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Is a Teacup Poodle Bigger than a Toy Poodle?

2 red poodles, one teacup. one toy, isolated on a white background

No, a teacup poodle is not bigger than a toy poodle. Instead, it is smaller and that’s one of the marked differences between these two dogs. A lot of people can’t distinguish between these cute, little poodles because they have a lot in common. In this article, we will discuss the main features of teacup and toy poodles to answer some of the doubts.

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Key Characteristics of a Teacup Poodle

The following are some important points that you must know about teacup poodles.


France and Germany have a bit of a debate about the exact origin of this dog. According to AKC, teacup poodles were originally developed in Germany, but they became popular once they reached France. French dog enthusiasts don’t agree with that as they feel that their ancestors were behind this adorable pup. In either case, poodles were created to serve as water retrievers, and they did really well at that job.

NOTE: Keep in mind that the poodles originated in the standard size and this variation was introduced later on.


Close up portrait of a tiny, red, poodle

Teacup poodles are always less than 10 inches in height. They grow anywhere between 6 and 9 inches tall and will weigh around 2-6 pounds. They often appear square in shape because their length is quite similar to their height. These cute pups come in a wide range of colors including brown, cream, white, and red.

Exercise Requirements

Small brown poodle jumping hurdles on an agility course

This breed is often considered an ideal alternative for being a lap dog. Hence, it won’t require a lot of exercise and a 30-minute walk should be enough for the day. It will also give them some mental stimulation and an opportunity to explore their surroundings. You can choose different spots in the neighborhood and switch between them to keep it interesting.


Small white poodle standing on a chair

Teacup poodles have a sweet and cheerful personality that can make anyone fall for them. They love to entertain and will attract your attention with their cute appearance and actions. This friendly dog demands a lot of love and won’t stand long hours of loneliness. Therefore, it is ideal for families that have ample time for their pets.

Although these intelligent pups are always willing to socialize, they do keep an eye out for a potential threat. This is why your teacup poodle may start barking when a stranger is around. However, they are easy to manage and will get used to a new face if they see him/her often.

Teacup poodles are an ideal candidate to become lapdogs because they are small and require minimal physical activity. A short walk will keep them sorted for the day as they prefer to stay indoors and enjoy your company.

Key Characteristics of a Toy Poodle

A tan poodle and a white poodle sitting in a chair. Both with short haircuts

Some of the most vital features of toy poodles are discussed below.


Just like teacup poodles, the origin of toy poodles is also not clear and we have different theories. According to one claim, the ancestors of this breed belonged to Africa and came to Europe through Portugal. Another theory suggests that toy poodles originated in the countries of Eastern Europe. However, most people seem to believe that German soldiers took these lovely pups (to France) with them during the war.

Toy Poodles were quite famous in the circus because they are intelligent and learned new things quickly. Their desire to please humans also helped them to excel in this job. These small canines were also known as ‘Sleeve Poodles’ because they were used as hand warmers.


Small white poodle cooling itself on stone floors

This smaller version of poodle can grow up to 10 inches in height and weighs between 4 and 6 pounds. It is much more rounded than teacup poodles and has a beautiful personality. Hence, it is often preferred for dog shows. The coat of this poodle is wavy and soft and often comes in solid colors. 

Exercise Requirements

Small white poodle jumping in grass

Although toy poodles are very small in stature, they have an abundant supply of energy. Therefore, they will need a rigorous exercise routine to burn the excess energy and stay calm. Experts believe that you should give them at least an hour of physical exertion to keep them happy. You can either go on a long walk in the neighborhood or play some games in your backyard.


small black poodle hiding inside a persons pink jacket while they are wearing it

These canines are very versatile and can adapt to any living environment. Whether you are living in a busy city or a calmer town, toy poodles will be fine. All they need is your attention and some regular exercise to stay calm and happy. They like to be a part of everything that is happening around them and will make perfect companions.

It has been observed that a toy poodle does best when he/she is always accompanied by a human. This is because separation anxiety is a problem with this canine. Staying alone will make them anxious and it can also result in bad habits. Therefore, proper training at an early age is important for these poodles.

Which is better? A Teacup or Toy Poodle?

3 small red poodle puppies on a white background

There is no clear-cut answer to this question because it depends on the needs and lifestyle of your family. For example, a teacup poodle will be more suitable for inactive families who don’t want to take their pooch for long walks. Likewise, this type of poodle is ideal for owners who are seeking a lapdog.

On the other hand, toy poodles are a better alternative for active people. They can join you on your morning walk and will give you good company in your exercise routine. Similarly, they are more suitable for families with children because teacup poodles can get intimidated if they are mishandled. This can lead to an unwanted incident so we won’t recommend them for families with kids.  

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