How to Choose a TeaCup
How to Choose a TeaCup Puppy
Written & Created by Spoiled Rotten Schnauzers
These are just Tips!
They will NOT Guarantee You Will Get a Teacup size.
The more you educate yourself, the better chance you have of getting what you want.
Before we begin you need to understand we are NOT experts. Below is just our opinions and what we have personally learned over the last 15 years of being involved in the pet industry. We have worked hands-on with vets, trainers, breeders, rescue & rehabs as well as owned pets our entire life. We hope you find these tips helpful in your search for a new teacup baby.
Never Buy a Newborn Schnauzer Puppy Posted as a TeaCup.
Birth weight means nothing so don’t rush to put a deposit down on a puppy that was born tiny. There are many reasons a puppy might be born with a low brith weight which we will write about in another article. But just know it can be common for a tiny newborn to catch up with the others in size. Matter of fact, we have even seen the tinest one in the litter end up being the largest by the time it’s 8 weeks. So it’s best to just wait to make sure the puppy is going to stay tiny.
Don’t Believe Everything You Read
Prepare yourself for some confusion. When researching the topic of teacup puppies you are going to come across alot of heated debates, conflicting articles & stories with people sharing their experiences & opinions. Keep in mind, the topic of “teacup size animals” in general provokes alot of very strong & passionate emotions (good and bad) in people so NEVER base everything on what ONE person tells you or what ONE website article says. Do your homework. Talk to Professionals like a vet. Talk to (multiple) people that actually own more than one teacup dog. Read alot of articles regarding BOTH SIDES of the “argument” so that you can have a full understand on where everyone is coming from and then you can form your own opinions on what is right for you. Be weary of anyone that uses absolutes. Take caution when someone sinks to the level of slandering, bad-mouthing, and pointing fingers to prove their point and then justifying their bias behavior in one way or another. People in general like to take bits and pieces of information to strengthen their argument. Both sides of the parties will do this. So take all this into consideration as your form your own opinions and perspectives.
TeaCup Puppies are NOT the same as “Runt” or “Premature” Puppies.
This is an extremely common misunderstanding so lets clarify the differences.
Runt Puppies (vs)Premature Puppies:
Runt and premature puppies can happen in ANY breed of dog or animal. For those that aren’t familiar with breeding. When a female dog is bred, NOT all the puppies are conceived at the same time. Breeders will often bred the female puppy everday for a week. Other breeders may breed every other day for a week. etc….So one puppy might have conceived on Monday while another puppy might have conceived on Friday which makes the puppies almost a week apart in age. The problem comes when the female goes into labor because ALL the puppies are born whether they are fully developed or not. It is these puppies that haven’t been in the mothers womb long enough to mature & develop correctly that are runt and premature puppies. This is just ONE example, there are also other reaons a puppy may not develop properly in the womb but we will talk about that in a different article. Runt & premature puppies ARE at high risk for serious health issues because one or more of their main vital organs (heart, lungs, liver, brain etc..) are NOT fully functioning. Most runt | premature puppies die within the first few days. The ones that do sneak past death often have long-term health issues like portosystemic shunts, heart problems, collapsing trachea, hydroencephaly, neurological issues, digestive or respiratory issues etc….
Healthy TeaCup Puppies:
Healthy TeaCup size puppies ARE born on-time.
They did NOT have any problems in the womb.
They ARE born with fully functioning organs and have developed properly in the mothers womb.
Do You Understand the Word – “teacup?”
The SOLE PURPOSE of this word is to give families a reference to the size the animal will be full grown. Also, its very important to understand that the word “teacup” is breed specific. For example: it’s common knowledge that a teacup Yorkie usually weighs around 3-4 pounds. Same with Chihuahuas. But NOT all animals can be bred down that tiny and still be healthy. TeaCup PUGS are considered anything under 10 pounds. They even have TeaCup PIGS that weigh around 30-65 pounds. Now clearly when you think of a 65 pound animal or even a 10 pound animal you might not consider it a “true teacup” but for THOSE BREEDS they are. So clarify with the breeder the size range for their specific breed if you don’t already know it.
Experienced TeaCup Breeders are Your Best Bet
You probably want a breeder that has alot of hands-on experience working with the tinier sizes. We mean this with NO offense but a breeders ignorance (as innocent as it may be) can create long term health problems in teacup puppies. Studies have proven that inexperienced teacup breeders are more likely to create things like eating issues (and other health problems) with their teacup puppies leaving YOU with a higher chance for having to deal with hypoglycemia & (other health issues). Alot of inexperienced breeders struggle with hypoglecima in their teacup puppies, especially during weaning time. Every time a puppy goes into hypoglecima it weakens their immune system and can cause real harm or damage to the puppies vital organs which can create long-term health issues that could have been avoided if the breeder would have raised or weaned the puppy differently. Breeders that are experienced weaning teacup puppies rarely have hypoglecima issues and instead of weakening the puppies overall health the experienced breeder also knows the steps to take to actually strengthen their teacup puppies overall health. Also, breeders that don’t get alot of teacup size puppies often misjudge the puppies sizes because to them it’s smaller then what they normally produce so they assume it’s a teacup size. So you do increase your chances of getting a true teacup size if you buy from an experienced breeder that knows well what their bloodlines throw and is confident in distinguishing between the different sizes.
Buying From a “Proven Breeder” Is Very Smart
A good idea when buying a teacup size puppy from a mom or dad is to find out if one (or both) the parents have thrown past puppies that have proven to stay in the teacup size range. Breeders start to learn what their females & males generally produce in not only size but also color, coat, structure etc…..so look for mommies or daddies that has a history or throwing those tiny babies that your looking for.
Health Guarantee is so Important (but be careful)
We strongly recommend buying a teacup puppy from a breeder that stands behind the health of their dogs in a legal contract called a “health guarantee.” If a breeder is going to create a life then there should be a commitment to that “life” beyond the quick cash for it. Read through the health guarantee and make sure it doesn’t just tell you all the things they DON’T guarantee against because sadly, ALOT of breeder health guarantee is just a big long list of everything that is NOT covered to protect THEM (the breeder). Health guarantees like these are just a big joke. The breeders use the word “health guarantee” as a selling point to bring in the higher dollar but if you actually read the health guarantee is really does NOT guarantee much. So be careful. Make sure the health guarantee states VERY CLEARLY what they DO cover so that YOU AND THE PUPPY as also protected and NOT just the breeder. Some of the most common things to look for in a health guarantee would be life-threatening genetic disorders, cocciddia, giardia, worms, and or ear mites. Most breeders won’t admit this but if you have your puppy checked out by a vet within the first few days of arrival and it has any of those issues, then it came with it. Try not to be to upset with a breeder if the puppy is diagnosed with cocciddia, giardia, worms or ear mites. These are very common parasites that can even reputable breeders with clean environments can pick up. What’s important is if the breeder is willing to stand by the puppy and pay to have it cleared up if the puppy arrived to you with it.
Be Aware of Eating Issues
Eating issues in a teacup puppy WILL make a HUGE difference for you long-term. Eating issues are when the puppy is picky, finicky, and just plain stubborn about eating their food. Any size breed of dog can have this but studies have proven that the tinier you get the more common it can be AND the more dangerous it is. Teacup size puppies develop alot slower then the larger puppies in the litter. Matter of fact, teacup puppies keep their baby/infant mentality while their larger sibilings have developed into a more toddler mentality. It is extremely critical you understand that HOW the breeder weans, introduces new food, and raises the litter will have a tremendous impact on whether the puppy will end up with an eating issue or not. Teacup puppies with eating issues are at alot higher risk for hypoglycemia & are generally overall alot “higher maintenance” because they are alot more frail and delicate then a puppy that eats great. TeaCup puppies that struggle with eating disorders generally mean a life with more hospitial visits and higher vet bills. It is true that some young teacup puppies can be so stubborn during weaning time that they literally clamp their mouth shut and even turn their head side to side in an effort to get away from the food. Many will even spit the food out or just let it sit in their mouth with no desire to swallow it. We can not stress enough that HOW the breeder handles all this WILL have a lasting effect on the puppies life. If your wondering why some teacup puppies refuse to eat, the answer is several reasons. Sickness such as Giardia, Coccidia, Worms etc…can make a puppy not want to eat. Stress of the environment they are in (even if its a loving environment) Also, TeaCup puppies find a tremendous amount of security & comfort in cuddling upto mom and nursing. They don’t like the new texture, the new taste and the new smell of real food. They want mommies warm creamy milk. Again, because TeaCup puppies develop slower – they tend to hold onto that infant personality longer. The danger with this is that their bodies reach an age where they can NOT live just off the milk anymore. Their body requires actual food and if the breeder can’t get them to eat they will start into a series of hypoglycemic episodes and even death. So HOW the breeder works with the puppy, handles and treats the puppy during weaning time can either create or prevent eating issues and health issues. TeaCup puppies that end up having eating issues are NOT recommended for 1st time teacup owners. By waiting until after the litter is weaned the breeder (if honest) can let you know if that puppy will be more of a special needs puppy or not.
Stay Away from Breeders that Use Alot of Nutro-Cal
Nutro-Cal is just a vitamin supplement for animals that may not be eating enough or are not getting enough nutrition from the current food they are on. Alot of TeaCup breeders use Nutro-cal to try and increase the puppies appetite. Yes, there is a time and place for Nutro-cal but it tends to be over-used which ends up actually causing more problems. If you do decide to use Nutro-cal, use it with caution. Nutro-cal is very rich and can cause diarrhea which can pose a serious threat to a teacup puppy. Diarrhea can make puppies weak, shaky, dumpy, dehydrated and even death. Diarrhea in teacup puppies can also make them feel sick and not want to eat which can lead them into hypoglycemia issues. Also, Nutro-cal can spike the puppies sugar levels too high, which again, can lead to problems. So when is a good time to use Nutr0-cal. The answer will vary depending on who you talk to. We believe Nutro-cal should be used when a puppy is ACTUALLY in a hypoglycemia attack. We deal with alot of families that own teacup size dogs and we were shocked to learn how many breeders are selling their teacup puppies “addicted” to Nutro-cal. These families were having a terrible time trying to get the puppy to eat real food so they would have to keep giving it Nutro-cal to try and prevent it from going into hypoglycemia but too much Nutro-cal causes it’s own problems so the families were in and out of hospitals with issue after issues trying to stabilize the puppy onto a good healthy diet. Please do NOT misunderstand us, Nutro-cal is NOT a bad thing. It’s just you do NOT want to train your puppy to depend on Nutro-cal instead of eating it’s food, which sadly – alot of breeders are doing. As we shared above, your more experienced teacup breeders who know how to properly raise and introduce food to teacup puppies in a positive way are alot less likely to sell you a puppy dependent on Nutro-cal then an inexperienced breeder who is struggling to get the puppy to eat and desperately trying to keep the puppy from going into constant hypoglycemia attacks by pumping it full of Nutro-cal (which again, is not the long-term answer) but they get stuck in this cycle.
What Causes TeaCup Puppies Not to Eat?
There are alot of reasons that can cause any puppy (not just teacup sizes) to not want to eat. Here are a few common examples: change in environment or routine, leaving the mom & littermates, traveling (driving or flying), vaccines, vet visits, adjusting to new faces, voices, smells, sounds, too much handling when you first get it from children or even children running around the house playing loud & rough. Showing it off by taking the new puppy over to friends, family members, petstores, parks etc… when you first get it. Sickness can also cause a puppy not to eat so its a really good idea to have your puppy checked out by a vet to make sure there isnt an under lying problem.
There are 2 types of TeaCups
We like to let people know there are 2 different types of teacups. You have teacups that are more solid, sturdy, hearty, and basically act like the toy size puppies but are just alot tinier. Then you have your teacups that are alot more higher maintenance, can have special needs, be alot more demanding and/or even frail. These types of teacups are alot like owning a baby their entire life. TeaCups with these “special needs” are not recommended for 1st time teacup owners. Make sure you find an honest breeder that will be open with you about the puppy because alot of breeders are afraid to tell you if the puppy has issues or needs specialized attention for fear of losing the sale or even just thinking you poorly of them. Other breeders might just assume you already know that teacups (like any other breed) can come with issues and think nothing of it. So like we stated above, don’t just randomly buy any teacup. Find out more detailed information about the type of teacup puppy your interested in. If the breeder doesn’t understand what you mean – then most likely they are inexperienced because any breeder that is breeding teacup sizes is going to know the differences between these 2 types of teacups.
Talk to the Breeder About YOUR Home Life, Daily Routine & Environment
NOT all teacups are suitable for every environment and the last thing you want to do is get home with a teacup puppy that starts having problems because it’s struggling in your type of lifestyle, daily routine, schedule, household noises & activities. Some teacups doing awesome with kids while other teacups get real nervous around them and want nothing to do with kids as they much prefer to be an adult companion. Some teacups enjoy a more active busy lifestyle where other teacups have personalities that are more suitable for a quiet, mellow, lower paced type of a lifestyle Etc……So it’s really important to wait until the teacup puppy is alittle bit older (maybe about 6 weeks old or so….) so that you can talk to the breeder about the differences in size, structure, health, hypoglecima issues, eating habits, personality, any special needs etc…..When the puppy is just a newborn to a few weeks old the breeder is NOT going to be able to answer any of these questions. The puppy will just be too young to know details.
Small Parents DON’T always mean Tiny Puppies
(understanding throw backs)