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Teacup Pug Info: Pictures, Temperament & Traits


May 30, 2023
Teacup Pug Info: Pictures, Temperament & Traits


Teacup pug standing on wooden floor

The Teacup Pug is a dwarf version of the standard Pug that “fits in a teacup”. One of the popular teacup pet trends, the Teacup Pug is not an officially recognized Pug variation, but that doesn’t sway any of this tiny pup’s fanbase.

Though adorable, Teacup Pugs can experience health problems as a result of breeding to produce a smaller pup, often from breeding two runts. Before you bring a Teacup Pug home, here’s what you need to know.

Breed Overview

Suitable for:

Companions, lap dogs


Single owners, families with children, people with limited space

Teacup Pugs aren’t an official breed variation on the standard Pug. They’re more of a novelty for people who want a pint-sized version of the larger Pug. Because of their popularity, breeders strive to produce Teacup Pugs by breeding runts of the litter together or combining Pugs with smaller breeds or dwarf breeds. These dogs are often marketed as purebred Pugs and command high prices.

Teacup Pug Characteristics



High-energy dogs will need a lot of mental and physical stimulation to stay happy and healthy, while low-energy dogs require minimal physical activity. It’s important when choosing a dog to make sure their energy levels match your lifestyle or vice versa.



Easy-to-train dogs are more skilled at learning prompts and actions quickly with minimal training. Dogs that are harder to train will require a bit more patience and practice.



Some dog breeds are prone to certain genetic health problems, and some more than others. This doesn’t mean that every dog will have these issues, but they have an increased risk, so it’s important to understand and prepare for any additional needs they may require.



Some breeds, due to their size or their breeds potential genetic health issues, have shorter lifespans than others. Proper exercise, nutrition, and hygiene also play an important role in the lifespan of your pet.



Some dog breeds are more social than others, both towards humans and other dogs. More social dogs have a tendency to run up to strangers for pets and scratches, while less social dogs shy away and are more cautious, even potentially aggressive. No matter the breed, it’s important to socialize your dog and expose them to lots of different situations.


Teacup Pug Breed Puppies

Teacup Pugs are popular because of their ability to “fit in a teacup”. People are often attracted to their tiny size, especially when they’re pictured in an actual teacup or the palm of someone’s hand. Because these dogs are in such high demand, they can cost as much as $10,000, though you’re more likely to find pups in the range of $1,500 to $2,000.

It’s not uncommon for reputable breeders to charge high prices for their dogs, depending on the popularity of the breed and selling points like champion lineage or exceptional. But with Teacup Pugs, these prices are for novelty and demand, not a reflection of stellar breeding and bloodlines. These breeders choose their parent dogs based on their size first, sometimes without concern for the temperament or health of the bloodline. It’s possible that you will have a puppy with health issues or behavioral problems later in life. Another issue is that the genetics that determine a teacup-size dog aren’t guaranteed, so you could buy a tiny puppy and end up with a full-sized adult pug.

Like other novelty breeds, Teacup Pugs are sometimes purchased by enthusiastic owners only to have that novelty wear off. You may be able to find Teacup Pugs in shelters or rescues, which gives you the benefit of a lower adoption fee than a purchase price and a full understanding of the dog’s temperament and size as an adult.

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Temperament & Intelligence of the Teacup Pug

Are These Dogs Good for Families? 👪

Teacup Pugs are a good choice for families, much like standard Pugs. They get along well with children as long as they’re socialized properly. But due to their size, it’s crucial to monitor playtime with young children and teach them to play with the puppy appropriately. Otherwise, it’s easy for a tiny pup like a teacup to get injured.

Does This Breed Get Along With Other Pets?

Pugs are agreeable, friendly, and social dogs that get along well with other dogs, cats, and some small pets. Still, it’s possible for a Teacup Pug to have a prey drive and chase small animals, such as hamsters or rabbits, so it’s best to keep them separated and supervise any interactions. In addition, medium or large breeds that play rough can easily injure a Teacup Pug, so be mindful of leaving dogs alone together.

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Things to Know When Owning a Teacup Pug:

Food & Diet Requirements 🦴

Teacup Pugs have similar diet requirements as standard Pugs. You should rely on high-quality commercial dog food with a puppy formula until your dog reaches adulthood at around one year; then, it can be transitioned to an adult formula. Because of the Teacup Pug’s size, it may be best to get a small or toy breed formula that has smaller kibble that’s easier for your pup to eat comfortably.

Pugs are prone to overeating and obesity, whether they’re teacup or standard. Be careful about overfeeding your dog, which can contribute to joint problems or obesity-related health conditions.

Exercise 🐕

Pugs are laid-back dogs that are comfortable with a low-key lifestyle. They enjoy cuddling with their owners, especially as they age, but they do need some exercise and playtime. Puppies, in particular, require more attention and play to keep them engaged and stave off boredom, which can lead to undesirable behaviors.

Teacup Pugs are brachycephalic like standard Pugs, which means they have a shortened face that can affect their ability to breathe properly and cool themselves. If you live in a hot and humid environment, be careful about exercising your pup too rigorously.

Training 🎾

Pugs have been lap dogs for centuries, often as companions to royalty and public figures. With their small size, Teacup Pugs offer the same experience and are easy to train. Pugs are sensitive dogs, however, and don’t take well to punishment or harsh training methods. Always use positive reinforcement training with your dog and encourage early socialization to teach it confidence in new situations.

Grooming ✂️

The Teacup Pug’s coat is short and smooth, like the standard Pug. These dogs don’t shed much and don’t require a lot of grooming. Brushing every week or so should be sufficient to remove dead skin and loose hair. You should also bathe your Teacup Pug at least once a month—which is easy enough to do in a kitchen sink—and trim its nails.

Health & Conditions 🏥

Pugs are prone to certain health conditions, and given the breeding practices with Teacup Pugs, some of these may have a higher risk of occurring. Generally, Pugs are prone to eye problems, such as cherry eye, skin problems like mange and skinfold dermatitis, and breathing conditions related to their facial anatomy.

Minor Conditions

  • Skinfold dermatitis
  • Mange
  • Ear infections
  • Eye ulcers

Serious Conditions

  • Brachycephalic obstructive airway syndrome (BOAS)
  • Respiratory problems
  • Heatstroke
  • Obesity
  • Dental disease
  • Legg-Calvé-Perthe disease
  • Eye problems (cherry eye)

Male vs Female

Choosing between a male or female Teacup Pug is a matter of preference. They’re close in size and temperament. Some people believe that male dogs are more playful and loyal but may be more prone to aggression and behavioral issues. This isn’t well researched, however. Whichever you choose, getting your pup spayed or neutered is the ideal way to prevent health conditions and behavioral issues related to sex hormones.

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3 Little-Known Facts About The Teacup Pug

1. The Standard Pug Is the Only Recognized Pug

The American Kennel Club and other kennel clubs only recognize the standard Pug, not the variations like Teacup Pugs or Micro Pugs. These dogs are smaller than the typical Pug, but it’s considered a breed fault for kennel clubs and breed registries.

2. Teacup Pugs Are Lap Dogs Like Their Ancestors

Standard Pugs have been lap dogs for royalty, nobles, and public figures for centuries. They were especially popular among Chinese emperors. Similarly, the novelty Teacup Pug is a choice lapdog for celebrities.

3. “Teacup Breeds” Is an Unofficial Term

Teacup dogs come in many different breeds, but they’re not a standard that’s accepted by kennel clubs. This term arose because these dogs can “fit in a teacup.” Comparatively, a toy or miniature breed is an official designation for many smaller versions of the standard dog, such as a Poodle or Dachshund.


Final Thoughts

Teacup Pugs gained popularity for their small stature and unique look, but that may come at a cost. These dogs are highly sought in the pet market, despite not being a recognized purebred standard, leading some breeders to rely on unethical practices to produce smaller and smaller puppies. Because of this, Teacup Pugs may have health and behavioral problems that are less common in the standard versions.

Featured Image Credit: Jumpstory

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