Chihuahua Information & Dog Breed Facts

Collection of all the general dog breed info about Chihuahua so you can get to know the breed more.

Group Companion Dogs
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Chihuahua dog profile picture
OriginMexico flagMexico
Other Names
What other names does the Chihuahua have?
CsivavaChihuahueño
Breed Type
What type of dog breed is it?
Purebred

Chihuahua Price and Availability

Price
How much does the Chihuahua puppy cost? What is the price range of this puppy? What is the average price of this dog in the United States? Is this puppy expensive? How much should I pay for it?
$600-$800
If you choose to purchase the Chihuahua, you should know that the mentioned amount of money is an average of the collected data from breeders’ sites and puppy finder places. If you have a Chihuahua for sale, please advertise it on a reliable website to make sure the Chihuahua gets to a happy place.
Availability
How easy is it to get a Chihuahua?
Very frequent: The Chihuahua is quite easy to get. There is a risk of overbreeding, as it is an extremely popular breed.

Inbreeding is common because of its popularity. A new study suggests that inbreeding contributes to the incidence of disease and health problems.

So be careful, buy from a trustworthy place or kennel and seek the help of an experienced person, a professional, to make the right decision.

Chihuahua Size

Size
What size is this breed? How big is this dog?
Small
Weight
How much does the Chihuahua weigh? Chihuahua weight:
2-6 pounds (1-3 kg)
Average Weight
What is the average weight of the Chihuahua? Chihuahua average weight:
4 pounds (2 kg)
Height
How tall is the Chihuahua? Chihuahua height:
6-9 inches (15-23 cm)
Average Height
What is the average height of this fido? Chihuahua average height:
7.5 inches (19 cm)

Chihuahua Grooming, Hair and Care

Coat / Hair Types
What type of coat does the Chihuahua have? What does this canine coat/fur look like?
Fine
Colors
What color is the breed's coat? What color is a proper Chihuahua's coat?
ChocolateFawnTanCreamRedBlack
Grooming
How to groom the Chihuahua and how often?
Effortless: The Chihuahua requires minimal grooming. Seasonal flea treatment is needed, but cutting the dog's hair by a professional groomer isn't necessary.

Ears and eyes should be cleaned sometimes to avoid infections. Chihuahua is one of the best choices if you don't have the time, skill, or money to take care of a high-maintenance dog.

Highly recommended for beginners.
Shedding Level
How much do Chihuahua dogs shed? How to control, reduce and prevent the shedding of the Csivava?
Chihuahuas shed none to minimal. Having a puppy from this breed you don't have to be afraid of your couch or car being covered by dog hair. Chihuahua dogs could be the best choice if you don't tolerate dog hair.
Bath Time / Bathing Frequency
How often does the Chihuahua need a bath? How often should bathe this dog? Can I bathe my Chihuahua every day?
3-4 weeks
More often than average. These dog coats tend to be longer, softer, and oilier than short-haired breeds. While a good bath every now and then is a great way to keep your buddy from becoming overly smelly, be mindful about overbathing. Bathing will wash away your dog’s natural oils, while a simple brushing every few days should keep them clean.

Chihuahua Personality / Temperament

Temperament
What kind of personality does the Chihuahua have? What characteristics or traits does the breed have?
AlertDevotedIntelligentCourageousLivelyQuick
Intelligent Rank
How smart is the Chihuahua? Are they intelligent?
Low to average: This canine intelligence is not the brightest one. Keep in mind that if you want to teach them any tricks, they understand and memorize new commands in 40-80 repetitions. Chihuahua obey the first command 30% of the time or better. So if you want to have a smart dog, you might have to reconsider your choice with this breed.
Trainability
Are Chihuahua dogs easy to train? Do they go well on dog training?
Chihuahuas are quite easy to train. Sometimes they can be challenging, but if you're consistent in teaching new commands they will obey for sure.
Playfulness
How playful is this breed?
Average: Chihuahuas, like any other dog breed, like playing. Sometimes they bark in excitement for playing, but they are not the most playful dog breed.
Sensitivity Level
How sensitive are they? Chihuahua sensitivity:
Sensitive: Chihuahuas don't like an irregular daily routine, noisy household, and frequent guest visits. This breed's emotional level reflects their owner's feelings and they don't handle punishments well.
Affection Level
How affectionate are they? Are they affectionate?
High: Chihuahuas are genuinely loyal, soft and gentle, loving and affectionate dogs toward their handlers. They enjoy quality time with their owners despite the activity and are considered great therapy dog for those in need. This breed responds strongly to their handler's emotions because they bond closely. Their happiness is your happiness.
Social Needs
How much social interaction does the Csivava need? Chihuahua social needs:
Chihuahuas need a lot of social interaction. They desire to always be with someone or around people. This breed hates being left alone.
Barking
Do Chihuahua dogs bark a lot? Are they barkers/noisy? Why does my Csivava bark?
A lot: Chihuahua is a particularly loud breed. They often enjoy barking and howling loudly. If you want a quiet dog, not the best choice. The main triggers for barking are fear, attention, alarm, boredom, greeting, separation anxiety, compulsive barking, and defense.
Watchdog Ability
Is Chihuahua good as a watchdog? Are they alert at night?
Chihuahuas are average watchdogs. If they sense something different, they will alert you, but the observation isn't considered their main job.
Guarding Behavior / Territorial
Do Chihuahua dogs have an aggressive behavior to protect their home/house/territory? Do they have guarding instincts?
Chihuahuas strongly protect their territory. This breed is a complete security guard, so you don't have to be afraid in case of danger.
Biting Potential
Do Chihuahua bite humans? How likely are you to get bitten from the Csivava? What are the odds of getting bitten by a Chihuahua? Why do dog bites happen?

Low 🔽

The Chihuahua has a low chance of biting somebody. Top reasons for dog bite: protection, pain, excitement, herding instinct, being provoked. (Data based on the available online bite statistics.)
Bite Force
Does the Chihuahua has a hard bite?

Between 100 and 200 PSI 🔽

Chihuahua bite force: Weak. Dogs that have the weakest bite force below 200 PSI. However, it is important to note that despite the fact that their bite force is considered the “weakest” it can still be very dangerous as all dog bites are. They are usually not aggressive and very friendly towards children and other animals.
Mouthiness
How much mouthing/nipping/play biting does the Chihuahua do?
Chihuahuas have an average tendency to nip, chew, play-bite, or herd people. It's a common habit during puppyhood, not aggressive behavior. These "bites" don't hurt, but Chihuahuas need to be taught for a good attitude.
Impulse to Wander or Roam
How likely is the Chihuahua to run away? Does this breed explore or wander a lot? Does Chihuahua roam?
Chihuahuas tend to escape less than other breeds. They have low to average wanderlust potential. Exploring the world is not the best activity they can imagine.
Prey Drive
Do this canine have a strong prey drive? Does Chihuahua have high prey drive?
Chihuahuas have an average prey drive, which means that they don't have a high impulse to chase and catch something like a cat or any other small aminals, but it might happen. Training can help to achieve good behavior.
Apartment Friendly
Is Chihuahua good as an apartment dog? Can they live in a flat?
Very house-friendly dog the Chihuahua breed. It's good if you have a small garden where he can go out and do his business, but it's not important at all. You can get enough exercise with one or two walks a day, so keeping them indoors shouldn't be a problem.
Adaptability
Are they adaptable and easy-going?
Chihuahuas adapt very well to lifestyle changes and basically all living environments. They don't mind moving from one place to another with their owner.
Tolerates Being Left Alone
Can you leave this breed home alone?
Chihuahuas tend to have separation anxiety when their owners left them alone at home because they bond very closely with them.

Chihuahua Good With

Stranger Friendly
Are they aggressive or friendly towards/with strangers? Chihuahua temperament with other people:
Chihuahuas are average friendly towards strangers.
Pet Friendly
Are they pet-friendly dogs? How well do Chihuahua dogs get along with other pets? Are Chihuahua dogs good with pets? What is this canine temperament with other pets?
Chihuahuas are one of the friendliest dog breeds.
Child Friendly
Are Chihuahua dogs kid-friendly? Are they good with young children? Chihuahua temperament with children:
Chihuahuas are not kid-friendly dogs. This breed is not recommended for families with children.
Cat Friendly
How well do Chihuahua dogs get along with cats? Are they good with kittens? What is this fido's temperament with cats? Can they be good with cats?
Chihuahuas are very cat-friendly dogs.
Dog Friendly
Is Chihuahua good with other dogs? Are they dog-friendly dogs? How well do Chihuahua dogs get along with other dogs? What is this canine temperament with other dogs?
Chihuahuas are average friendly towards other dogs.
Good For First Time Owners
Is Chihuahua breed good for first-time owners? Do they make a good dog for novice owners?
Yes
Chihuahuas are good for novice owners, due to their easy-going personality.
Office Friendly
Are Chihuahuas good office dogs? Do Chihuahuas make good office friendly dogs? Can Chihuahuas be office dogs?
No
Chihuahua is not the best dog breed for office environment.
Senior Citizens Friendly
Are they senior citizens friendly dogs? How well do Chihuahua dogs get along with the elderly people? What is the Csivava temperament with senior people? Are Chihuahua dogs good for elderly owners?
Chihuahuas are not recommended for elderly people.

Chihuahua Health

Health Issues
Is it a healthy or unhealthy breed? Do Chihuahua dogs have health problems or genetic diseases?
Chihuahuas are commonly healthy dogs. Vet costs aren't expensive with this breed.
Health Problems
What genetic/health problems does the Chihuahua breed have? What are the health issues and concerns of the Chihuahua breed? Most common health risks of Chihuahua:
Collapsed TracheaHeart MurmursHydrocephalusHypoglycemiaOpen FontanelPatellar LuxationPulmonic StenosisShivering
Veterinarian Visits
How often does the Chihuahua breed need to go to the vet? How often should you take your dog to the vet? How often should the Chihuahua see the vet?
Rare
The Chihuahua should have a complete physical check-up at least every 12-18 months (but preferably once per year). If your dog shows any symptoms, call your veterinarian.
Life Expectancy
How long do Chihuahua dogs live? What is the average lifespan of this breed? How old can a Chihuahua be? What is the age limit of the Chihuahua? How many years can the oldest Chihuahua live?
14-18 years
The average lifespan of Chihuahua: 16 years
Hypoallergenic
Is the Chihuahua breed hypoallergenic?
No
Chihuahuas don't do well with allergy sufferers by causing allergic reaction. Some of the dog breeds are even considered to higher the possibility of an allergic response. Coat type isn't necessarily relevant, because most people are allergic to dander (flakes on the dog's skin) or saliva, not actually to dog hair.
Energy Level
How much energy does the Chihuahua have? What is the activity level of the Chihuahua?
Chihuahuas have an average energy level, so if you live a semi-active life, this breed can be a good choice for you.
Activity Requirement / Exercise Need
How much activity does this dog need? How much exercise do Chihuahua dogs require per day?
Chihuahuas exercise need is very minimal. If you live a lazy life, this breed can be a good choice for you.
Sleeping Need
How much sleep does this fido need?
Chihuahuas sleep 12-14 hours a day as an average dog and they're not considered a lazy breed.
Average daily food consumption
How much food does the Chihuahua need? How often should I feed my canine? What dog products should I buy?
Recommended daily amount: 1/4 to 1/2 cups of high-quality dry food a day.
Weight Gain Potential / Prone to Obesity
How easy to gain weight for this dog? Chihuahua risk for obesity:
Average: The Chihuahua has an average risk for obesity. Daily walks should be on schedule. To make your dog happy and fit, feed him with quality dry dog food and live an active life together. Try to find the happy medium between exercise and feeding. If you notice any weight gain, consult your veterinarian and make a diet plan. Reduce unhealthy food and snacks, and measure the Chihuahua's weight regularly.
Weather and Climate
Which weather condition is preferred by this dog? Can they tolerate hot or cold weather and climate?
Prefers warm weather
Dogs that prefer warm weather conditions are typically breeds that were originally bred in warmer climates.
Stinkiness
How stinky is this dog? Why does it smell bad and how to get rid of the smell?

High 🔼

The Chihuahua has a high chance of bad smell. Top reasons for dog stinkiness: infection of bad tooth/ear/skin folds, gas attacks.
Drooling Tendency
Does the Chihuahua drool?
The Chihuahua is a perfect example of a very low drooling tendency. If you're disgusted by slobber spots on your clothes, the Chihuahua could be a perfect choice for you. Drooling is the unintentional saliva flowing outside of the mouth. It can be completely normal or a sign of a health problem. Certain dog breeds drool minimum compared to others, just like the Chihuahua. If you notice any change in your dog's drooling habit, you should contact a vet as soon as possible.

Chihuahua As a Working Dog

Service Dog
Are they good as service dogs? Can Chihuahua be a guide dog? Are they used as seeing-eye dogs?

Not really

This breed generally not used as a service dog. A service dog is a term used in the USA to refer to any type of assistance dog specifically trained to help people who have disabilities, such as visual impairment, hearing impairments, mental disorders, seizures, mobility impairment, and diabetes. Service dogs are protected under the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act). Chihuahua is not the best breed for service purposes.
Therapy Dog
Are they good as therapy dogs? Can Chihuahua be a therapy dog? Are they good anxiety dogs? Can a Chihuahua be an emotional support animal?

Yes

This breed makes a perfect therapy dog. A therapy dog is a dog that might be trained to provide affection, comfort, and love to people in hospitals, retirement homes, nursing homes, schools, hospices, disaster areas, and to people with anxiety disorders or autism. Chihuahua breed is a good choice for therapeutic purposes.
Detection Dog or Sniffer Dog
Are they good as detection dogs? Can Chihuahua be a sniffer dog?

Not really

They are not typically employed for this type of work, but there may be exceptional cases. A detection dog or sniffer dog is a dog that is trained to use its senses (mostly its smell) to detect substances such as explosives, illegal drugs, wildlife scat, currency, blood, and contraband electronics such as illicit mobile phones. Chihuahua is not the best breed for detection purposes.
Search and Rescue Dog (SAR)
Are they good as SAR dogs? Can Chihuahua be a search and rescue dog?

Not really

This dog breed is not typically used as a search and rescue dog. The use of dogs in search and rescue (SAR) is a valuable component in wilderness tracking, natural disasters, mass casualty events, and locating missing people. The Chihuahua is not the best breed for SAR purposes.
Boat and Sailor Dog
Are they good as boat dogs? Can Chihuahua be a boat dog?

Not really

Chihuahua breed usually doesn't like being on a boat.

Boat dogs were typically bred for their strength, stamina, and water resistance, as they were often required to perform tasks such as pulling in fishing nets, and jumping into the water to retrieve ropes or lines, or helping to move cargo.

Sailor dog is a type of dog that was bred to accompany sailors on their voyages. They were typically used for three purposes: as a working dog, a watchdog, and as a companion. A boat dog is a term used to describe a type of dog that was traditionally bred and used as a working dog on boats.

Cart Pulling or Drafting Dog
Are they good as cart pulling dogs? Can Chihuahua be a drafting dog?

Not really

A drafting dog or draft dog is a dog bred and used for cart pulling. Dogs bred for this work have strong builds and qualities that are needed, strength and determination. Chihuahua is not the best breed for drafting purposes.
Fighting Dog / Military Dog
Where Chihuahua dogs used as fighting / military dogs in history?

Not really

In history, this breed was not really used for combat dog.

Chihuahua Reproducibility

Gestation Length
How long does this dog's pregnancy last? How long does this dog pregnant? How long does it take to have puppies?

60-64 days

Reproductive cycle of the female Chihuahua: The first period called Proestrus lasts for about 9 days. During this time the females start to attract males. You can notice by swelling vulva and bloody discharge. The second part is the Estrus when the female is receptive for the male. It lasts for about 3 to 11 days. The sign of the proestrus part is the soft and enlarged vulva. The discharge decreases and lightens in color. The third part is the Diestrus. Normally, it occurs around day 14. In this period the female’s discharge changes for vivid red and coming to its end. The vulva returns to average, and she will no longer permit mating. The fourth part called the Anestrus. The time frame between heat periods normally lasts about six months.
Litter Frequency

Once a year.

More frequent breeding is not healthy. It is very important not to buy a dog from a puppy mill, where the needs of the pups and their mothers are ignored. It's an inhumane high-volume dog breeding facility, where puppies born several times a year.
Litter Size
How many puppies can the Chihuahua have? What is the average litter size of this fido?
2-4 puppies

Chihuahua Recognition

AKC Group
Is Chihuahua recognized by the American Kennel Club?
Recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1904 as a Toy breed.
FCI Group
Is Chihuahua recognized by the Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI)?
Recognized by FCI in the Companion and Toy Dogs group, in the Chihuahueno section.
Breed Recognition
What kennel clubs and organizations recognize or register the Chihuahua breed?
American Canine RegistryAmerican Kennel ClubAmerica's Pet RegistryCanadian Kennel ClubDog Registry of America Inc.Federation Cynologique InternationaleKennel Club of Great BritainNorth American Purebred Registry, Inc.American Canine Association, Inc.Australian National Kennel CouncilContinental Kennel ClubNational Kennel ClubNew Zealand Kennel ClubUnited Kennel Club

Chihuahua Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Health Issues: Chihuahuas are commonly healthy dogs.
  • Apartment Friendly: Very house-friendly dog the Chihuahua breed.
  • Grooming: Effortless: The Chihuahua requires minimal grooming.
  • Shedding Level: Chihuahuas shed none to minimal.
  • Drooling Tendency: The Chihuahua is a perfect example of a very low drooling tendency.
  • Impulse to Wander or Roam: Chihuahuas tend to escape less than other breeds.
  • Adaptability: Chihuahuas adapt very well to lifestyle changes and basically all living environments.
  • Cat Friendly: Chihuahuas are very cat-friendly dogs.
  • Good For First Time Owners: Chihuahuas are good for novice owners, due to their easy-going personality.
  • Therapy Dog: This breed makes a perfect therapy dog.
Cons
  • Intelligent Rank: Low to average: This canine intelligence is not the brightest one.
  • Hypoallergenic: Chihuahuas don't do well with allergy sufferers by causing allergic reaction.
  • Stinkiness: The Chihuahua has a high chance of bad smell.
  • Tolerates Being Left Alone: Chihuahuas tend to have separation anxiety when their owners left them alone at home because they bond very closely with them.
  • Child Friendly: Chihuahuas are not kid-friendly dogs.
  • Office Friendly: Chihuahua is not the best dog breed for office environment.
  • Senior Citizens Friendly: Chihuahuas are not recommended for elderly people.

Chihuahua History

The Chihuahua is considered to be the smallest dog breed on the entire world. Furthermore, the breed is also believed to be among the oldest existing breeds, even though there is some uncertainty about its ancestry.

The Chihuahua is thought to have originated from the wild domesticated dogs indigenous to Mexico, more particularly, from the Tolec civilization, which dates back as far as 300 B.C. The Chihuahua’s earliest ancestors were called the Techichi, they had more or less the same round head with large ears, and with the tiny physique, these dogs were depicted on potteries found from 400 B.C. After the Aztecs conquered the Tolecs during the early 12th century, they have taken the Techichi into their culture and society too. Many of the dogs were represented and used during Aztec religious rituals. According to the Aztec mythological culture, the Techichi possessed mystic powers, including the ability to see the future, to heal the sick, and to safely guide the souls of the dead to the underworld. It was also customary, according to this mythology, to sacrifice a red Techichi, and cremate him with the remains of descended people. The Aztecs also saw the Techichi dogs as a source of pelts and unfortunately, food. No matter the use, many experts believe that the Aztecs refined the Techichi into a lighter and smaller dog.

By the time that the Spanish conquistadors conquered the Aztec civilization during the 16th century, the Techichi became an integral part of the Aztec culture, the dogs were considered one of the Montezuma’s fabled treasures, once presumed, lost forever after the conquest of Cortez. According to a well-known theory, small and hairless dogs were brought from China to Mexico by Spanish traders, and they were bred with small native dogs. No matter which theory is accurate, the modern shorthaired Chihuahua was discovered in the late 1850s, in the Mexican State called Chihuahua, from which the breed derives its name. These early, modern Chihuahuas lived in remote villages, however, by the late 1800s, Americans arriving in the country, began to take an interest in the breed. As the American visitors started to like the breed, they brought them to the United States of America. It is thought that the Chihuahua was further refined in the State of Texas, towards the end of the 19th century. People started to show the breed in 1890, and not much later, the first specimen gaining an AKC (American Kennel Club) recognition for the breed, was named Beppie, in 1906. There is another more modern variety of the Chihuahua, the long-haired one, which emerged during the 1930s. It is believed that the long-coated type is a result of cross-breeding the Chihuahua with either the Papillons or with the Pomeranians.

The Chihuahua’s popularity took off during the early 1940s when the breed was associated with the dance king and Latin music bandleader, Xavier Cugat. Since then, the Chihuahua has been one of the most popular breeds registered by the AKC. After surviving two great civilizations’ doom, the Chihuahua got worldwide fame, with their loyalty, courageous nature, and intelligence. The breed is the ultimate purse-sized companion, coming in multiple different colors and coats. The breed was also shown in various TV shows and films, like ‘Sex and the City', and ‘Legally Blonde’. Moreover, the Chihuahua was a favorite to a number of celebrities, including Paris Hilton, with their huge personalities.

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Chihuahua Comments, Reviews and Questions

  • Nia

    Mar 9, 2022, 11:43:03 AM:

    I would not say they are entirely aggressive with proper training and socialization.

  • Georgia

    Nov 28, 2021, 1:02:51 PM:

    I had one for 16 years. She loved me and was fiercely protective. She would attack any one that she didn’t know. You have to introduce the dog to lots of people at a young age to get them used to people.

  • Chloe

    Jun 5, 2021, 6:42:31 PM:

    Barks a lot but is a great companion, loves large dogs and cats. My Chloe is long haired and sheds a lot. Shows her love with kisses and snuggles and has never bitten anyone.

  • yappy

    Jan 13, 2021, 3:38:25 PM:

    bark bark bark thats all it does

  • linda Sanders

    Nov 6, 2020, 6:55:55 AM:

    just love small dogs they listen so good always show u how much they love u

  • thesearebaddogs

    Oct 28, 2020, 10:18:16 PM:

    Ugly, yappy, aggressive, and annoying are words one might use to describe these wretched creatures.

  • doggosforlife

    Oct 6, 2020, 11:34:17 PM:

    i havent met a single chihuahua who hasnt tried to bite me, our neighbor has a chug and even with the pug in it its still agressive

  • Mike Naccarato

    Jul 1, 2020, 9:19:38 PM:

    i have one of my own, her name is bella, she is so adorable

  • Anna Kyle Murphy

    Nov 21, 2019, 4:21:18 PM:

    i hove one of my own! i think it is the best thing in the world. she is the sweetest and her name is reecee!