The Chihuahua is a small dog breed that originated, and is named after, the state of Chihuahua in Mexico around the 1500s. They are intelligent little dogs that come in a variety of sizes, colors, and coat lengths. Sizes may vary, but American breed standards states that they should weigh no more than 6 pounds.
The temperament of a Chihuahua greatly varies depending on the temperament of its parents (genetics) and how it is raised and socialized. They can range from shy to protective guard dogs to social and friendly dogs. Chihuahuas love their dens and love to burrow in blankets. They are lively and playful and devoted to their owners. These little dogs should be fed constantly throughout the day because of their high metabolism and the risk for hypoglycemia, but care should be taken not to overfeed them.
Chihuahuas are prone to certain health conditions to which care should be taken.
- Hypoglycemia – This is the condition of low blood sugar which can be especially dangerous for puppies. They should be fed frequently to avoid hypoglycemia.
- Eye infections or injury – Because their eyes are large and protruding, they may be more prone to injury or infections.
- Dental problems
- Weight problems – an overweight Chihuahua is more susceptible to joint injuries, bronchitis, and reverse sneezing
- Luxating patella – this genetic condition occurs when the kneecap (patella) becomes displaced and can cause the leg to lock up
- Heart conditions such as pulmonic stenosis which is a condition that causes a reduction of blood flow to the lungs
Chihuahuas are a great companion dog and can live for many years with proper health care.
Happy Cinco de Mayo!