse.
Training the dog thoroughly from a young age, or even better as soon as you bring them into your home, would be helpful and would prevent them from developing small dog syndrome later on.
By nature, these little pups love to bark and your main aim should be to control this by a command followed by a healthy treat to reward his good behavior. This can also be dealt with by regular socializing and taking an active interest in your dog’s behavior.
Due to their smart agile minds, it is important to keep these dogs busy and their minds stimulated. Even though their bodies do not support their minds, you should play mental games instead of physical – ones that would develop their intelligence.
Keep in mind, these pups are small and are overly loving and affectionate so it is best to expose them to other people at the very start to help prevent them from getting nervous and aggressive later on.
Quick Breed Summary Table
|Size||6 to 8 inches|
|Weight||2 to 5 lbs|
|Lifespan||8 to 15 years|
|Color||Solid colors including white, black, brown, red, and most common – apricot.|
|Coat||Curly, dense, medium length|
|Shedding & Grooming||Do not shed, need regular brushing|
|Temperament||Friendly, playful, smart|
|With Other Pets||Good if socialized from a young age, if not keep away|
|People Skills||Loving and loyal|
|With Children||Yes, but only older children|
|Exercise Needs||Moderately active|
|Food||½ cup of kibbles daily, wet or dry small breed dog food|
|Known Health Problems||hypoglycemia, dysplasia, patella luxation, heart, eye, and bladder issues|
All Things Considered
Not meant for first-time dog owners, these pooches are quite complex to handle and do need an experienced owner to efficiently take care of all their needs. Intelligent, friendly, and energetic, teacup Poodles need all the mental stimulation they can get, to keep them healthy and happy.
A little tasking to maintain, but with some devotion and affection, these tiny little creatures could be the perfect little addition to brighten up your home. It may take a bit more effort on your part to properly care for such a small pup, but rest assured that it will all be worth it in the end.