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Science Diet - Vet's #1 Choice for Their Own Pets


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Chihuahuas are loyal, friendly and good family pets when treated respectfully. They can get all the exercise needed in the house or apartment.

     Chihuahua At a glance

Size:

Weight Range:

Male: 2-6 lbs.
Female: 2-6 lbs.

Height at Withers:

Male: 9 in.

Female: 7 in.

Features:

Upright ears (naturally)

Expectations:

Exercise Requirements: <20 minutes/day
Energy Level: Very energetic
Longevity Range: 14-18 yrs.
Tendency to Drool: Low Tendency to Snore: Moderate to high
Tendency to Bark: Moderate to high
Tendency to Dig: Low Social/Attention Needs: High

Bred For:

Companionship

Coat:

Length: short/long
Characteristics: Flat, straight
Colors: Any color
Overall Grooming Needs: Low

Club Recognition:

AKC Classification: Toy
UKC Classification: Companion Dog
Prevalence: Common


The Chihuahua Dog Breed

In the 1940s, well-known bandleader Xavier Cugat was known for conducting the orchestra with a Chihuahua under his arm.

Chihuahuas are the smallest dogs in the world.

They weigh as little as two pounds and seldom are more than six pounds (1 to 3 kilograms). They stand only about five inches high. Chihuahuas have a domed skull. In some, there is a soft spot on the top of the head where the bones have not joined. This is called molera. They have large prick ears and short and pointed muzzles. Their eyes are round and large. The dogs are slightly longer than they are tall and have a longish tail that is carried up or over the back.

There are two coat varieties. One is smooth and short. The other is long and soft with fringed ear and legs. The Chihuahua coat comes in almost any color and pattern.

Chihuahuas are considered long-lived, with a typical life expectancy of up to about 14 years.

Personality & Living With:

Chihuahuas are excellent companion dogs. They like attention and are loyal to their owners. Even though they are considered lap dogs, they are active and like to be kept occupied.

Chihuahuas are good family pets when treated respectfully, but they have a reputation for snapping at strangers or small children who may be threatening to their diminutive size.

Like many small dogs, they may be more prone to barking than some larger dogs. They can also seek to dominate their owners and be somewhat temperamental.

History:

The history of the Chihuahua is uncertain. The dog is named after the Mexican state of Chihuahua, where the dog was discovered about 1850. Some experts think the Aztecs or Incas developed the dog; others say the breed can be traced to Spanish dogs as far back as the 1500s. The use of the Chihuahua long ago also is uncertain. Some think Chihuahuas might have been used for food by Central American Indians, while others think the dogs had great religious significance. The first Chihuahuas are thought to have come to the United States in the early 19th century. The introduction of the Chihuahua to the public has come in unusual ways. Opera singer Adelina Patti publicized the breed in 1890 when she was given a Chihuahua concealed in a bouquet presented by the President of Mexico. In the 1940s, bandleader Xavier Cugat was known for conducting with a Chihuahua under his arm. Recently, recognition and appreciation of the breed has increased thanks to the dapper Chihuahua featured in Taco Bell commercials.