A few days ago a woman asked me a question via email:
‘Are Chihuahuas loyal to their owners?’
In this article you’ll find out the answer to this question.
- 9 facts about Chihuahuas and loyalty.
- If Chihuahuas are loyal to all of their owners or just to one person.
- And more…
Are Chihuahuas loyal to their owners?
Chihuahuas are loyal to their owners. Chihuahuas are lap dogs that belong to the toy dog group and love attention. They were originally bred to be companion dogs and serve their purpose well. They will stay by their owner’s side at all times and attempt to protect him from potential danger.
Here you’ll discover the reasons behind a Chihuahua’s loyalty. Even though Chihuahuas are tiny and cute, they can get snappy to strangers and kids. That’s how protective they can be around their owner.
Lissa, my long-haired Chihuahua mix is a perfect example of a loyal dog 🙂
She wants to be with us all of the time – when we’re cooking, working, sleeping, and even when we’re in the bathroom… Ugh, a little privacy… maybe?
Besides following us everywhere and standing next to us, she gets very territorial around other people and dogs.
This happens whenever we go outside and decide to sit somewhere and chill. Doesn’t matter if we’re on the ground or on a bench.
As soon as Lissa spots another dog or a human near us, she starts barking.
She even goes so far as to jump off my lap and get closer to the ‘intruder’ to warn them properly.
Are Chihuahuas loyal to all of their owners?
Chihuahuas are loyal to their owners. As long as the Chihuahua receives attention and affection from all owners, they can do great in the households without small children. Chihuahuas are not good with kids and can easily get nervous and aggressive around them.
‘What’s the reason?’ you might ask…
Kids are energetic and unpredictable. They tend to move fast and uncontrolled a lot of times.
Kids can step on a Chihuahua, play rough with them, or hurt them by picking them up incorrectly or by dropping them.
When you look at this from your Chihuahua’s perspective, it’s not to hard to understand why they’d get defensive around kids.
These tiny dogs basically see the kids as a two-legged threat.
Caution: Bear in mind that the 2nd biggest cause of Chihuahua death is trauma.
Chihuahuas could learn to tolerate kids in the household though, as long as the kids are taught how to act around the dog.
If you have a kid, make sure to teach them to not pull the tail of the dog, chase them, hug them or throw themselves at the Chihuahua.
Are Chihuahuas only loyal to one person?
Chihuahuas are one-person dogs that are loyal to their owner. While they can be okay with all family members, they’ll show loyalty to one member in particular. That could cause them to become clingy and overly-protective of that person. This is usually a result of how they’ve been raised.
If they haven’t been socialized actively during puppyhood, they can become snappy and yappy towards kids, other dogs and strangers in general.
They’re most likely to bond with their primary caretaker as they see him or her as their food, exercise and protection supplier.
Why are Chihuahuas so loyal? 9 facts revealed
#1: Chihuahuas are pack animals
Chihuahuas might be small in size but they’re big time pack animals 🙂
It’s typical of pack animals such as dogs to stick to their pack. This applies to hunting for food, finding shelter and sleeping together.
#2: Chihuahuas are affectionate
Chihuahuas are so affectionate that the affection could grow into jealousy. This is to be expected as it’s directly connected to their temperament.
You can see episodes of jealousy as soon as your stop touching your dog and showing a mild interest in another person or pet.
This often happens with Lissa if she sees me petting another dog. Even if a canine tries to approach me, she jumps off my lap, showing her teeth. She emits a growl which soon turns into a bark.
Then she quickly gets back to me, pushing my hand with her head. It seems as if she’s saying ‘Hey, pet me. I’m here. I want belly rubs.’
But this isn’t the only instance in which a Chihuahua could show they’re jealous.
A Chihuahua could snap at family members if they attempt to hug, kiss or show any kind of affection towards the primary caretaker.
Tip: Even if you have an adult Chihuahua, you could work on socializing them. It will take more time and patience but it’s possible. You can also enroll them in obedience training.
You might also like: Do Chihuahuas Like To Cuddle?
#3: Chihuahuas thrive on attention
The more attention you give your Chihuahua, the more they’ll bond with you.
It’s only natural that they’ll feel connected to the one family member that gives them the most attention. Chihuahuas will repay with loyalty.
Chihuahuas could require attention of you by pawing at you, or by standing on their hind legs.
#4: Chihuahuas could be clingy
A Chihuahua’s job as a dog is to protect their owner. That involves being a watch dog and alerting you when something is off.
The Chihuahua feels the need to stay by your side at all times. This means that wherever you go, they’ll follow. Like your shadow.
Your Chihuahua could even become obsessed with protecting you.
That being said, some Chihuahuas are likely to experience a strong form of separation anxiety when left home alone.
Tip: If you notice your Chihuahua being too clingy, you can practice leaving them alone in a room for 10 to 20 minutes a day. This will help them become more independent over time.
Leave a treat or a stuffed Kong while you’re away so their attention is occupied and they build positive associations with the time spent alone.
More on this topic in the following article: 13 reasons why Chihuahuas are so needy and clingy
#5: They bond closely with one person
The truth is Chihuahuas are one-person dogs.
What this means is that even though other people could offer your dog treats and affection, your Chihuahua might not take them.
It’s not at all uncommon for Chihuahuas to show favoritism to a certain person. As to the others – they could ignore them.
This could be troubling if the other family members love the Chihuahua and want to interact with them too. Not to worry though. This is fixable!
Make sure the Chihuahua spends more time with the family members they’re not used to.
This could happen during a short walk. Or at playtime. And last but not least, the family member can give some treats to the Chi.
Feeding snacks to a Chi can make a great difference in how the Chihuahua perceives you.
Caution: You should be careful how many treats you give your Chi per day. Small dogs can easily get obese. Follow the 10% rule – the snacks in a day shouldn’t make up more than 10% of your Chihuahua’s meal.
#6: They’re always alert
The main purpose of a Chihuahua is to keep you company. But the Chihuahua doesn’t know that.
They don’t know how small they are and compensate with a big attitude. In other words – they have no fear of ‘voicing’ their concerns.
A Chihuahua is always on guard. Any possible danger won’t go unnoticed.
Now that we’ve covered the typical Chihuahua traits, it’s time to look at things from a different perspective. Your Chihuahua’s loyalty to you might have more to do with you than you think…
So, have you ever thought how your behavior towards your Chihuahua is affecting your relationship?
Good news – certain actions you take could make them more loyal to you. Part of why they’re loyal to you could be:
#7: Because you play with them
Nothing like fun times to make your Chihuahua enjoy the time spent with you.
Spend quality time together by playing fetch, tug of war, or hide and seek at least once per day.
Caution: Remember to be gentle during play as Chihuahuas are fragile.
#8: Because you train them
Training has to do with both physical and mental stimulation. These are equally beneficial for your Chihuahua.
Teaching your Chihuahua new tricks or commands requires teamwork. Such activities can strengthen the trust between you two.
A lot of times training means rewards for a job well-done. You bet your Chihuahua is eager to receive a snack from you.
After all of that, how could they not be loyal to you? A big part of the reason is that they’ll have good associations with you (provided you use positive reinforcement).
#9: Because you talk to them
‘Talking to my dog…seriously?’ you might think…
Yeah – talking to your Chihuahua has multiple benefits.
That’s why there’s been a reading initiative in a dog shelter. The event involved kids reading to dogs.
The idea was that kids practice their reading skills while helping dogs become more sociable.
This way the dogs were learning to be calm around people and the kids were learning empathy.
Now that you know that, you could either tell your Chihuahua a nice story or read from a book.
Not only will this strengthen your bond but it can also calm your Chihuahua down. If you speak in a calm friendly tone of voice, that is 🙂