As the toy breeds’ toy breed, the Chihuahua is the ultimate lapdog. No breed is smaller than these little doggies – and some would say no breed is more spoiled. But when Chihuahuas aren’t being picked up and coddled by their owner, how do they like to play?
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Chihuahuas at Play
Playtime and Chihuahuas seldom seem to go hand in hand. This is due to the breed arguably being more pampered than any other breed around. Unfortunately, some Chihuahuas tend to treat their doggies like helpless little babies, looking to pamper them at every possible turn.
As such, it can be somewhat surprising to hear how athletic the breed can be. The truth is, these dogs are energetic dynamos that will go until they can’t go anymore if you let them. If given the right amount of training, Chihuahuas can even become skilled in various dog sports disciplines like flyball.
An adult Chihuahua will usually require 30 minutes of walking on a daily basis. If you let him loose in the yard for a supervised spell, you’ll really see him turn on his energy. A Chihuahua will engage in romps, chase squirrels, play fetch, and toss toys pretty much as long as you’ll let him.
While the breed doesn’t have the reputation for needing a ton of exercise, this is counterbalanced by the dog’s tendency for weight gain. Overfeeding is a serious problem, as it may be tricky to feed the dog the right amount of food due to his small size. Of course, pampering the pooch with table scraps doesn’t help much, either.
When you do take your Chihuahua out to play, always make sure that he is supervised. He may be your awesome little doggie, but he could be viewed as lunch to a hawk or coyote that makes his way into your backyard. If you can’t be outside with him, keep him indoors.
As stated earlier, it’s better to give you Chihuahua a handful of fun, high-quality toys than to overload him with a bunch of cheap playthings. Chihuahuas are smarter than often given credit, and on some level, you got to think that they’ll appreciate the fact you shelled out a few extra bucks for him.
The Skinny Peltz No Stuffing Squeaky Plush Dog Toy by ZippyPaws is a really good conduit to bring about this reaction. Each order comes with three cute squeak toys (fox, raccoon, and squirrel) that are designed to stand up to the jaw power of small dogs larger than the Chihuahua, so your little guy will get plenty of enjoyment chomping on them without any signs of wear and tear.
The squeaker in the toy provides assurance that the Chihuahuas will be able to use the toy to fight boredom. As is the case with most dogs, you can count on him trying to get to the squeaker, which he won’t for a long time. This will occupy his determined mind, which in turn will keep him from gnawing on your furniture.
If you get a Chihuahua at the puppy stage, having a quality chew toy will help him cope with teething. The Pestages Mini Dental Chew Pack is a great way to help your little buddy get through this difficult and somewhat painful stage of his young life.
The rope toys are also versatile enough to turn into a high-quality chew toy once the Chihuahua reaches adulthood. He’ll tend to keep playing with it because it’s a familiar toy that will bring him comfort. You’ll appreciate that he does because it will help him combat such nasty things as plaque and tartar.
What’s more, you can make the toy the conduit for a light game of fetch. The Chihuahua is a much more athletic breed than we give him credit for, so if you teach him how to fetch, it could turn into a favorite activity. Besides, seeing your little guy running around with a flopping rope trapped in its mouth will make you chuckle.
Regardless of how you play with your Chihuahua, the important thing is that you play with him. The breed’s reputation has been somewhat sullied because some owners tend to treat them less like a dog and more like a doll. As a result, the breed has unwittingly been synonymous with a spoiled lifestyle, which is not fair to the breed.
If you decide to wedge your Chihuahua into a life of spoiled luxury, you’re truly giving him and yourself a disservice. While his exercise needs are low, this is still a high-energy dog whose full character and charm can only be realized by allowing him to be like a dog.
So let him tap into his true canine self every day! He will greatly appreciate it – probably a lot more than being carried around all over the place. And after you see how happy he is, you’ll appreciate it, too.
What Toys are Best for Your Chihuahua?
The best way to unleash your Chihuahua’s boundless energy is by providing him with a bunch of small toys that he can easily chew on, toss about, or bring them back to you. Because the toys best suited for his size tend to be smaller (and cheaper), you may end up showering him with a bunch of playthings. However, this is overkill.
You should concentrate on just getting a handful of durable, high-quality chew toys. If you wish, you can designate some of the toys for outside use and some for inside use. While the best toy for a Chihuahua is a chew toy, don’t get the notion that they are all one in the same.
Your Chihuahua should have three types of chew toys at the ready – a toy that cleans his teeth, a toy that features interactive properties like a squeaker, and toys that keep him busy when he’s home alone. This mix of toys will help keep his teeth clean, fight boredom, and provide him with a measure of comfort.
What Toys Should be Skipped?
Never purchase any chew sticks or animal parts like hooves for Chihuahuas. It’s not that he wouldn’t enjoy them, but because he’s so small, they could pose a danger.
A Chihuahua has a narrow airway. If he unwittingly breaks off a small hunk of rawhide or chewie while playing, the piece could easily obstruct the air passage, and your little guy could end up choking. While it may be very difficult for a Chihuahua to break a high-quality chew, it’s better to be safe than sorry here.
A Small Look at Chihuahuas
If there is one thing that Chihuahuas are more famous for apart from their small size, it’s their reputation for having a larger than life personality. There probably has never been a Chihuahua that has ever been aware of how small they are. Considering the first Chihuahuas are thought to date back to the 9th century, that’s saying something.
Sometimes their bravado can get them into trouble – not too surprising, considering that they’re giving up size to literally every other dog breed on the planet. However, their large, satellite dish ears and tendency to be hyper-alert serves them well when a threat is nearby.
These traits, coupled with the breed’s worse-than-his-bite bark and tendency to be aloof toward strangers, make the Chihuahua an excellent watchdog despite his size. At the same time, his uncanny ability to latch on to family members makes him a good family dog, especially with older kids. Just be mindful that he may signal one of your brood as alpha dog.
Chihuahuas tend to earn a spot in many people’s hearts because they are goofy breed loaded with odd, eccentric idiosyncrasies. At the same time, their behavior contains more variability than most other breeds. Chihuahuas by nature could be nervous, friendly, swagger-filled, or relaxed – it’s not quite a crapshoot, but it can feel like one.
The reason for this is because genetic temperament plays a key role in how the little guy turns out. Yes, there are indeed Chihuahua bloodlines that contain anti-social tendencies, and if you end up with a dog from this type of line, you could have a much more difficult time training and socializing him.
As such, if you’re getting a purebred Chihuahua, you should always make sure your breeder has an astute knowledge of the bloodline. If you don’t obtain this information, you may end up with much more than you bargained for, even if the dog’s weight is in single digits.
However, if you do your due diligence, you’ll be rewarded with a hilarious little companion that will be fiercely loyal to you and your family. A properly trained Chihuahua may be small enough to virtually fit in your hand, but the love in his heart can fill your whole room.