Chihuahuas are comical, entertaining, and loyal little dogs. They are absolutely brimming with personality – often a quirky and eccentric personality unmatched by any other breed.
Other than that generalization, Chihuahuas are extremely variable. You can find individuals who are lively or placid. Bold or timid. Feisty or mellow. Confident or nervous. Stubborn or eager to please.
Chihuahuas are the world’s smallest dog breed, normally weighing between 2 and 8 pounds with an average height of 6 to 9 inches. Chihuahuas have a “cobby” body — stout, stocky and slightly longer than tall — that still seems flexible, sturdy and muscular. Their rounded, apple-shaped heads feature dark round eyes, pointed ears and a slightly pointed muzzle.
Chihuahuas do not have a particularly good reputation among the general public. Ask a few people, "Do you think Chihuahuas are nice dogs?" and see how many of them exclaim, "No! They're mean and nasty and they bite!"
Chihuahuas are the ideal lovable, loyal and long-term pal. When you’re alone in the house with a Chihuahua, you’re never alone — they sleep on your lap, sit by your side, or follow you from room to room while you do chores. When you’re not home, they protect it like their personal domain, barking at the sign of any approaching stranger (making them surprisingly effective watchdogs).
Similarly, while most Chihuahuas get along great with other pets in their own family, they tend to raise a ruckus when they spy a strange dog. Again, YOU have to put a stop to this from day one or it will get out of hand.
How long do Chihuahuas live? The Chihuahuas lifespan is pretty long — as much as 17 years — but they have a tendency to develop health problems like hypoglycemia, joint ailments, eye infections and bronchitis. Also, the tops of their skulls never fully develop, leaving soft spots (“moleras”) that should be protected.
If you want a dog who...
- Is small and easy to carry
- Comes in several different coats and colors
- Is oh-so-funny and entertaining in quirky ways (hard to describe – you gotta be there!)
- Is very loyal
- Travels well
If you don't want to deal with...
- The fragility of toy breeds (see below)
- The fine line you need to walk with toy breeds, where you need to protect their safety, yet require them to stand on their own four feet and be well-behaved
- Notorious housebreaking difficulties