Why Are Chihuahuas So Needy?

why are Chihuahuas so needy

Why are Chihuahuas so needy?

Having a Chihuahua for a pet is like having a small child for several years to come!

My dear Chihuahua follows me everywhere – to the bathroom, into the kitchen, and she is at my feet all day when I work.

I like having a clingy needy Chi, but not many Chihuahua owners prefer such a needy dog around.

So if you are planning on getting a Chi, please be aware of their needy behavior – which often stems from their breeding history and evolution!

If you already have a Chihuahua and want to curb its clingy and needy behavior, read on – I have many great tips for you to tone down their neediness.

Also read: Why Are Chihuahuas So Angry

Why are Chihuahuas So Needy?

why are Chihuahuas so needy

Does your Chihuahua follow you from room to room? Then s/he is a needy and clingy dog. Here are some reasons ‘why are Chihuahuas so needy?’

1. Velcro dogs

Some dog breeds are designed to be Velcro dogs. Velcro dogs are those dogs that are highly attached to their owners – just like Velcro attachments!

Almost all lapdog breeds are Velcro dogs and Chihuahuas were bred to be lapdogs.

This means that the breed is designed to inherently remain attached to their pet parents. And that is why your Chi appears so needy and clingy all the time.

2. Pet parents encourage the needy behavior

Human encouragement is often responsible for a dog’s neediness.

Do you always pause to pat your pooch? Are you always bending and picking up your Chi?

Then these behaviors unknowingly lead to neediness and clinginess in dogs.

Of course, most Chi parents like me don’t mind their pet’s clinginess. If that’s the case with you, then you need not worry. If not, please see the subsequent section on how to deal with your needy Chihuahua.

3. Aging or sick dogs often become needy

Senior dogs or sick dogs often become clingy because they develop vision or hearing problems, pain, etc.

They might start bumping into things and are often afraid to be left alone. If an otherwise independent Chi suddenly becomes needy, then have your vet examine it for health issues.

4. Separation anxiety

Some Chihuahuas turn super-needy due to dysfunctional hyper attachment syndrome. This means that any separation from their humans causes intense anxiety in them.

Please note that separation anxiety is not the same as Velcro dog syndrome.

In separation anxiety, your pet will howl, urinate, cry, bark excessively, display other unwanted behaviors, not eat, etc. when it is left alone.

On the other hand, in Velcro dog syndrome, your Chi simply wants to be with you wherever you go. It won’t panic or howl when you leave.

5. Boredom and lack of mental stimulation

Do you happen to leave your dog home alone all day?

Is your Chihuahua bored, lonely, and depressed because of a lack of physical activity and mental stimulation?

If you answered yes to the above, then my friend – you may be responsible for your Chihuahua’s neediness.

6. Change in routine

Have you introduced a major change in your Chihuahua’s life?

Added a new pet? Moved houses? Had a baby? Then too, your Chi could turn clingy and needy because it fears losing your love and attention.

7. They are companion dogs

We must not forget the fact that Chihuahuas were bred to be companion dog breeds.

Therefore, a lot of clinginess and neediness stems from this breeding history as well. Your dog is meant to be a companion dog or pack animals– so it will want to be with you all the time. You really cannot blame them for it!

8. Rescue dogs happen to be clingier

Have you seen the dogs in rescue homes and animal shelters?

They don’t always have the best conditions there, do they? If you have rescued your Chi from such a shelter, then it may be inclined to be grateful and might want to show its loyalty by following you around.

9. Hormones

A female Chihuahua could get clingy when in heat. Male Chihuahuas may be slightly better in this aspect.

My Chi Bella never leaves me when she is in heat and I allow that because I don’t mind. I give her all the TLC she needs during this phase!

10 Tips to Help Your Chihuahua Become Less Needy

why are Chihuahuas so needy

Now that you know the reasons ‘why are Chihuahuas so needy’, let us take a look at some easy ways to deal with your pet’s neediness in a positive manner.

The following tips can help reduce clinginess:

A. Increase your pet’s exercise

There is little doubt that a well-exercised dog is a happier dog.

When you exercise your Chihuahua adequately, it will be too tired to follow you around. Chances are that it will mostly sleep all day!

So make it a point to factor in some exercise or physical activity for your small dog. Chihuahuas are a tiny dog breed like French bulldogs – so 30-35 minutes of active time should be enough. You can break this up into 2 or more sessions per day based on your schedule.

B. Increase socialization

Often, clinginess and neediness in dogs can stem from a lack of socialization.

Your pet may be too afraid to be left alone. It does not feel confident that it can ‘survive’ on its own.

Increasing socialization can help. Take your pet out with you to malls, dog parks, to other people’s homes, and especially allow it to socialize and interact with kids and other dogs.

With time, your pet’s mind will get adequately stimulated and this will reduce its clingy and needy behavior.

C. Stimulate your pet’s mind

In addition to physical stimulation, your Chihuahua also needs some mental activity.

A dog that is made to think and solve problems is less inclined to be needy and might have a better temperament.

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Provide your Chihuahua with Kong toys , dog puzzles interactive dog games, etc.

D. Crate train your dog/provide it a special place to rest

Crate training might not seem like much but it is the best way to make clingy dogs more independent.

A crate provides your older dog and Chihuahua puppy with a secure place to rest and relax. When you train your Chihuahua to go to its crate, it can understand that it is to stay there and relax.

When you get crate training and positive reinforcement right, your pet won’t view it as a punishment but would see the crate as its haven.

Check out crate training tips here.

E. Desensitize your pet to be left alone

Desensitization works for humans so it is little wonder that it works for dogs too.

Train your Chihuahua to be left alone. You can also desensitize it to your movements. For example, has your Chi learnt to associate you grabbing the car keys with leaving? Then simply grab the keys, then turn on the TV.

This will help your Chi understand that not all of your movements warrant much attention.

F. Enroll it in doggy day care

A well-socialized Chihuahua is also less likely to be clingy and needy.

Enroll your buddy in pet obedience school or a doggy day care where it will get to interact with other dogs.

This will definitely make your pet a lot less clingy.

G. Board your Chi frequently

Another way to make your Chihuahua less needy is to have it stay at a dog boarding facility.

Some time away from you can help your pet understand that you always come back but also that it is okay to spend some time apart.

H. Spread your pet’s toys around the house

This little trick helps your Chihuahua understand that it is not alone and it will be more inclined to spend time in other rooms as well.

The toys will give it a feeling of comfort and familiarity and your pet won’t feel too alone or lonely.

You can also provide your Chihuahua with some chew toys or dental chews which will give your pet some purpose and prevent the need to constantly follow you around.

I. Do not let your pet sleep in your bed

We humans are often responsible for our dogs’ needy behavior.

We let them sleep in our beds and stop to pet them or lift them frequently. Avoid letting your chi sleep next to you in your bed if you do not want to encourage clingy behavior.

Also Read: Why Do Chihuahuas Sleep Between Your Legs

J. Play hide-and-seek with your dog

Encourage your Chihuahua to play hide-and-go-seek with your kids and other nose-work games for dogs.

This will teach your Chi that you can have fun even when you are at a distance.

Do Chihuahuas Like Being Carried? Should I Encourage It?

why are Chihuahuas so needy

Whether a Chi likes being carried around or not depends on the individual dog.

Many Chihuahuas resent being held too much and too often. On the other hand, some Chis that are used to being held all the time since puppyhood might always want to be carried around.

I strongly urge you not to encourage the behavior.

This is because some Chihuahuas become very lazy and might always want to be carried around. They might even refuse to walk and lack of exercise isn’t good for your pet.

So make sure your dog walks around so it can also sniff and get the mental stimulation that sniffing provides.

Do Chihuahuas Need a Lot of Attention?

why are Chihuahuas so needy

Depending on the type of Chihuahua you have, you might not need to spend a lot of time on grooming it.

However, your tiny dog still needs a lot of attention from you in terms of feeding, regular brushing, vet checkups, and of course daily walks/exercise sessions.

Having said that, this is still a hardy breed and it can be left alone. In fact, you should train your Chi to be left alone frequently so that it does not become clingy and needy.

If you work outside your home, then too you might want to teach your Chi to stay alone at home.

In case you feel guilty about leaving your Chihuahua home alone for prolonged periods, then please get another Chihuahua or a pet sitter to check on it. You could also consider enrolling your pet in doggy daycare.

FAQs on Why Are Chihuahuas So Needy?

why are Chihuahuas so needy

1. Should Chihuahuas sleep with you?

Whether or not you allow your Chihuahua to sleep with you is an entirely personal decision. These dogs are not hypoallergenic – so if you have pet allergies, then please avoid sleeping next to your pet.

Secondly, allowing your Chi in your bed could encourage clingy and needy behavior.

 Lastly, you must not forget that Chihuahuas are small dogs and you could accidentally hurt them in your sleep. Do consider all these factors before letting your pet sleep with you.

Also Read: Why Do Chihuahuas Burrow?

2. Why do Chihuahuas cry so much?

Chihuahuas like most small breeds are prone to separation anxiety. They tend to cry a lot when they are in pain, or even when they are hungry.

If your dog feels alone, bored, or depressed, then too it might try to get your attention through crying and whimpering.

3. Do Chihuahuas like to be kissed?

Most Chihuahuas like to be kissed – provided they are trained to accept kisses since puppyhood.

On the other hand, if your dog isn’t used to kisses, then it might perceive kisses as threatening behavior.

4. Can Chihuahuas be left alone all day?

Whether or not you can leave your Chi alone depends on how you train it. If your Chi is used to being left alone since puppyhood, then yes, you can leave it alone.

In general though, the Chihuahua dog breed is prone to separation anxiety. They are Velcro dogs and they do not like being left alone for prolonged periods.

 If your work requires you to leave your dog alone all day, then it may be a good idea to get another dog (preferably a Chihuahua) to give each other company.

Also read: Are Chihuahuas Good with Cats

Conclusion – Why are Chihuahuas So Needy?

Chihuahuas are needy because they are Velcro dogs – this means that they are ‘designed’ to be lap dog and always have their humans by their side.

You might have encouraged their needy behavior further by letting your pet sleep in your bed or petting it frequently.

We hope the above guide helps you curb your Chi’s clingy and needy behavior.

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