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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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!
I’m an avid dog lover and I’ve had many dogs throughout my life. When I rescued my first Chihuahua, I was hooked on the breed.
I have had dogs all my life and have trained as a dog groomer. I also have been a kennel worker, worked in a pet hotel through PetSmart, and still am a pet sitter.
Read my full bio on my About page