Care of the chihuahua
Chihuahuas are very small dogs that do not reach 3 kilograms. They have an average life expectancy between 15 and 20 years, being animals of great longevity. It is a much sought after race around the world as it easily adapts to city life, among many other qualities.
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If you already have or are thinking about sharing your life with one of these cheerful and loving companions, pay attention to this article by YourCatCareguide about the care of the chihuahua .
What food should I give my Chihuahua?
Because it is the smallest dog in the world, it is crucial to be aware of the amount of food it eats. The portions should be small as we have to think about the size of your stomach and distribute them in two meals a day. If you have questions about quantity, please inquire about the amount of food recommended for a Chihuahua .
The best type of food is a feed that fits the needs of our pet correctly. Nowadays rations are created especially for this breed . Some brands that already offer this product include Royal Canin and Eukanuba.
You can also choose to know about types of home diets like BARF.
How to help them regulate their temperature?
These little ones come from tropical climate , which is why their coat does not have great density and length. However, there are longhair chihuahuas. For this reason and because of their small size, they are a race that tends to be cold.
If you live in a hot climate and provide shade, shelter and fresh water to the dog, you do not have to worry about regulating your body temperature, which happens naturally.
However, if you live in very cold areas and with low temperatures, it is essential to check if your companion is cold. To know this safely, just touch the dog. Some people try to be guided by the dog’s tremors, which is not always reliable. This breed has a tendency to tremble for reasons other than cold, such as stress, fear, anxiety, and even joy and excitement.
In this case, you should provide blankets and warm places indoors where he can snuggle. In the street, you should protect him with a special piece of clothing for dogs , without the need to overdo it. You should also make sure that your paws do not freeze, using shoes for dogs of your size, special for snow. However, you can simply carry it in your arms, which is simpler.
Need a lot of physical activity?
It may seem that because they are so small, Chihuahuas do not need a lot of physical activity. However, they are very active and nervous dogs , and it is convenient that they do not accumulate energy.
So you should provide at least two walks a day so you can get the dog tired and let him play with other dogs. It is also essential that you play with it in the house or ensure that you exercise from time to time.
It should also be borne in mind that, compared to larger puppies, Chihuahuas have less resistance. This means that in case of prolonged physical activity, you should let the dog rest whenever you need it. When you walk your partner, let him walk at your own pace.
Behavior and education
These puppies are very cunning and affectionate with their guardians and companions. Because they are so intelligent and observant, they take steps to make things work their way. We can say that they are like “rebellious children”.
Thus, it is easy to verify that many are overly spoiled, having a jealous behavior and manipulating the tutor with this. Through this behavior, they get more food, more attention, more demonstrations of affection, shamelessly revealing what is yours to others.
In addition, this is a breed with little fear of other dogs, despite their difference in size. For this reason, you should educate him so that he does not create fights where he can lose with great ease. Because they have this quality to defend what is theirs, Chihuahuas are excellent surveillance dogs.
It is necessary to take care of your education from such basic subjects as where to make your needs, to subjects such as learning to share things with other dogs, without your will is always done. It is essential to set limits and reward it when it is expected .
Hygiene and special care
- The bath and the hair:
It is very important to keep your pet in good hygienic condition. In the case of Chihuahuas, one bath per month should suffice. Bathing too often is not good for any dog. It should take into account the type of hair of your companion in order to choose a suitable shampoo, always suitable for dogs. The product may be special for short hairs or for long hairs, for white or dark fur, or simply a solution of special oats for puppies.
The water temperature should never exceed 27 ° C, and it is preferable that they dry only with towels and running around the house, once they have a lot of fun with it.
If your dog has long hair, it should provide periodic brushing to avoid nodes that develop into skin problems. In addition to brushing, do not hesitate to cut when needed. You should also pay special attention to long-haired dogs’ ears, making sure they are never moist and that they are always clean. When necessary, cut this coat to prevent unwanted otitis.
- The eyes:
As is easy to verify, your dog’s eyes are remarkably large in proportion to the rest of your face and your head. This causes them to have slightly exposed eyes, always tearing. The eye area is always moist, hardly resecting.
This constant tearing causes the hair around it to darken and become dirty, so it is essential to keep this area clean and free of potholes. You can use saline or infusion of thyme or chamomile (cold) and sterile gauze around your finger to gently wipe the outline and eyes of your dog. In this way, you can keep your hair clean and your eyes healthy, free of conjunctivitis and other complications.
- The teeth:
Small dogs have poor teething quality compared to medium or large puppies. This way, your teeth spoil much earlier than normal on puppies.
It is normal that, since young people, Chihuahuas have tartar in their teeth, complicating their oral health with bad breath and falling teeth. It is very important to help them maintain a healthy mouth. It may seem complicated, but in reality it is not. It should provide you with special edible prizes for mouth care and own toys to help clean your teeth with the simple act of playing.
Some of these objects contain products that help them eliminate tartar and keep fresh breath, with toys with cables and ropes helping to clean and brush teeth, such as the use of dental floss in humans.
If that is not enough, you always have the option of brushing the dog’s teeth yourself with a small brush and a few drops of chlorhexidine (similar to our buccal elixir) that we can find at the vet. If your partner’s mouth is still in poor condition, you should go to the veterinarian to have a professional mouth cleansing, thus avoiding possible diseases and falling teeth.
Common Diseases and Health Problems
There are certain diseases that this breed tends to develop , such as:
- Double dentition or retention of milk teeth
- Split or cracked palate
- Slightly open skull area that does not close properly during growth
- Cryptorchidism, retention or lack of testicles
- Secondary glaucoma
- Hernia discal
- Dislocation of joints
- Hoarseness or problems in the trachea that causes a slight asphyxia similar to a temporary cough
- Gemofilia A
- Heart problems: mainly mitral regurgitation
Given all these diseases and even more that can affect these dogs, it is very important to keep regular visits to the veterinarian, trying to be always the same professional that makes the recognition. In this way, he knows the specific problems of each dog, and can adapt his own solutions to his companion.
Also read our article 10 curiosities about chihuahuas .