Graceful, alert and swift-moving with a saucy expression, Chihuahuas are highly intelligent and should not be underestimated even though small in size. The breed can be any color – solid, marked or splashed and the coat may be long or short. These sassy little dogs are well known as "purse dogs" like the famous Bruiser in the movie Legally Blonde starring Reese Witherspoon.
A Look Back
The Chihuahua’s history is shrouded in mystery, but some believe he originated from the Fennec Fox, a very small animal with big eyes and ears, which could explain the tiny frame, luminous eyes and large ears on the breed today. Chihuahua’s were used in religious ceremonies and were pets to the upper class. The breed derives its name from the Mexican State of Chihuahua, where the earliest specimens of the breed were found.
Right Breed for You?
Chihuahuas are alert dogs with terrier-like qualities. They are good with families if the children are gentle and patient. Because of their small size, they require little exercise and are good city dogs, but can be sensitive to cold temperatures. Smooth coated Chihuahuas need very little grooming due to their short hair. Long coats need occasional brushing but still require minimal grooming.
Toy Group; AKC recognized in 1904. Not more than 6 pounds. Companion dog.
Chihuahua Breed Standard
A graceful, alert, swift-moving compact little dog with saucy expression, and with terrier-like qualities of temperament.
Size, Proportion, Substance
Weight – A well balanced little dog not to exceed 6 pounds. Proportion – The body is off-square; hence, slightly longer when measured from point of shoulder to point of buttocks, than height at the withers. Somewhat shorter bodies are preferred in males. Disqualification – Any dog over 6 pounds in weight.
A well rounded "apple dome" skull, with or without molera. Expression – Saucy. Eyes - Full, round, but not protruding, balanced, set well apart-luminous dark or luminous ruby. Light eyes in blond or white-colored dogs permissible. Blue eyes or a difference in the color of the iris in the two eyes, or two different colors within one iris should be considered a serious fault. Ears – Large, erect type ears, held more upright when alert, but flaring to the sides at a 45 degree angle when in repose, giving breadth between the ears. Stop – Well defined. When viewed in profile, it forms a near 90 degree angle where muzzle joins skull. Muzzle – Moderately short, slightly pointed. Cheeks and jaws lean. Nose – Self-colored in blond types, or black. In moles, blues, and chocolates, they are self-colored. In blond types, pink noses permissible. Bite – Level or scissors. Overshot or undershot, or any distortion of the bite or jaw, should be penalized as a serious fault. A missing tooth or two is permissible. Disqualifications – Broken down or cropped ears.
Neck, Topline, Body
Neck – Slightly arched, gracefully sloping into lean shoulders. Topline – Level. Body – Ribs rounded and well sprung (but not too much "barrel-shaped"). Tail – Moderately long, carried sickle either up or out, or in a loop over the back with tip just touching the back. (Never tucked between legs.) Disqualifications – Docked tail, bobtail.
Shoulders – Lean, sloping into a slightly broadening support above straight forelegs that set well under, giving free movement at the elbows. Shoulders should be well up, giving balance and soundness, sloping into a level back (never down or low). This gives a well developed chest and strength of forequarters. Feet – A small, dainty foot with toes well split up but not spread, pads cushioned. (Neither the hare nor the cat foot.) Dewclaws may be removed. Pasterns – Strong.
Muscular, with hocks well apart, neither out nor in, well let down, firm and sturdy. Angulation – Should equal that of forequarters. The feet are as in front. Dewclaws may be removed.
In the Smooth Coats, the coat should be of soft texture, close and glossy. (Heavier coats with undercoats permissible.) Coat placed well over body with ruff on neck preferred, and more scanty on head and ears. Hair on tail preferred furry. In Long Coats, the coat should be of a soft texture, either flat or slightly wavy, with undercoat preferred. Ears – Fringed. Tail – Full and long (as a plume). Feathering on feet and legs, pants on hind legs and large ruff on the neck desired and preferred. (The Chihuahua should be groomed only to create a neat appearance.) Disqualification – In Long Coats, too thin coat that resembles bareness.
Any color - Solid, marked or splashed.
The Chihuahua should move swiftly with a firm, sturdy action, with good reach in front equal to the drive from the rear. From the rear, the hocks remain parallel to each other, and the foot fall of the rear legs follows directly behind that of the forelegs. The legs, both front and rear, will tend to converge slightly toward a central line of gravity as speed increases. The side view shows good, strong drive in the rear and plenty of reach in the front, with head carried high. The topline should remain firm and the backline level as the dog moves.
Alert, projecting the ‘terrier-like’ attitudes of self importance, confidence, self-reliance.
- Any dog over 6 pounds in weight.
- Broken down or cropped ears.
- Docked tail, bobtail.
- In Long Coats, too thin coat that resembles bareness.
Approved August 12, 2008 Effective October 1, 2008
Color & Markings
Below is a list of the colors and markings available for this breed. Please refer to the breed standard for descriptions and the difference in types. Description: The name of the color and/or markings. Type: Standard or alternate. This is the classification of the color for show purposes. Please refer to the breed standard for specifics regarding this breed. Code: This is the code entered on an application for registration of a dog. Colors Markings Markings
|Black & Tan||S||O18|
|Blue & Tan||S||O44|
|Chocolate & Tan||S||O72|
|Black & Red||A||O14|
|Black & Silver||A||O16|
|Black & White||A||O19|
|Black Sabled Fawn||A||354|
|Black Sabled Silver||A||353|
|Blue & White||A||O45|
|Blue Brindled Fawn||A||356|
|Chocolate & White||A||271|
|Chocolate Brindled Fawn||A||355|
|Chocolate Sabled Fawn||A||358|
|Cream & White||A||O77|
|Fawn Brindled Black||A||357|
|Gold & White||A||O92|
|Silver & White||A||182|
|Masks and Markings|
|Spotted on White||S||O71|
|Black Mask, White Markings||S||OO5;|