The Chiweenie packs a huge personality and comes loaded with tons of charm.
With his unique look, intelligent nature and loyal disposition, it’s no wonder the chiweenie has risen to fame over the past few decades. But does this mean the chiweenie is the right dog for you?
Before you take the leap and find a chiweenie to call your own, let’s take a few minutes to learn more about this pint-sized pup and which kind of lifestyle, home and family would suit him best.
Let’s get started!
1. The Chiweenie Is Not A Purebred Dog
Chiweenie’s are not purebreds nor are they mutts.
First and foremost, the chiweenie is not a purebred dog. In fact, the chiweenie is what is known as a crossbreed, designer dog, hybrid or mixed breed.
While crossbreeding has been going on for centuries, it has become a more well-known and widespread trend in the United States over the last two decades. “Designer dogs” like the chiweenie have been toted around in purses and on the laps of celebrities like Paris Hilton, Miley Cyrus, Katy Perry, and more.
Some of the most popular designer dogs to date tend to be doodle mixes, (for example, yorkie poos, maltipoos, labradoodles, etc), but mixed breeds don’t stop there. Dogs like chiweenies, while relatively new to the designer dog scene, are quickly climbing the ranks in popularity.
That said, crossbreeds like the chiweenie are also considered a bit controversial as there are questions regarding the predictability of crossbreed dogs when it comes to temperament, health and overall appearance.
Some experts claim that crossbreed dogs are healthier than purebreds while others insist their health risks are the same. Others claim that crossbreeds are simply just mutts while supporters point out crossbreeds are purposefully “designed” by breeding two purebred parents.
What’s the verdict?
With that said, the chiweenie was designed to (hopefully) inherent the best of both his purebred parent breeds as far as looks, temperament and health. Of course, because genetics are genetics, all of these factors will be left up to chance and each individual chiweenie will be different.
Still, there are some things we can predict when it comes to this little hybrid by looking at the background of his two purebred parent breeds.
Keep reading to see for yourself.
2. The Chiweenie Is A Mix Between the Chihuahua and The Dachshund
Part of the chiweenie’s charm are his many monikers. Also known as the Mexican Hotdog, the Choxie, the Weeniehuahua, and the German Taco, the Chiweenie is a cross between two very famous, very beloved, and very boisterous dogs.
That’s right, a chiweenie is a mix between a chihuahua and a dachshund. With that in mind, let’s take a look at the background of his two purebred parents to get a better idea of where this unique and adorable little hybrid comes from.
The chihuahua is a symbol of Mexico and is small, scrappy and smart.
Everyone is familiar with the little Chihuahua. A famous symbol of Mexico, the Chihuahua is one of the oldest canines in the Americas. Though small, he is known for his big personality and is reported to have somewhat of a Napoleon syndrome.
Chihuahua’s make wonderful companions for the right home, though they do best in single-dog households and prefer to be the center of attention. Without proper training and socialization, chihuahuas can be quite stubborn and territorial. That said, they are also incredibly charming, funny, and somewhat human-like with their emotions.
The dachshund is famous for his elongated body, short legs and big personality.
Hailing from Germany, Dachshunds are famously built for hunting. Though small, they are fearless, which was a trait needed for a little dog set to chase after badgers.
The dachshund’s long body, short legs and pointed snout allowed him to dig into badger holes, which was quite a formidable task as anyone who has ever seen a badger will tell you. That said, dachshunds are highly energetic and active, though they are not athletic or built for walking long distances.
Their adorable frame, while part of their charm, can also lead to some serious health concerns in their senior years, especially if they become obese. For this reason, care should be taken to ensure dachshunds are properly exercised and fed a healthy diet.
3. Chiweenie Dogs Are Known To Be Spunky, Energetic and Fearless
Chiweenie dogs are playful and energetic but they can also be stubborn.
Understanding a bit about the Chiweenie’s parent breeds certainly helps us understand this dog’s incredible personality traits. Seeing as his parents are small, scrapy, smart and stubborn, it’s no wonder the Chiweenie has been described by those who know him as “almost human-like”.
This little dog can be fearless to a fault and is known to be quite vocal. He is also somewhat territorial.
Chiweenie dogs are not ideal for first time dog owners who aren’t prepared for a dog with a big personality. Though the Chiweenie is small and portable, and though he does enjoy traveling, he is not built to be a lap dog only and prefers to play, explore, and keep his mind active.
4. Chihweenie Dogs Shed And Aren’t The Best Dog For Allergy Sufferers
Chiweenie’s shed moderately depending on their coat type.
Many mixed dogs are hypoallergenic, but the chiweenie is not one of them. He is a cross between two dogs who shed and depending on the traits he inherits from his dachshund parent, may even inherit long or wirey hair.
With that noted, if you do suffer from allergies, the chiweenie may not be the best dog for you. On the flip side, if you don’t mind a bit of dog hair on your furniture and clothing and if you aren’t concerned about allergies, then the moderate shedding of the chiweenie shouldn’t be a problem.
5. Chiweenie Dogs Are Not Ideal Additions To Homes With Small Children
Monitor the chiweenie around small children as he may not tolerate being poked and prodded.
Chiweenie dogs can be impatient and intolerant of small children. Furthermore, their tiny size can put them at risk of getting injured if handled too roughly. With that in mind, these dogs are best for families with older, more respectful children, or for singles, seniores, or those without little ones.
Let’s take a closer look at the size and appearance of a potential chiweenie dog.
Chiweenie Height: 8 to 10 inches
Chiweenie Weight: 8 to 12 Pounds
Chiweenie Coat Color: Brown, black, white, tan, and brindle
Chiweenie Coat Type: Double coated, shedding, may be long-haired, wire-haired, or short.
Chiweenie Eye Color: Brown, blue, green, or black
6. The Chiweenie Is A Good Apartment Dog, Though He Can Be Vocal
Chiweenie’s make excellent watch dogs.
Due to his small size, the chiweenie makes for an excellent apartment dog. He doesn’t require large spaces or yards and therefore can also make for a wonderful traveling companion.
That said, this dog is known for his big-dog bark and can be quite vocal. While this makes him a wonderful guard dog, it can also be problematic in tight spaces or in homes where walls are thin and neighbors are near.
7. The Average Lifespan of a Chiweenie Is Around 10 Years
Chiweenie’s can live up to 15 years if conditions are ideal.
Based on his purebred parents’ lifespan, the Chiweenie typically lives on average for about 10 years. That said, a very healthy chiweenie can live as long as 12 to 15 years, if conditions are ideal.
Unfortunately, the chiweenie can be prone to some serious health issues that may have an impact on or shorten his lifespan that owners should be aware of. Take a look below.
8. The Chiweenie Can Be Prone To Obesity And Other Health Issues
Chiweenie dogs are particularly prone to obesity.
Like all hybrid dogs, the chiweenie may be susceptible to the same health concerns that plague his purebred parent breeds. On the chihuahua side, the chiweenie has lucked out as chihuahuas are notoriously healthy dogs.
The same goes for his dachshund side, though dachshunds do face a few more health concerns than Chihuahuas due to their unique build.
Let’s take a look at some of the potential health issues you should be aware of before you invest in a chiweenie dog.
- Luxating Patella
- Dental Issues Including Early Tooth Laws
- Degenerative Disc Disease
- Intervertebral Degenerative Disc Diseases
- And Seizures
Getting your chiweenie from reputable sources like a reputable breeder or shelter can help decrease the chances of you winding up with a potentially sick chiweenie. You can also get your chiweenie tested for these potential genetic health issues if you are concerned about facing them in the future.
Testing a dog for genetic health issues can help you prepare an emergency fund for health care in the future or even prevent certain health conditions by implementing preventative care.
9. Chiweenie Dogs Require Only Moderate Grooming
Grooming can help you build a stronger bond with your chiweenie.
Chiweenie dogs can come in a few different coat type varieties, including:
- Short Hair
Depending on your chiweenie dog’s coat, grooming could be easy to moderate. That said, grooming should not be skipped regardless and should include regular brushing, bathing at least once every three months or so, as well as regular ear cleanings and nail trimmings.
Chiweenie dogs are also prone to some serious dental issues and should have their teeth taken care of regularly. In between vet visits and professional dental cleanings, we suggest purchasing a dog safe toothbrush and toothpaste and brushing your chiweenie’s teeth at least once a day to ensure his long-term oral health.
Remember, grooming is an important part of being a pet parent and will not only help ensure your chiweenie lives a long and healthy life, but also help to strengthen the bond between you and your dog.
It’s a win-win!
10. Chiweenie Dogs Need To Be Well Socialized At An Early Age
Because the chiweenie comes from two very boisterous, outgoing parents who can be fearless and stubborn to a fault, it’s important to implement proper socialization during puppyhood.
All dogs need to be socialized and the chiweenie especially will benefit from this practice with you. Properly socializing your chiweenie includes taking him with you as often as possible at an early age and introducing him to a number of new experiences in a positive way.
If possible, we recommend introducing your chiweenie puppy to children, loud sounds, groomers, car rides, vacuums and more between the ages of 8 to 11 weeks to ensure he grows up well rounded and happy. Socialization not only helps your dog grow up better behaved, but it also helps reduce anxiety in your pup and leads to a healthier, happier life.
11. Make Sure Your Chiweenie Eats A Healthy, Balanced Diet
Speaking of health, the diet of your chiweenie is especially important considering some of his health concerns revolve around obesity. Remember, the chiweenie is susceptible to hypothyroidism and diabetes, and his elongated frame can give undue stress to his joints and spine, especially as he ages.
Feeding your chiweenie a healthy diet for his age, weight and activity level can ensure that he ages gracefully, maintains a healthy weight, and can even help prevent future conditions that can shorten your chiweenie’s lifespan.
That said, we know some dog foods can be expensive, but there are quality dog food products you can purchase that are affordable and made with all the right nutrients your chiweenie needs to thrive.
12. Chiweenie Dogs Need Lots Of Exercise and Mental Stimulation
Chiweenie dogs can be prone to boredom and destructive behaviors if not kept mentally stimulated.
Both the chihuahua and the dachshund are known for their intelligence and knack for getting into mischief if they get bored. With that in mind, know that your chiweenie dog is likely going to harbor some of these traits.
If left to his own devices a chiweenie can become bored, depressed, or even destructive. To help keep him happy (and to also protect your belongings) experts recommend ensuring your chiweenie is properly exercised and kept mentally stimulated.
A brisk, short walk each day with lots of indoor or outdoor playtime can help ensure your chiweenie burns through all his energy. We also recommend implementing puzzle toys into his toy box to help keep him busy and challenged when you are away.
13. Chiweenie Dogs Respond Best To Positive Reinforcement Training
Your chiweenie wants to please you during training sessions but he may shut down if he senses you are getting frustrated.
All dogs aim to please, and while the chiweenie may be stubborn and mischievous, he still wants you to be happy. This is a crossbreed who responds best to positive reinforcement training and prefers treats and praise over scolding and punishments.
In fact, if your chiweenie senses you’re displeased or frustrated with him during a training session, he’s more likely to shut down and refuse to go on with the training session any further.
Instead of getting frustrated, try keeping training sessions short, repetitive, and fun. Make these sessions feel like games and as soon as you sense your chiweenie has had enough, give him a break. Doing this will ensure your chiweenie soaks up the lessons without becoming overwhelmed, which will in turn help him to learn the lessons faster.
14. Chiweenie Dogs May Prefer To Be The Only Dog In The Household But Can Get Along With Other Pets Too
Chiweenie’s love to be the center of attention but if properly socialized can get along well with other pets
The purebred chihuahua is famous for wanting all the attention, so it’s likely our chiweenie pup will be the same. This is a dog who will certainly enjoy being the only apple of your eye and may even have the potential to rule the roost.
Of course, that’s not to say that a properly socialized chiweenie won’t get along with other pets. Many chiweenie do well with both cats and dogs in the home so long as they have been properly introduced, socialized and trained.
15. A Chiweenie From A Reputable Breeder Can Be Pricey, But Be Wary Of Trying To Cut Costs
The chiweenie is neither a purebred nor is he a mutt, and that is reflected in the price of a chiweenie puppy. While not as expensive as some other hybrid dogs, the chiweenie can still be pricier than most, costing potential owners anywhere between $300 to $600.
Experts warn against trying to cut costs by going through outside sources to get your dog. Purchasing a puppy from backyard breeders, online sellers, and other inexperienced sellers increases your risk of ending up with a very sick puppy.
This could cost you much more money in the long run and plenty of heartache if your sick puppy doesn’t make it.
There are plenty of benefits of spending a good chunk of money up front for a healthy dog from a reputable breeder, including being able to see a certification of health and even getting to meet your puppy’s mother, which can give you a better idea of what your dog will grow up to look like.
Of course, we are also big fans of adopting dogs or getting your chiweenie from a local rescue. Rescuing a chiweenie on average costs around $50 to $100, and you may even get a free initial vet exam.
Rescuing your chiweenie not only helps you save money but it also gives a dog in need a good home and makes room in already overcrowded shelters for the next homeless dog or puppy.
Our Five Favorite Products For Chiweenie Dogs and Their Owners
Have you decided that the chiweenie dog is right for you? If so, that’s wonderful news!
If you’ve finally made the leap into chiweenie parenthood, let us help you out with a list of our favorite products every chiweenie dog owner needs.
Take a look.
Muttitude Dog Harness and Leash Set
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Chiweenie dogs tend to be built like their dachshund parent, with long bodies and shorter legs. For this reason, they may require harnesses that fit their unique body shape. We like the above harness and leash set by Muttitude because it is a no pull harness that does not put pressure on your Chiweenie’s sensitive trachea.
This harness can also help alleviate pressure on your chiweenie’s body which reduces pulling and makes walking easier for the both of you. Plus, we really like the cute design.
Arm & Hammer Clinical Care Dental Kit For Dogs
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Chiweenie dogs can be prone to serious dental issues like tooth decay and early tooth loss. You can help protect your chiweenie’s teeth by implementing a brushing routine at least once a day.
The above dental care kit by Arm & Hammer is designed for puppies or small dogs like the chiweenie and includes a toothbrush, a finger brush, and dog-safe toothpaste to help fight tartar buildup and keep your chiweenie’s teeth healthy.
KONG Chew Toy
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The KONG chew toy is a famous dog toy perfect for dogs like chiweenies. These toys are designed to be stuffed with all your dog’s favorite snacks like cheese, treats, peanut butter, and more.
What we love most about KONGS is they allow for your Chiweenie to safely chew and stay busy to help prevent potential destructive behaviors and anxiety while you are away or while you are busy. KONG toys are also long-lasting, durable, and can come in different sizes depending on your dog’s needs.
Outward Hound Puzzle Toy For Small Dogs
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Chiweenie dogs like to stay busy, so investing in a puzzle toy is a great way to keep them occupied and reduce anxious, destructive behaviors.
The above puzzle toy is specifically designed for smaller dogs like the chiweenie and encourages pups to use their minds to solve the challenges and get to the treats. The toy can be purchased in different levels depending on your dog’s needs and even comes in different styles to ensure your chiweenie is happy.
AWOOF Pet Snuffle Mat For Dogs
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Last but not least we have a snuffle mat for dogs. Remember, the chiweenie is a mix between a chihuahua and dachshund, and his dachshund parent is prone to digging. The above snuffle mat allows for your chiweenie to get in touch and utilize his foraging instincts by digging into something that is safe and designed for him to do so.
You can hide treats or toys or both in the mat to encourage your chiweenie to play. This is an excellent toy to help not only with mental stimulation, but also with decreasing destructive behaviors and boredom.
So, what do you think? Is the Chiweenie the best dog for you, and which products would you pick out for your chiweenie from our above list of favorites?
We would love to hear your thoughts on this unique, charming, and very boisterous canine. Leave us your opinion in the comment section below.
Jen Jones is a professional dog trainer and behavior specialist with more than 25 years of experience. As the founder of ‘Your Dog Advisor’ and the ‘Canine Connection’ rehabilitation center, she applies a holistic, empathetic approach, aiming to address root causes rather than merely treating symptoms.
Well known for her intuitive and compassionate approach, Jen adopts scientifically-proven, reward-based methods, encouraging positive reinforcement over punishment. Jen specializes in obedience training, behavior modification, and puppy socialization. Her innovative methods, particularly in addressing anxiety and aggression issues, have been widely recognized. Jen has worked with many of the world’s leading dog behaviorists and in her free time volunteers with local animal shelters and rescue groups.