Have you heard of pugs that can fit into teacups? That sounds puggin’ adorable, doesn’t it! When it comes to the cute factor, you can never go wrong with teacup pugs. However, dog lovers know that there are more serious factors to consider before bringing a poochie home.
The decision becomes even more critical when it revolves around teacup pugs. Not only are these tiny pups super lovable to look at, but they also have an endearing temperament. That said, owning them can be challenging.
Teacup pugs themselves are loving animals, but they suffer from many health issues because of their breeding. The breed may need several visits to the vet as well as particular care and attention.
If you are looking to bring this miniature pug home, know that you should not make this decision lightly. Read on to get a better understanding of teacup pugs and their needs.
Know The Breed: What Are Teacup Pugs?
You have likely heard of the more common pug breed. Well, teacup pugs are a variation of this standard breed.
The physical features and personality traits of these pugs are a lot like their larger counterparts. However, teacup pugs do not mature beyond six inches in height and five pounds in weight.
Breeders often cross the runts of the litter or dwarf pugs to breed this variety of dogs. With a quick Google search, you can find tons of images of these little critters. Often, these pictures show them in teacups or mugs to emphasize their tiny size.
In reality, the practice of breeding these pugs is quite sad. When dogs with weak constitutions are crossed, their puppies can suffer several health problems. Unfortunately, this fact holds for teacup pugs.
These tiny pooches are not recognized as a pure breed by the American Kennel Club. However, the reason they exist is that breeders know owners will willingly pay hefty prices for them.
Is It Illegal To Breed Teacup Pugs?
By law, there is nothing wrong with breeding teacup pugs. However, when you think of all the health issues these little pups need to deal with, it seems too cruel. You may even go so far as to call it unethical to cross sickly pugs for this purpose!
What Do Teacup Pugs Look Like?
Apart from being super tiny, teacups pugs have the same build as standard ones. They have a compact and stocky body with a large, round head and black face masks.
Like their cousins, these pugs have big, round eyes, a scrunched nose, and a wrinkled brow. Their ears are velvety soft and fall to their temples once they are mature. Also, they have the tiniest teeth that produce common underbite.
When it comes to coats, teacup pugs come in a variety of different colors. Their double-layered coat may be black, fawn, white, or even silver.
The miniature features of this pug make it all that much cuter. However, these attributes come at the cost of several health issues.
What Is The Temperament Of A Teacup Pug?
When it comes to personality, teacup pugs are some of the happiest dogs around! These playful pooches are a little friendlier than standard pugs and get along with everybody. Babies, adults, cats, and dogs – everyone can become friends with this breed!
As an owner, you will love their loyal and affectionate behavior. However, these tiny pups have a mind of their own, so training them requires effort.
With a routine and some patience, it will be easy for you to housebreak them. Pugs are intuitive of their master’s voice, and they want to please you. So use positive reinforcement when training them to teach them proper behavior.
What Health Issues Are Common In Teacup Pugs?
Teacup pugs are often bred from the runts of the litter, or pugs that have genetic defects. Sadly, this means that their puppies, too, are born with weak genes. Here are a few common health problems teacup pugs deal with in their lifetime.
The miniature pups have a brachycephalic facial structure or flat face. So it restricts their airways and can lead to serious breathing problems.
These lovable dogs are full of energy and love to play. However, they do not have the necessary energy reserves for such activities.
So they often end up drained and hypoglycemic. Hypoglycemia is a condition in which blood sugar levels drop. It could even lead to unconsciousness, and in the worst cases, death.
These pugs suffer from several stomach issues like food intolerance and constipation. Most often, they suffer from volvulus that then leads to other digestive problems. If a pooch does suffer from such an issue, it will likely not survive for long.
Teacup pugs inherit defective genes from their parents that can cause heart problems. Sometimes, these issues might also be sudden and unexpected.
These tiny fur babies suffer from this problem because of their miniature size. They often have an abnormal hip joint attachment, so it also makes movement difficult for them. They may also suffer from chronic pain or arthritis.
The most common fatality among teacup pugs is a collapsed trachea. It could be because of genes or because of mishandling the dog’s neck and chest.
While this might not seem as serious as the other issues mentioned, it is still a risk. Loss of sight could cause trauma in teacup pigs that may then lead to other problems.
What Is The Lifespan Of A Teacup Pug?
Unfortunately, these adorable poochies have quite a short lifespan. On average, a teacup pug can live for about 6-10 years.
When compared to their larger counterparts, this is a limited period. The standard pug has an average lifespan of about 12-15 years.
How To Care For Teacup Pugs?
Now that we are through the scary part, let us see how you can care for these precious fur babies. A teacup pug’s tiny size means it is very fragile and susceptible to injuries. So if you do decide to bring these tiny bundles of joy into your home, keep that in mind.
Without a doubt, you must offer your pug ample attention and care. Here are two important tips to keep in mind when doing so.
Exercise Is Vital But Keep It Short
By nature, teacup pugs are hyperactive dogs. However, as an owner, you will have to restrict their playtime. Sounds strange, doesn’t it?
Well, remember that their tiny bodies do not hold enough energy for excess play. Even with healthy diets, if these pugs get tired, they may develop hypoglycemia.
That does not mean you should avoid playing entirely! As with any other breed, exercise is an important part of the teacup pug’s daily routine. You should limit your pug’s workout to 30 minutes a day.
Take Care Of Your Pug’s Temperature
These tiny companions are not adept at temperature control. The shape of their face makes it hard for them to deal with heat. At the same time, their miniature bodies mean they get cold faster.
As an owner, it falls to you to help regulate your pug’s body temperature. If it is hot, keep your pup away from the sun. Also, help them cool down with an air conditioner or some cold water.
When it is cold, you can dress them in a cute and warm doggy sweater. Also, make sure that the sweater is not uncomfortable for your furry pal.
How To Feed A Teacup Pug?
A nutritious and planned diet is a must for tiny teacup pugs because of their high energy levels. You must ensure that your little friend gets the right amount of nutrients and proteins. The best way to feed these pups is with a feeding schedule.
The ideal meal for a pug would include 40% meat, 30% starch, and 30% vegetables. You should always include meat in your dog’s meals because it is their primary source of proteins. Another step you should not forget is adding a dog supplement to the meal.
Here is a list of suitable meal options for your adorable pug:
- Sweet potatoes
- Brown rice
- Whole meats (chicken, beef, fish, and lamb)
- Peas and green beans
- Kale and parsley
Teacup pugs can suffer from several digestive issues, so you need to be careful when feeding them. These are a few foods you should avoid at any cost:
- Grapes, currants, and raisins
- Items containing caffeine (chocolate, coffee)
- Nuts (almonds, macadamia, walnuts, pistachio)
- Canned or wet food
- Seasonings, salt, and butter
- Food meant for large breeds (large kibbles)
- Avocado, garlic, mushrooms, onions, green tomatoes, and raw potatoes
How Often Should You Feed Your Teacup Pug?
Like with any other breed, teacup pugs need feeding according to their age. Here is a meal guide you can follow for your little poochie according to the age:
- 1-3 months: 3-4 meals/day (1/4 cup-1/2 cup of nutrient-heavy dry and wet foods)
- 3-6 months: 3 meals/day (1/4-1/3 cups of quality food)
- 8-12 months: 3 meals/day (1/3-1/2 cups of quality food)
- Older than 12 months: 1-2 meals (1/2 cup of quality food)
How To Groom Teacup Pugs?
Much like standard pugs, these tiny dogs tend to shed a lot. To make matters worse, teacup pugs shed through the year and not on a seasonal basis. So if you, your family members, or your guests are allergic to dog hair, you will need to be extra careful.
That said, handling the pet dander from these mini pups is pretty easy. Here are some key tips for you to follow while maintaining your pooch.
Brush Your Pug 2 To 3 Times A Week
If you brush your pup’s hair regularly, it will help reduce the shedding around your home. Since teacup pugs are heavy shedders, try to brush them three times a week for at least 5-10 minutes.
Wash Your Pug Once In Every 1 To 2 Months
Coat and skincare are things you cannot compromise on with any dog breed. You want to maintain the natural oils in a teacup pug’s skin and fur. So limit showering to once, every one or two months.
Use Tearless Pet Products
A teacup pug’s eyes are bulging and exposed, so it is important to invest in tearless products. Whether you are using shampoo or wipes, make sure it has a tearless formula. Such products will be easy on your furry friend’s eyes and nasal airway!
Properly Dry Your Pug’s Folds
If you do not pay enough attention, wet folds can cause infections in tiny pugs. After washing, leftover moisture can lead to germ infestation. So make sure to thoroughly dry your pup after washing or even if it comes into contact with water.
Can First Time Pet Owners Handle Teacup Pugs?
Teacup pugs require a lot more maintenance and care than the average dog out there. While it is true that their tiny stature makes them aesthetic and appealing, managing them is not easy.
If you are looking for your first pet, this would be even more difficult. As a new owner, you will not have the experience to tell when a pup might be feeling unwell. Remember, dogs cannot speak, so it comes down to reading the tiniest signs to figure out if something is wrong.
If you are looking for a lovable family pet that everyone can enjoy, this fragile breed is not for you. Also, these tiny pugs can cost upwards of USD 300 to almost USD 4000. So invest in these fur babies only when you can commit to caring for them.
A teacup pug can be an adorable addition to your family if you can give it the necessary attention. However, keep in mind that these dogs are very fragile.
Always make sure that you have enough time and can deal with multiple vet visits. You may want a teacup pug for many reasons, but give it a thought before buying a tiny pug.