The Dachshund Chihuahua Mix (A Review)
Dachshunds and Chihuahuas are spunky little dogs that have big cult followings. So it makes perfect sense that these breeds would get together to form their own designer dog, dubbed the Chiweenie. While this hybrid pooch knows how to bring the cuteness, will he bring joy to your life?
What’s in a Name?
Because of the Chiweenie’s pedigree, he’s sometimes known as the Mexican Hotdog or the German Taco. Ultimately, it doesn’t matter what you call the little dog. He’s an adorable buddy that will effortlessly warm your heart – particularly if you like your dogs on the small side.
Chiweenies in Brief
Like a lot of designer dogs, the Chiweenie isn’t recognized by some of the major dog registries out there. Unlike some of the hybrids, there is a ballpark estimate to when they started showing up on the scene. The dogs have been traced back to the 1990s, and they’ve been gaining in popularity ever since.
One of the main reasons why the Chiweenie has developed its own cult following is because it stems from two parental breeds that are well-known to have passionate fans. And from a physical standpoint, some of the most popular features from either breed are fleshed out in this hybrid.
There is a lot of Dachshund going on in a Chiweenie. The hybrid does feature a long body, short legs, and a versatile coat that can be either shorthair or longhair. In some cases, he’ll have the long, thin muzzle and floppy ears of a Doxie, as well.
The biggest element that a Chiweenie draws from a Chihuahua is the smallest one possible – his size. This is a tiny dog that will only stand 8 to 10 inches tall and weigh 8 to 12 pounds. If you get one that has especially pronounced Dachshund features, having one in your home is almost like having a toy or teacup wiener dog in your midst.
The hybrid could also pick up on other Chihuahua features on occasion, too. For instance, you may pick up a Chiweenie that has a domed head shape or ears that point straight up. This look could truly appeal to you if you’re truly looking for the best of both worlds from a physical point of view.
What’s the Personality of a Chiweenie?
Another reason why a Chiweenie works so well as a hybrid dog is that his parental breeds share a somewhat surprisingly large number of characteristics. This allows the designer dog’s behavior to be a little more predictable in comparison to other hybrids.
For one thing, both the Dachshund and the Chihuahua have strong reputations for being bold and fearless. This bravado will sometimes lead them to various misadventures, particularly given the Dachshund breed’s proclivity to digging; a trait it used to hunt badgers and foxes back in the day.
The Chiweenie’s bravery also tends to make him a pretty good watchdog. This pooch has no problem barking to alert you of a stranger’s presence, even if that stranger is merely walking by your home. This may be a trait your neighbors may find less than endearing.
The Chiweenie is also a very clever dog; something that is directly culled from the overall intelligence both parental breeds. They also tend to be fast, athletic dogs that can pick up on dog sports like dog agility rather quickly because of their brainpower. Sometimes, their intellect and strong will can make them a bit stubborn.
The strong will of a Chiweenie can also make this dog a bit demanding at times, particularly when he wants attention and adoration. He also has a tendency to establish a close bond with a particular family member, although he will still show love and affection to other people in your household.
With that being said, the Chiweenie tends to be social and outgoing dogs that love playing around with family members of all ages. This is perhaps the biggest Dachshund-driven influencer on this pooch, given that Chihuahuas are notorious for being difficult around young kids. The Doxie genes do tend to take the “edge” off.
What Are the Exercise Needs of a Chiweenie?
It may be easy to think that a small lapdog like a Chiweenie doesn’t need exercise. This is not the case, as this hybrid is a bundle of energy that needs a regular outlet to burn off his excess fuel. But don’t worry – he won’t require as much exercise as you’d have to provide with a larger working dog.
A Chiweenie’s exercise needs can be met with one or two short walks outside each day. Plus, his tiny stature makes it possible for him to enjoy some big romps in a small space. This is definitely an ideal dog to welcome into your life if you live in an apartment or even a compact home with a small yard.
If you do have plans to let him run off-leash in a dog park, make sure he’s obedient to your commands first. This speed demon could easily use his wheels to satiate his sense of bold adventure if left unchecked. If you aren’t prepared, you may have a dickens of a time trying to gather him up.
While a Chiweenie is bright enough to pick up on commands and training elements rather quickly, that doesn’t mean he’s a snap to train. In fact, it’s quite the opposite, thanks to his tendency to be headstrong and bold. You’re going to need a lot of firm yet gentle patience to get this dog to behave in the manner you want him to.
The smarts this dog exhibits also means that you better be prepared to provide him with ways to stimulate his mind. Consistent playtime and puzzle toys when you’re away will keep his mind focused on fun and make him less susceptible to wrecking your garden or furniture. Given his digging skills, he can create havoc pretty quickly.
Is Grooming a Chiweenie Easy?
The level of grooming you’ll need to provide a Chiweenie’s fur depends on the length of the dog’s coat. If your pooch has a short coat, you can get away with brushing his fur once a week, whereas the longhaired variety will require brushing every day. If your dog has a medium coat, the grooming needs will fall between the two extremes.
Chiweenies tend to be on the low-end of the shedding spectrum, so you won’t have to worry too much about your house covered in dog hair. You can also get away with bathing him on just a monthly basis. He’ll most likely be hanging out with you indoors, you won’t have to worry about him running around and collecting stinky odors.
Apart from his fur, you’ll obviously have to tend to his nails, ears, eyes, and teeth on a routine basis. It’s particularly important that you stay on top of trimming his nails because he likes to dig. If his nails become too lengthy, they may be susceptible to getting snagged on something.
Are There Any Known Health Issues with a Chiweenie?
Because Chiweenies are relatively new to the scene, they are considered to be healthy dogs. However, because they ae the product of two specific purebreds, they may be susceptible to a few ailments known to be common within their parental breeds.
The most obvious of these conditions relate to back issues. This is not too surprising, since Chiweenies are Dachshund-shaped and Doxies and back problems seem to go together like peanut butter and jelly. Other issues you may see crop up in your hybrid include bloat, deafness, allergies, and eye issues.
One way you can help your dog live a long, healthy life is to strictly monitor his food intake. This dog is a voracious eater; given his small stature and low exercise needs, he can pack the pounds pretty rapidly. He’ll be perfectly fine dining on ½ cup to 1 cup of high-quality dog food per day.
A Chiweenie’s lifespan is 12 to 15 years, which is about the same age range of your typical Dachshund. It’s impressive, but not as impressive as the Chihuahua’s which ranges from 10 to 18 years.
How Much does a Chiweenie Cost?
The price tag of a Chiweenie is surprisingly low considering how popular the hybrid in some circles. You can expect to fork over $200 and $550, depending on metrics concerning size, age, pedigree, and appearance.
Keep in mind this cost only covers the initial price of purchasing the pooch. Be prepared to shell out additional money for vet visits, registration, neutering costs, and essential equipment like bedding, toys, and food. Make sure you have the budget to comfortably provide for your four-legged friend before you bring him home.
Get A Long, Little Doggie!
If you have a big heart for a small hybrid dog, the Chiweenie may be the pooch you’ve been waiting for. Sure he’s a little stubborn and tends to act bolder than he probably should given his size, but those are the things that actually add to his charm. One thing’s for sure: if you have a Chiweenie in the house, your life won’t ever be boring.