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Long-Haired Chihuahua: Complete Breed Guide

The tiny yet highly desired Chihuahua dog can be long-haired or short-haired. Long-haired Chihuahuas are not a separate breed and possess the same personality traits regardless of their coat type. Still, the Chihuahua long hair is the most popular type, adored for its fluffy ears, neck, and tail.

Long-Haired Chihuahua Origin

The fluffy Chihuahua is the smallest dog breed worldwide and one of the oldest. They date back as far as 100 AD, originating from the state of Chihuahua in Mexico, where they get their name.  Legend has it that the Chihuahua was initially bred from the small dog Techichi. Techichi was an ancient breed dating back as far back as 300 BC. They were viewed highly in Toltec and Aztec cultures as it was believed they had the power to fight off evil spirits and guide the deceased through the underworld. As a result, they were the companion dogs of the rich and were often buried with their owners when they passed away. Long hair Chihuahuas were bred to hunt pests like rats and moles. They came to America in the late 1800s but remained rare until the early 20th century. In 1904, the American Kennel Club registered Chihuahuas as a breed. They then slowly grew in popularity, eventually becoming one of the most common dogs in the United States and beyond.  Today, they can sell for anything between $500 to $1500. The price depends on their coloration (the Merle patterning is one of the most expensive), genetics, and the level of health testing the breeder has carried out. We recommend only buying from a breeder who can supply evidence that the puppies are healthy, as Chihuahuas are prone to several health issues.

What Does A Long-Haired Chihuahua Look Like?

The cute and furry Chihuahua is a toy breed, weighing around 6lbs and standing between 6 and 9 inches tall. They are the smallest breed registered with several kennel clubs; females and males are no different in size. A Chihuahua with hair of any length will have one of two distinct head shapes; apple headed and deer headed.  Apple heads are the most common. This type has short muzzles that meet their forehead at a 90-degree angle, creating the classic L shape and bulging eyes with which you associate this breed. Those with a deer head shape have a slightly longer nose, and their muzzle meets their forehead at around 45 degrees. Regardless of the head shape, Long Haired Chihuahuas have large triangle-shaped ears with feathering and bright round eyes. What's more, their legs and tail are proportional to their body. The hairy Chihuahua has long and smooth fur all over, but longer hair is typical around the ears, necks, legs, and tails. They can come in various colors, such as black, brown, tan, red, blue, white, and cream. Most commonly, they will have a solid or bi-color pattern, but they can also be tricolored, spotted, brindle, or merle.

Personality and Behavior of Long-Haired Chihuahua

The fluffy Chihuahua is known for being small in size but big in personality. Chihuahuas do not see their small size as a disadvantage and behave as if they are big pups. They are incredibly loyal and will do whatever it takes to protect their family.  Chihuahuas are super affectionate and are at their happiest when they are snuggling with their owners. However, the downside of this is that they are pretty needy and thus, do not do well on their own.  Chihuahuas require tons of attention and do best with someone who can take them wherever they go; this is not tricky considering they can fit in your handbag! This breed is very adaptable and does well in small spaces. Therefore, they are a good choice for someone who lives in an apartment or works as a driver, as they will happily accompany you on the road.  If a Chihuahua is left alone for long, it will quickly become anxious, usually resulting in destructive behaviors. What's more, the downside of their loyalty is that they get jealous quickly, whether it's of another animal or a new baby. In addition, they can get aggressive, snappy, and stubborn; thus, they are not recommended for families with young children. It's important to note that the personality of this breed is down to their genetics. Therefore, it's always best to see the parents of a Chihuahua puppy before buying.

How to Train Long-Haired Chihuahua's

Although Chihuahuas are known for being stubborn and easily annoyed, they are intelligent. Therefore, you can teach them to "dial down" their negative traits, but note you can not wholly train these traits out of them.  The most effective way to minimize aggression and small dog syndrome in a long-coat chihuahua is to socialize and train them early. It's essential to set rules from day one and show your new pup that you are the leader of the pack straight away.  Some easy things you can do is set feeding and walking times and stick to them every day. This is important as if you give into their whining or barking for food even once, they will see themselves as the leader and act accordingly.  Part of training a Chihuahua puppy should include potty training. These tiny canines have small bladders, so they cannot hold their urine in, especially when young. Therefore, training them to let you know when they need to pee is vital for preventing your home from smelling! Regarding exercise, games like fetch are ideal as long-coat Chihuahuas have a high prey drive. In addition to play, you should take them on 2 or 3 short walks a day instead of one long one as their little legs tire quickly.  Finally, when training a Chihuahua, don't expect instant results. Their stubbornness might make the training process longer than expected, so be patient and don't give up.

Grooming and Maintaining a Long-Haired Chihuahua's Coat

Because of their long coats, these hairy Chihuahuas require brushing at least twice a week. If you find their hair keeps getting tangled and matting, increase the frequency to three or four times. Another way to keep the Chihuahua's silky coat in top condition is to bathe them every two or three months using specialized dog shampoo.  Then trim their nails every three to four weeks using a dog nail grinder or clippers. Nail trimming is essential for small dogs like Chihuahuas as they spend most of their time indoors, meaning their nails do not file down naturally.
Ultimate Pet Nail Grinder

Common Health Issues

Like most dog breeds, there are some health issues you should be aware of when getting a Chihuahua puppy. The most common condition in this breed is Patellar Luxation, which restricts the mobility of the knee joint and can lead to osteoarthritis.  The Chihuahua's tiny size doesn't just make their bones fragile; it also affects their muscle mass. They can develop hypoglycemia or low blood sugar if they do not have enough muscle mass. A few less common health concerns for this breed are:
  • Pulmonic Stenosis
  • Hydrocephalus
  • Heart Murmur
  • Keratoconjunctivitis Sicca
Despite these health dispositions, Chihuahuas can (and often do) live for a long time. If healthy, they can live for 15 to 20 years, so always ask the breeder for proof of health testing!

Final Thoughts

Although the long-haired Chihuahua may have gained a bad reputation, there are many reasons to choose this tiny but mighty breed. They are suitable for all living environments, travel easily, and are super affectionate. If you bring a Chihuahua into your home, you'll have a loyal companion who will always protect you!
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