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What Is A Teacup Miniature Yorkie?

Teacup Miniature Yorkies are so small they can, metaphorically, fit into a teacup.

Just what is a Teacup Miniature Yorkie? A Teacup Miniature Yorkie is a specialised breed of Yorkshire Terrier that has became popular in recent years. It weighs no more than 4 lbs and no taller than 5 to 6 inches

While these cute little creatures will easily melt everyone’s hearts, they require a great deal of care and patience.

These tiny versions of Yorkshire Terriers are known to extremely needy and temperamental. Because of their small size, they require professional grooming and are more prone to health issues when they grow older.

If you think that the Teacup Yorkie is a perfect addition to your family, read on more to find out more about their characteristics and how to best care for them. 

What’s Considered A Teacup Yorkie?

First and foremost, it is important to understand that Teacup Yorkies are just very small Yorkshire Terriers. Contrary to popular belief, the two are just a variation of the very same dog, unlike the Biewer Yorkie which is a totally different species and originates from a different continent. It is also different from the Parti Yorkie which has a 3rd color in its hair due to the parti gene.

In fact, the only difference between a teacup and a regular Yorkie is size, with everything else from genetics to personality being the same. So how do you know if your yorkie is a teacup? These dogs are identified mainly by their weight.

A teacup Yorkie’s weight ranges between and 3 pounds at the age of 12 to 18 months which is when they reach maturity.

To put things in perspective, regular terriers at this age weigh between 4 and 7 pounds or even more depending on the diet and pedigree. While not recognized as a standalone breed, the under-3 pounds rule remains the only identifier for the adorable little pooches.

In addition to the weight, Yorkies are sometimes identified through their length and height measurements- and we are not talking here about how snuggly they fit into household crockery.

But exactly what size is a teacup Yorkie? There are many different answers here based on different organizations. However, most of them play around the 5-6 inches height range which is used by several breeders and adoption agencies.

This difference in weight and overall size is because teacups come from runt Yorkies. The small weight and height gets passed down with the new generation unable to grow past the 6 inch and 3 pounds upper range limit.

More often than not, Teacup Yorkies also tend to have their tails docked to maintain the streamline figure of their petite build. This is purely for aesthetics purpose, which is, unfortunately, the sole purpose teacup breeds are bred in the first place.

Teacup Yorkie Lifespan And What Other Health Problems Do Teacup Yorkies Have?

Teacup yorkies have a lifespan of 7-9 years. This is almost half of the life expectancy of the regular yorkies have which is 13-16 years. This is because the smaller size of the teacup pooches leaves them prone to more health problems and more serious complications. Here is more teacup yorkie information on conditions they have to deal with:


This is the leading cause of health complications and death with teacup yorkies. They have notoriously weak immune systems leaving them prone to all sorts of infections from skin lesions to stomach bugs. A few common culprits in this case are parvovirus and distemper which is a gut infection that causes serious diarrhoea and pain.

More Genetic Conditions

Their very size is a genetic anomaly but this is not where it stops when it comes to teacup yorkies and congenital health problems. They suffer from a number including simple anomalies like general weakness, seizure disorders and immune deficiencies. They also suffer more serious conditions including heart defects, tracheal collapse as well as a variety of liver abnormalities.

Eye Problems

These include issues like congenital blindness which affects the overall quality of the yorkie’s life. Older teacups also tend to suffer from cataracts which if left unattended could cause partial or full blindness.

Respiratory Deterioration

This is a group of conditions including lung fibrosis, pneumonia and tracheal insufficiency that affect yorkies both large and small. It gets worse with age with teacups being particularly negatively affected.

More Prone To Accidents

Due to their size, trauma from home accidents causes more devastating effects with teacups. Whether they got accidentally dropped or run over, the complications are often worse and death more common.

How To Take Care Of Teacup Yorkies

Teacup yorkies are very delicate and require a lot of tender loving care. You simply cannot afford to wing it with them. To help you out, here are 6 foolproof tips to help you raise a healthy and happy little pooch.

Feed Them Right

What can you feed your teacup Yorkie? How much food should a teacup Yorkie eat? Proper nutrition is crucial to the survival and thriving of a teacup. They need carbs for energy, proteins for extra strength as well as vitamins and minerals for a boost in their immunity.

Try not to skimp and save on food here. If your miniature Yorkies get sick, the toll on their bodies are going significantly higher due to their already brittle health. You will not want them to be vomiting over a few dollars saved. These tiny creatures do not eat much, so do go for the best quality food for these toy breeds.

Health Extension Little Bites are a fantastic option in this case with the brand being specifically formulated for teacups. In addition to the nutrient-rich chicken and rice, the dog food includes bonus ingredients like omega fats, pure coconut oil as well as probiotics. ½ or 1/3 of a cup of the food per day should be enough.

Health Extension Little Bites Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe, 4-Pound
  • 4-Pounds Of Dry Dog Food - Health Extension Little Bites Chicken & Brown Rice Recipe Dry Dog Food Is Crafted Especially For Teacups, Toys And Miniature Dogs - From Puppies To Senior Adults

Routine Vet Visits Are Non-Negotiable

These little bundles of cuteness will need all the help they can get when it comes to navigating the multitude of health problems in their way. It is best to have a vet involved so you could pick out and deal with any of the issues as early as possible.

Handle With Care

Teacup yorkies are as physically delicate and should be handled carefully, just like how you would care for a newborn puppy. Whether you are carrying them in your arms, cuddling or going for a run, be very gentle. An awkward tug here or a sudden drop there could have really major ramifications.

Hygiene Is Everything

Give your little yorkie a shower at least once a week. This will help keep them smelling nice and stay clean in preventing skin and gut infections associated with poor hygiene.

Ample Sleep

Make sure your teacup Yorkies have ample amount of sleep everyday. This will ensure their immune system is in tip top condition and they will be able to stay as healthy as they can.

Get Them Spayed

Breeding is a horrible idea with these dogs as they are often too small to safely carry and deliver a pregnancy. Instead of exposing them to the additional complications, you should consider getting the females spayed and stop their heat cycles.

Are Teacup Yorkies Good Family Pets?

Yes, indeed they are. Teacup yorkies have the ideal personalities and sizes for safe and fun family pets. In case you need a bit more convincing, here are a few perks you have to look forward to having these doggies in your home:

They Are Sociable

Teacup yorkies have a reputation for being very friendly and social with both humans and other dogs. This is, of course, once they get to know you and feel comfortable in their environment. The cute little furry beasts are ideal for homes with small kids and with other species of pets including cats and birds as they get along beautifully with everyone.

They Are Easy To Train

Yorkshire terriers in general are very easy to learn and teacups are not an exception. This is because they are incredibly intelligent. How smart are Teacup Yorkies? Well, they are considered above intelligence dogs and have been rated among the top 40 smartest dog breeds.

They Bring Life To Every Home

Do Teacup Yorkies bark a lot?

Absolutely. This will help bring some life and noise to your home. The good news is that they are easy to train so if it gets too irritating you can teach the little one not to bark unnecessarily.

They Are Generally Low Maintenance

Teacup yorkies are a fantastic family pet because they are very easy to take care of. They don’t eat a lot. They are good at keeping themselves entertained.

While they do shed as much as a regular Yorkie, which is not a lot in the first place, the amount is relatively low due to their small size. So there is going to be less stray hair lying around your house.

Really all you have to do is keep up with vet visits and feed them properly with occasional treats and you should have your family bestie around for a long time.

How Much Does A Teacup Yorkie Cost? Why Are Teacup Puppies So Expensive?

Teacup yorkies are among the most expensive dogs on the market. A puppy could set you back between $1200 to $2000 depending on where you get them.

You may purchase a Teacup Yorkie from an adoption home or get one for free from a dog rescue. However, they are notoriously rare in these setups as they require careful breeding procedures that only specialized breeders can offer.

This price tag is quite high especially compared to regular yorkies that range between $300 to $800 or even less. The reason for this is the hype behind teacups. Remember that they are pretty much the exact same thing as normal Yorkshire terriers so the extra cost is just for the extra cuteness the smaller doggies carry.

When it comes to maintaining the dog, the price depends a lot on the general health status. If you get yourself a sickly teacup yorkie, you might end up spending up to $1000 give or take a couple hundred dollars per year. This will go to everything from medical bills to special diet meals required to keep them alive and well. This may go up to $1500 or more as they get older or if surgical intervention is needed for one of their many health problems.

If you get yourself a healthier teacup, it will definitely cost you less with an average of between $600 and $800 per year in maintenance. This covers basic needs like food, routine vet visits as well as grooming. If you cannot resist the adorable teddy bear cuts on these cute little angels, be prepared to fork out more on grooming expenditure.

It is important to note that this number will inevitably increase as they get older, their health deteriorates and their needs increase.

[SPOTLIGHT] Can you guess the number of colors and patterns that Yorkies come in?

Well, other than the traditional black and tan Yorkie that all of us probably know, there are at least 15 other extravagant colors and patterns of a Yorkie.
Discover all of them right here >

Related Questions

What Is The Difference Between A Miniature Yorkie And A Teacup Yorkie? How About A Toy Yorkie? The answer is simple: there is no difference between a Toy Yorkie, Teacup yorkie nor a Miniature Yorkie. All these are just wordplay variations of the same thing. It is a trick used by breeders to increase the hype and therefore the price tag. A toy, miniature, or teacup yorkie is basically a Yorkshire terrier that does not grow past 3 pounds in weight and 6 inches in height.

Do Teacup Dogs Stay Small Forever? Teacups are as small as they are as a result of genetics. Their capacity for growth is therefore more or less capped at the 3 pound mark. Anything larger than that and they are considered regular yorkies. So for the sake of sticking to the definition, teacup dogs do actually stay small forever. The moment they outgrow their limits they no longer qualify as teacups.

What Is The Best Teacup Puppy To Get? Teacup yorkies are among the most popular of this group for their overall cuteness and lovable personalities. Another favorite on the market are teacup chihuahuas which were among the trendiest teacups in the dog world. They are ideal for dog owners looking for an accessory companion with a less feisty personality.

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