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ilovechoc's avatar

Are small puppies usually healthy?

Asked by ilovechoc (140 points ) July 10th, 2011

Hi,

I’m just wondering if anyone out there have small pups before? I really want to have a puppy (a small one, because I’m living in an apartment), but I’m just curious if small puppies are okay in terms of its health and stuff like that? and is it costly to take care of a small puppy?

Just for some additional info: the previous owner claimed that when it’s full grown it won’t be more than 5lbs. and it’s a pomeranian mixed with poodle.

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16 Answers

Judi's avatar

Sounds like a puddler to me. Ask the manager how much it will cost to replace the carpet.

jaytkay's avatar

Sounds like a puddler to me.

Why do you say that?

zenvelo's avatar

You really need to be careful. My ex paid a lot for a Maltese puppy for the kids; it turned out to have a significant heart defect. If yours is a cross, it has a better chance of being healthy because it won’t have an inbred condition. But if yours is a multiple generation mix, it can cause problems.

Make sure you can get your money back from the breeder if something is found wrong.

Good Luck.

Judi's avatar

Small dogs are harder to housebreak. Especially toy poodles.

athenasgriffin's avatar

My mom has a baby Chihuahua right now, and he is a trooper. However, you have to be really careful about feeding them often so their blood sugar doesn’t drop. Also, it is better to wait until they are larger for many of the immunizations that would normally be given to puppies. There is more risk involved in any sort of procedure because of their small stature. It is far too easy to give a 2 pound puppy too much anesthesia/immunization, and they can be harmed by it. Also, you have to worry more about things like raisins and chocolate and other poisons because a little bit can hurt them a lot.

Despite all of this, toy puppies are the cutest thing in the world. You will constantly be in awe of the amount of will power and brains something so small has.

crisw's avatar

No.

Very small puppies have significantly more health problems.

First of all, good breeders do not breed abnormally small puppies on purpose. “Teacup” puppies (especially mixes such as you are contemplating) are bred by those intent on profit, not the betterment of the breed, and thus the parents are unlikely to have health testing.

Secondly, very small puppies are prone to hypoglycemia which can kill.

Lastly, if you are working, you don’t want a puppy, especially one with a bladder the size of a marble. You will be far better off adopting a healthy, already-housebroken adult small dog from a rescue.

john65pennington's avatar

Generally, most puppies are healthy. The main problem are puppies that are in-bred with a brother or sister. I had a border collie that was in this condition. She was beyond wild and uncontrollable. We later discovered that she was in-bred and kept in a cage, since birth.

Puppy mills are the main villian in puppies that are psycho. Sorry for the language, but that is just the way it happens. jp

john65pennington's avatar

Judi….......good answer. john

jaytkay's avatar

How about a 10 or 15 pound dog?

I had a 12 pound terrier mutt. She was fairly smart, athletic and easy to house train.

Great avatar, @ilovechoc. I used that picture on Fluther for Halloween. It was my Justin Bieber costume!

lillycoyote's avatar

@crisw is right. Here is an article on so-called tea cup puppies. You don’t want one if you want a healthy dog and I don’t think anyone should encourage or participate in the breeding of them, in my opinion. It’s a horrible thing to do to a living creature
.

Coloma's avatar

I had two small dogs years ago, one was a Dachshund and ? mix and the other a toy Fox Terrier and Schipperke X. Both were very smart and well trained, but, a lot of the toy breeds now days do have issues as have been mentioned.

CWOTUS's avatar

Don’t think in terms of “puppy”. If you get a puppy it will grow into a “dog”, and in less time than you realize. So don’t just think of how (relatively) insignificant the weight, size and habits of a puppy are; consider the dog you’ll have in a few months.

There’s no way to generalize about “puppies” in the abstract like this. Puppies that you get from reputable breeders will generally be healthy, because the breeder’s reputation depends on that. (That’s how they get to be “reputable”.)

Puppies from “puppy mill” operations may be healthy (you could get lucky), but that’s just coincidental. The conditions under which those puppies are bred, maintained and rushed to pet stores “while they’re still so cute” makes it unlikely to expect “good health” from such a beginning.

On the other hand, the mutt you pick up at your animal rescue shelter may or may not be healthy (and if the place is run well they will attempt to steer you toward “healthy” pups unless you have a lot of experience and desire in nursing sick animals to health – and a proven track record of having done that), but at least you will know everything that they know about the animal before you take it. They have no profit motive in foisting an unhealthy animal on you “to make a sale”; their purpose is to match needy animals with loving and capable owners.

That’s the way I got Willow eight years ago, and we’re both glad I did.

WestRiverrat's avatar

If you are going to be absent from the home for more than 4 hours at a time, you may want to get 2 pups so they have some companionship. Dogs are social animals and do better if they have companionship.

athenasgriffin's avatar

Although what @WestRiverrat says is true, I have never known a first time dog owner who had good experiences with getting two puppies at once. Mostly, people with two puppies that have grown up together are one of two things, very happy or (for new dog owners) very miserable.

crisw's avatar

@WestRiverrat

Have to disagree with you on that. Almost all reputable trainers advise against getting two puppies at the same time, because they will bond more with each other than with you.

Plucky's avatar

I agree with @crisw on both points. Tiny dogs are much more prone to physical, psychological and sexual issues than larger breeds. It is also not usually a good idea to get two puppies at the same time. That makes training more difficult – especially for inexperienced people. Again, as stated, the dogs will bond much more with each other than they will with you (hence the training issues).

I’d like to add that, if this is your first dog, you should get a larger size. Small dogs/puppies are more difficult (in regards to practically everything), especially for people who are not experienced with dogs. I’m not saying that if you get a small dog, everything will go wrong. I’m just saying that issues are much more likely to occur – issues you may not be fully capable of dealing with yet.

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