Are Chihuahuas Good Apartment Dogs?

Are Chihuahuas Good Apartment Dogs

Being the proud owner of an 8-year old Chihuahua (Bella), many potential Chihuahua owners call to ask me ‘are Chihuahuas good apartment dogs’.

I love the fact that they are considering this question before they buy or adopt their Chihuahua.

And if you too are wondering ‘are Chihuahuas good apartment dogs’ then I am happy to say that Yes! They certainly are!

In this guide, I am going to talk about the reasons why Chihuahuas make excellent pets for people living in an apartment or a small house.

 I will also cover topics like how much exercise your Chi needs, who are good owners for Chihuahuas, and what a potential Chi owner should know before they buy or adopt their pet.

Are Chihuahuas Good Apartment Dogs? (The Short Answer)

Are Chihuahuas Good Apartment Dogs

Yes, Chihuahuas make excellent apartment dogs.

This is mainly due to their small sizes which also makes them capable of living in both urban and rural settings. Of course, as a pet parent, you will wonder if it is okay to keep a Chihuahua in a small home without a big yard or terrace.

You need not worry too much.

Chis are tiny dogs and they can easily run and play inside your small apartment without taking up too much space or feeling overly-restricted.

 Of course, the best home for a Chihuahua (or any dog for that matter) is the one with a fenced yard where they can run around and expend all that energy. But even with a fence in place, Chihuahuas are not outside dogs. They will be much safer and happier inside an apartment irrespective of its size.

In the next section, I will cover all the wonderful reasons why Chihuahuas are great as apartment dogs.

Why Are Chihuahuas Good Apartment Dogs?

Are Chihuahuas Good Apartment Dogs

A majority of Chihuahuas make excellent apartment dogs due to the following reasons:

1. They are small in size

Chihuahuas are the world’s smallest dog breed. A male Chihuahua measures about 6 to 10 inches at the withers (shoulders) whereas a female Chi measures between 5 to 9 inches.

This means that your pet won’t need too much room. Even if you decide to crate train your companion dog, you can place the crate anywhere and it won’t be in anyone’s way. (Of course, you should ensure that your Chi’s crate is always kept in a safe, noise-free area.)

Bottom-line, their small sizes make Chihuahuas ideal pets for cramped spaces.

2. They need moderate exercise

Another reason why a Chihuahua is great for apartment dwellers is that they do not need strenuous exercise unlike many of the larger dog breeds like Siberian Husky, German Shepherd, etc.

That does not mean your Chi DOES NOT need exercise!

Without exercise, your Chihuahua could easily get bored, depressed, and might even indulge in unwanted behaviors like chewing up slippers, tearing up clothes or bed linen, biting, aggression etc.

The fact is that most Chihuahuas need only about 30-40 minutes of exercise daily. So apartment dwellers can easily choose to walk their pets outside or play with them indoors without too much hassle.

3. They are fairly easy to train

Another reason that makes Chihuahuas good pets for apartment residents is that they are fairly easy to train.

With consistent training and patience, you can easily house train your Chihuahua puppy within a matter of weeks.

House training will help you avoid the hassles of indoor accidents and cleanups. You can also use indoor potty training pads while training your Chi in case you are unable to take your pet outdoors too often for pooping/peeing.

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4. They are not very energetic

Chihuahuas are cute cuddly dogs that will gladly spend their time snuggling with their owners. While they are fairly energetic, you certainly won’t find them bouncing around your apartment and this feature makes them ideal for small and compact houses.

5. Not too yappy

Most Chihuahuas aren’t too yappy (as long as their needs are met and they are exercised properly!) so your neighbors won’t complain too much about your keeping this small dog in your apartment.

Of course, you will want to ensure keeping your indoor dog busy throughout the day with toys and puzzles. You must also exercise your Chihuahua daily to curb that unnecessary barking.

Can You Leave Your Chihuahua Home Alone in an Apartment?

Are Chihuahuas Good Apartment Dogs

Unfortunately, most Chihuahuas are known to suffer from separation anxiety.

Due to this, leaving them home alone, especially for prolonged periods of time, could be very stressful for your pet.

Some untrained Chihuahuas even indulge in unwanted behaviors when they are left alone at home including incessant barking, crying or howling, and even tearing up clothes and bed linen.

As a general rule of thumb, you can leave your Chihuahua home alone for about 4-5 hours, not more. If needed, arrange to have a pet sitter or a dog walker come by to walk your pet. This can help reduce your dog’s anxiety considerably.

Always make sure you exercise and feed your pet before leaving for the day. This will help it expend energy and prevent naughty behaviors.

If possible, have some kind of monitoring system in place so you can observe your Chi remotely. Make sure the apartment is safe or at least limit your Chi’s access by crating it.

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In general, the following factors can come in handy when determining whether to leave your Chihuahua home alone:

1. Training and desensitization

A well-trained Chihuahua will feel less anxious when it is left alone at home.

Desensitization is the act of getting your Chihuahua used to something, in this case, staying alone. You should ideally do this from its puppyhood.

Start by leaving your Chi alone in the apartment for a few hours and then slowly increase this period.

2. Age and bathroom habits

Consider your Chihuahua’s age. Some Chihuahua puppies will definitely need more monitoring and supervision. Also, during your pup’s potty training phase, you will want to take it outside at least 5-6 times a day for potty. That is why leaving your young puppy home alone for prolonged periods may not be the best thing to do.

Senior Chihuahuas might also lose their vision and hearing ability and that could heighten their anxieties. Some old Chihuahuas also need medication and consistent monitoring to ensure their well-being.

3. Your dog’s personality and temperament

No two dogs (even within the same breed) are exactly alike. That is why you must include your Chihuahua’s temperament and personality in the decision-making process when deciding whether to leave your Chi home alone.

How Much Exercise Does a Chihuahua Need?

how much exercise do Chihuahuas need

The amount of exercise your Chihuahua needs depends on its age and overall health.

A young Chihuahua needs more exercise than a senior or aging Chihuahua. However, both need exercise as without it, they could get depressed, bored, and even destructive.

An adult Chihuahua needs about 30 to 40 minutes of exercise every day. You can divide this into 2 or 3 smaller sessions based on your schedule.

Your Chihuahua puppy will likely be getting a lot of exercise since it will be training. Also, it will be exploring the apartment to fuel its natural curiosity.

A fully-house trained adult Chihuahua will need two or three walks each day around the block whereas aging or senior Chi needs at least 2 walks each day to empty its bladder.

Check out our guide on How Much Exercise Do Chihuahuas need?

Are Chihuahuas Good for First Time Owners?

Are Chihuahuas Good Apartment Dogs

Chihuahuas are not a very good choice for first-time dog owners.

You see, they happen to be very strong-willed dogs and are also quite stubborn. Without proper training and handling, they could get out of hand.

Training and socialization are very important for this small dog breed and without both, they might start thinking that they are the alpha of the house!

However, with consistent training and firm and patient handling, you can establish a solid foundation in your Chi. Then there will be no limit how well your Chi will do in all aspects of life!

With proper training and handling, your Chihuahua will become the indispensable, affectionate, and obedient pet you were always hoping for!

Who Are Chihuahuas Good Pets for?

Are Chihuahuas Good Apartment Dogs

Chihuahuas are best suited for experienced dog owners– someone who has owned and trained a dog before.

They are also great companion dogs for senior citizens who are still fairly active and can take their Chi out for daily walks.

Due to their vocal natures, they make a fairly good watchdog and guard dog. Your pet will instantly alert you to the presence of strangers in your vicinity. They are extremely loyal dogs and are very protective of their owners. Indeed, this small dog isn’t aware of its small stature and will defend its loved ones at any cost.

Chihuahuas also get along well with other house pets although you need to introduce and socialize them to dogs/cats/birds/other house pets right since its puppyhood.

Chihuahuas don’t do very well with very young kids, as being small, they are rather fearful and could show aggression towards toddlers/babies when they feel threatened. However, they do very well in households with older children who know how to respect the dog’s personal space.

What Should You Know Before Getting Your Chihuahua Home?

Do Chihuahuas like to be kissed?

Here are 5 things every Chihuahua owner should know before bringing their pet home:

1. These small dogs need to touch and be touched

Chihuahuas are extremely affectionate and cuddly little dogs. They constantly need to be next to you (or on you!). Your Chihuahua puppy will demand to be held all the time.

2. They get cold quickly

Don’t be too surprised to see your Chihuahua shaking. Most forms of Chihuahua shaking can be attributed to its feeling cold. These small dogs need plenty of warmth and they will always burrow under the covers. Use a sweater to keep your Chi warm.

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3. They are not low-maintenance

A Chihuahua does need a lot of TLC. Whether you have a long haired Chihuahua or a smooth coat or short haired Chihuahua, it will need brushing and grooming on a daily or weekly basis.

Your apartment dog also needs daily walks and regular vet checkups to prevent major health issues.

4. They are prone to anxiety and nervousness

Being small dogs, they get scared at slightest of noises and that can trigger barking, shaking, and other nervous behaviors. Be prepared to comfort your tiny pet from time to time!

5. They are prone to certain health issues

Chihuahuas are a fairly robust and hardy dog breed but sometimes, they are prone to health problems like skin or food allergies, heart murmur, eye problems, etc. Some Chis also have hypoglycemia, seizures, and luxating patella.

FAQs on Are Chihuahuas Good Apartment Dogs

Are Chihuahuas Good Apartment Dogs

1. Are Chihuahuas hard to take care of?

Chihuahuas are not difficult to take care of but they need a routine and they are high-maintenance. Being small in stature, they are also quite delicate.

 Longhaired Chihuahuas will need daily brushing and grooming and short coat Chihuahuas will need at least 2-3 brushing sessions each week. They also need exercise and regular vet checkups to prevent major health problems.

2. Is it better to get two Chihuahuas?

If you have to work all day, then it is better to get two Chihuahuas so they can give each other company. Chihuahuas mostly do well in pairs.

3. Which other dog breeds are good for apartments?

Dog breeds like Cavachons, Bichon Frise, Havanese, Lhasa Apso, Shih Tzu, Yorkshire terrier, dachshund, Cavalier King Charles spaniel, Boston terrier, and miniature Pinscher are good choices for apartment dwellers.

Conclusion – Are Chihuahuas Good Apartment Dogs

Yes, Chihuahuas are good apartment dogs as their small sizes make them suitable as indoor dog for cramped spaces as well as urban or rural living.

They are also not too energetic and won’t be bouncing around. With adequate exercise, they can also be made to control excess barking. They are fairly easy to train and that reduces indoor urination and potty accidents considerably.

All these features make Chihuahuas good apartment dogs.

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