Chihuahuas: Dog Breed For You

October 12, 2009

Chihuahuas are one of the most popular dog breeds today, especially after the famous Taco Bell commercials. They are the smallest of any breed, which is another reason why they everyone likes them. Even though they are so common, this does not mean that this is the dog for you. These dogs are not for everyone.ChihuahuaAidanCrouch

The Chihuahua Dog was named after a region in Mexico called Chihuahua. It is the oldest breed in America. Even though this breed is native to Mexico, the Chinese introduced it. At the end of the nineteenth century it was brought to Europe and has become more and more popular since then. Most people today want these dogs as small as can be and the smallest are often the most expensive.

The Chihuahua breed comes in two varieties, long haired and short haired. Both coat types come in many colors, such as brown, black, fawn, white and silver. They weigh between two and six pounds and their height is only six to nine inches. They also have the longest life span of any breed and regularly live over fifteen years.

Each Chihuahua has its own personality, so not many generalizations can be made about the breed. Most Chihuahuas are very devoted and loyal to their owners. This causes jealousy and suspicion when strangers are around. They are very courageous, lively, strong-willed, bold and fearless. With their owners, these dogs are very gentle and loving. However, because they are so protective of their owners, they are very wary of strangers.

Chihuahuas do not do well with other dogs except for their own breed. If they are around other dog breeds they tend to be aggressive. They are also not recommended for children. These dogs need to be socialized extensively from a puppy to prevent aggressiveness with strangers and other dogs. If they are not socialized they can become so wary of other people that they will bite.

If you have a short haired Chihuahua it will only require occasional brushing, however, the long haired variety requires brushing several times a week. This dog is an average shedder. When bathing them, you must be sure not to get water in their ears because they are very susceptible to ear infections. When this dog is a puppy, they are very fragile and you must be very careful with them. Also, they cannot handle the cold, so it is recommended that they be kept inside. If you bring them outside, you should put a warm sweater on them.

The breed does have several health problems that owners need to be aware of. They have a very short nose which causes them to sneeze and snore. Because their eyes are so large, they are prone to corneal dryness. Other common health problems include colds, stress, gum problems and rheumatism. You need to be sure not to over-feed Chihuahuas because they gain weight very easily.

Chihuahuas can be difficult to train, but if you are consistent they do well. The best way to train them is to use positive reinforcement. They do not respond well to other forms of discipline.

Chihuahuas make great pets if they have intense socialization and consistent training. The Chihuahua’s extremely small size makes it a great dog for people that live in apartments. It is very adaptable and hardy, but must live inside. They are good companions that travel very easily and are very loving to their owners.

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