The teacup Labradoodle is not an official variant of the Labradoodle mix. This version is very small, but their tiny size can cause quite a lot of problems.
- What is a teacup Labradoodle?
- How big do teacup Labradoodles get?
- Teacup Labradoodle temperament and training
- Health concerns associated with teacup dogs
- Finding teacup Labradoodle puppies
Teacup dogs are bred to be extremely small. They may also be called toy or micro dogs, and will remain as small as puppies for their entire lives. Teacup Labradoodles are not officially recognised anywhere. They are the smallest type of Labradoodle available, smaller even than miniature Labradoodles. However, this tiny size comes with a price, and many teacup Labradoodles experience a large number of health issues as a consequence.
What is a Teacup Labradoodle?
Since a teacup Labradoodle is not an official variant of this mix, there can be some confusion about this tiny dog! Teacup Labradoodles are not the same as Miniature Labradoodles. Teacup dogs are a variety of toy breeds, known for their extreme, exaggerated size. These dogs are bred to be as small as possible. Their name comes from their ability to fit inside a teacup, as a young puppy would be able to.
Toy and teacup dogs were first popularised by celebrities, who owned dogs small enough to carry in their handbags. Since then, some people have bred smaller versions of many purebred dogs, often selling these tiny varieties as ideal for a low energy pet in small homes.
A standard Labradoodle is a medium to large dog. So, to achieve teacup dog sizes, breeders will usually have to breed the smallest dogs over several generations of litters. Let’s take a closer look at size in teacup Labradoodles, and how such a small stature is achieved.
How Big Do Teacup Labradoodles Get?
Since there is no official teacup Labradoodle variety, there is nowhere to look for official statistics on this dog’s size. However, as a general rule, teacup dogs will not exceed 5 lbs in weight. Their height at the withers will be a matter of inches. These dogs are incredibly tiny. Especially compared to the standard Labradoodle. Many teacup dogs are labelled ‘forever puppies’, simply because they never grow larger than a regular sized puppy.
Breeders cannot achieve these sizes overnight. The process of getting a teacup Labradoodle will usually involve breeding several generations using only the smallest puppies in a litter, or the runts of the litter. They may also involve the Toy Poodle in f1 Labradoodle parents, in an attempt to achieve a small size from the offset.
In some cases, breeders may involve other toy breeds. For instance, they may breed a small Labradoodle with a Chihuahua, to encourage a smaller size. Of course, this would no longer make the dog a Labradoodle. So make sure to find out exactly how a breeder is achieving this size, as it can have a huge impact on your dog’s health and temperament.
Teacup Labradoodle Temperament
The standard Labradoodle is an intelligent, energetic, and family-oriented dog. It has high exercise needs, high grooming needs, and requires lots of mental stimulation. Breeders of teacup varieties hope to pack this big personality into a much smaller body. Smaller dogs often need less exercise than larger ones. But, they are also faster to groom since they have less fur, and cheaper to care for, since they require less food than larger breeds.
If a teacup Labradoodle has the same personality as a traditional Labradoodle mix, it will be friendly, affectionate, and playful. But, a teacup dog’s size can impact its personality. Since they are much more vulnerable, and prone to injuries, teacup dogs can be more fearful than larger dogs, which can lead to aggression. Of course, any bites may not hurt that much, but it is still a problematic behavior.
A Closer Look at Problematic Behaviors
Studies and owner-surveys suggest that small dogs tend to display more of these problematic behaviors than large breeds. And there’s a lot of potential explanations for this. Perhaps, owners tolerate biting and bad behaviors more, since their dogs are smaller and inflict less harm. Some theories suggest that bad behaviors in teacup and toy breeds are down to bad breeding practices, by breeders that prioritise appearance and size over health and temperament.
And others suggest it could be due to upbringing. Small dogs will still need exercise and mental stimulation. Without enough, they can display unwanted behaviors, just as larger breeds will. So, these unwanted behaviors could be caused by a misunderstanding of a teacup Labradoodle’s needs.
In some cases, behavioral problems in teacup breeds can be a symptom of common health problems. So, let’s examine some of the most common health problems teacup Labradoodles can suffer from, related to their size.
Teacup Labradoodle Health Problems
Teacup Labradoodles may be small and cute, but their extreme size can cause a number of huge problems around health and training. Since these tiny dogs have such small bladders, they may struggle with potty training more than larger breeds. So, owners must be more vigilant when it comes to taking their tiny dogs to the toilet regularly.
On top of this, there are several health problems that small dogs are more prone to. Here are some of the most common health issues that could affect a toy or teacup Labradoodle:
- Fragility and more common broken bones
- Breathing problems
- Myxomatous Mitral Valve Disease
- Hydrocephalus (water on the brain)
- Patellar luxation and arthritis
- Liver shunts
- Blindness and other eye issues
Managing Teacup Labradoodle Health
Since teacup dogs are so tiny, they will require much less food than larger dogs. But, this means that teacup Labradoodles can very easily become overweight or obese. Obesity can worsen some of the health problems above, particularly joint issues.
Regular veterinary checks and a high level of daily care is very important for small dogs. Owners must be vigilant when watching for early symptoms of the above issues. Catching health problems early can go a long way towards extending your small dog’s lifespan, and improving their overall quality of life.
But, another point to be aware of is pain sensitivity. Studies and surveys have found that most people believe small dogs are more sensitive to pain than larger dogs. Not only can these health problems cause pain, but so can the treatments and recovery. And, complex treatment, like surgery, will be much harder on teacup dogs, since they are just so tiny. So, it’s really important to consider all of these factors before looking for a teacup Labradoodle for sale.
Finding a Teacup Labradoodle Puppy
Since teacup Labradoodle size is associated with so many health concerns, many reputable breeders will avoid breeding dogs with such an extreme size. This can mean it’s much harder to find the type of dog you’re looking for. In fact, dogs this small are much more commonly found in pet stores and puppy mills – places that prioritise profits over the health and care of their animals.
Puppy mills will usually follow trends. And, since the Labradoodle is such a popular dog at the moment, it’s very likely that you’ll stumble across some in your search. But, puppies from these places are often less healthy than puppies from reputable breeders. They are usually kept in poor conditions, and can be more likely to experience behavioral problems as a result of their negative early experiences.
It can be tempting to buy puppies from these places to “rescue” them. But, the financial support puppy mills get this way allows them to continue breeding unhealthy puppies. Signs of a puppy mill can include: lack of health testing evidence, multiple litters at any one time, multiple types of dog being bred, dogs kept in bad conditions, not allowing you to see puppies or dogs in person, and so on.
How to Find a Good Breeder
Since teacup dogs are often very unhealthy, you will most likely struggle to find a reputable breeder that breeds teacup Labradoodles. Instead, you may be better off looking for a Miniature Labradoodle, which is the smallest official variant of the mix.
Good breeders will have evidence of health testing, particularly of the most common Labradoodle problems. They will be happy to let you visit the puppies and meet the pup’s mother. All puppies and dogs will be a loved part of the family, will be friendly and healthy. The mother dog will respond to her name, and be happy for the breeder to handle the pups.
On top of this, reputable breeders will be happy to answer any of your questions, and will ask you plenty of questions in return. This is a sign they want their puppies to go to a good home. If you think you’re visiting a puppy mill, it’s best to leave and look elsewhere for your future puppy.
Should I Get a Teacup Labradoodle?
Teacup Labradoodles are hard to find from reputable breeders. They are prone to a huge number of health issues, and often aren’t suitable for family homes, since they are so delicate. These small dogs may seem easy to care for at a glance, but can actually require more time and care than a larger Labradoodle variant.
If you’re considering a teacup Labradoodle puppy, try looking at the Miniature Labradoodle instead. These dogs are slightly bigger, but are usually a much healthier option.
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References and Resources
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