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10 Reasons Not to Get a Chihuahua

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To help you understand if they are the right breed of dog for you, consider these 10 Reasons Not to Get a Chihuahua.

1. You are not ready for a long-term commitment.

elderly senior chihuahua

Chihuahuas are the most long-lived breed of dog; they can live to be as old as 15 or 20 years old! Some have lived even longer.

As such, before bringing a Chihuahua home, you must be prepared to give your chi care and love for the next 15 to 20 years.

If you are not sure if you can commit to such long-term care, consider adopting a senior chi to make their retirement years golden, or consider other small animals with shorter life spans such as rabbits or guinea pigs.

2. You cannot say no to a cute face.

chihuahua begging against human legs

Although they are generally a hardy breed, one of the most commonly seen health issues with these dogs is heart problems, dental problems, and obesity.

If you cannot say no to the notorious begging puppy dog eyes which are mysteriously passed through generations providing an expert level of begging from birth, your Chihuahua will become overweight quickly, which will negatively impact their life span as it will exacerbate heart problems.

If you are not ready to put in the time and effort to train your Chihuahua to allow you to brush their teeth, they may experience dental problems earlier in life. Dental problems have the ability to exacerbate problems with the heart as well.

3. You do not want to work on training.

person's legs holding leash and fawn chihuahua looking up

Chihuahuas are prone to become little napoleons who will run the house if allowed to. They need training and consistency from a calm, assertive pack leader as Cesar Milan would say, to be their best.

Chihuahuas are especially prone to resource guard their humans; they may not want other humans or animals to approach you if they are sitting in your lap.

This behavior may create a liability for you, as some chis who resource guard will bite people or other animals who threaten their prized resource. Being dedicated to training can help prevent, or overcome, this behavior.

4. You are looking for a family dog.

family with chihuahua

Chihuahuas tend to bond closely with one person, so if you are looking for a family dog who will want to spend time with everyone, this breed is probably not the best fit for your family.

Chihuahuas are best for single people who want to make their dog the center of their life, or couples who make their dog their baby.

5. You are looking for a jogging partner.

While every breed of dog needs regular exercise, even little Chihuahuas, cannot withstand high-impact exercise that other breeds can.

That said, where there is a will, there is a way! Take your Chihuahua along on a long walk or hike via dog backpack. However, these backpacks are not ideal for jogging. If you prefer jogging, consider a stroller.

If you like to do long walks and hikes and do not want to carry your dog in a backpack or stroller, this is not the breed for you.

6. You work long hours and travel frequently.

Chihuahuas attach very strongly to their humans. They are very affectionate and often known as velcro dogs.

If you have a job that allows you to bring your chi, or if you work from home, long hours are less of an issue. But leaving them alone for an extended time would be difficult for this breed.

If you cannot spend significant time with your pet, a dog may not be the right choice for you. Consider a small pet like a guinea pig or rabbit, which does not need as much human interaction but share the characteristics of being personable and furry like dogs.

7. You do not enjoy snuggling and do not like “velcro” dogs.

bald man laying on floor reading book with 2 chihuahuas cuddling him

Chihuahuas love to snuggle and spend time with their people. If you prefer a canine companion who is not constantly wanting your attention, this may not be the breed for you.

The breed may have even been used by ancient people as a warm compress due to their snuggly tendencies so a chi who does not like close human contact is virtually unheard of.

8. You live in a cold climate but do not want to dress your dog in clothes.

Chihuahuas were bred to live in a warmer climate. If you live in a cooler climate or an area with cold seasons, you need to be prepared to keep your chi warm in the lower temperatures.

You will need sweaters or coats, or potentially a sweater layered beneath a coat in very low temperatures.

Further, you may need to take your chihuahua on walks in stores during very cool temps to get them to exercise while combating the cold. Or you can play indoor games with your chihuahua.

9. You have zero tolerance for barking.

barking chihuahua with fawn chihuahua behind him

Chihuahuas are sometimes jokingly referred to as “newsboys” because whenever there is something to report, they are the first to bark about it.

If you do not like barking, consider the Basenji, a very quiet breed of dog.

10. You want an outdoor dog or you prefer to let your dogs outside unsupervised.

tri-color long hair chihuahua running in grass

Due to their size, Chihuahuas are a prey target for wildlife and thieves.

They simply cannot be left outside unattended; birds of prey or other predators are able to overcome them easily. They can be severely injured, or even killed, quickly.

Birds of prey, specifically hawks, will drop prey animals to kill them. Other large predators could quickly kill a chihuahua due to their difference in size.

Further, Chihuahuas can also fit through small openings in fences, which could lead to them being lost, stolen, injured, or killed.

Another size-related hazard is that they could easily be stolen from a yard, patio, or deck by a thief if left unattended.

As such, it is in your Chi’s best interests to be supervised when outdoors.

If you want your Chihuahua to be able to relieve themselves without having to be escorted outside, consider training them to use a potty pad.


By carefully considering the breed’s care requirements and your lifestyle, you can make the best decision for your family and your potential future chihuahua.

Chihuahuas are an amazing breed of dog to bring into your family if they are the right fit for your lifestyle. There is no love like Chihuahua love!

blond woman holding white chihuahua

Cathy Bendzunas

Pet Blogger

I have had dogs all my life. I have been a pet groomer, worked in a pet hotel, and a kennel, and have bred and showed dogs.

Wendy Grace

Monday 7th of November 2022

I seem to have a problem with him wetting in the same place when I am in bed I have tried everything and nothing seems to work, his 4 years and house training was easy Wondering if someone could help me please


Monday 7th of November 2022

Once they pick a spot it's hard to deter them. Make sure the area has been cleaned really well with an enzyme cleaner and if you can block that area off. If you can't, keep them tethered to you with a leash ao you know what they are doing. If that's not feasible, you can always put a potty pad in that spot.


Saturday 24th of September 2022

You are so right on all accounts!!! You need to socialize them right from the start. I’ve had Chi’s since I was 13 and have loved everyone of them! I have one now and I’m 69 and love every second of my life with him beside me! They are all so different then the last. I LOVE my Remi! Thank you for a fantastic newsletter!!

Julie Cameron

Saturday 24th of September 2022

The only thing I would add to this would be that if you are not careful to look behind you when you step backwards, you will send your baby flying with your foot (as I have done quite a lot) because they are standing right behind you when you move. P.S. I have been lucky not to have hurt my girl on any of those occasions, but it could have been a disaster if I had, and I instantly apologise to her.


Saturday 24th of September 2022

Good point Julie. Specially when they are puppies and haven't learned to get out of the way.