We created this page to help answer some of the most common questions that we get from new Chi owners. All of our answers are based on our experience and research, and by no means will they absolutely apply to every single Chihuahua in every single situation. Chi's are like people in that they are all very different, and have different personalities and needs. If you do not find the answer to your questions here, please don't hesitate to e-mail us. We will be more than happy to answer anything we can for you.
Animal Planet has a great video that concisely lays out most of the facts about Chihuahuas. However, we do have one little point that we want to make before you watch the video. Chihuahuas generally are very good with kids as long as the children treat them well. We have placed several puppies in homes with small kids and they do great! So, it really is all about the interaction between the child and the puppy and making sure that it is safe for both of them. If you do that, Chihuahuas will bond very strongly with kids! That said, enjoy the video and check out our FAQ's below for more precise answers to some of the questions!
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Do Chihuahuas Shed?
Yes, Chihuahuas do shed. ALL dogs shed. However, as with any other breed of dog, some Chihuahuas shed less or more than other Chihuahuas. And on average, long coat Chihuahuas seem to shed less than short coats...but they do all shed at least some. Also, please be aware that when it comes to allergens and dog allergies, people are allergic to pet dander, not pet hair. All dogs produce dander, even the breeds that aren't supposed to shed (but do).
Do male Chihuahuas "Mark"?
Yes, IF they are left intact. As with any other male dog, they will "mark their territory." This is part of their pack mentality, and it's their means of telling other males (whether they are there or not) where their territory is. It can be a problem for humans, but on average, many vets will tell you that if you have your male neutered before he lifts his leg (before he is completely sexually mature) he will never mark. Also, behavior training can put a stop to the marking as well. An interesting fact that many don't know is that female Chihuahuas also mark. Mine mark just as bad as the boys do.
Is a Male or Female Chihuahua Better as a pet?
The answer to this question depends on your preferences. There are many things to consider here. Please see the page we dedicated to this question for a more complete answer. Still, my lap dog always has been and always will be a male.
Long coat versus short coat?
If you're considering a long coat Chihuahua, many people have asked this question too....would a long coat puppy be better for my family than a short coat. The answer is, they are equally loving companions. Long coats do tend to shed a bit less, and they must be groomed a bit more (not much more though.) Your long coat puppy may require 2 baths a month instead of 1 as a short coat would. And he may need to be brushed once a week or so, instead of once every couple of weeks. Additionally, in our experience, long coats tend to be a bit more laid back and easy going than short coats, but both are equally lovable!
How much grooming does a long coat Chihuahua need?
Long coat Chihuahuas do not require as much grooming as many other long coat breeds. Their coats are very silky and easy to keep clean. A bath every few weeks and a good brushing once a week should be all your long coat should require. And don't forget to trim his nails about twice a month.
Are Chihuahuas good with kids?
In our experience, Yes, Chihuahuas are very good with kids. However, like any dog, they will rebel against people who treat them badly, so if children are unsupervised and play too roughly with a Chihuahua, he will not like that child, and may, as a result, carry his dislike for that child over to other children. However, if your child treats your Chihuahua properly, your Chi will adore your child and others.
Do Chihuahuas make good Companions?
Absolutely! Chihuahuas are the world's best companion. That's what they are bred for! They attach very strongly to their people and they are extremely loyal little dogs. They can form a bond with many people, so the more people there are in your family, the more people there are for your Chi to love!!
Do Chihuahuas Travel Well?
In most cases, yes, Chihuahuas travel very well. They love to go places with their people. They can be very easily trained to sit next to you while you drive and be a perfect little angel. They especially love to travel in motor homes and such. They are very good dogs for people who do a lot of traveling. However, as with any breed of dog (and people too) some of them do have a tendency to get motion sick. We've only ever had one dog that ever got motion sick though, so it seems to be a rather uncommon condition in Chihuahuas.
Are Chihuahuas good for Apartment dwellers?
Absolutely! They are ideal apartment dogs. Chihuahuas can get almost all the exercise they need running around a smaller space such as an apartment. They do not require a lot of room for sleeping, as their absolute favorite place to sleep is in bed with their people. They can be easily trained to puppy pads and such. We do recommed taking your Chi out at least once a day, even if he's trained to puppy pads, because they LOVE sunlight.
Is it true that chihuahuas do better in pairs?
In our experience, yes...they do better in pairs. When you have two Chi puppies together, they keep each other company, making them less likely to cry at night when you first bring them home. Also, they learn from each other, making it easier to house train two of them together. Chihuahuas are very social and they love company, so they do very well in pairs. BUT, it should also be said that if you get a single Chihuahua, your Chi WILL housetrain. And he WILL stop crying at night from separation from his siblings. It just tends to go a little faster with two as opposed to one. A single Chi puppy WILL be just as happy and well adjusted as a pair would be.
Do chihuahuas get along with other breeds and/or cats?
Most Chihuahuas, if brought home as puppies, will get along with other animals, no matter what kind of animal they are, just fine. They grow up with them and they tend to do fine. However, an older Chihuahua may not do as well with other breeds and/or cats. Chi's will almost always do fine with other Chi's though, no matter what their ages.
Can a chihuahua be litter box trained?
Some people have successfully litter box trained Chihuahuas, so the answer is yes, it can be done. However, you must begin litter box training while they are still very young puppies. In our experience, litter box training an older Chihuahua is nearly impossible. That seems to be because they want to scratch at the litter and it goes flying. But we have also seen other Chihuahuas use litter boxes. So, start them very young and yes, it's very possible to litter box train a Chi. One word of warning though...you should never use cat litter in a Chi's litter box. Purina makes dog litter and there is also litter that is made from recycled newspapers that will work great. But Chi's have a difficult time with the dust from cat litter.
Do puppy pads work?
Yes, they absolutely do work for MOST puppies. Many people have great success training their Chi puppies to use puppy pads. However, there are some who would rather use the pads as chew toys, and they will end up shredding them. For those puppies, try paper training instead. It may be something about the plastic or cotton on the pad that they don't like. We haven't quite figured it out yet.
What size will my puppy be?
We get this question several times a day...this is by far the most asked question for us. The only answer that we can give that will be absolutely true is "we aren't sure." We can make an educated guess. That's all any breeder can do. Most really reputable breeders will not guarantee size of a puppy because we cannot know for sure. We use a weight chart, and take the puppy's weight and plot it on the chart. That, in combination with experience, gives us an educated guess that we can pass on to you. BUT, the chart and experience are not always right. There are just too many factors involved in determining a puppy's size for us to try to guarantee it.
Is it safe to ship a chihuahua puppy?
Yes, however, there are several guidelines that we use to determine when to ship, how to ship and where to ship. Please contact Shayna for more information
are chihuahuas hard to house train?
Just about every difficulty we've ever run into with housetraining had more to do with the humans than with the Chihuahua. In order to housetrain a puppy, you must be consistent. Pick a schedule for your puppy and stick with it. Take your puppy to the same places to potty each time, and try to make it the same times each day. If you do these things, housetraining your puppy shouldn't be difficult. Chihuahuas are no more difficult to housetrain than any other breed of dog, and some say they are much easier to train than most dogs!
are chihuahuas nervous and shaky?
NO...most Chihuahuas are not nervous. On average, most do not shiver or shake for no reason. However, just about all Chihuahuas will shiver under certain circumstances. When they are cold or frightened is usually when most of the shivering occurs. Often, the very tiny Chihuahuas tend to be a bit more nervous and shivery.
Why was my grandparents' chihuahua mean? will mine be mean?
Believe it or not, we get this question more often than you might think. Since Chihuahuas form such strong bonds with their people, in situations where a Chi does not come into contact with too many other people as a puppy, during the critical socialization time, he may become very skeptical of strangers. This tends to happen most often in Chihuahuas owned by elderly people. It's very seldom that a Chihuahua, even one who has not been exposed to other people, is actually being mean though. They sound mean, and they can even look pretty mean, but all they're really being is scared. They are letting you know that you shouldn't come any closer. If you do, you may be bitten, but usually, the Chi will tuck his tail and run. This IS NOT the case though, in Chi's who have been exposed to other people as a puppy. It is a result of improper socialization. So, the answer to the second part of the question is...no, not if you continue the socialization that we (or your breeder) started. One thing you must always remember about Chihuahuas....they love people as much as people love them and they will continue to love people if they are exposed to them.
My puppy's (or the puppies on your website) nose was pink and now it's developing spots. Is this normal? Will it turn completely black (or chocolate or blue)?
Yes. Most (though not all) puppies noses are pink at birth. Sometimes they have already begun to turn colors when they are born and sometimes they haven't. If your puppy's nose is pink with black dots on it, it will finish turning black, though this process may take several weeks. Some puppies will have blue or chocolate noses, and often, these start out pink too, and begin to develop blue or chocolate spots. Those puppies' noses will also turn completely to either blue or chocolate.
Is it a good idea to buy clothes for my chihuahua? Will he wear them?
The answer to this depends on the puppy and where you live. If you live in a warm enough climate, there really is no need for clothing, unless it gets pretty cold in winter. Chihuahuas are warm weather dogs. They really do not like the cold. So if you live in a cold climate, where the temperature drops in the winter, it would be a good idea to get some sweaters and things for the winter. Will your puppy wear them? Probably, if you begin putting them on his as soon as you get him, while he is still very young. Even then though, sometimes the clothing just irritates the puppy so that they end up chewing them up trying to get them off. But many Chihuahuas wear clothing very well. It is our recommendation that you do not put clothing on your puppy just to be cute though, unless your Chi tolerates it well. If the puppy likes it and keeps it on with no problem, dress him however you would like to. If not, and clothing is not needed due to weather, we recommend that you don't put your puppy, or yourself, through the bother or trying to keep those clothes on him.
do chihuahuas help with asthma?
The general answer to this question is...in many cases, they do. Chihuahuas have been known for decades for the unusual way that they seem to quiet symptoms in asthma patients. However, that being said, we must also tell you that no research has been done on this subject, so there is no scientific basis for it. Also as a result of a lack of research, there is no explanation for it. Nobody quite knows how Chihuahuas help asthma.....but in our experience, and in the experience of some of our friends and acquaintances....they do.
Is there a deer type Chihuahua?
Yes, there is, however, there is no such thing as a Chihuahua that is registered as a deertype. That is due to the practices of a certain kennel club and the misinformation that the club passes on to it's members. Still, the fact remains that the deertype Chihuahua looks more like the animals believed to be the ancestors of the Chihuahua than its more dome-skulled, depressed face counterpart, the apple head Chihuahua. Most of our Chihuahuas are a mix between the deertype and the apple head type and that is the way we like it. Click HERE for a great article on the deertype Chihuahua.
Is there a "teacup" Chihuahua?
NO! There is no such thing as a "teacup" Chihuahua. All Chihuahuas are categorzied by all registries as toys, regardless of size. Most folks don't understand what they are getting themelves into when they ask for a "teacup". That means that they want the tiniest dog possible, but they don't realize that the smaller the dog, the bigger the health issues, or at least the potential for health issues. "Teacup" sized Chihuahuas often require much more vet care, and the care is much more diffcult on a dog that size, which usually translates to "much more expensive". The truth is that the breed has been intentionally bred down in size through the use of questionally ethical breeding practices, and to the detriment of the health and temperament of the individual dog. They are not supposed to be 2 pound dogs. Chihuahua ancestors were believed to be 15-20 pounds. You can imagine what kind of health issues would come along with a "shrinking" of that nature! "Teacups" are anomolies that used to be called "runts" and were undesirable in a litter. Yet, now that is what everyone thinks they want, until they actually get one!