These dogs may be tiny, but they have mighty personalities.
The Teacup Yorkie is a tiny version of a Yorkshire Terrier. Don’t be fooled by their stature, these little mischief makers are confident and bold – they can be handful.
They love their owners and are protective over their family.
This dog isn’t one you should take on lightly, they need a lot of care and love being the center of attention. They have strict feeding schedules and will most likely need professional grooming. Their small size means they are prone to health issues as well.
If you think a Teacup Yorkie is the perfect addition to your family, keep reading to learn all about what makes these petite pooches unique and how to succesfully care for them…
Contents and Quick Navigation [show]
Teacup Yorkie 101 (Overview)
Teacup Yorkies are miniature Yorkshire Terriers. Not much is known about when people started breeding Yorkies smaller, but they are becoming more popular for people who love toy breeds.
Yorkshire Terriers were originally bred to hunt rats and rodents in northern England in the 1870s. Mostly used in industrial settings like coal mines and textile factories, they soon became a fashionable companion dog. They were introduced in America around 1880s and became very popular.
In fact they are now one of the most popular breeds in the US!
They are recognized by the American Kennel Club, in the Toy group. However the Teacup variety is not recognised.
Teacup Yorkie Appearance and Size
You can expect your teacup to look exactly like a standard sized Yorkie, just smaller.
Their skulls are round with a short muzzle. They have a black button nose and medium sized eyes. They have small V-shaped ears that stand upright on the top of their head.
As for their body, it is very compact but well-proportioned. They have short legs and their tail is medium length, and is carried slightly higher than their back.
They have a spring in their step and always look alert and engaged.
Height and Weight
The standard Yorkshire Terrier size averages around 7lbs, whereas the Teacup is a lot smaller.
When fully grown the Teacup Yorkie will weigh between 2-4lbs.
As for their height expect no more than 5-7 inches – very small indeed.
The Teacup Yorkie can be a number of different colors, with the most common colors being:
- Black and Gold
- Black and Tan
- Blue and Gold
- Blue and Tan
You should expect their coat to be the same as the standard Yorkshire Terrier. They have glossy, fine and silky coats. They have long straight coats, which can be trimmed for a neater appearance (more on this later).
The hair on the top of their head can also grow long – this can also be trimmed to avoid it getting into their eyes.
These tiny dogs are also hypoallergenic, as they shed very little.
Teacup Yorkie Personality and Temperament
These Yorkies may be tiny, but they have huge personalities. These dogs have every bit of the Terrier personality – affectionate, sprightly and confident.
Yorkies are known for their demanding traits. They seek a lot of attention and are people orientated, but they are cautious of strangers. It’s likely your pup will be prone to separation anxiety – so don’t leave them alone for too long.
Teacup Yorkies have the feisty and bossy traits of a true terrier.
They can be said to have little dog syndrome; in which they think they are bigger than they actually are. This also causes them to be more anxious and excitable.
These toy dogs can be a bit of a handful, they love to cause some mischief. They have a strong prey drive and love to hunt small animals. This boldness can get them into situations that can be harmful to them as they have very fragile bones.
They love the sound of their own voice!
Yorkies are territorial and will defend their home, this can make them ‘yappy’ when someone comes to the door.
This susceptibility to barking can be trained out though.
With all their faults, these tiny pups will be devoted to you. They love being the center of attention and entertaining their families.
When you bring them home for the first time, give them a room and a cozy bed which they can easily get in and out of. As they are small, they can be very nervous in new environments, so give them time to adjust.
Is A Teacup Yorkie a Good Family Dog?
Teacup Yorkies are very fragile, so they are not recommended to families with small children.
They are best suited to a single pet household. Due to their Terrier natures, they can see any other animal in their home as competition and won’t back down from a fight.
Training a Teacup Yorkie
This pooch is smart and responsive to training. They may be a bit stubborn at first, but with some consistency they will warm up to you.
Positive reinforcement is known to be the most effective training strategy, and punishment being the worst. The use of punishment should be avoided as it can cause behavioral issues.
Give them praise when they follow a command and don’t give them too many treats as this can upset their sensitive stomachs. Find natural and high-quality treats to give them.
Their training should start from an early age, this includes socialization. Their Terrier nature means they may show signs of aggression to unfamiliar dogs and people- socialization is a good way to prevent this.
Expose them to a range of dogs and people as soon as they are fully vaccinated to help prevent this. Thanks to its small size, it is easy to take them with you and experience new places and smells.
Mental stimulation is vital for a breed like this, as they will want a lot of things to do, unless you want chewed up shoes and furniture!
Give them toys and puzzle feeders. Play time has been shown to decrease stress and increase memory.
Caring for a Teacup Yorkie
Teacup Yorkies need a lot of attention and care. This is a dog that needs 24/7 devotion.
Grooming is a must, they may not shed, but they love to look their best!
They have a regular feeding routine that is vital to their health. These tiny pooches are highly adaptable, they can live in urban areas and apartments. They are great for first time owners and anyone else that wants a small dog.
Let’s take a look at their specific care requirements below.
You may be surprised to find out that this tiny breed has a lot of energy, but they won’t need too much dedicated exercise.
Around 20-30 minutes will be fine.
They are very energetic by nature and love running around; they will never give up in a chase. Don’t let them get too excitable and jump up on surfaces though as their bones are very fragile.
During the winter months, be sure to put on a coat to keep them warm, as they are very susceptible to the cold.
Be careful when walking your Teacup Yorkie, it is easy to accidently trip over them and cause them damage.
Grooming and Shedding
These dogs look best when they are regularly groomed. They have long straight coats that should be trimmed often.
Their hair will grow continuously throughout the year and can even grow longer than their height and can get in their eyes.
Thankfully, they don’t shed much throughout the year.
You should brush their long hair every day to keep it from matting and keep it clean! It may be worth thinking about taking them to a professional groomer. Yorkies are prone to suffering from dental problems, make sure their teeth are clean and healthy by brushing them every day.
Check the inside of their ears for wax buildup and debris. Clip their nails to avoid overgrowth.
Feeding and Diet
This micro dog has a very specialized diet.
They are prone to suffering from hypoglycemia (low blood glucose). For this reason, they need to be fed at regular intervals during the day.
Feed them every 3-4 hours during the day and make sure not to skip a meal. Thankfully, they don’t need huge portions. Don’t worry about midnight feeds, just make sure you feed them before you put them to bed and first thing in the morning.
The general rule to follow for small dogs is they only need 40 calories per pound of body weight. So a 4lbs Teacup Yorkie would only need around 160 calories a day.
Dogs need a balanced diet, just like people. They need protein, dietary fats, minerals and vitamins. So look for a premium or specialized dog food to feed your pooch. It may be extra money, but its worth it in the end!
Avoid food with filler ingredients that have high amounts of carbs, this can be harmful and cause obesity.
Known Health Problems
Unfortunately, these tiny dogs have multiple health issues. Make sure you do your research so you can spot any symptoms that could arise.
As mentioned, hypoglycemia is common with these dogs. Low blood sugar can be fatal in a dog if not controlled with a specialized diet.
Low blood sugar can cause seizures. If they ever go into a hypoglycaemia, you can rub some honey on their gums and keep them warm – the sugar in the honey will be absorbed and elevate their glucose concentrations.
They can also suffer from collapsed tracheas, which sounds worse than it is. Airflow is limited and can cause chronic coughing and other respiratory problems. They have very sensitive stomachs and have an increased risk for liver shunts. Liver shunts are usually congenital birth defect that stops the liver from filtering toxins in the blood.
Teacup breeds have very fragile bones and can break them very easily.
As you can see taking on a teacup breed comes with health complications and you should give this some serious thought.
If you keep them health they can for up to 14 years with most living to around 12 years old.
Buying a Teacup Yorkie
Considering the health issues Teacup Yorkies can have, it is crucial to find a trustworthy breeder than will sell you a healthy pooch.
Unfortunately, there are lots of unreliable breeders out there, but just a little bit of research can stop you from being caught out.
Breeding any teacup breed is risky business. Breeders will breed two undersized dogs together to get even smaller pups – this can be dangerous for the mother.
Always ask a breeder if you can see the pups with mom. If they don’t let you, chances are they are not trustworthy.
Seeing how mom has cared for the puppies will give you a good idea about what kind of temperament they will have in later life. Pups that have low quality maternal care are more likely to have problematic behaviors when they are adults.
Breeders should provide you with health certificates for the pup’s mom and dad (this is to show there is no genetic health issues being passed down to their litters).
Ask the breeder questions like:
- How many litters has the mom had?
- What are you feeding them?
- What kind of socialization have they had so far?
If the answers sound suspicious walk away and find another breeder.
Puppies should be at least be 9 weeks old to leave mom, but some breeders wait until 12 weeks.
How Much Does a Teacup Yorkie Cost?
Teacup Yorkies will cost between $1200-2000, depending on the breeder.
Quick Breed Summary Table
|Lifespan:||9 to 14 years|
|Coat:||Silky and straight|
|Color:||Black and tan, blue and tan, black and gold, blue and gold|
|Do They Shed:||Very little amounts|
|Temperament:||Friendly, bold and mischievous|
|Intelligence:||Above average intelligence|
|Socialization:||Cautious of strange dogs, will need early socialization|
|Destructive Behavior:||Can be ‘yappy’ and destructive when bored|
|People Skills:||Protective of owners but will warm up to others|
|Good with Children:||Not recommended for households with small children|
|Activity Levels:||Highly energetic for such a small size. Needs around 20-30 mins of activity a day|
These small dogs have big personalities, they will need an owner who can match their personality.
Highly demanding and needy, owners should be aware of the 24/7 care that will be necessary to keep these dogs happy.
The Teacup Yorkie needs a strict diet and feeding routine, and can have health issues that shouldn’t be ignored.
With that said, they are one of the best companion dogs out there!
If you give them a lot of love, they will give you lots back. They will bring your house to life with their bright attitude and confidence.