|Chihuahua Breed Standard
The Chihuahua Breed Standard:
®: Chihuahua 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
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.
If you are considering purchasing a Chihuahua puppy, learn more here.
• Toy Group; AKC recognized in 1904.
• Not more than 6 pounds.
• Companion dog.
© The American Kennel Club, Inc.
|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.
Head- 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, 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.
Hindquarters- 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.
Coat- 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. Color
Any color - Solid, marked or splashed.
Gait- 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
Temperament- Alert, projecting the ‘terrier-like’ attitudes of self importance, confidence, self-reliance.
Disqualifications 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