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13 Things Only a Chihuahua Owner Understands

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Chihuahua dogs sometimes have a bad reputation but if they are as bad as they are portrayed, why are so many of us crazy for them?

2 chihuahuas in basket in background

I know once I got my first chihuahua, I knew I would always have one. It doesn’t mean I don’t love and have other dog breeds, but there is something special and different about chihuahuas.

Sometimes it seems that chihuahuas are their own breed of animal, completely different from other dogs. But They are dogs. Just funny, quirky, adorable little dogs.

I asked my readers on Facebook what is something only a chihuahua owner would understand and was surprised at the amount of responses. Well over 700 responses, closer to 800! Apparently we as chihuahua pet parents have a lot to say about this subject.

I went through them and made a list and will share with you the most common answers. Most I expected and have experienced with my own chihuahuas. There were a few though that I was surprised was so common with other pet parents.

sleepy chihuahua under orange blanket

1-Chihuahuas Love Burrowing in Blankets

This was the top answer. Chihuahuas, more than any other breed love their blankies and love to burrow in them until you often can’t even tell they are there. That’s why (as so many people pointed out) you have to be very careful before sitting down so you don’t sit on them.

2-Chihuahuas Have Rituals With Their Food

I was surprised at the amount of pet parents that responded with this answer. I know one of my chihuahuas does this (as does my yorkie too) but I didn’t realize it’s such a common thing. The most common ritual is that they pick up one piece of food at a time and carry it to a different room to eat it. 

Another ritual is that they will walk around the bowl one way and then turn around and walk around the bowl the other way before eating. 

I’m sure there are more quirky “food rituals” and if your dog does one, let us know in the comments. I’m sure we would all love to hear about it.

3-Personality Plus

For such tiny little dogs, chihuahuas have strong personalities. Your home will never be dull with a chihuahua around. I love seeing how different each of my dog’s personality is and how much fun they are to have around.

funny chihuahua with tongue out

4-Chihuahuas Have an Attitude

Well that’s probably an understatement. Chis have no idea that they are the smallest dog breed and think they can take on anyone or anything. I think they should change the phrase “Napoleon Complex” to “Chihuahua Complex”.

5-You Will Never Need a Doorbell

Chihuahuas actually make pretty good watch dogs. They may not scare of an intruder but they will definitely let you know about it. They will also let you know if someone is walking by on the sidewalk, or a leaf is blowing across the yard. 

6-Chihuahuas Love to Bark

This kind of goes along with not needing a doorbell. Chihuahuas do love to bark. A lot. It can be annoying and doesn’t help their bad reputation. 

chihuahua barking

7-Chihuahuas are the Ultimate Lap Dog

Chihuahuas love nothing better than to snuggle in the lap of their favorite human. They are great companions. 

8-Chihuahuas are Loyal and Devoted

Chis decide who their human will be and though they may love everyone in a household, there is usually one special person who belongs solely to that chihuahua. At least in their mind that is. 

All dogs are loyal but I had never seen the same degree of loyalty a chihuahua has in any other breed, have you?

Once they decide they love you, you will never have a moment alone again. You will have a constant tiny shadow.

fawn chihuahua under the covers

9-Shivering and Shaking

This seems to be universal among chihuahuas. I haven’t met one yet that doesn’t do it to some degree. And there are different reason for it. Click the link to learn more about why chihuahuas shake and shiver.

10-Chis Tend to Paw at Their Pet Parents

Lucy does this to me a lot but I didn’t realize this was so prevalent among chihuahuas. A lot of chi parents wrote that their chihuahua will slap at them with their paw when they want attention, to be picked up, to be petted or fed, or whatever. 

Lucy does it when she wants me rub her belly with my toes. If I stop, she scratches my ankles until I give in. It definitely lets me know when her nails need trimming.

11-House Training Issues

This was a big one among chihuahua owners and it’s one I hear about every day from readers. House training a chihuahua seems to be harder than with any other breed.

smiling chihuahua with urine stain

12-Chihuahuas can be Demanding

Let’s face it. The dark side of their big personalities is that chis can be demanding. I heard more than once “My chihuahua owns me“.

Chihuahuas can be overly sensitive and get their feelings hurt easily. They love attention. They can be clingy. They can be bossy. They can be aggressive. 

Please notice I said “can“. It’s a generalization. Not all chis are like this but many do have some sort of issue to some degree.

13-Chihuahuas are Love

These little balls of fur are the purest form of love. When they love you, they love you with all their heart, soul and being. I try to be worthy of their love as much as I can.

paw print graphic in purple and turquoise


So what do you think of this list? Can you relate to it? Were any of them a surprise to you?


Sunday 5th of September 2021

We have adopted a 10yr old Chihuahua from a shelter. So we have no idea what kind of life he had. He is on antibiotics for kennel cough. We are elderly and we have a hard time walking on grass or rough terrain. We want to try litter training. What kind of ideas can you give me. I’ve read a lot of suggestions on here. I think it would be fairly easy on a a puppy but one that is 10yrs. Old may be different story. Help, help


Sunday 5th of September 2021

Hi Marianne, I'm assuming you saw the post I wrote on this. It had some tips in it. I found a post though that has some better tips here:

Wednesday 18th of August 2021

The most loving guy my Rascal is. Yes he likes others but I am his daddy.


Thursday 19th of August 2021

Of course, you are his human.


Wednesday 18th of August 2021

I can relate to all of these. Especially number 10. My chi, Lucky, always paws at me for everything. He's very vocal,too, so if he wants something, he doesn't hesitate at all to slap me on the leg and bark in my face.


Wednesday 18th of August 2021

LOL, at least he isn't shy about letting you know when he wants something.


Wednesday 18th of August 2021

My chi is a rescue that was used for breeding. She rescued me. She doesn’t do all of those things but some relate to my Trixie


Wednesday 18th of August 2021

I'm glad you gave her a good home Bernadette!

Brigette Palmer

Wednesday 18th of August 2021

Hi Cathy,my boys agree to the list above all except 1, my chi boys were so easy to house train both were clean with in a few days, I think as a chi parent you have to remember they have tiny bladders so need to go out more than bigger dogs,I use to set a kitchen timer for every 30/40 mins and then take them out,if they ever went inside it was my fault as I'd think oh I will just finish this then let them out ! I also spent a lot of time sat in my kitchen/ dining room with them both close to the back door so easy to go out. I also don't agree with puppy pads because I think if you teach them it's ok to go in the house then it's harder to break the cycle. You learn with chi's to go to bed later and get up earlier but they are well worth it. Look forward to my next news letter,take care, Brigette,Holly, Dexter, Hunter and Chewie (from UK)


Wednesday 18th of August 2021

Thanks for your input Brigette!