Are you the new pet parent to a cute little long-haired Chihuahua dog? Are you thinking about adopting a long-haired Chihuahua? If so, then you’re not alone! These small, adorable dogs are extremely popular!
We’ve put together this quick guide with information on the Chihuahua dog breed, their characteristics and more!
An Intro to Long-Haired Chihuahuas
Many people are familiar with Chihuahuas; in fact, these small dogs have a huge reputation for believing they’re actually a big dog! They may be pint-sized, but these little dogs are in charge of their home, and they’ll let you know it!
They’ve been a popular dog for older people for years; this could be due to the dogs’ small size. Even so, people of all ages love these dogs for many reasons. In fact, the number of registered Chihuahuas has grown in recent years by about 30.4%. When it comes the popularity of dog breeds, the Chihuahua comes in at about 33 out of 196 dog breeds, according to the AKC (The American Kennel Club).
Speaking of the AKC, this organization first recognized the Chihuahua as a breed back in 1904, when this was the AKC’s 54th recognized dog breed.
History of Chihuahuas
The Chihuahua is believed to have originated in Mexico; most experts think it’s likely this breed is descended from an ancient dog breed known as the Techichi. These dogs were raised by the Toltecs, who were Native American people living in Mexico. The Techichi dogs date back to about 100AD but could date back even further. After the Toltecs were conquered by the Aztecs, the Aztecs then adopted the little dogs into their lives.
Back to Chihuahuas, they were originally bred to hunt rats, and possibly other small animals. This dog breed was first found in the 1850s in the Mexican state of Chihuahua, for which the dogs are named.
Chihuahua Dog Breed Characteristics
Chihuahuas are small dogs, typically weighing between 3 and 6 lbs. They stand about 6-9 inches tall and have a very long lifespan of 15 to 20 years. Their color variations can include black, red, blue, white and cream, brown, and tan.
This can be a little confusing, but you’ve probably seen both short- and long-haired Chihuahuas. Some people believe these dogs are two different breeds; however, that’s not the case. The long- and short-haired Chihuahuas are the same dog breed, just one has long hair, while the other has short hair. Our focus today is on the long-haired Chihuahuas.
Did you know there are two types of Chihuahuas? Not only are there short- and long-haired Chihuahuas, but these little dogs also come with different shaped heads!
One is called apple-headed, and the other is called deer-headed. The deer head Chihuahua has a less domed, flatter head. Apple-headed Chihuahuas, on the other hand, have a more rounded head. Their eyes are round, but do not protrude like dogs with a domed head. Again, these are not two separate breeds.
Temperament and Personality
Long-haired Chihuahuas are known for being confident, with very large personalities. The fact is that some of these small dogs believe they’re about as big as a St. Bernard! However, for the most part, Chihuahuas are great, loving, loyal companions. They are very devoted to their pet parents.
There are have been some studies that have shown these dogs can sometimes turn on their pet parents and families. They can be extremely aggressive. For this reason, Chihuahuas are not recommended for families that have small children.
In addition, because Chihuahuas are so small, they can be easily hurt by kids, or even other pets.
Even so, most of these cute little dogs are pretty sweet and love to have fun with their pet parents and families! And they’re adaptable to living in the city or in the suburbs/country.
Long-Haired Chihuahuas and Health
As noted earlier, Chihuahuas can live for up to 20 years! However, they can suffer from a wide range of genetic diseases, especially those that have been bred in a puppy mill or by a backyard breeder.
While this breed is generally healthy, some Chihuahuas are prone to these health issues:
- Patellar luxation
- Pulmonic stenosis
- Heart murmur
- Keratoconjunctivitis sicca
- Dental problems (teeth may be too crowded together)
Keep in mind that if you adopt your fur baby from an ethical, professional breeder, chances for these health problems will be lower than adopting from a puppy mill or backyard breeder.
Long-Haired Chihuahua Grooming
Long-haired Chihuahuas have a soft coat that may be flat or a bit curly. You may notice a little more hair around your fur baby’s ears, a plume on his tail, and he may sport a ruff around his neck. Your canine companion may even have a lot of fur on his feet!
Groomers recommend using a slicker brush and a comb to keep your fur baby’s fur free of tangles and mats. Your dog shouldn’t be groomed too often, because of his sensitive skin. However, if you do give him a bath, be sure to avoid getting water in your canine companion’s ears.
Exercise & Training
Your Chihuahua is small, but he will need plenty of exercise! Chihuahuas love to run and play! And they enjoy walks, which can be short.
Your canine companion will need dog food that provides all the essential vitamins and nutrients for his age. And you’ll want to watch his calorie intake, too, as Chihuahuas have a reputation for becoming overweight.
When it comes to training, you’ll find your Chihuahua is highly intelligent! He is eager to please and enjoys being trained. It’s important that your little dog understand who is in charge, which should be you! You’ll need to use positive reinforcement with your tiny fur baby, but keep in mind you’ll also need a firm hand during training.
We hope this quick guide has given you some helpful information about these tiny dogs. If you’ve become the pet parent of a darling Chihuahua fur baby, we’d like to wish you both all the best for years to come!