Smooth Coat Chihuahua
Discovered by Europeans, Chihuahuas are thought likely to derive their name from the Mexican state of Chihuahua where it is possible they originated from. Some believe the Chihuahua was fattened up and used for food. Others say that the Mexicans kept these tiny canines "in the belief they would guide the souls of the dead to a state of everlasting bliss". The Spaniards brought them back to Europe where they were bred to other toy dogs.
Chihuahuas were originally smooth coated, no undercoat and with very large ears, both of which are perfect for the very hot dry climate experienced by so much of Mexico. Interbreeding Chihuahuas with Papillionís and Pomeranians produced the more modern long coated show specimens. It is sometimes said that it is possible to distinguish Papillion or Pomeranian ancestry by looking at the type of coat possessed by your Chihuahua. These days there are 2 recognised varieties, the Long coated Chihuahua and the Smooth coated Chihuahua, with the only difference between them being the coat.
The smallest of the Toy Group, the Chihuahua can become very protective of its owner and family. He will not be frightened to warn them in a vocal manner when strangers approach. However snappiness or overprotective behaviour should not be tolerated. No matter how funny it is, do not allow a Chihuahua to lunge at another dog when a reversal of the situation could be potentially fatal.
Many people say that Chihuahuas and children do not mix; this however, in my personal instance is not the case. I have 3 children who have all been brought up around Chihuahuas. They have however been taught to respect a Chihuahua. They are never allowed to walk around holding a puppy, if they want to stroke or cuddle a puppy they are asked to sit on the floor and hold the puppy. A tiny Chihuahua dropped from the arms of a young child could be easily injured. A puppy will enjoy the company of children of all ages, however it should be remembered that the little dog is not a toy.
Chihuahuas are just as happy as a lone pet or in the company of others; they are ideal companions and house pets for persons of all ages and circumstances. Exercise is down to the individual dog, some will enjoy long walks whilst others are just as happy to have the run of the home and garden.
Regular attention should be paid to dental hygiene and toenails should be cut regularly. Ears should also be checked regularly to ensure that they are clean. Known Health Problems with the Chihuahua are slipping patella and dislocating kneecaps. Less common ailments are heart murmurs, eye problems and collapsing trachea.