The Ottawa Valley Dog Whisperer
learn, grow, create balance
ORIGIN OF THE CHIHUAHUA
The Chihuahua is the smallest breed of dog in the world and is also thought to be the oldest breed on the American continent. The origins of this diminutive breed have been the subject of much debate as dog historians differ in their opinions. Some experts believe that the Chihuahua is a native of Mexico, originating under the Aztec civilization. Others believe that the breed originated in China and was imported to Mexico by traders. Another theory states that the breed evolved in Egypt and later made its way to the Mediterranean countries. The breedís predecessors were brought into the United States in the 1800's where they were crossed with Terriers to produce the modern Smooth-coat Chihuahua. The breed is named after the Mexican state of Chihuahua.
CHARACTERISTICS OF THE CHIAUHUA
The Chihuahua is loyal, intelligent, courageous, lively, proud, and affectionate. It can also be overly brave and strong willed, over protective and jealous. Chihuahuas really dislike the cold, although a Long-coat Chihuahua will fair better in colder temperatures than the short haired, Smooth-coat Chihuahua. This minuscule dog requires a fabric coat when living in colder climates during winter time. Many think of Chihuahuas as delicate lap dogs. However they do require exercise and are perfectly capable of keeping up a quick pace and walking a good distance. The Chihuahua has a tendency to shiver when they are excited - mistakenly interpreted by many as a reaction to fear or cold.
ON THIS PAGE:
LEARN ABOUT THE ORIGIN AND CHARACTERISTICS OF:
LEARN ABOUT LOW INTENSITY - DOG BEHAVIOUR
PROBLEMS & ESSENTIAL DOG TRAINING FOR PUPPIES
LEARN, GROW, CREATE BALANCE
MY DOG PACK BIOS
MEET CARMEN...ON THE BEHAVIOURAL SCALE CARMEN WAS IN THE LOW INTENSITY ZONE
Carmen is one of the few members of my pack who I had as a very young puppy - my task was just to bring him up right...
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Carmen is not a rescue. However I believe there are times when he would like to be rescued, for instance when it's not so warm out and I insist on taking him for a walk!
Carmen joined my pack when he was eight weeks old - he weighed half a pound and fit into the palm of my hand...sorry Carmen but you looked like a very cute rat with extremely large ears!
I was fortunate to have adopted Carmen when he was so young as I had the chance to influence his behaviour from a very formative age. Carmen got along with everyone from the very start - he was a very tiny dog who came into a pack of dogs smaller (Jacob) and larger (much larger!) than his diminutive half a pound.
Carmen is a well balanced, sweet, affection, comic fellow and like all Chihuahuas, he loves to be an actor. He is very brave around squirrels and chipmunks. Someday I am going to pay a chipmunk - the currency will be peanuts - to pounce on Carmen. Carmen is confident but not dominating or obnoxious. His confidence is a reflection of his balanced state of being.
He does not feel threatened in the presence of larger dogs, nor does he engender their ire. When Sarah first arrived on the scene, Carmen had no trouble telling Sarah where to put her over excited attitude - but he told her in a way that she respected. Carmen has always gotten along well with Robbie, even when Robbie first arrived as a very unbalanced, distressed canine. Carmen's initial reactions to both Sarah and Robbie are a testament to Carmen's ability to socialize and adapt his responses, in a firm but respectful way, to those around him.
Most puppies will, at a very early stage in their development, test out various methods of dominating those around them - Chihuahuas are no exception to this rule...in fact some small breeds like the Chihuahuas and the Pomeranian can be worse than larger breeds in their drive to try to dominate. It is very important to correct this behaviour in the right way before it starts to get out of hand. When first introduced to a new household Chihuahuas will quietly observe those around them, taking time to ascertain who are the leaders and the followers.
During the first few weeks after Carmen arrived he tried out various dominating tactics - as I addressed each occurrence right away he became a very nice little guy - with proper social graces, in no time at all.
Despite the difference in their size, Jordie was the first one to play with Carmen. Their play was a delight to watch as they both adjusted their style to suit the difference in their size.
Carmen is a very loving little fellow and gets along with everyone including the cats and bunnies. He loves to play with the cats and they in turn very much enjoy playing with him. My larger cat Tibby weighs in at about 15 pounds - twice Carmen's weight. There are times when they play together when Carmen just disappears, only to be discovered buried underneath Tibby. Carmen and Callie (my smaller cat) closely match in size and weight - I have seen Carmen drag her across the floor during play activity. Carmen adores the bunnies and given the opportunity is more than happy to curl up with one of them.
Carmen seeks Tasha out on a daily basis to have his ears and coat groomed. This usually occurs late in the evening when I am sitting down on the couch with the dogs lying all around. Tasha the (Australian Shepherd) is usually on one of the other couches and Carmen will jump up and request a grooming - lucky for him Tasha is always willing to oblige.
Carmen goes for the daily walks with the rest of the pack members. He has no trouble keeping pace and has the endurance to walk the same distance as the larger dogs.
Whether I attend a dog charity function along with the pack, walk the pack in a crowded environment, such as the 'Market' in downtown Ottawa, or have Carmen out alone with me on errands, he always sociable with strangers (adults and children) and other dogs. He is not protective, nervous or jealous - he is just a well behaved, well adjusted dog.
He is a little sneaky though. If he decides itís too cold out and he doesnít want to go for a walk I have to hunt for him - I usually look under pillows and quilts as invariably that is where he will be found!
Carmen when he was a puppy.
Will someone please pay attention
OK, the shivery, pathetic look didn't work, so now I will try the unconcerned, confident look.
I could swear I just saw a chipmunk!
He went the other way, lucky for him the sun was in my eyes.
Nothing beats a good nap,
and warm blankets.
Darn, I think I hear Mom calling...
Maybe if a just stay really quite...
Heck, there's no point,
Mom will find me...
I'm getting up, darn walks!
Out on the trail...
It's not so bad, once I wake-up I enjoy walks...
And now, I feel a siesta coming on,
Hey, you aren't laughing at the spots on my belly are you?
Always practice your pathetic look,
it can get you things. Mom, Tasha wants to know if we have time for her to groom me.
Time to get my ears cleaned...
Thanks for keeping me warm Tasha!
In the toy basket.