The Chihuahua is famous for being the ultimate purse dog. This national symbol of Mexico is renowned for being the smallest dog breed, but makes up for its diminutive stature with a personality as big as any giant breed dog.
Chihuahuas enjoy life to the fullest, and they love being around and spending time with their human companions. The Chihuahua is a portable little pet, at home inside tote bags and purses. They form deep bonds with their guardians, and are both loyal and courageous when it comes to protecting their family.
TemperamentWhile the breeds that created the Chihuahua are unclear, the behavior of the breed can almost be classified as that of a terrier. Chihuahuas are brave, alert, and watchful, and are great at sounding the alarm when a stranger approaches their property. Despite this, they’re also playful and affectionate to people who they know and trust, and will not hesitate to chase their owners around during playtime. They’re equally comfortable with just lazing around all day, as they’re not a working breed. The Chihuahua is not a breed that you can leave alone for long periods of time, as they require a lot of attention from their human family members. Thankfully, they’re easy to bring around. However, they still benefit from learning to navigate on their own, except for cases where there is a large amount of foot traffic and a risk of the dog getting hurt. Chihuahuas get along well with humans and other species of pets, but tend to be wary around larger dogs and strangers. However, once you’ve earned a Chihuahua’s trust, they will follow you to the ends of the earth.
The Ultimate Guide to Chihuahua
The origins of the Chihuahua are somewhat unclear, but what is known is that they date back to the 9th century. There are carvings in South and Central America depicting a dog that resembles the Chihuahua, with a round head and large ears. This dog was called the Techichi, and it is believed that it is the ancestor of the modern Chihuahua. The Aztecs who conquered most of South and Central America eventually came to value the Techichi, and they believed the breed had magical powers. These larger dogs are believed to have been bred down to the modern Chihuahua. The Chihuahua became a pet for Aztec nobles and was heavily involved in religious rituals. The Chihuahua became so ingrained into daily life that most homes eventually had one. The arrival of the Spanish conquistadors put an end to Aztec rule, but not to the Chihuahua. The dogs lived on, to be found in villages throughout South and Central America. In particular, many could be found in the state of Chihuahua, from which the dogs derive their name. Americans eventually began to take an interest in the breed, and started importing Chihuahuas in the early 20th century. They rose to even more prominence with the advent of pop culture in shows such as “Sex and the City” and movies such as “Legally Blonde”.
Key Characteristics of Chihuahua
While the breeds that created the Chihuahua are unclear, the behavior of the breed can almost be classified as that of a terrier. Chihuahuas are brave, alert, and watchful, and are great at sounding the alarm when a stranger approaches their property.
Despite this, they’re also playful and affectionate to people who they know and trust, and will not hesitate to chase their owners around during playtime. They’re equally comfortable with just lazing around all day, as they’re not a working breed.
The Chihuahua is not a breed that you can leave alone for long periods of time, as they require a lot of attention from their human family members. Thankfully, they’re easy to bring around. However, they still benefit from learning to navigate on their own, except for cases where there is a large amount of foot traffic and a risk of the dog getting hurt.
Chihuahuas get along well with humans and other species of pets, but tend to be wary around larger dogs and strangers. However, once you’ve earned a Chihuahua’s trust, they will follow you to the ends of the earth.
Despite being the smallest dog breed, Chihuahuas still need regular exercise. They have moderate energy levels and enjoy running around and playing, though they don’t have the stamina to do it for very long. Short walks are enough for most Chihuahuas, and it’s important to keep an eye on them to ensure they aren’t being overworked.
A total of 30 to 45 minutes worth of exercise is advisable for most Chihuahuas, broken up into smaller chunks of walking, playing, or some combination of both. They don’t have a very high prey drive and cannot run very fast or for very long, but it’s still advisable to keep them on-leash when playing with them outdoors.
It’s possible to have most of a Chihuahua’s play sessions indoors if the owner is not mobile enough to bring them outside. Poms need a good amount of mental and physical stimulation, so toys, puzzles, and games to be used indoors can be a good investment.
Chihuahuas come with two types of coats, either short or long. The short or smooth-haired Chihuahua will have a soft coat that lies close to the body, with occasionally more hair around their neck. Long-haired Chihuahuas will have longer hair around their ears, necks, legs, and tails.
Both types of Chihuahua will require regular grooming. For short-haired Chihuahuas, a weekly brushing is usually enough to control their shedding. For long-haired Chihuahuas, brushing two to three times a week is recommended. Long-haired Chihuahuas will occasionally need to have the hair around their ears, necks, legs, and tails trimmed to prevent painful mats and tangles.
Most Chihuahuas will be fine with a monthly bath, unless your dog gets especially dirty from playing outside. Tooth brushing should be done regularly, if not daily, to prevent tooth and gum diseases. Nail trimming is also recommended, however it may be best to have a professional groomer perform this task as the Chihuahua’s nails are very small.
When grooming your Chihuahua, take some time to examine their eyes and check for any irritation or discharge from the eyes. Their large eyes may be prone to a number of diseases and conditions.
Chihuahuas may be a toy breed, and mainly function as companion animals, but that doesn’t mean they can’t be trained. In reality, they benefit greatly from a regular training schedule. They’re smart and feisty, so those traits need to be tempered with obedience training so that they don’t end up becoming the boss of the household.
Chihuahuas are sensitive to the moods and emotions of their owners, so harsh reprimands are not advisable. Positive reinforcement and praise will get the best results during training. Apart from that, patience and consistency will be the keys to successfully training your Chihuahua.
Chihuahuas can be successful in a variety of dog sports, such as agility and obedience, so that could be an option for owners with a competitive mindset.
|Chihuahua Lifespan And Health Issues||
Chihuahuas are generally healthy and can have a life expectancy of up to 14 to 18 years. Chihuahuas may be prone to:
|Chihuahua Size and Space Requirements||
Chihuahuas are the smallest dog breed, and will generally only weigh between 3 to 6 pounds. Most Chihuahuas will only stand between 6 to 9 inches at the shoulder.
Due to their tiny bodies, Chihuahuas are a favorite choice for people who live in apartments. However, they are adaptable dogs and are equally well-suited to suburban or rural homes.
The only real caveat to having them in a larger property is that they may be viewed as prey by larger animals, such as hawks or owls. Take care and never leave your Chihuahua unattended outdoors. Chihuahuas love to play in yards or gardens, but it’s not a requirement for their exercise needs.
- here is almost no size and weight difference between male and female Chihuahuas.
- Chihuahuas may get cold easily and are prone to shivering, so it’s a good idea to provide your Chihuahua with a sweater or coat when they have to go outdoors in cold weather.
- Most breeders will not sell Chihuahua puppies to homes with young children, as Chihuahuas are easily injured, especially by small children who do not yet know how to play with a puppy or small breed dog.
How can I take good care of my Chihuahua or Puppy?
It is important to socialize your Chihuahua puppy as soon as you bring them home. Chihuahuas tend to have big personalities that must be controlled by their owner. Part of doing that is exposing them to new experiences at an early age so that they become less wary of the world around them. The period between 8 to 12 weeks old is crucial, as this is when dogs are most receptive to new experiences.
Chihuahuas are a small breed and do not eat a great deal, but it’s still advisable to give them high-quality, premium dog food. Small breed specific dog food is usually a good choice for a Chihuahua. One of the major issues Chihuahua owners encounter is overfeeding – a Chihuahua does not have a very big stomach, so giving them too much to eat too quickly can cause digestive issues. Your veterinarian may have more specific recommendations regarding your Chihuahua’s feeding schedule and nutritional needs, depending on their health and activity level.
Chihuahua puppies will have a couple of rounds of vaccinations in the first few weeks or months with you. Contact your veterinarian for their recommended vaccine schedule, and follow it to the best of your ability. Following the vaccine schedule your veterinarian gives you will ensure that your puppy is protected and resistant to common dog illnesses.
Most Asked Chihuahua Questions
+How Much do Chihuahua Puppies Cost
Most Chihuahua puppies for sale will cost between $400 and $2000. Most Chihuahuas are healthy and long-lived. However, this is because responsible breeders perform numerous medical tests and health checks on both the mother and the puppies before any puppies are sold. Only get Chihuahua puppies from responsible breeders to give your Chihuahua the best chance of success in life.