What Is a Toy Or Teacup Dachshund?

Toy Teacup Miniature Dachshund

Have you seen a toy or teacup Dachshund advertised online? Are you wondering what a toy or teacup Dachshund is? Or if they’re even a real breed? Here’s everything you need to know about toy and teacup Dachshunds!

What Is a Toy Or Teacup Dachshund? A toy or teacup Dachshund is not a real dog breed, it’s just a very small miniature Dachshund. The names ‘toy’ and ‘teacup’ generally refer to Dachshunds that are less than 13cm in height to their withers and weigh less than 8 pounds or 3.6kg when fully grown.

Read on to find out more about toy and teacup Dachshunds, if they’re a real breed, where the names come from, how much they’re said to weigh, and what you need to know before buying one.

This article is based on research and personal experience as a Dachshund owner of 10+ years. I’m not a Vet, qualified dog trainer or dog behaviourist.


Toy And Teacup Dachshunds Explained

A toy or teacup Dachshund is the name some people give to very small miniature Dachshunds that weigh less than 8 pounds or 3.6kg at 12 months old.

The idea is that the Dachshunds are so tiny they look like toys and could probably fit into a teacup if you ever felt the need to put them in one!

People like the idea of toy or teacup Dachshunds because they’re small, cute and Instagrammable. They’re also more unusual, easier to carry around and are perfectly sized for apartment-living – although all Dachshunds are really!

People also presume toy or teacup Dachshunds will be less work and require less exercise, but that’s not necessarily the case. All Dachshunds require lots of love, attention, time and training, no matter how big or small they are!

Small miniature Dachshunds do look cute because they’re so tiny and puppy-like, even when fully grown. But deliberately producing tiny Dachshunds is highly unethical and not something any reputable breeder would ever do.

So, if you ever hear a breeder using the terms ‘toy’ or ‘teacup’ to sell you a Dachshund, think carefully before you buy them! A credible breeder would never use terms like ‘toy’, ‘teacup’ or ‘rare’ to sell their puppies.

Is A Toy Or Teacup Dachshund A Real Breed?

No, ‘toy’ and ‘teacup’ Dachshunds are not real breeds. While some dog breeds do have toy versions of the breed, Dachshunds do not. In the UK and the US, the only two sizes of Dachshund that are officially recognised by the breed standard are ‘standard‘ and ‘miniature‘. In Europe, you can also get kaninchen (rabbit) Dachshunds, which are smaller than miniatures.

Toy or Teacup sized miniature Dachshund puppy laying on the floor
Toy or Teacup sized miniature Dachshund puppy laying on the floor

While it’s possible that some Dachshunds may be born smaller than others, this just makes them small miniatures. There’s no such thing as a ‘toy’ or ‘teacup’ Dachshund.

This isn’t to say that toy breeds don’t exist. For some dog breeds, they do. The Kennel Clubs classify toy breeds as ‘small companion or lap dogs’.

Some are versions of dog breeds that have been deliberately bred to be miniature. For example, the toy poodle, English toy terrier, Russian toy and miniature pinscher.

Others are dog breeds that are naturally small, like Pekingese, pugs, Maltese, Italian greyhounds, Chinese crested dogs and chihuahuas.

None of the major dog registries – the United Canine Association, the United Kennel Club, the American Kennel Club or the UK Kennel Club – recognise ‘toy’ as a category of Dachshund.

Where Do The Names Toy Or Teacup Dachshunds Come From?

The idea of toy or teacup Dachshunds is quite a new thing. It’s got nothing to do with the Dachshund’s history as a hunting dog.

Miniature and standard Dachshunds were bred to be a specific size and shape so they could wriggle into holes and flush out badgers and rabbits.

Basically, the names ‘toy’ and ‘teacup’ have been adopted by breeders as a way to profit from small dogs in the litter. They could either be the runt of the litter or dogs they’ve deliberately bred in a way that keeps them small.

At one time breeders would have to almost give away the runts in the litter because no one wanted them. By giving them a cute name and marketing them as ‘rare’, breeders have now found a way to make them desirable.

They can charge as much for these small and potentially sickly dogs as they can for miniature and standard Dachshunds. In fact, some may even charge more for them by convincing buyers they’re more rare and unique!

Cute Toy or Teacup sized miniature Dachshund puppy
Cute Toy or Teacup sized miniature Dachshund puppy

How Are Toy Or Teacup Dachshunds Bred?

Quite often, a Dachshund that’s advertised as a toy or teacup variety will be the runt of the litter. This is normally the smallest and weakest puppy in the litter.

The puppy is often sickly because it can’t feed from his mum properly. This is because his brothers and sisters are stronger than him and getting all the milk.

While the puppy could still make a lovely pet, he may end up having health problems and costing you a lot in vet bills.

Typical issues with runts include fragile bones, a weakened immune system and poorly functioning organs. This means there’s a potential for shortened life expectancy.

Should you save the Dachshund?

While it’s OK to want to give this Dachshund a home, you need to be aware that he could cost you more in vet bills. He may also need more care than a regular Dachshund.

Any reputable breeder wouldn’t charge you a lot of money for taking on the runt of the litter. They’d also be open with you about the extra care the Dachshund may need.

Sadly, some unscrupulous breeders will purposely breed two runts to create a litter of unhealthily small Dachshunds. This is so cruel to the puppies and the parents!

If you sense this is happening with your breeder, it may be best not to buy the puppy, even to save him. This just gives the breeder more money and the demand to keep doing it.

Another thing that bad breeders do is underfeed the mother. They may also take the puppy off the mother’s milk when it’s too young, to stunt its growth.

This is obviously extremely cruel and puts the Dachshunds at greater risk of health difficulties. Not to mention making them miserable and being terrible for their welfare.

Plus, if the puppy hasn’t been allowed to feed properly or interact with his mum and siblings in a natural way, he may develop behavioural issues further down the line. This could potentially cause big issues for you.

Noisy Toy or Teacup sized miniature Dachshund puppy
Noisy Toy or Teacup sized miniature Dachshund puppy

How Much Does A Toy Or Teacup Dachshund Weigh?

Although there’s no breed standard that recognises a toy size for Dachshunds, the terms ‘toy’ and ‘teacup’ generally refer to Dachshunds that weigh less than 8 pounds or 3.6kg at 12 months old.

As Kennel Clubs in the US and the UK only recognise ‘standard‘ and ‘miniature‘ Dachshunds, a ‘toy’ Dachshund is technically just a small miniature. This means that it weighs less than 11 lbs or 5kg.

A standard Dachshund weighs 16–32 lbs or 7–14kg, and a miniature Dachshund weighs up to 11 lbs or 5kg.

In Europe, the breed standard also recognises a third size of Dachshund, which is called a kaninchen (or rabbit) Dachshund. This weighs up to 8 lbs.

So, if you take into account the European breed standard, you could say a toy or teacup Dachshund is more like a rabbit Dachshund.

Although rabbit Dachshunds are bred by very experienced breeders and would never be advertised as ‘toy’, teacup’, ‘unique’, ‘special’ or ‘rare’.

Should I Buy A Toy Or Teacup Dachshund?

If you see someone advertising a toy or teacup Dachshund online, think carefully before buying it. In fact, steer clear of anyone advertising Dachshunds online if they use words like ‘rare’ or ‘unique’.

A reputable breeder wouldn’t intentionally breed a Dachshund to be unhealthily small, so you shouldn’t trust breeders that do this.

A big red flag is if they are advertising multiple ‘toy’ or ‘teacup’ Dachshunds. This shows they’re deliberately breeding the dogs to be tiny. They could also be lying about the size of the Dachshund or the puppy may not exist at all.

If you’d like to buy a miniature Dachshund but would prefer one that’s on the smaller side, the best thing to do is find a reputable breeder and ask for their advice.

They might routinely produce small miniatures, and that’s OK – as long as the puppies are healthy, the breeder is part of a Kennel Club breeder scheme, and you’re confident they’re credible, responsible and ethical.

You could also adopt a Dachshund that you fall in love with at your local dog shelter. Their hearts only come in one size – BIG!


So, there you have it! Toy and teacup Dachshunds don’t exist. They’re just really small miniature Dachshunds that weigh less than 8 lbs or 3.6 kilos. Small Dachshunds are often the runts of the litter and can be more prone to health problems. Don’t be fooled by adverts selling ‘unique’ or ‘rare’ puppies online as no responsible breeder would ever do this. Dachshunds are perfect whatever their size so, love them unconditionally, and keep the teacups just for your tea!

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What is a toy or teacup Dachshund?
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