sobota, 11. julij 2009

What You Should Receive When You Buy Your Chihuahua Puppy

Congratulations! You've taken all the steps to ensure the Chihuahua puppy you buy has the highest possible chance of growing into a happy and healthy adult. You've selected a Chihuahua puppy from the litter and you're ready to pay for him and take him home.

Here's what you should receive from the breeder, in addition to your new Chihuahua puppy...

1. Sales Contract

You should receive the sales contract with all the terms and conditions you and the breeder have agreed to abide by and have both signed. The contract should also have, at least, a 48-hour health guarantee where the breeder agrees to refund or exchange the puppy if he is found to be sick when you take him for his Veterinarian check up after you get him.

2. AKC Certificate or AKC Registration Application

You should receive the AKC Certificate which shows the puppy is registered with the AKC if the breeder has already sent the papers in and had the puppies registered. Otherwise you should receive an AKC Registration Application which the breeder has filled out which you will need to send off to the AKC to have your puppy registered.

3. Health clearances

You should see the OFA and CERF certificates for the puppies parents and grandparents. You can get photocopies of these from the breeder.

4. Pedigree

You should receive a piece of paper which outlines the pedigree (family tree) of your puppy.

5. Medical Records

You should receive all the medical records for the puppy up to this day. This will include information on which vaccinations the puppy has had and when. Information on when the puppy was wormed. And a general health clearance signed by a Veterinarian.

6. Advice on feeding

The breeder should also give you advice on what food, and how much, to feed your puppy.

7. Photos of the puppy and parents (optional)

It's also nice if the breeder has some photos of your puppy when he or she was really young, to give you, for keep sake. And possibly some photos of the puppies parents that she can give you too. So you can start your photo album ;-)

Choosing a Puppy From The Litter

Okay, so you've found a responsible breeder with a litter of puppies who are 8-12 weeks old and ready to go to off to new and loving homes.

Do you just pick any Chihuahua puppy from of the litter? No, some individuals may be better suited to you then others. Those with personalities that match yours will be best suited to you. The breeder will most likely point out which puppy is the best match for you.

However, you can also conduct a personality test on each of the puppies in the litter to get an idea of what each of their own unique personalities are like. And you should also be aware of what a healthy puppy looks like so you don't pick one that is sick (which is highly unlikely to be the case if you're buying from a responsible breeder, but it's good to know how to spot a healthy puppy from a potentially unhealthy puppy anyway).

Ethical breeders will never sell a puppy before 8 weeks of age. So this is the time to go and see the litter.

Also keep in mind that the breeder may classify some of the puppies as "Pet" quality and some as "Show" quality. This doesn't have anything to do with their health or temperaments, it has to do with their appearance. Basically, in dog beauty contests, the best looking dog wins (the one with the least amount of faults). Some Chihuahua puppies will have more faults than there brothers and sisters. Such faults, such as ears slightly to big, a short tail, or nose the wrong color, may stop the puppies from winning in shows, so the breeder will be deem these as "Pet" quality puppies who will live their life as a pet - not a show dog. These are the puppies in the litter you will get to choose from. Unless, of course, you intend to show your Chihuahua in conformational trials when he grows up.

Personality test

Chihuahuas, by their very nature, are not social dogs. But they should not be vicious or extremely shy around strangers once.

Whether you get a Chihuahua with a solid temperament is hugely dependent on his lines - the temperaments of his parents and grandparents. This is why you should choose to buy your Chihuahua puppy from a responsible breeder who breeds Chihuahuas who have great temperaments.

However, every puppy in the litter will have his or her own unique personality.

Personality can be divided into three categories:

  1. Normal
  2. Independent
  3. Dominant
  4. Submissive

You can get a good idea of which of these personalities your Chihuahua puppy will have as an adult, by doing a personality test on him in the breeders home. A puppy who is normal is your best choice, an overly independent and dominant puppy will be harder to train, an overly submissive puppy will tend to be a little quieter around the home and a little shy in social situations.

Keep in mind that a puppy cannot fail this test. Some puppies will just suit certain people better. If you are an assertive person who can establish yourself as "pack leader" than a more dominant Chihuahua will be fine for you. If you are more laid back than a dominant Chihuahua will be more of handful to train and may try to make himself the boss of the house. A Chihuahua with a normal personality will be your best bet in most cases. The test is also only gives you a rough idea of the type of personality the puppy has.

Conduct the following test twice (to get more accurate results), in unfamiliar environment to the puppy (another room in the breeders home). Each puppy in the litter should be tested by himself in the room. It's a good idea to video tape the test so you can review the puppies later and have a good think about each one.

  • Gently restrain the puppy on his back for 20 seconds. Does he fight for 2 seconds and then submit, happily laying there? Then write "Normal." Does he fight or cry the whole time. Then write "Independent or Dominant". Does he lay their licking your fingers? Then write "Submissive."
  • Cradle the puppy in your palms, underneath his chest, and lift him off the ground for 20 seconds. Does he struggle for a moment, then accept his position, possible looking around the room? Then write "Normal". Does he struggle to get free for most of the time he is held there? Then write "Independent or Dominant". Does he just hang there submissively? Then write "Submissive".
  • Get the puppies attention, tap your leg, walk forward, in a friendly voice call him to follow you. Does he follow you as you walk forward? Then write "Normal". Does he look and then ignore you to go off and do his own thing? Then write "Independent ". Does he rush up to you and bite your shoe? Write "Dominant". Does he stay where he is, and possibly sit down, or follow you with his tail between his legs? Then write "Submissive".
  • Get down on your knees and softly clap your hands and in your most inviting voice call the puppy over to you. Does he come? Then write normal. Does he come, but then bite at you? Then write dominant. Does he ignore you? Write "Independent". Does he come slowly, with his body low to the ground, possibly with his tail between his legs, and/or roll on to his back when he gets to you? Then write "Submissive".
  • Take your car keys and rattle them (Loud enough so he hears them, but not so violently so that they scare him). Does he come over to investigate. Write "Normal". Does he come to investigate and then pounce or bite when he arrives? Write "Dominant". Does he comes with tail between his legs, with caution? Write "Submissive". Does he ignore you all together? Write "Independent".

A Chihuahua puppy with a temperament that will be good for most families and people will score "Normal" in the majority of tests. If he scores mostly "Dominant" or "Independent" he will need an owner who is assertive (and only ever positive) while training him and will be find in louder householders. If he scores mostly "Submissive" he will suit a quieter household and more laid back owners.

General Health Inspection

If you're buying your puppy from a responsible Chihuahua breeder, and i strongly recommend you do, it is probably pretty safe to assume that all the puppies are of sound health. After all, the breeder has been taking care of her litter for 8 weeks or more now and she would know if one of the puppies wasn't healthy, and she definitely wouldn't try to knowingly sell you an unhealthy puppy.

However, it's still good to do a quick general health inspection on the puppy. Here's how to know if the puppy is healthy:

  • Eyes should be shiny and bright with no discharge. Not splashed with red or yellow.
  • Nose should be moist with no discharge.
  • His ears should be clean and not smelly.
  • Gums should be light pink in color and clean.
  • Teeth should be white.
  • There should be no coughing or evidence of the puppy vomiting.
  • His bum should be clean with no signs of diarrhea.
  • His paws and pads should be clean.
  • His coat should be shiny, soft and be clean.
  • You should be able to feel, but not see, the ribs which means the puppy has the right amount of body fat
  • He should not have a pot belly, which may mean he has worms
  • His skin should not have any fleas. A sign of fleas is excessive scratching or biting of his coat.
  • He should be energetic and playful between naps. (He sleeps more often than they he plays)

Once you've chosen and purchased a puppy you like, you should take your puppy to the vet that same day, for a thorough health check up. The contract will have a 48-hour money back health guarantee. So if the Vet finds any health issues with the puppy you can take him back for a refund.

How To Identify a Responsible Chihuahua Breeder

So how do you tell if a Chihuahua breeder is a responsible one or not?

Well, it's easy to separate responsible breeders from irresponsible ones... because responsible breeders do things that irresponsible breeders do not.

Below i have made a list of the important things responsible breeders do - to help you tell if a breeder you are evaluating is a responsible breeder.

Responsible breeders do all of the things listed below - not some of them - all of them. If a breeder you're speaking to doesn't do any of the things listed below - walk away (or you are taking a much bigger risk of getting an unhealthy, ugly, or ill tempered Chihuahua):

  • A responsible breeder screens their breeding stock for Luxating Patella (OFA) and eye diseases (CERF) - two hereditary diseases commonly found in Chihuahuas. If either dog fails the OFA or CERF screening tests, they do no breed that dog because the chances that the disease will be passed on to it's offspring are increased. Screening the breeding stock, and only breeding the dogs if they pass the tests, increases the chances that the puppies will be healthy and will not inherit diseases. (This is quite possibly what truly separates responsible breeders from all the rest, that's why i listed it first. Health screening is not optional, it is a must and every responsible breeder does it. Run away from any breeder who cannot show you, on request, OFA and CERF certificates for the parents, and grandparents, of the puppies you are considering).
  • A responsible Chihuahua breeder only breeds AKC registered Chihuahuas. This ensures that the dogs being bred, are, in fact, purebred Chihuahuas, so the puppies, too, will be purebred Chihuahuas. (Although, keep in mind that "AKC registered" does not mean the dog has sound health or temperament or that it will even look true to it's type. Even irresponsible breeders sell "AKC registered" Chihuahuas. "AKC registered" is not a sign of quality, it just means that the Chihuahua has parents who were also Chihuahuas, i.e. the puppy is a purebred).
  • A responsible Chihuahua breeder thoroughly researches and assesses the pedigrees (family tree) of both the sire and dam being considered for mating. They do this to determine what the temperament, health, and "looks" of the previous generations was like... because these characteristics will be passed on to the puppies.
  • A responsible breeder breeds Chihuahuas to the AKC breed standard - the characteristics such as size, proportion, coat, color and temperament - which the breed should have. It's what makes a Chihuahua a Chihuahua! You can read the breed standard here:
  • A responsible breeder will be happy to introduce you to the mother of the puppies and will encourage you to spend time with her. Puppies inherit half their genes from their mother, and half from their father. So by meeting the parents you can get an idea of what the puppies will grow up to be like. It is unlikely that you will be able to meet the father, because most of the time the father will not belong to the breeder, it will belong to someone else. Responsible breeders spend a lot of time researching and tracking down the right stud to mate their bitch with. And often the "right stud" is located in another town or state. This is the mark of responsible breeder, because she didn't just breed her bitch with the nearest male dog she could find. She found the right one to mate her bitch with. However, in some cases responsible breeders will have the male in their home too. Chihuahuas are naturally a little antisocial, however the mother, and father if he is present, should settle down to you after you've meet them. She should not be overly shy or aggressive! keep in mind that she may be a little protective of her litter if they are still very young.
  • A responsible breeders raises the litter in clean and well maintained conditions. When you visit the breeders home (a responsible breeder will always let you inside her home to examine the living area of the litter) check to see how well kept the area is that the litter are being raised in. There should not be any old stools or urine found on the ground. There should obviously not be any flies or foul smells. The conditions the litter and mother are living in should be very clean and tidy. If this isn't the case it may be a breeding ground for parasites or even disease and unhealthy puppies. However, keep in mind that the breeder may spend so much time and attention cleaning and looking after the litter, that the rest of the home is a little messy and needs some routine house keeping.
  • A responsible Chihuahua breeder won't sell to just anybody. She will interview you thoroughly first to ensure her "baby" finds a good home and will be well cared for his whole life! She should be caring, knowledgeable, and genuine. she will know about the breed inside-out and will be able to answer any question about the breed that you ask. She should encourage you to visit with your family to spend some time with the litter. She should be willing to provide support to you for the lifetime of the dog. There should be no pressure for you to buy, a responsible breeder wants you to make up your own mind so you make the right decision.
  • A responsible breeder will only be breeding Chihuahuas, or at very most, one other different type of dog breed as well. It takes so much time and work to breed Chihuahuas responsibly, that it is impossible to have the time and knowledge to do it properly if you are breeding several different breeds.
  • A responsible breeder a maximum of 3 litters per year, and often has a waiting list of buyers.
  • A responsible breeder raises the litter inside the home as part of the family, not outside in a kennel or anywhere else. Chihuahua's need a lot of early socialization - being surrounded and introduced to everyday sounds, pets, people, and so on. This socialization of being raised from birth around humans, and everything related to humans, will lead to temperamentally sound, socialized Chihuahua puppies.
  • A responsible breeder doesn't sell cheap puppies. It is very expensive to breed a litter of Chihuahua puppies responsibly, there are a lot of costs involved.
  • A responsible breeder is involved in local, state or national Chihuahua clubs. And may also show their Chihuahuas in confirmation trials (basically a beauty pageant, where the Chihuahua most true to the breed standard wins), or compete in obedience trials or other canine activities.
  • A responsible breeder will be able to give you references of other breeders who belong to Chihuahua kennel clubs or who show their dogs. In addition to references from owners of puppies from their past litters.
  • A responsible breeder will provide a written contract outlining all of your responsibilities and hers. This contract will contain, at minimum, a standard 48 hour full-refund guarantee. This guarantee gives you sufficient time to take your new Chi puppy to the Vet for a health inspection. Also push for a 2 or 3 year guarantee of hereditary health and temperament. Some responsible breeders will not do this though, so it doesn't necessarily mean anything if they don't.

You now know how to identify a responsible Chihuahua breeder. Now it's time to go shopping for your new puppy...

Chihuahua puppies

The breeder you buy from plays a big role in how your Chihuahua will eventually turn out.

"You mean, not all Chihuahuas are created equally?", you ask. Exactly right. Anyone can "attempt" to breed a Chihuahua, there's no laws saying who can breed Chihuahuas and who cannot. This means that there are a lot of breeders out their who are breeding Chihuahuas who do not take the necessary steps to breed Chihuahuas that are temperamentally sound, healthy and confirm to the breed standard. This means that many Chihuahuas don't conform to the breed standard, they inherit diseases, and they have unsound temperaments.

Breeding Chihuahuas responsibly, to produce healthy and happy offspring, takes a lot of work and is very expensive. and this means that a lot of Chihuahua breeders take shortcuts.

So, If you want the best chances of getting a healthy, good looking, and happy Chihuahua then you must buy your puppy from a responsible Chihuahua breeder - not just any old breeder.

The breeders decisions before, during, and after breeding, play a huge role in how her Chihuahuas will turn out.

The three variables, listed below, are determined largely by the skill, or lack thereof, of the breeder whom you purchase your Chihuahua from:

  1. Appearance - your Chihuahua should conform to the breed standard so that he actually looks like a good-looking Chihuahua. Not all Chihuahuas look the same, some are much more true to their type (the Chihuahua breed standard) than others.
  2. Temperament - you want your Chihuahua to be confident and friendly. You do not want a nervous or overly aggressive Chihuahua who will be a handful around strangers and difficult to live with.
  3. Health - you want a healthy Chihuahua who is free from the hereditary diseases commonly found in Chihuahuas

Whether you get a healthy, happy and good looking Chihuahua, like this, is determined largely, as i mentioned before: by the breeder.

So, you should be seeking out a responsible Chihuahua breeder to buy your Chihuahua puppy from.

Responsible Chihuahua breeders aim to create happy, healthy, and true-to-type Chihuahuas.

However, keep in mind that nothing is guaranteed. Mother nature ultimately deals the last card... but... by choosing a responsible Chihuahua breeder you greatly increase the chances that your Chihuahua puppy will turn out to be happy and healthy.

So your mission is to find and buy your Chihuahua puppy from a responsible Chihuahua breeder - and overlook all the other charlatan Chihuahua breeders out there.

Yes, you could choose any old breeder to buy your Chihuahua puppy from, but beware that you are taking a larger risk of obtaining a Chihuahua will have hereditary disease and/or an unsound temperament and/or won't physically conform to the Chihuahua breed standards (faults in the way he looks).

petek, 10. julij 2009


Breed standards for this dog do not generally specify a height, only a weight and a description of their overall proportions. As a result, height varies more than within many other breeds. Generally, the height ranges between 6 and 10 inches (15 and 25 cm) at the withers.

Both British and American breed standards state that a Chihuahua must not weigh more than 6.0 pounds (2.7 kg), however the British standard also states that a weight of 2–4 lb (0.91–1.8 kg) is preferred and that if two dogs are equally good in type, the more diminutive or smaller is preferred. The FCI standard calls for dogs ideally between 1.5 and 3.0 kg (3.3 and 6.6 lb), although smaller ones are acceptable in the show ring. Typically the breed standard for both the long and short coat chihuahua will be identical except for the description of the coat.

The basic body type of purebred Chihuahuas is Apple headed. Characteristics of an Apple headed Chihuahua are short noses, an apple shaped head, and close- set eyes.


Being naturally territorial and protective, Chihuahuas can be easily provoked to attack, but are therefore generally suitable for homes with small children, but not in all cases.[
The AKC describes the breed as, "A graceful, alert, swift-moving little dog with saucy expression.
The breed tends to be fiercely loyal to one particular owner, but may be attached to more.
Chihuahuas crave attention, affection and petting.They can be hyper, but eager to please.
They have a reputation as a "yippy" dog, which can be resolved with proper training.
Chihuahuas with proper breeding are not "yippy".In southern California in 2009, three chihuahuas protected their master, a three year old girl, from a 100 pound mountian lion.

Emma and Elle