Why are Chihuahuas so angry?
My 5-yr old neighbor asked me this question the other day because both his Chihuahuas were always quite ‘mean’, angry, and aggressive. But not my Bella – our 8-yr old Chihuahua.
There are myriad factors that can cause anger and aggression in small dogs like Chihuahuas.
Mostly, they feel insecure and suffer from the Small Dog Syndrome. Other times, they may feel threatened and might show anger to assert their dominance.
Let us study 13 common answers to the question: why are Chihuahuas so angry all the time?
Why are Chihuahuas So Angry? 13 Top Reasons
Chihuahuas are so angry for a variety of reasons, such as improper breeding, lacking socialization, when they are seeking for attention, when they are sexually frustrated, inadequate exercise, lack of training, or poor diet and nutrition.
In most cases, a Chihuahua owner is usually at the root of an angry Chihuahua.
Inadequate training, lack of socialization, not asserting that s/he (the owner) is in charge, can all lead to a spoilt Chihuahua.
To some extent, raising a Chihuahua – or for that matter – any dog, is the same as raising a child. Some parents successfully raise children who listen, perform well in studies, and do well in life.
On the other end of the spectrum is bad parenting that leads to spoilt brats.
The same can be said about Chihuahua’s anger issues. Often, a dog is angry because its needs aren’t met. In a small percentage of cases though, there may be temperament issues that stem from poor breeding, genetics, etc.
Here are 13 common answers to the question: why are Chihuahuas so angry.
1. Improper breeding
An aggressive dam (female mother dog) will usually give birth to an aggressive dog.
Good breeders won’t breed aggressive dogs. If they do, you might end up with an angry Chihuahua having temperament issues.
2. Breed and genetics
Another reason why Chihuahuas may be angry is because they are insecure of their small size. In short: anger and aggression is a ‘breed’ thing and the ‘Small dog Syndrome’ very much exists.
Often smallest dogs are the most aggressive (read Dachshunds, Terriers, etc.), although the larger dog like pit bull get the bad rap for being aggressive.
This insecurity breeds anger and aggression as the dog tries to show false bravado by baring its teeth, snapping, and growling all the time.
3. Lack of socialization
This stems from an owner’s laziness.
A Chihuahua owner who refuses to take his/her pet out to meet people, to the dog park to socialize with other dogs, or a kid might later end up with an angry and aggressive little dog that cannot bear strangers.
4. For attention
Another common answer to ‘why are Chihuahuas so angry?’ is their unmet needs.
Your dog may try to mask its frustration at not getting something from you through anger, barking, and aggression. It can be as simple a thing as spending time with your pet or feeding it a nutritious diet.
5. When they are sexually frustrated
This type of anger issue is seen in un-spayed and unneutered Chihuahuas.
A female Chihuahua will snap and growl or snarl when her hormones peak during her estrus or heat. She will soon become calm once her cycle tapers.
6. Inadequate exercise
People often adopt or buy Chihuahuas thinking they are small dogs that do not need much exercise and will be content being couch potatoes.
That isn’t true at all. Even small breed dogs like Chihuahuas need 30 minutes of exercise daily.
Without exercise, you’d have a snappy and angry Chihuahua.
7. Inadequate mental stimulation
In addition to physical exercise, your Chihuahua also needs mental stimulation.
You mustn’t forget that this is a very smart and intelligent dog breed. It needs puzzles, toys, and mental stimulation on a regular basis. Without mental activity, your pet is likely to get bored, angry, or depressed.
8. Inadequate training
Dog training just isn’t a means of getting your dog to ‘come’, ‘stay’, ‘heel’, etc. It also entails establishing a dog-and-owner relationship – one of mutual respect where the dog learns to acknowledge its pet parent as its alpha.
Inadequate training leads to a reversal of roles where the dog starts to believe that it is the alpha of the pack. Eventually, it gives rise to anger when its humans fail to respect its leadership.
9. Routine changes
All domesticated dogs are creatures of habit and routine.
Routine establishes a sense of discipline and makes them look forward to certain events happening at certain times, each day. The same sense also keeps them from getting along with strangers – although stranger
Changes to the set routine could cause anger in some dogs. It is therefore a good idea to establish a routine, follow it, but also desensitize your Chi to some weekly pattern-and-routine-changes for desensitization.
10. The dog’s history
Some Chihuahuas are angry because of past history of abuse or trauma.
Rescue or shelter dogs are often angry and show aggressive tendencies because of experiences they might have had in the past.
11. Stress and anxiety
Sometimes, the answer to the question ‘why are Chihuahuas so angry’ may be because of some stress that may be making them very anxious. This anxiety often manifests as anger.
A new dog, a baby in the house, change of place, loud noises in the neighborhood, thunder, etc. can also cause stress and anxiety in dogs.
12. Poor diet and nutrition
In many dogs, lack of adequate nutrition, poor diet, and deficiencies can also give rise to anger issues.
13. Underlying health issues
A Chihuahua with chronic pain, underlying health problems, intestinal parasites, etc. could also suffer from temperamental problems.
Do All Chihuahuas Have Anger Issues?
Although temperament and anger issues are often a breed-thing, not all dogs are the same.
The same is true with Chihuahuas. Not all Chihuahuas are angry. They certainly are not born angry.
No two dogs are the same and that is also the case with Chihuahuas. You can mold your Chihuahua to be a sweet, loving dog that gives cuddles, kisses, and love and affection freely to all and sundry.
In short, do not stay away from Chihuahuas just because you have heard of some Chi who is mean and angry all the time.
What to Do to Reduce Your Chihuahua’s Anger Issues?
A sweet dog is usually the efforts of a responsible dog owner.
You can do several things to reduce your Chihuahua’s anger issue and mold it into a loving, affectionate dog. After all, your dog’s temperament is very much a product of its environment. Here are some steps you can take:
1. Train your pet
Start training your dog right from an early age. This involves potty training as well as teaching it commands like Come/Sit/Stay, etc.
The more time you spend in training it, the better it will mold into a well-behaved and well-rounded personality.
The key to training is positive reinforcement. Never hit or shout at your dog when it makes mistakes. Instead, ignore the mistakes and keep teaching and praising the positive dog’s behavior.
When you appreciate and cuddle your Chihuahua and give it love freely, it will soon become a sweet and well-mannered dog.
Check out our Guide on How to Care for Chihuahua for some more dog training tips.
2. Desensitize your pet
Desensitize your Chihuahua to different people, dogs, and situations.
Take it to the mall, to the dog park, or to other people’s homes (better if they have dogs too!).
The more situations your Chi encounters, the greater its confidence will be. Teach your Chi to greet people calmly and without jumping on them or barking.
Also take your pet to meet other dogs, animal, house pets, etc. This will stimulate it in many ways and curb aggression and anger.
3. Physically tire it out
Daily exercise is a must for your Chi. Walk your dog two-three times a day for 15-20 minutes. If needed, hire a dog walker. A tired dog will have no energy to be angry!
4. Enroll your Chi in doggy day care/obedience school
In dog daycare, boarding homes, and pet schools, your Chi will meet other dogs and learn a great deal about ways to interact with other dogs in a positive way. This will definitely reduce its barking frequency.
5. Enroll your Chi for agility training
This will work in reduce severe cases of aggression. Agility training courses will make your Chi very confident and also give it a way to expend its energy productively.
6. Give it personal space to rest
Your Chihuahua needs its own crate and bed. A personal space will provide a calm, safe, and secure area to your pet and reduce stress and separation anxiety.
7. Get it ‘fixed’
Neutering and spaying will reduce hormonal upheaval in your Chihuahua and tone down aggression. Speak to your vet about the right time to neuter or spay your Chihuahua.
8. Schedule regular vet checkups
Regular vet checkups can help find problems and solutions to minor ailments and keep your pet healthy. Don’t forget to get your pet dewormed to prevent intestinal worms.
9. Feed your pet nutritious diet
Make sure your Chihuahua gets the best diet. If needed, speak to your vet about nutritional supplements to overcome deficiencies if any.
10. Reduce stress triggers
Anxiety and stress can also trigger anger in Chihuahua. To reduce stress, avoid changing its routine too much. Make sure your pet gets good rest by providing it with a crate and comfortable, sound-proof room to nap in. Also clean up the place and avoid trash lying around.
If you have multiple pets, make sure each one has its own food bowl, toys, etc. Chihuahuas can be very possessive of their belongings.
11. If needed, use a muzzle
If your Chihuahua gets aggressive with other dogs, then use a muzzle to calm it, especially at the dog park. This will prevent biting, barking, growling, and snapping.
12. Use anxiety medicine
Speak to your vet about prescription medicine for severe anxiety issues in your dog. You can also try over-the-counter calming supplements.
13. Seek help of a canine behaviorist
If none of the above tips work, seek help of a vet, a dog trainer, or a canine behavior therapist for further guidance.
FAQs on Why Are Chihuahuas So Angry
1. Why is my Chihuahua so mean to me?
Your Chihuahua being mean to you is nothing personal. It may just be its personality trait.
Try scheduling more time for your lap dog: train it, take it out on walks, feed it treats and home-cooked meals, etc. In general, be in charge but do not spoil your pet. Soon your Chi will be following you around!
2. Why are Chihuahuas so moody?
Changes to your Chihuahua’s routine, not getting adequate sleep, nutritional deficiencies, passing away of a loved one or another house pet can all cause your Chi to become moody and aloof.
3. Why does my Chi get angry when I pick it up?
Many Chihuahuas perceive ‘being picked up’ or being kissed as a sign of threat or aggression. Your small dog suffers from Small Dog Syndrome and feels it is constantly in jeopardy. Resultantly, it may display bad temper upon being picked up.
4. Why do Chihuahuas bite their owners?
If a Chihuahua suddenly turns on its owner and bites them, it could be a defense mechanism to show aggression. Many Chis suddenly bite when they are sick or in pain. A mother Chihuahua might bite when she feels that her pup is in danger.
Why are Chihuahuas so angry?
Most Chihuahuas are sweet, loyal, and affectionate dogs. However, being small in size, they feel insecure and may show anger and aggression to assert their dominance.
Inadequate training and socialization can also make a Chihuahua angry and aggressive.
We hope this guide helps you mold your pet into a sweeter and loving companion dog.