The Chihuahua is a native icon of Mexico is more than just a pretty purse dog. What makes it a perfect choice of pet is its larger-than-life persona which is similar to a terrier but in a smaller size.
There are two speculations about the roots and origin of Chihuahua dogs. The first suggests that Chihuahuas are the descendants of a South American dog known as Techichi.
In contrast, the second speculation theorizes that Mexican native dogs were bred with Chinese hairless dogs. And eventually, the breeding gave birth to Chihuahua dogs.
It is almost impossible to trace back the originality of either of the theories. However, it can be said that they were first discovered in the 1850s in the Mexican state, of Chihuahua.
By the 1960s, they gained immense recognition and succeeded in securing a spot as one of the most desired pets.
One distinguishing attribute of Chihuahua dogs that makes them unique from other breeds is their rounded “apple” head.
Chihuahua information heavily consists of their big-dog demeanor, saucy attitude, and sass-filled aura. But only a few contain the reasons why their confidence and compactness often make them the ideal pets.
Table Of Contents
Appearance and Personality of Chihuahua
Chihuahua dogs are charming dogs with saucy expressions but have sound temperaments.
A limit of 6 pounds constrains their tiny structure. They have full, round eyes and erect ears as they grow older.
Their longevity range lasts till 18 years which is relatively high compared to other breeds. There’s a range of variety when it comes to their coating.
The coats come in various colors and patterns. They usually have a height of six to nine inches.
They are known to have moderately short muzzles but long tails.
Chihuahua dogs are companion dogs that are loyal and compassionate.
Their sassy nature earned them a popular nickname used by most owners called ‘chis.’ They are known to make good watchdogs since they have a good sense of judgment for strangers.
They also have a very high intelligence level, so the term ‘purse dogs’ understates their true abilities.
Chihuahuas tend to be strong-willed, which becomes a major problem if it turns into a habit.
Therefore, owners should ensure that their pets are less aggressive about their wants and learn the rules and regulations of the house.
Owners can imply positive reinforcement training to avoid any unacceptable behavior from their pets.
They tend to be unresponsive to any harsh treatment. One trait of Chihuahuas that is quite commendable is their strong loyalty towards their owners.
They love spending time with their owners and prefer staying close to them at all times.
Whether they go out for a walk or grocery shopping, Chihuahuas love tagging along with them.
Health and Grooming of Chihuahua
Though Chihuahua characteristics make the dog one of the most desirable pets, one aspect that owners must consider is their health.
Chihuahua dogs have a high tendency of attaining genetic disorders.
Common health issues include heart diseases such as patent ductus arteriosus and mitral valve disease.
Patellar luxation and eye diseases are very common among Chihuahuas as well.
Therefore, it’s best if dog lovers adopt their dogs from a responsible breeder who is aware of the genetic conditions of the dog.
Frequent checkups for genetic disorders can help produce puppies with negligible possibilities of hereditary diseases.
Furthermore, Patella Evaluation, Cardiac Exam, and Ophthalmologist Evaluation are recommended health tests that can help detect any problems at the earliest.
Besides the diseases mentioned above, another deadly condition Chihuahuas often struggle with is Encephalitis.
Encephalitis is a condition where the head enlarges and is almost incurable.
Additionally, they have a sensitive spot in their skull that should be protected at all times as head injuries may affect that part of the skull.
Chihuahua dogs have two different types of coating- smooth coating and long-haired coating.
The two varieties require different types of grooming needs. Chihuahuas with smooth layers do not require frequent brushing, and regular baths help them stay neat.
In contrast, Chihuahuas with long-haired coatings need brushing weekly to avoid mat and tangles. Like any other dog breed, Chihuahuas also need proper dental care as part of their hygiene.
Additionally, their ears must be checked weekly for wax or dirt that may cause infection.
Furthermore, their nails should have proper trimming weekly as well. They may scratch themselves with long nails that may cause bleeding as they are very soft and sensitive.
Chihuahuas cannot handle cold weather. Their coating is hardly enough to provide warmth, so they shiver in cold temperatures.
They should be dressed in a sweater or appropriate warm clothes to be comfortable during cold weather.
Chihuahua dogs also have a low tendency to drool, making grooming much more manageable.
Dogs with a high tendency to drool make the home dirtier, causing their owners to spend plenty of time cleaning.
So, in the case of Chihuahuas, owners have little to worry about when it comes to cleaning.
Some Chihuahua dogs also develop tear stains under their eyes. Any discharge can be removed easily by wiping it off gently. There are also products accessible to help remove the tear stains.
Exercise and Training
One of the most common Chihuahua characteristics is their petite size, so the requirement for exercise is pretty low. Brief walks at the park or around the neighborhood would suffice as plenty of physical activity.
They love to run and play and usually require small spaces to move around. Strenuous exercise can be harmful to Chihuahuas.
It is best to prevent them from too much movement that may make them breathless.
Half an hour of exercise here and there split throughout the day is plenty for them.
As they get older, they become inactive, making them sluggish. Physical inactivity can lead them towards diabetes and obesity, so; they should not be entirely out of touch with exercise.
Chihuahua information may vary when it comes to their variety of coatings, but one thing common among every type of Chihuahua is their eagerness to please their owners.
They are observant and respond well to training methods. Chihuaha’s are intelligent enough to understand that their endearing nature makes people weak.
They can be easily trained and usually outshine in obedience training and other dog sports. One of their favorite sports is ball chasing.
Nutrition & Living Needs of Chihuahua
Chihuahuas can be given any high-quality dog food as long as they are in the right amount.
Puppies have different nutritional requirements than adult dogs, so it is essential to maintain a balanced diet. If a proper diet is sustained, there will be a lower risk of obesity.
Though treats are vital for training, too many treats make dogs overweight. Checking calorie consumption is essential as obesity makes dogs lazy and unhealthy.
It is ideal to ensure that the dogs are not fed high-fat-containing foods.
It is also vital to learn which human foods are safe for them to consume. A veterinarian can help figure out the correct diet chart with proper nutritional values based on the age and weight of the dog.
A diet rich in proteins and low in fat should be followed to secure a healthy lifestyle.
Given their tiny structure, they are the ideal pets for people living in apartments.
In addition to their petite sizes, their home-loving attitude makes them very suitable for city dwellers. It is considered unsafe to leave them outside without supervision as larger animals can attack them.
It is also essential to make sure that they are engaged in socialization from a young age as it becomes problematic when they become adults.
Without proper socialization, they deem other dogs and cats a threat, which may end up quite disastrous if things get out of control. They also see strangers under a light of suspicion. While they get along with older children, they are not suitable for families with small children as they are fragile.
They may cause injury to themselves while playing with little kids, who may not be able to handle the dogs with proper care.
Otherwise, they are easy to care for as they don’t shed. Too much shedding can make the small apartment spaces messy, requiring cleaning now and then.
While the accuracy of the origin of Chihuahua is still a topic of debate, they have won hearts across the globe with their spunky, sassy, and fashionista auras.
They initially gained popularity during the 1930s, and they have only prospered to be one of the most wanted pets.
The confident and bold Chihuahua is perfect for a single person who is direly in need of a watchdog.
Chihuahuas are one of the most loyal and compassionate dogs, so one will never feel lonely when accompanied by this mini spark of a dog.
Hence, the smallest dog in the world with the most prominent personality is no less than being the ideal pet.