|Barked: Sun Apr 29, '12 11:54am PST |
|First off, there is no such thing as "teacup." That is just a gimmick used by people breeding soley for tiny size rather than for health. And Lilith is right, some dogs are SUPPOSED to be tiny according to breed standard- for example, ACK standard Chihuahuas should fall between 2-6 pounds and Pomeranians should be between 3-7 pounds. The yorkies you saw fit in the 3-7 pound standard for their breed, so they really weren't too small according to standard. I guess what you are really asking is why people want small breed dogs in general...
I am a small dog owner. My two are pomeranian/chihuahua mix littermates- Kip is at 6.3 pounds, but Oogie was the runt and she's much smaller at 3.5 pounds. I didn't choose her because she was the smallest; she could be the same size as Kip and I would love her just the same.
Why on earth would I want dogs less than 7 pounds a piece? Well, because I LIKE small dogs (particularly pomeranians and chihuahuas and mixes of the two). They fit my living situation well (an apartment), I can afford to feed them very high quality food since they don't need a massive amount of it, they are easy to clean up after (small dog= small mess), they are MUCH less likely to be able to be destructive on a large scale (think a big dog ripping up the couch, chewing up part of the wall, knocking things off of tables with it's tail, or getting into the trash bin), they are compact and easy to travel with, they don't cut off the circulation to my legs when they sit in my lap, they don't hog the bed at night and are the perfect size for cuddles, they are a breeze to bathe and groom, and they are easy to pick up if I need to. They are also good with a 30-60 minute daily walk... I don't have the time currently to take a large more active dog out running for 3 hours every day. And I happen to think that small dogs are pretty cute.
That said, I prefer Kip's size of 6ish pounds to Oogie's tinier stature. But at this time, I really wouldn't want a dog any larger than him.
You are right that all of those negative things you mentioned can happen with a small dog (the pup getting stepped on or a kid squeezing it or a big dog killing it in a bite)... but that's a tradeoff that some people make because they like the BENEFITS of small dogs that I mentioned previously. A responsible owner would take it upon themselves to prevent those negative events from happening, and that doesn't necessarily hinder what you can do with your dog- in fact, in some ways it makes it easier to take them more places with you, resulting in a more socialized dog. I take Kip and Oogie with me just about everywhere- from running errands to dog friendly cafes to hikes in the woods to friends' houses to small-dog-only playdates and meetups- they are super easy to pick up and take with me places and they love joining me. HOWEVER, I am NOT one of those people who carries around my dogs in a purse... they walk on a leash just like any other dog does. I don't really let me two interact with big dogs, so we avoid them while we are out. With kids we encounter, I only let calm ones who know to get down and put their hand out first interact with them... screaming hyper kiddos who are rough and handsy really shouldn't be interacting with ANY dog as far as I am concerned... they need to learn manners before interacting with other people's dogs.
And no, not every small dog owner is "undercompensating." Some people just happen to like small dogs and feel they fit better with their lifestyle... I am one of those people. I think anyone with ANY dog should feel special that they are lucky enough to have their canine buddy in their life, regardless of size. That said, the people who are "undercompensating" are the ones who are buying the dog SOLEY based on size who really see the dog as just an accessory... not as a dog that should be loved and treated as such.
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