Veterinarian-written / veterinarian-approved articles for your dog.

The Chihuahua

Learn some basic information about chihuahuas.

At, we are proponents of adoption and rescue when you are looking for a new dog. Still, some people prefer purebreds, and we understand that. If you want to adopt a chihuahua, we encourage you to look at shelters and local rescue organizations. Avoid pet stores that may get their dogs from puppy mills.

Additionally, please be aware that the information below—especially as it pertains to personality characteristics—is general in nature only, and individual dogs may show some or none of it.

Physical Traits and Common Health Issues of the Chihuahua

Chihuahuas are tiny dogs. Some are as small as two pounds. They come in many different solid colors and some patterns. They can also be short-coated or long-coated.

Chihuahuas tend to be physically fragile, so they're usually not great for households with small children, especially dogs on the lower end of the size range.

As puppies, chihuahuas can be prone to open fontanelle, which is when the hole present in the skull at birth doesn't close when it should. That may make them prone to fluid developing around the brain, seizures, and easy brain injury.

Chihuahuas are also more likely than many other breeds to develop the following health conditions:

Chihuahua Personality Traits

For a tiny dog, chihuahuas have huge personalities. They can be excellent watchdogs but tend to overdo it, becoming territorial and snappy. They can also be overly yappy if not trained well. Since people tend to carry them around a lot and put up with behavior they wouldn't from large dogs like jumping and yipping, Chihuahuas can be easily spoiled.

Chihuahuas often bond strongly to one family member.

Chihuahuas are quite intelligent and easily trained, but owners need to be consistent and use positive reinforcement just like they would with a larger dog to avoid the development of bad behavior.

Why Chihuahuas Make Great Companions

Chihuahuas are bold, smart, and funny when they're properly trained and handled. They're small enough to travel well with their owners and can be excellent companions.

You May Also Like These Articles:

The Labrador Retriever

Collapsing Trachea in Dogs

Luxating Patella in Dogs

Obesity in Dogs: Overview of Causes and Dangers

Hypoglycemia of Toy Breed Dogs

Disclaimer: This website is not intended to replace professional consultation, diagnosis, or treatment by a licensed veterinarian. If you require any veterinary related advice, contact your veterinarian promptly. Information at is exclusively of a general reference nature. Do not disregard veterinary advice or delay treatment as a result of accessing information at this site. Just Answer is an external service not affiliated with

Notice: Ask-a-Vet is an affiliated service for those who wish to speak with a veterinary professional about their pet's specific condition. Initially, a bot will ask questions to determine the general nature of your concern. Then, you will be transferred to a human. There is a charge for the service if you choose to connect to a veterinarian. Ask-a-Vet is not manned by the staff or owners of, and the advice given should not delay or replace a visit to your veterinarian.