Everything you need to know about Chihuahuas

Life Expectancytypically 10+ years
SheddingMedium length with moderate shedding

Chihuahuas are typically less active dogs. They are small and light, and can be long or short-haired. Chihuahuas can have varying coats, from short-haired and smooth to long-haired and tufty. They can also be a variety of colours including black, brown, fawn, cream and white.

There’s lots of doggy behaviour that comes naturally to all breeds of dog, including Chihuahuas, from digging and chasing to searching and retrieving.

Thinking about giving a Chihuahua a forever home? Here are some Chihuahua facts that might help you decide.

Caring for Chihuahuas

Every dog is different with their own personality and needs. Here are some areas to think about when taking care of a Chihuahua.

Health issues

Before you give any dog a home, it’s important to know about possible health issues. Not every dog will suffer them but it’s good to be prepared.

To find out more about potential health issues for Chihuahuas, sp...

How much food does a Chihuahua need?

The amount of food a Chihuahua needs depends on their:

  • age
  • size
  • activity levels
  • fitness
  • weight.

You can use the information on dog food packets as a guide, taking...

An infographic showing the key indicators of healthy body condition for a dog

How much exercise does a Chihuahua need?

Chihuahuas need regular exercise and stimulation, but they might not manage long or strenuous walks or mountain hikes.

Chihuahuas are brachycephalic which means they have flat faces.

Chihuahuas need regular exercise and stimulation, but they might not manage long or strenuous walks or mountain hikes.

Chihuahuas are brachycephalic which means they have flat faces. See our page on brachycephalic dogs for more information.
They'll need daily walks, plus plenty of time and opportunity to explore, burn energy, and play. Like all dogs, they will need training and will benefit from daily enrichment.

If you enjoy regular relaxing strolls, this breed could be a great match for you.

Things that you need to think about when exercising your Chihuahua include their:

  • age
  • health
  • personality.

For example, young or growing dogs might need a few shorter walks each day, rather than one long one. Older, injured or ill dogs will have different exercise needs which should be tailored to them based on advice from your vet.

Some dogs will need peaceful walks without many other people or dogs around. Others will enjoy meeting new people and play dates with their furry friends.

Check with your vet if you need advice on exercising your dog.

How much grooming does a Chihuahua need?

Chihuahuas will require grooming according to the length of their coat, but both types are relatively low maintenance. Both short-haired and long-haired Chihuahuas shed moderately. Short-haired Chihuahuas might requir...

What size crate do you need for a Chihuahua?

When inside their crate, your dog should have plenty of space to:

  • sit and stand up at their full height
  • turn around without touching the sides
  • lie down fully stretched out
  • comfortabl...

Chihuahua behaviour and training

Even if you think you know about Chihuahuas, it’s important to remember that every dog has their own personality.

What’s the temperament of a Chihuahua?

Just like you, every dog is an individual with their own unique personality and prior experiences. So, every Chihuahua temperament is different.

As dogs grow from puppies, they learn all about the world. They de...

Are Chihuahuas easy to train?

You can teach any breed of dog new tricks! It’s all about positive learning. Find out what your dog loves so you can use this to reward them after a success. Whether it’s small food treats, toys or lots of praise, tra...

Are Chihuahuas good with children?

Every dog has their own unique personality that has been shaped by their own experiences of the world. They’ll have their own likes and dislikes and will respond to situations in different ways. However, there are som...

Related dog advice

Buying a puppy safely and responsibly
Choosing your dog
Buying a puppy safely and responsibly
Should I get a dog? 10 questions to ask yourself
Are you ready for a dog?
Should I get a dog? 10 questions to ask yourse...
Benefits of adopting from Dogs Trust
Are you ready for a dog?
Benefits of adopting from Dogs...