Pearl’s aunt was the previous record holder.
a white chihuahua wearing a magenta sweater and jewel necklace lays in a person's palm
Credit: Guinness World Records

Pearl the Chihuahua is officially the shortest living dog in the world—even shorter than a TV remote. 

When she was born, teeny Pearl weighed less than 1 ounce. Now as an adult, the 2-year-old pup stands at 3.59 inches tall and 5 inches long—around the same length as a dollar bill, Guinness World Records says. Pearl's owner, Vanesa Semler, tells Guinness her dog is only "slightly taller than a teacup." 

The previous record holder, Miracle Milly, also a Chihuahua, passed away in 2020. However, her spirit lives on in the current title holder—as Pearl's mother is one of Milly's sisters. 

Pearl went back to where it all started when it was time to capture her world record, getting measured at the Orlando, Fla., hospital where she was born. The Evaluators measured the Chihuahuas three times using a dog measuring wicket. Per Guinness's rules, the measurements spanned from "the base of the front leg foot up to the top of the withers (the ridge between the shoulder blades) in a straight vertical line." 

Pearl's record-breaking gained international attention when she made her television debut on a TV talent show in Milan, Italy. Semler joined her on the show, telling the host how her little pup is a "bit of a diva" with very lavish tastes, who loves to eat chicken and salmon and also enjoys getting dressed up. Pearl wasn't fazed by her time in the spotlight, and was very calm despite being in front of a large audience. 

Even though she's officially an adult, Semler says the flamboyant pooch is still a "child at heart." However, she falls short—er, tall—of being Guinness's shortest dog ever. That title still belongs to a dwarf Yorkshire terrier who belonged to a British newspaper editor in the 1940s. That pup was only 2.8 inches tall.   

While Pearl and teacup dogs are certainly cute and tiny—be careful. Teacups and other tiny dogs are prone to a host of health concerns not seen in their larger counterparts. Many are not ethically bred and sometimes come from puppy mills, in which breeders' primary goal is to make a profit rather than ensuring healthy reproduction.

It's important to do your research and find a responsible breeder or consider adopting a dog from a shelter instead.