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Are Chihuahuas Good With Kids?

Are Chihuahuas Good With Kids?

Are you thinking of getting a Chihuahua but don’t know what the breed is like around children? Maybe you’re about to have a baby and want to know if a Chihuahua is the right dog breed for you? Here’s everything you need to know about whether Chihuahuas are good with kids!

Are Chihuahuas Good With Kids? Yes, Chihuahuas can be good with kids, but are better around older children that are less likely to accidentally scare or hurt them. They can be feisty and stubborn so need proper socialisation and consistent training for them to be a good addition to the family.

Read on to find out what Chihuahuas are like around babies, and what rules you should put in place when your children are playing with them.

Never use the advice in this article as a substitute for professional veterinary advice or treatment. I am NOT a Vet, qualified dog trainer or dog behaviourist. This article is based on research, personal opinion and experience of owning dogs over the last 12+ years. 

Are Chihuahuas Good With Babies?

Chihuahuas can be good with babies if they’re introduced slowly and carefully. However, they can also be a jealous breed, which can sometimes make it more difficult for them to accept a baby.

Chihuahuas bark a lot too, which isn’t an ideal trait if you have a new baby.

However, as with all dog breeds, it’s important to never leave your Chihuahua unattended around your baby, even if you trust them.

So, if you need to leave the room, pop them in a crate or put them in a separate room for a few minutes.

Chihuahuas basically get jealous because they want all your attention, all the time! So, if you’re expecting a new baby, you need to work on preparing them for your new arrival.

Here are some things that can help your Chihuahua get used to a baby:

Play Baby Noises

Chihuahuas are very alert little dogs that don’t miss much! Their upright ears pick up even subtle sounds, so loud or unfamiliar noises may unintentionally scare them.

Playing baby sounds like crying, gurgling, giggling and even screaming, can help prepare your Chihuahua for what’s to come.

You don’t want them to feel scared of the noises your new baby is making, so it’s best to get them used to the sounds in advance. 

Set Up Equipment Before Your Baby Arrives

New situations and experiences can be daunting for some Chihuahuas.

So by setting up the new equipment you’ll need for your baby, such as their crib, pram, changing station or high chair, gives your Chihuahua time to get used to them before the new baby arrives. 

Give Your Chihuahua Their Own Space

Some Chihuahuas can be anxious or nervous, making them feel quickly overwhelmed. So it’s important they’ve got their own quiet place to retreat to if they need a break from what’s going on around them.

Make sure they’ve got a comfy bed, some dog toys, and constant access to this safe space. Encourage them to go there during busy times, to help them feel calmer and more secure. 

Give Your Chihuahua Lots Of Attention

Chihuahuas love to be the centre of attention! So, it’s really important that they’re still getting plenty of love and fuss, even after your new baby arrives.

Without this, they can quickly feel pushed out and jealous of your new arrival.

This is particularly important if you already have a Chihuahua and this is your first child. They’ll be used to having your sole attention and may find it difficult to adjust to sharing you with someone else.

By making sure your Chihuahua gets plenty of attention, they’ll feel more reassured and learn to adjust more quickly to the new family unit.

Girl cuddling her Chihuahua on a yellow background with a speech bubble that says 'Am I a good family dog?'
Girl Cuddling Her Chihuahua

Make Time To Exercise Your Chihuahua Daily

Although they’re small, Chihuahuas are still fairly active, with adults needing around 30 minutes of exercise each day – and that doesn’t include playtime or training either!

So, it’s important your Chihuahua still gets the opportunity to go out for daily exercise, even when your new baby arrives.

If you’re struggling to get a chance to do this yourself, ask friends, family or a dog walker to help you out. 

Spend Time Around Babies

If you have friends or family members with babies, it can be helpful to get your Chihuahua to spend time around them. It’s best to keep them on their leash in this type of situation, until you’re 100% sure they’re comfortable and it’s safe to let them off.

This can help them get used to the scents, sounds and sights that come along with a baby, so they know what to expect when your new little one arrives.

Reward and praise them for showing calm behavior and for not barking or jumping up. 

Are Chihuahuas Good With Children?

Chihuahuas can be great with children, provided they’re treated kindly and respectfully. Although tiny, Chihuahuas are full of personality and love to get involved in anything that might be fun! With careful, patient training, they can form strong friendships with the children they live with. 

However, it’s advisable for Chihuahuas to live alongside older children that can be more gentle around them than toddlers might be.

Due to their small size, they can easily get injured if accidentally handled too roughly. They’re also quite defensive, and could bite if feeling threatened or hurt.

Even though they’re super-cute, Chihuahuas aren’t toys and must not be treated as such! If you have younger children, you may want to supervise them when they play together.

Here are some rules that kids and their friends should follow:

Play Gently With Your Chihuahua

Chihuahuas are the world’s smallest breed of dog standing between 5 and 8 inches to their shoulder! This can make them vulnerable to being hurt if they’re played with too roughly.

Even accidentally stepping on your Chihuahua when they’re running around with you could really injure them.

They might also get scared if there’s lots of children charging around and squealing too. So it’s important that play is calm and the children know how to play sensibly and respectfully at all times.

Don’t Try To Pick Your Chihuahua Up

Although Chihuahuas only weigh around 6lbs, they still shouldn’t be picked up all the time by your children. If they’re picked up in the wrong way or dangled by their front feet, it could potentially scare or injure them.

Unfortunately, this might make them snap or bite as a reaction to how they’re feeling.

So it may be a good idea to ask your children not to pick up your Chihuahua, or to teach them how to pick them up carefully, giving proper support to their rear and back legs.  

Don’t Hug Or Squeeze Your Chihuahua

Children may find it tempting to hug or squeeze your Chihuahua, but it’s best not to encourage this.

Chihuahuas are quite fragile and can easily get hurt if handled incorrectly, so must not be squeezed too tight.

It’s best to encourage your children to give them a gentle stroke, instead of a hug. 

Leave Your Chihuahua Alone If They’re Anxious

Some Chihuahuas can be anxious or nervous, especially in new situations.

So, if they show any signs like licking their lips frequently, avoiding eye contact, yawning excessively, cowering or have their tail between their legs, then it’s best to leave them alone.

Teach your children to look for these signs and to give your Chihuahua space when needed.

Boy hugging his Chihuahua on a green background with a speech bubble that says 'Am I a good family dog?'
Boy Hugging His Chihuahua

Never Pull Your Chihuahua’s Tail, Ears Or Fur

Chihuahuas have big, pointed ears that children may be tempted to grab at, and a tail that sticks up or curls slightly over their back that they may try to pull. They can also be long-coated with lots of fur to hold on to.

But pulling, tugging or holding can make your Chihuahua feel stressed, threatened or really hurt, so should never be allowed.

Even though unintentional, a Chihuahua could easily snap defensively if they feel threatened in any way.

Don’t Stare At Your Chihuahua

Chihuahuas have big, appealing eyes, so it may be tempting to stare at them up close. However, they might not see this as a positive, and could be scared or threatened by it instead.

This is particularly important if your Chihuahua is already an anxious or scared dog.

So it’s best for children not to put their face near to your Chihuahua’s face, as this may be seen as intimidating and could make them snap or bite. 

Leave Your Chihuahua Alone When Eating

Chihuahuas can be greedy and protective over their food, especially if it’s something really tasty! So, it’s always best to leave them alone when they’re eating their meals or treats.

They might growl or snap if they think you’re going to take their food away from them.

So make it a rule that if your Chihuahua is eating, the family must leave them to eat!

Don’t Disturb Your Chihuahua When Sleeping

Chihuahuas don’t like being woken up suddenly when they’re sleeping. They can easily get startled, causing them to snap or bite if disturbed.

So, it’s best to leave them alone when they’re resting or sleeping, especially if they’re in their own bed. 

So there you have it! Chihuahuas can be good with kids, but are more suited to older children that are less likely to accidentally scare them. You’ll have to get to know your Chihuahuas individual character to work out their boundaries. With the right training and socialisation, most Chihuahuas fit well into a family home.

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