A friend of mine and I were talking the other day, and I showed her a picture of my cat. I was telling that she was really cute as a kitten, and that I wished she could have stayed that way forever. Lo and behold, my friend said that she had always wanted a teacup pig. I was like, ”what?” and she told me it was a breed of pig that stays tiny forever. Well, with that I was SOLD. I had to find out more, and er, ah, possibly get my hands on one.
So, after 45 minutes of googling, comparing, and using my better judgement, I came up with the following verified facts.
- Teacup pigs are not an official breed of pig
- ‘Teacup’ is just an adjective that breeders use to make pigs more valuable
- Even if you get a pig from an honest breeder, many people do not realize that normal-sized pigs grow to be 500-700 pounds, so a very, very small pig would be 40-50 pounds, much bigger than most people expect.
- Many ‘teacup’ pigs are underfed, and their growth is stunted.
In short? Teacup pigs don’t exist like people expect them to. While they might fit into a teacup as newborn piglets, even a very small full-grown pig is larger than most people want. Tragically, the adorable above piggy can’t stay that way forever.
Rather disappointed, I turned my attention to another, similar search term; teacup puppies.
I googled and searched some more, and I came up with the following;
- Teacup puppies are not an official dog breed
- A ‘toy-sized’ dog is an official term, a dog smaller than 7 pounds and shorter than 10 inches at the shoulder is a toy-sized dog
- ‘Teacup’ is an unofficial term used to describe a dog that is smaller than 5 pounds
- Honest breeders will specify that ‘teacup’ is a unofficial term
Once again, I was SOLD. I looked at prices, care, and where to get them, and here is the summary;
- Teacup dogs are not much harder to care for than any other small dog (like a Chihuahua), although they do require a little extra care
- The most common teacup dog breeds are Shih Tzu, Pomeranian, Maltese, and Yorkies. The above puppy is a Pomeranian estimated to grow to be 4 pounds or less.
- These dogs are highly prized, and can go for as much as $3,995 for a tiny Shih Tzu
- There are online breeders who you can buy a puppy from, and the puppy will be flown with a human escort. Generally, that adds about $150 to your total puppy price.
In short? Teacup puppies DO exist, although unofficially. They will probably not fit in a teacup forever, but they will stay very small their whole lives. These puppies are highly prized however, and have a price tag to match; $500-$600 for a toy-sized puppy, and more for a teacup.
My verdict? I definitely want one of these sweet little dogs, preferably a Maltese or Pomeranian. I will most likely be doing a lot more research (as my parents always have me research a pet before seriously considering getting one), but for now, here’s some more cute puppy pictures;
*dies of cuteness overload*
See you soon, pretzels!