Chihuahuas have their name derived from their place of origin – the province of Chihuahua in Mexico. These mini dogs occurred here and in the whole Central America already at the times of Toltecs. They originally lived in the mountains. However, Indians used to catch them and domesticated them. The natives even described Chihuahuas as the guardians of dead chiefs in the world of ghosts. The first individual was imported to the Czech Republic in 1971, i.e. 29 years after the breed was recognized by the International Cynological Organization.
I probably don’t have to describe how Chihuahuas look like very much. They weigh from 500 grams to 3 kg. Their apple shape of head and round eyes are characteristic for them. We can talk about a great spirit in a small body with these dogs. They are very confident and courageous. However, they also have many reasons to be afraid because of their small size. They usually don’t trust strangers and if you underestimated their socialization in an early age, they might become aggressive.
Otherwise, they are friendly and intelligent companions which often fixate to one person. However, they are nice and affectionate to all family members. If they are well socialized, they also usually have good relationships with other dogs, even though they prefer other chihuahuas as companions. And they also usually don’t have problems with cats either. I even know a chihuahua that lives in a temporary cat shelter with about 15 dogs and that is a real member of the pack. Even though, chihuahuas are usually considered to be purse dogs, many of them love walking and some even like longer trips if they get used to them.
With regard to their fur length and colour, everyone can pick. There are both short-haired and long-haired varieties with many colours and shades. However, you have to be careful about Merle, the so-called marble colours. Two individuals of this colour cannot be cross-bred because their inheritance responsible for this attractive colouration also comes with serious health risks. In some countries, Merle Chihuahuas are even banned, it is considered to be animal cruelty and there are strong sanctions. The International Cynological Organization does not allow this colour and if you get a chihuahua of this colour, it can’t get a certificate of origin. To get merle colour, a chihuahua needs to be cross-bred with another breed. Therefore, it cannot be “a pure blood dog” and no one can make sure that this individual is healthy and does not have any birth defects. They are usually products of puppy mills and I definitely don’t recommend getting them.
Chihuahuas can be great and loyal companions if you will be consistent with their upbringing. Thanks to their size, they can be perfect companions for travelling. They love playing and are also suitable for children but you have to properly explain to them they have to be careful when playing with this dog in order not to hurt it. Therefore, you need to pay more attention to small children. These dogs have problems with dental caries which we should also take into consideration before we get one. However, if you decide to get a chihuahua, you’ll definitely have no regrets.