Toy Dogs, Small Dog Breeds vs Teacup, Pocket Dogs.Small dog breeds, or Toy dogs are usually under 15", and weighing less than 15 LBS.
Toy dogs that are under 10" may be called Miniature Dogs.
The very smallest version of Toy dogs are sometimes called Teacup-, or Pocket Dogs, but these two titles are not recognized by any breed registry.
Toy, or small dogs, including our Papillons, and Phalenes are basically hardy dogs, with mostly a big dog attitude, with an average of a 13 year life span. There are many Papillons who reach the age of 16+.
But here I want to focus on the health problems+ heart breaks people have when they purchase a cute Pap, ever so tiny, under the term Teacup, or Pocket Pup.
These little dogs, weighing barely 2 LBS when full grown, are mostly the results of inbreeding, as litter mates, or sons, daughters to parents.
With inbreeding you have the high risk of genetic diseases. And even not inbred, breeding for increasingly smaller offspring will put all pups , and moms in danger. Small dogs, or Papillons have small litters anyway, with an average of (my Papillons) 2.2-(other small dog) 4. A very small mom will most likely have big troubles to bear puppies, and her naturally ability of bearing any healthy puppies diminishes.
There is no such a thing as a Teacup dog.
Another problem you may run into is that you may purchase a very tiny puppy under the Teacup term, but it is a puppy in a much younger age given to you than it actually is.
Most people can not distinguish the difference between a 5 week old puppy, and a 8, or 10 week old one, simply because of the lack of experience. A small puppy is small, and that is what they see; especially in small breeds.
These kind of breeders just simply lie to you for extra money. The outcome here does not need be further explained.
The very worst and horrible kind of breeders are the ones who force the puppies to remain small by starving them. The pups are taken of their moms milk bar, and given only occasional puppy formula or sometimes no formula at all, and substitute only liquid vitamins, and or liquid gel like Nutri Cal; which all stunts their growth.
All these puppies will have health problems, as they have insufficient calcium for bone growth, protein for muscle, brain development, no colostrum given to develop their immune system.
The outcome is that you purchased a dog which will remain frail, fragile in all aspects, with a possible lifespan of only 1/3 of the normal lifespan.
I had written an article before about the size of the Papillon Dog. I encourage you to click here and read.
Don't make the "Teacup" mistake, go for a healthy pap!!