If you have wondered about the smallest dog on record, you aren't alone. Tons of people are fascinated by exceptionally tiny dogs and love looking at photos of them. It's true that they're absolutely adorable, but sadly, most of these dogs are so tiny thanks to serious congenital medical conditions.
The Smallest Dog Ever
There are many people who claim to have had the smallest dog ever, and it's difficult to keep up with who is right.
Sylvia the Yorkie
The "smallest dog ever recorded" is a tiny Yorkie named Sylvia. Sylvia was owned by Arthur Marples of England, and she died in 1945. It is said that she was 2.8 inches tall and measured 3.75 inches from her nose to the base of her tail. She was reported to have weighed only about four ounces.
Most record managers require dogs to be over one year old to ensure that they've actually stopped growing when deciding whether the dog is the smallest or not.
More Guinness World Record Smallest Dogs
Nearly every year, someone claims they have a smaller dog than the current title holder, but few go so far as achieving a Guinness World Record, like these pups.
Pearl — Shortest Living Dog
Heaven Sent Brandy — Smallest Length
Heaven Sent Brandy was a tiny female Chihuahua that measured six inches from her nose to the tip of her tail. Even though she passed in 2014, Guinness considers her the smallest dog ever in terms of length.
Past Smallest Dog Record Contenders and Movement-Makers
Cuda — the Short-Spined Pit Bull
While she was bigger than all the other dogs on this list, Cuda the pit bull made waves when she lost the World's Ugliest Dog Contest. (We think you're beautiful, Cuda!) During her life, Cuda and her owner, Julie LeRoy, raised awareness about how amazing pit bull type dogs are, celebrated shelter dogs, and spread the word about the rare short spine syndrome Cuda had. For such a small pit bull, that's a large list of achievements!
Cupcake — World's Smallest Service Dog
Cupcake measured only 6.25 inches tall in 2012 and was officially recognized as the World's Smallest Service Dog by the Guinness World Record for her work with her owner.
Picasso — the World's Smallest Pit Bull, Maybe?
Picasso is teeny, for sure, and while the video claims he's the "World's Smallest Pit Bull," we're not quite so sure. Either way, he's definitely adorable, and we love how he's raising awareness about the challenges pit bull owners and their pups face.
Smallest Breed of Dog
The chihuahua is officially the smallest dog breed in the world. These dogs are generally 5 to 8 inches tall, and they must weigh not more than six pounds to fit the ideal American Kennel Club standard.
The Problem With Tiny Dogs and Health
While many small dogs are generally healthy, it's important to note that the tiniest dogs on record often have a variety of health problems or live very short lives due to their unique needs. Tiny dogs are interesting to read about, but caring for them can be exceptionally difficult. According to Torrance Companion Animal Hospital, "To create teacup dogs, breeders will breed together runts from different litters. This can be a problem because sometimes dogs are the runts because of a birth defect or other medical condition." So, while we can adore these tiny puppers from afar, you'll probably be better staying away from buying a tiny dog yourself.