Welcome to the world’s smallest and most portable dog breed! The teeny tiny Chihuahua (pronounced Chi-Wah-Wah) is seriously loyal to its owner and is a popular choice among the toy dog breed group. Chihuahuas come in two varieties – short-haired or long-haired – and require very little exercise beyond scuttling around the house, owing to their modest proportions. An ideal indoors-only dog.
Breed Group: Toy
Coat length: Short or Medium
Exercise: Up to 30 minutes per day
Grooming required?: At least once a week
The Chihuahua’s name comes from Mexico, but opinions differ as to the breed’s origins. Some experts say it came from China. Others say it came from South or Central America. Either way, Chihuahuas became popular in Europe in the early part of the 20th century.
Chihuahuas can live a whopping 14-18 years.
They’re susceptible to a number of health issues including eye problems, rheumatism, bone fracture in puppyhood, and molera (a hole in the skull). Care is needed around toxic household substances as it won’t take much to make a Chihuahua sick.
The big personality
Chihuahuas have a lively and varied temperament and become very attached to their owners. The often express this devotion with an enthusiastic session of face-licking.
Small Dog Syndrome
The temptation to ‘baby’ such an adorable little dog is huge. But the price is high. Chihuahuas that don’t feel like their owner is a strong pack leader quickly become stressed out and will try to boss you abound by barking.
Chihuahuas have a reputation for being hard to train, but that’s usually the result of human failings. However adorable a Chihuahua is, at the end of the day it’s still an animal, and needs to be socialised with positive reinforcement tactics to encourage good behaviour.
Housebreaking a Chihuahua can be a little on the difficult side – but this is often associated with lax training all round.
Where to find Chihuahuas
Fancy talking to fellow Chihuahua owners about how life is better when you share it with one of the cutest creatures on the planet? Find a group below.
Adopt a Chihuahua
Want to adopt a Chihuahua in need of a loving home? Find a rescue centre below.