Have you ever guessed which dog breed is the smallest? If you said Chihuahua, you'd be right! This breed sure is tiny, but it's also one of the oldest in the world. These guys are feisty, sweet, and love to sit on laps for long periods of time. They're also extremly devoted to the person they've chosen to bond with. They connect quickly and once they do, they'll protect that person with all they've got. The Chihuahua is so small that it's not the best idea to keep one with small children around. The dog may get injured. Chihuahuas also like to nip, so the child may get bitten. These are sassy little dogs that have medium exercise requirements, so if you live in a small home or apartment, it may be a good fit for you.
Continue reading to learn more about Chihuahuas, otherwise known as one of the smallest and oldest dog breeds in the world.
Popularity: Very popular.
Trainability: As far as basic tricks such as shake, sit and roll over go, training a Chihuahua isn't terribly difficult. This dog is eager to please and eager to learn. To assist with this training process, use treats and positive reinforcement. When it comes to housebreaking this breed of dog, you may have some difficulty. The Chihuahua puppy and dog has a tough time learning where the appropriate spot to go is. Some owners have had success with litter boxes and wee wee pads, but it's best to teach the dog to go outdoors.
Size/Weight: Small sized dogs, weighing in at an average of 4-6 pounds.
Origin Location/Date: Myth and legend surround the Chihuahua breed of dog. Stemming from Mexico, there are claims that the Chihuahua was a spirit guide for those who traveled through the underworld. Chihuahuas are thought to be the very first dogs in both North and South America, so they are actually a very old breed. It's named after the state of Chihuahua in Mexico. In 1904 in North America, the American Kennel Club recognized the breed and the Chihuahua Club of America was formed in 1923. Today, this breed is wildly popular as pets for all sorts of people.
Energy Level: Chihuahuas aren't particularly energetic dogs. They do run around inside and have fun playing, but they don't require extensive exercise like many larger dogs do. Because of the tendency of these dogs to be carried around a lot by their owners, they can become overweight. If that happens, simply allow them to walk or run around more as opposed to being carried. They also enjoy walking outside on grass or the sidewalk.
Temperament: While Chihuahuas are great family pets, they must be socialized early on in puppyhood. They are friendly with other pets and other dogs of the same breed, but can become snappy if teased by children because of their small size. Kids need to be taught that the dog is not a toy and if treated like one, the child may be bitten. Otherwise, if socialized early and treated well, the Chihuahua is a great family pet and best friend.
Necessary Space: Chihuahua puppies and dogs can live in the smallest of apartments. Since they are so tiny, they're easily carried around and can get a lot of exercise indoors. They aren't an outdoorsy type of dog, so they'll likely prefer to be indoors with you.
Talents: Chihuahuas are known as the "armpit piranha" because they are so protective of the person they've bonded with. If you've ever tried to pet a Chihuahua while it's being held by its master, you have heard the growling and most likely have felt the snapping. They are obsessive about protecting those they love. Otherwise, they're friendly and fun dogs to have around.
Life Expectancy: 14-16 years.
Group: Toy group.
A few terms and phrases to describe the typical Chihuahua puppy and dog: charming, graceful, sassy, saucy, alert, protective, friendly, fun, tiny, small, toy, loyal, expressive, indoor, not good with kids, difficult to house train, barks a lot, yappy, nippy, snappy, can bite and good watch dog (of threats real or imagined).