Although the Chihuahua is known as the smallest dog in the world, there is much more to enjoy about this breed than just its small size. The Chihuahua is a lively little dog with a wonderful personality and a big heart. Chihuahuas love to travel with you and stay by your side. They are very animated and love to please their owners in all they do. Due to their small size, Chihuahuas are perfect for people who live in an apartments.
The Chihuahua gets along fairly well with other pets but is not a good choice for families with very small children. Small children can not appreciate the small size of the Chihuahua and the chihuahua could be seriously injured if handled roughly or dropped.
As you look at a litter of Chihuahuas you may notice that the puppies bodies may look very different. Some have long bodies and long legs and some have very short legs and a short body. Some of them may have short hair and some are very fluffy. It’s important to ask the breeder to see the parents of the puppies since it’s very hard to tell what the puppies will look like when they are grown but, seeing the parents will give you a general idea.
As with any other breed, the Chihuahua has some health concerns that you should be aware of. An open fontanel, hypoglycemia, and patellar luxation are all common in Chihuahuas.
The open fontanel is the soft spot on the top of the Chihuahuas head. Sometimes it will close as the Chihuahua grows, sometimes it will not. While the fontanel is open care should be taken so the Chihuahua doesn’t receive a blow to the head or a fall.
Hypoglycemia is a condition where the Chihuahuas blood sugar can drop to a dangerous level. Picky eating or illness can bring this condition on. The symptoms of hypoglycemia are stumbling, weakness and lethargy. By the time you notice these symptoms the Chihuahua could be in real danger. If you suspect hypoglycemia, look at the Chihuahuas gums. In hypoglycemia the gums will be very gray. You can help your Chihuahua at this point by rubbing a little corn syrup on his gums. In about ten minutes he should be ready to eat a little bit because the corn syrup will stimulate his appetite. Free feeding your Chihuahua is the best way to avoid this condition.
Patellar luxation is a condition where the kneecap slips out of it’s normal position causing pain and later on in life, arthritis in the affected joint.
The Chihuahua has a life expectancy of about fifteen years. He will need regular veterinarian care including annual check-ups and vaccinations to stay happy and healthy.