Dog Breed


Fits in your backpackConfidence KingLong-lived
Primary image of Chihuahua dog breed
Full Name
Alternate Names
Arizona dog, Texas dog
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Life Span
14 - 16 years
4 - 6 pounds

The Chihuahua dog is the smallest dog breed and a pure proof that size doesn't matter. Being the smallest does not stop them for being loud, confident and territorial. Loving their people as much as possible and in the funniest way possible is what anyone can expect out of this intelligent and fast learners. These dogs are the national symbol of Mexico and are one of the oldest North American breeds. They are known for their round head, erect ears and shining eyes. They are good guards because they have a penetrating bark that they often use. Therefore, they are preferred by older owners and people who spend a lot of time in the apartment, but they are often kept by people who do not like to be separated from their pets.

Bred For
Helpinh herd animals such as goats and sheep
Family Considerations
Child Friendly

Is the Chihuahua good with children? Nearly all dogs enjoy playing with small children, but some can play too rough, or be a bit careless. In some cases dogs can get jealous of small children, or try and "herd" them due to their natural instincts.

Stranger Friendly

Is the Chihuahua friendly with strangers? Getting a dog that is friendly with people really depends on what your lifestyle is. Dogs who are more cautious with strangers oftentimes make good guard dogs, which can be a great fit for some owners. If you are social, live in the city, or frequently have guests over, you may want to consider getting a stranger friendly dog.

Dog Friendly

Is the Chihuahua friendly with other dogs? Of course this is particularly important if you already have another dog at home. However, it's an important factor to consider as well if you plan on frequently going to the dog park. Otherwise, even a dog who is not automatically friendly with other dogs can be an excellent fit, as they can still be affectionate with their human family.

Likes to Cuddle

Does the Chihuahua like to cuddle? All dogs want love, but they have different boundaries when it comes to physical affection. If you plan on frequently having a dog on your lap or pushed up against you, then you should consider whether this breed enjoys that.


Does the Chihuahua like to play? All puppies are playful, but as adults certain dogs are more playful. If you have children, or otherwise want to keep your dog active with plenty of play, there are plenty of options of breeds who will be happy to play all day.

Service Dog Ability

Does the Chihuahua make a good service dog? When looking to train a service dog it's important to consider how they were historically bred, and if their personality makes a good fit. A service dog must be smart, patient, and obsessed with pleasing their owner. Working dogs are a good fits since service dog 'work' gives them a feeling of accomplishment from doing a job.

Overall Ease of Breed
Ease for Novice

Is the Chihuahua good for first time owners? Dogs that are good for first time owners are ones who are easy to train, and are eager to please their owner. Very large dogs, or dogs with very high energy may also not be the best for first time owners since it adds a layer of complexity.

Training Potential

How well can the Chihuahua be trained? This rating is about the training potential of the Chihuahua. Dogs with high training potential oftentimes are good service dogs, police dogs, and dog show competition dogs. This does not necessarily mean they are the easiest to train, since many will be very intelligent and demanding.

Amount of Shedding

Does the Chihuahua shed a lot?

Ease of Grooming

Is the Chihuahua easy to groom?

Exercise Need

Does the Chihuahua need a lot of exercise?


How smart is the Chihuahua?

Amount of Barking

How much does the Chihuahua bark? Does the Chihuahua bark too much? It depends on your lifestyle, and where you live. Dogs use barking to communicate, keep guard, and alert. A strong bark can be a good characteristic for guard dogs, or flock guardian dogs who need to be vocal.In apartment living you should consider getting a dog who is less vocal.

Guard Dog Ability

Is the Chihuahua a good guard dog?

Tolerates Being Alone

Is the Chihuahua good at staying alone? Is the Chihuahua independent?

Home and Environment Considerations
Good for Apartment Living

Is the Chihuahua a good apartment dog? Can the Chihuahua live in an apartment without becoming frustrated or destructive? Typically people immediately consider the size of the dog, but energy level and historical habitat are also factors.


How big is the Chihuahua?

Tolerates Heat

How much does the Chihuahua tolerate hot weather? When is it too hot for a Chihuahua?

Tolerates Cold

How much does the Chihuahua tolerate cold weather? When is it too cold for a Chihuahua?

Potential to Run Away

Does the Chihuahua try to run away? Some dogs have natural wanderlust and are escape artists... they will do everything to get out and explore.

Physical Characteristics
General Health

Is the Chihuahua a healthy dog? The general health of a Chihuahua should be measured not just by how many years they live, but how often they have health issues during their lives. It is important to know which health conditions your breed is prone to- hip problems, eye problems, bloating, and arthritis are all common dog health problems.

Energy Level

How energetic is the Chihuahua? Is the Chihuahua too energetic for your lifestyle?

Amount of Drooling

How much does the Chihuahua drool?

Prey Drive

Does the Chihuahua have a large prey drive? Does the Chihuahua like to chase birds, cats, and other small animals? Prey drive can be bothersome at the park, but really an issue at home if you have small animals, since this comes as a natural instinct for dogs with high prey drive, to chase cats, birds, etc.


Is the Chihuahua atheltic? Is the Chihuahua fast and strong?

Breed Variations

The Chihuahua is a purebred dog that belongs to the Toy Terrier sub group, which falls under the larger Toy dog breed group.
Toy group: Toy dogs are primarily characterized by their very small size. But don't let that fool you- if anything their personality and tenacity is higher than the average dog. In fact, even their protective instincts are above average! In fact, because of that it is crucial they get socialization with children and other dogs from an early age. Because the toy dog is both small and primarily bred for home companionship, they make excellent additions for a wide range of families. There are also practical benefits with toy dogs- they are great for apartment living, and traveling. Toy dogs are also loyal and love to cuddle, making them the ideal lap dog.
Toy Terrier sub-group: Expect craziness and cuteness all in one. The toy terrier is a toy dog that is very small, perfect for your lap, and will provide endless amounts of love. But at the same time, at their core they are a terrier- with a big personality and plenty of confidence that exceeds their size a hundred times over. They are very alert, so can even serve as a bit of a watchdog- certainly compared to other toy dogs. They were bred to hunt vermin, so they like when they have a job, and they have more energy than the average toy dog. Because of their proud personality, they may not be immediately friendly with strangers or other dogs.

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