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Chihuahua - From chihuahua puppies to breeding chihuahuas to the long haired chihuahua, we have all the info you need on chihuahuas!

A Chihuahua is a dog with a stereotype attached to it. Images of a sissy little dog dressed in miniature versions of human clothes, carried about in an expensive handbag by a bleached blond, come to mind. But this petit dog is actually just going along for the ride and he does not care if that ride leads to Wal-Mart or Tiffany’s. A charismatic little animal, the Chihuahua takes his job as a guard dog seriously and he is as smart as he is tough. Just don’t ask him about his ancestral lineage because just like the blond if asked if she dyes her hair, he’s not telling. Although the Chihuahua has been traced to Mexico, believed to have been discovered in the Mexican state of Chihuahua by tourists, in the early 1900s, there are numerous written accounts of these tiny dogs found with both short and long coats, living along the Mexican and American border since 1888.
There are even those who believe that the Chihuahua history goes back even further and that he is a relative of the "Techichi", the beloved companion of the Toltec of Mexico, living around the 9th Century A.D. Others still, believe that the Chihuahua was the sacred dog of the Aztec often depicted in their ancient art. There are even more theories regarding the Chihuahua’s heritage. Scientists have discovered the mummified remains of a small dog in an Egyptian tomb. This dog it is said, has a soft spot in the skull, which is common in this particular breed. While in Malta, they claim that Chihuahuas have been around for many centuries, arriving there from North Africa around 600BC. While a Botticelle fresco from 1482 with the Sistine Chapel in Rome, Italy, includes the likeness of a pet dog that looks to be a Chihuahua. Other Chihuahua experts believe that like animals such as the horse, cow, pig, sheep and goat, that the dog was not indigenous to Mexico when the Spaniards first arrived and they believe that the little dog was brought over with them during the Spanish conquest of 1519. Still some believe claims that the Chihuahua actually came from Egypt, making its was to the Mediterranean countries later and then onto Mexico. Yet another theory has it originating from China, brought over by traders a hundred years ago. So many theories make it appear that there is some likely hood that this little dog has more of a history than is perhaps correctly documented. Mexicans though, still believe that the Chihuahua was one of four types of dog domesticated long ago within Mexico and regardless of its true heritage, its name remains Mexican. A popular dog in many countries today, the Chihuahua was brought over to the United States well before the turn of the last Century. It was bred with terriers including the Black and Tan Toy amongst other types of dogs and thus was created the modern smooth coat that is most common today.
The first Chihuahua by the name of "Midget” was registered in the United Sates in 1904, although this type of dog documentation shows, was first shown in 1901 and even registered a win with the American Kennel Club. The Chihuahua Club of America was established in 1923 after many years of trying to form a proper Club for the popular little dog. The standard for a Chihuahua that was then agreed upon differs very little today. While this breed became immediately popular in the States, during the same time period in Britain it was still a rare dog to see in the 1950's and known to draw a huge crowd of onlookers. Today the Chihuahua is common in both Countries and brings a large number of entries in show classes within both. This breed comes with either a long or a short coat. The short is smooth and dense while the long is silky and feathered. The long coat Chihuahua is believed to have been developed later in the United States by crossing a smooth coat with another miniature breed. The long coat is identical to the shorthaired in all ways except its hair and it is still considered a rarity in many part of the world. The Chihuahua is considered the smallest breed of dog; its recognized weight being between two to six pounds and it is one of the most recognizable dogs in the world. In Mexico City's Natural History Museum, there are skeletal remains of a full grown Chihuahua that died around 1910. It is believed that with its flesh and coat, it would have weighed a pound at most when it had died. Regarding a Chihuahua size does matter, meaning the smaller the dog the more coveted and valuable it is.
The popularity of the dog stems greatly from its size. It is easy to carry this dog around, making it both a manageable and easy to care for companion. While it may be simple enough to pop this little dog into your purse or to carry it in one hand, it does need a lot of exercise and therefore should be encouraged and allowed to move around on its own. It is not a difficult dog to train and responds well to commands. A good amount of exercise and feeding it lightly will keep this tiny wonder in good shape and it is said that although known as a lap dog, a Chihuahua will walk as long as its master wishes. The Chihuahua's size makes it quite different from other breeds and the dog's head is what makes it most beautiful to breeders. The head should be round like an apple with fine and accented cheekbones. Chihuahua's ears are large and set far apart on the head and are erect when the dog is alert. It has a compact body that appears to be somewhat tucked up under the dog and should be longer length wise than height wise. Its tail is of medium length and should curve slightly and it will often carry it high proudly, much like a flag. Though hairless tails are acceptable, a thick tail is most desirable in this breed. Its eyes are brilliant and not too prominent and are set far apart. Eyes will be brown, black, blue or even ruby colored. Its coat is glossy when it is a shorthaired. Longhaired are more rare and often have a wave in their coat. All colors and mixtures of color are acceptable. The most common colors found in this dog are fawn or brown, chocolate, white and cream and considered the most desirable. Because this breed often has a sparse amount of hair around its neck, a small collar is recommended.
There are a few differences between the long and shorthaired Chihuahua regarding the coat. The tail on a longhaired should be long and feathered and the ears may be less erect due to the weight of the hair. There was a time that breeding of long and short coat Chihuahua's was allowed and it was not uncommon for a litter of puppies to be born with both varieties. Things to avoid in either type are clipped or droopy ears; docked or broken tails and a lack of hair, which will make this dog, resemble the Mexican Hairless dog. Both long and shorthaired are relatively inexpensive to keep and easy to groom, requiring only a daily combing or brushing with a soft bristled brush. The Chihuahua is a very alert and lively little dog. While he may not be the scariest looking dog, he is quick to give alarm at the least bit of noise or movement that he deems suspicious. So attached is he to his owner and wary of strangers, that he makes a good guard dog who does not appreciate humans who enter his home without permission. He will yell and threaten mayhem as he races to defend his home and family from anyone whom he deems to be a threat. A courageous and very intelligent dog, he can move very fast despite his small stature. A brave dog, he will put up with a great deal of pain stoically but will not put up with any form of insult from other dogs, no matter their size. He has no fear of standing up to a bigger dog, a common trait amongst small dogs and therefore must be watched carefully so as to not be allowed to pick a fight with a much larger opponent. This is generally a shy dog that can be both possessive and jealous of new animals and people around its owner. This dog loves to play and hates to be left alone and therefore does well with another dog, especially another Chihuahua.
A generally happy little dog, the Chihuahua has been described as having a saucy expression and this would sufficiently describe its personality. This is also a good hunter and outdoors dog. While the Chihuahua is not considered a weak or delicate breed, anyone planning on owning a puppy must take precautions, as it is easy to step on a dog so small. Breeders of this dog know to use a shuffling method when walking, so as not to step on a pup. Owners with young children should supervise the interaction between puppy and child constantly as the puppy could easily get hurt if played with roughly. This dog is not expensive to feed as it eats very little. It is a good pet for an adult or a gentle child and can adapt to any climate although it may need a sweater and booties in harsh weather. Finding the right breed of Chihuahua is not an easy task. A good breeder can almost always tell what and where a particular dog came from. It is hard to breed good Chihuahuas, as there has been so much breeding with other types of dogs within this breed. It is now hard to cut the bad from the good. A feisty and courageous little spirit, the Chihuahua makes a great companion for anyone who can handle is huge personality. Whether you’re looking for a dog that will be at home in your purse or is brave enough to guard your home from an intruder, the Chihuahua with its elusive past is ideal for the job.