The Chihuahua is the world’s smallest dog breed and they’re also really popular as pets all over the world too, including within the UK. The Chihuahua is in fact the second most popular dog breed in the UK overall, and there are a huge number of these little dogs owned all across the UK, with their numbers growing each year as more and more dog lovers set their hearts on owning one of these cute, comical little dogs.
The Chihuahua has a lot of advantages as a pet for dog owners of all types, and the breed’s small size means that they can fit into even the smallest of homes comfortably.
However, the Chihuahua’s small size and delicate build also means that they need some special care and attention, to keep them safe and happy whilst still enabling them to live a normal life. Some Chihuahuas are also born with a soft spot called a fontanelle on their skulls, which often closes up in adult dogs as they mature, but that is not always the case. A Chihuahua with a fontanelle is also more vulnerable to head injuries, and this has a range of care implications for their owners and their lifestyles.
Chihuahuas aren’t hard to come by in the UK, and if you have decided you wish to own one, finding a breeder and selecting a pup from a litter should be relatively simple. However, before you set your heart on buying a Chihuahua or a dog of any other type, you need to do plenty of research to ensure that the dog you’re considering will be a good fit for you, and that you’ll be able to provide it with an appropriate lifestyle.
It is also a good idea to explore some alternative dog breeds that might provide a viable alternative to the breed that you are looking for, and which can enable you to choose different and more suitable core breed traits for your lifestyle if this is appropriate, or confirm your original selection of a Chihuahua.
All dog breeds are of course different, and there is no one breed that like for like, shares most of the Chihuahua’s core traits – but there are a few breeds that are also themselves small, and that can provide alternative options for prospective Chihuahua buyers. In this article we will introduce three dog breeds that are a potential alternative to the Chihuahua. Read on to learn more.
The Yorkshire terrier is a native British dog breed that has long been a very popular companion dog and pet in the UK, and up until a couple of decades ago when lots of dog breeds from abroad really began to gain traction in the UK and provide alternative options for puppy buyers, was one of our most popular small dog breeds of all.
Whilst the Chihuahua and the Yorkshire terrier might not have a lot in common at a glance, they do share quite a number of common traits. Yorkshire terrier sizes can be quite variable, but smaller dogs of the breed aren’t much larger than a Chihuahua, and they share some temperament traits too.
Although Chihuahuas and Yorkshire terriers are both kept as pets in the main part today, both breeds have historically been used for ratting and pest control, and they both have quick, lively natures, a strong prey drive, and high energy levels for their small size.
The Chinese crested is quite a unique dog breed that comes in two different varieties, being hairless and “powderpuff” or furry respectively.
Both variants of the Chinese crested breed are slightly taller and more leggy than the Chihuahua, but their general shape and build is otherwise fairly similar. They are lean, lithe dogs with a delicate build and they don’t have an overly challenging need for exercise.
Chinese crested dogs are playful, social and very affectionate, and they form strong bonds with their owners, usually getting on well with children too. They like to have plenty of company and enjoy curling up close to the people they love for a snooze, and they tend to be gentle, laid back and easy going, assuming that all of their needs are met.
The hairless variants of the breed require some special care and attention to be paid to their skin as well as protecting them from the sun, but this is one small toy dog breed that can be very rewarding to own.
The miniature pinscher looks a lot like the larger Doberman pinscher but on a much smaller scale, and again, this breed is a little larger than the Chihuahua but still very small, and included within the Kennel Club’s toy dog group.
Miniature pinschers are quite active dogs for a small breed, and they’re lively, fun loving, and enjoy varied, interesting walks. However, the dog’s small size means that they’re not too hard to wear out, and they tend to be calm and well behaved within the home as long as they’re not left alone for too long.
Miniature pinschers are a little sturdier and more robust than Chihuahuas, and they tend to be quite outgoing dogs that are very sociable with others. If you are looking for another small dog breed as a Chihuahua alternative that is not quite as delicate, this might be a good pick.