Taking care of your long haired chihuahua
Long-haired Chihuahuas are characterized by their by their smooth undercoat and long overcoat. The Long-haired Chihuahua is one of the two official versions of Chihuahuas recognized by the American Kennel Club. With its large eyes and erect ears, it is not difficult for people to mistake this version of the Chihuahua for a Pomeranian. As one of the smallest dogs, attention and care has to be given to the Long-haired Chihuahua, given its fragility.
Food for the Long-haired Chihuahua has to be chosen meticulously. Generally, Chihuahuas do not like frequent changes in their food. Given the small size of the Long-haired Chihuahua, the teeth of these animals are also relatively small compared to other dogs. As such, food has to come in small bite-sized proportions in order for ease of chewing and digestion. Chihuahuas tend to have two meals daily. Food should be fresh and any leftover food should be disposed off to prevent the growth of bacteria and germs which might cause the Long-haired Chihuahua to fall sick. Generally, most vets recommend dried food to prevent the build up of plaque and tartar. Also, plenty of drinking water should be provided for sufficient hydration. Supper is not advisable in order to prevent obesity and poor eating habits in future.
The Long-haired Chihuahua needs to be bathed regularly, on a basis of at least once a month. In countries with warmer temperatures, frequent bathing is advisable in order to prevent discomfort and fleas. While grooming, care should be taken to untangle possible knots on the long overcoats of the Long-haired Chihuahua. Care must be taken to prevent water from entering the ears during bathing to prevent the risk of the Chihuahua suffering from infection.
While Chihuahuas are often dubbed as pocket dogs, exercise is necessary to prevent obesity. The Long-haired Chihuahua is no exception here and frequent short walks are necessary for the health of these pets as well as to build up greater interaction and better relationship between the Long-haired Chihuahua and its owner. Care however, must be taken regarding the distance as even a walk around the block might prove potentially exhausting for the Long-haired Chihuahua.
In winter, it is important to provide the Long-haired Chihuahua with sufficient warm clothing. Despite its long overcoat, it is necessary to purchase warm clothing for these dogs as they do not adapt as well to the cold as compared to other dogs such as the German shepherd. In summer however, clothing should be removed to prevent discomfort. Many Chihuahua owners tend to choose style over comfort by clothing their Long-haired Chihuahuas in the heat of the summer. The extra clothing, coupled with the already long overcoat of hair of the Long-haired Chihuahua can result in extreme discomfort for the animal.
For families with children, it is important to educate the young not to drop the Long-haired Chihuahua. Falls often lead to injuries, even death for a young Long-haired Chihuahua. Chihuahuas are the only breed of dogs to be born with soft skulls known as moleras. These fill up with time as the Chihuahua gets older. Thus, great care is needed especially during the first six months until the skull is completely formed.
Regular timely checkups are also a necessity as an insurance against any possible outbreaks of illness. Long-haired Chihuahuas are active dogs and any tell tale signs of lethargy might mean possible illness.
Given the right care and a healthy dose of commitment and time spent, owners of the Long-haired Chihuahua can look forward to a fulfilling pet-owner experience.