Meet the Breed: The Chihuahua
A smooth-coated chihuahua puppy. Photo from Wikipedia.
The chihuahua is the smallest dog breed. They can be the velvety smooth-coated, short-haired variety or long haired. Some chihuahuas have an apple-shaped head, and some have a deer-shaped head with a longer nose and more angular head features. They have large, dark eyes, though some of the lighter-haired varieties may have lighter eyes. They come in a variety of coat colors including white, black, chestnut, fawn, sand, silver, sable, steel blue, black and tan, and multicolored coats, as well as others.
The chihuahua is one of the oldest breeds of the Americas. They have been documented in ancient artifacts dating back to 100 A.D. They originate in Mexico. They were recognized by the AKC in 1904 and have been popular ever since.
Chihuahuas are faithful and delightful companions that like to be cuddled and prefer to be the middle of their owner's world. Resist the temptation to baby these dogs. Rather, they should be treated like a bigger dog so they do not suffer from Small Dog Syndrome. Tiny dogs who assume the alpha role in the family are territorial, yappy, and even aggressive. Early and regular training from a calm, confident leader will allow a chihuahua to feel safe and will be well adjusted to life with more of a variety of people and circumstances.
Breed Club Links: The Chihuahua Club of America.
Because of the popularity of the chihuahua breed, they have been over bred. Unfortunately, many chihuahua's end up in shelters. Please consider adopting one from a rescue or shelter! Some of these chihuahuas have been relinquished because they have not been properly trained and exhibit Small Dog Syndrome. Be sure to educate yourself on how to be a good leader to these dogs so they can thrive and be good citizens in their forever home!
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Long-haired adult chihuahua photo by Phoenix Wolf-Ray.