Does the rescue ever get 'teacup' Chihuahuas?
No - there is no such thing as a teacup Chihuahua. The word teacup is used to describe an unusually small dog of various toy breeds. These dogs are not the norm and are usually runts, or inbred down to be small by scrupulous breeders who are interested in money only and not interested in the welfare of the dogs or the breeds. By the way, unusually small dogs under 4 pounds have various health problems and will be more expansive to maintain. They may not live as long as other Chihuahuas either.
What then is the average size of a Chihuahua? What is thier lifespan?
The AKC states that a Chihuahua should be between 4 to 6 pounds. The average household Chihuahua is about 8 pounds. Most Chihuahuas and CHi mixes that we get in rescue are under 10 pounds. We do take over 10 pounds and some Chihuahuas are bred to be larger for breeding purposes. Since we get most of our Chihuahuas from backyard breeders and mills - attaining a larger Chihuahua dog is not unusual. Chihuahuas are the longest living of all dog breeds and can easily live to be 16-18 years although 14-16 is the average.
Does the rescue ever get dogs that are good with young children?
While most of the Chihuahuas and mixes we get are not recomended as pets for young children , occasionally we do have dogs- usually mixes - that are super with young kids. Check out our where are they now pics and see Lady Lucy - a Chi/Jack mix, and Harper - a Pug/chi mix.
Are some of your dogs abused?
Most of the dogs that we get are from kill shelters. They get to the shelters for a number of reasons - some abused and neglected, some owner surrenders , some breeders. etc, When we get the dogs - they are all afraid and needing some kind of physical and emotional attention.
If I adopt a Chihuahua, what are some possible health issues I will encounter?
Chihuahuas do have some health issues that you should be aware of. Chihuahuas and other toy breeds are known for having dental issues. You can assist your dog in brushing thier teeth which will prolong help in maintaining good dental hygiene. Usually by the age of 5, most chihuahuas will be getting dental care. When we get a guy or gal in the 6 year or older range , we do a dental as part of the pre adoption medical care. Many Chihuahuas get dentals every 6 months to every year, some do not. Many dogs will lose teeth as they grow older. Smaller Chihuahuas are usually toothless when they are older.
Bone density and osteoporosis is also common in Chihuahuas and other small breeds. Many Chihuahuas have luxtating Patellas - moveable knee caps - and other joint issues. These bone issues are particulary common in inbred dogs and many times are passed on through the lineage of a dog.
The third most common ailment in Chihuahuas and other small breeds is heart murmurs. Heart murmurs are also inherited and often passed on thorugh families. A heart murmur may never need medication or it may requireIn the rescue we have several seniors - past the 13 mark that are on heart medication or in heart failure for several years.
When you adopt a dog from Limbo Chihuahuas-chi/mix rescue , the dog will be up to date on all shots, altered by law and microchipped. If there are any health issues - we will disclose those to you and give you all of the dogs medical records form thier veternarian. All adopters are encouraged to take thier new family member to a veternarian within two weeks of adoption and establish thier medical care.
How expensive are heart medications, what are the common heart medications and how long can a dog survive on heart medications?
The three basic heart medications given to small dogs are Lasix, Enalapril and vetmedin. Lasix and Enalapril are very inexpensive. They can also be ordered in large quantities from on-line services with scripts. Vetmedin is a little more expensive but not more than 25.00 for a month supply. Again these meds can be purchased online as well. Small dogs can live a very long time on heart medications just as humans can. Currently , I have a chihuahua and a Jack Russell that are living their life spans at 17 years.
How do dogs get heartworm and can my 'indoor' Chihuahua get heartworm?
Heartworm is a deadly desease that is caused by mosquitos. It only takes one bite from a mosquito to cause heartworm and it can take months or years until you notice your dog having issues breathing, coughing, vomiting , losing weight and falling. It is a horrible desease and TOTALLY PREVENTABLE!!!
Yes - all dogs and ALL CHIHUAHUAS - require heart worm preventative monthly even if your dog is housebound most of the time. NOt giving Heart worm preventative to your dog is like playing Russian Roulette with his or her life. By the way , all dogs need thier preventative Year Round - especially here in Florida!!! Talk ,to your veternarian as to the best preventative to use. LIMBO CHIHUAHUAS DOES NOT ADOPT TO ANYONE THAT DOES NOT USE PREVENTATIVE WITH THIER DOG OR HAS NEVER USED PREVENTATIVE WITH THIER DOGS! THERE IS NO EXCEPTION TO THIS RULE.
Why do Chihuahuas have a reputation of being barkers? Why are they so loud at events?
Chihuahuas tend to be possessive of their person or persons and very territorial. While Chihuahuas and mixes bark at events and in the community, for the most part Chihuahuas are not talkative at home unless provoked for a good reason. If you see our group at local events , we are noisy and everyone knows when we are in the area. Events are difficult for Chihuahuas as their 'territory' is not established and they will bark at almost anything that walks by their area until they feel established. Protecting their playpens become extremely important as does protecting their foster moms and dads so they may not be immediately social.
If you have any questions - please submit them to us! I will be adding more questions and answers in the upcoming weeks and months.
Megan B. - Limbo CHihuahuas - Chi/mix Rescue