Hybrid dogs— a euphemism for the term mixed-breed— are becoming hugely popular as of late! Purebred breeders are now embarking on this new area of raising dogs. The objective is to interbreed two dog breeds in order to promote the best characteristics in each breed.
Consider the Goldendoodle. This is a combination of a Golden Retriever dog breed, known for its intelligence and penchant for human companionship, with the Poodle, a hypoallergenic dog. The result is a hypoallergenic dog that is amazingly smart (both the Poodle and the Golden are renowned for their intelligence). Thus, this hybrid breed is great for those with animal allergies, plus the dog is easy to train and a great companion.
One wildly popular hybrid breed is known as the Chiweenie. This is a cross between parent breeds Chihuahua and Dachshund. The resulting pup is typically small and energetic, highly loyal, and perhaps a tad stubborn.
The Chiweenie may have other nicknames that you should know in your journey to find the perfect hybrid pup. These include the Choxie and the Weeniehuahua. These dogs are known for their ability to love unconditionally, tons of energy— in fact, these dogs are known to want to be near the action at all times, and their propensity for being noisy. If you want a fun dog that will alert you when strangers approach or when something is amiss, the Chihuahua Dachshund could be the perfect small dog for you!
Chiweenie Dog Breed Basics
The exact size of the Chiweenie will depend upon its parents and their characteristics. However, the typical Chiweenie will be between six and ten inches tall and will weigh between five and twelve pounds. Chiweenies are small dogs known to live for up to twelve years! They are happy in both large homes with lots of room to run around, but they are also perfectly happy in small apartments. You’ll just need to make sure your Chiweenie gets plenty of exercises.
The Chiweenie is typically not a dog that sheds very much (this is due to the Chihuahua parent, who is considered a hypoallergenic dog). The Chiweenie is also fairly easy to groom, but this may vary depending upon the parents. They are friendly dogs, but they may be a little leery of strangers at first.
It is important to note that you’ll need to look at the parents of the Chiweenie in order to know exactly what the offspring will look like. Typically, the Chiweenie has a short and smooth coat. However, some Chihuahuas have long, silky coats – as do some Dachshunds. No matter the coat length, your Chiweenie will still likely have the hypoallergenic status of the Chihuahua parent. They tend to shed very little, and they are easy to groom.
The Chiweenie may be any number of coat colors and patterns. The most typical coat colors of the Chiweenie are brown, black, or white. They may be a mix of two of these colors or of all three! Some Chiweenies will have spotted coats, or they may be brindle in color.
The Chiweenie will typically be a small dog. The Chihuahua parent is one of the smallest breeds in the United States, with some Chihuahuas weighing no more than six pounds at adulthood. The Dachshund is larger, but not by a great amount. The Dachshund’s adult size may range between twelve and fifteen pounds (note – Doxies DO tend to gain weight when they are not properly exercised; this trait may appear in your Chiweenie as well).
Both the Chihuahua and the Dachshund tend to have a long-ish tail; some Chihuahua tails will curl over the back like that of a scorpion. Some Chihuahuas also have feathery hair on their tails. The Dachshund tends to have a long, slender tail. There is no way to predict exactly what your Chiweenie’s tail will look like, but you can bet the Chiweenie will use his tail to express emotion (this is definitely a trait from the Chihuahua parent).
The Chiweenie “designer” breed has only been around for about thirty years (it was in the mid-1990s that breeders began mixing the Chihuahua and the Dachshund to get the Chiweehie). However, in that short span of time, owners have related that the Chiweenie tends to have a lively, energetic personality!
If you are in the market for a “lap dog,” the Chiweenie is probably not for you! Owners use the terms “sparky,” “lively,” and “firecracker” to describe the personality of the Chiweenie. Keep in mind that the Chihuahua parent is typically one that is alert and protective. The Dachshund parent will be the one to provide the Chiweenie offspring extra energy and sass! They love to play, and they were bred to be enthusiastic hunters. This drive has never been lost from the Doxie, so expect your Chiweenie to be on the lookout for adventure.
The Chiweenie may present some problems in training. The hound in the Chiweenie just can’t help but be independent and perhaps a little stubborn. They may take some extra time when housebreaking or in learning your expectations in general. The Chihuahua parent does contribute a tad bit of stubbornness as well! You’ll simply need to be consistent with housebreaking or any other rituals you intend to teach the Chiweenie. You’ll also want to start any training as early as possible. The more that you can expose your Chiweenie to your expectations, the easier it will be for her to learn. One thing you have going for you as you train is Chiweenie’s desire to please you. They are very loyal dogs, and they will eventually learn they’d rather make you happy than get their way every time.
The Chiweenie would much rather play than sit in your lap. However, if you’ll commit to play sessions daily of thirty minutes or less (typically), your Chiweenie will enjoy climbing up into your lap for a restful break from time to time.
One thing that must be noted about the Chiweenie – their propensity for barking. Some owners of the Chiweenie have described the hybrid breed as “yappy.” This is natural for the Chiweenie as they are alert and often wary of strange people. If you want a dog that will act as a bit of a guardian, then the Chiweenie is right up your alley!
Ok, so we understand that the Chiweenie has some great traits – they’re loyal and they make great watchdogs. However, we’ve also looked at a couple of traits that you might need to work with in order to make your Chiweenie the best pup it can be. Most of the time, a dedicated and patient pet parent can help to mitigate the more disagreeable traits of this loving and dependable dog.
You can begin training your dog regarding housebreaking, socialization, and barking when he is about ten weeks to three months of age. Of course, some dogs pick up on training at eight weeks of age. However, it’s best to start when you feel your puppy is ready for training and not before.
You’ll want to be consistent and patient when it comes to housebreaking the Chiweenie. One great way to start housebreaking is to take the puppy out for a bathroom break every time she wakes from a nap and after every meal. (NOTE: Do NOT take a puppy outdoors unless she has received her parvovirus vaccine, or she could contract this deadly and fast-acting virus.) Some pet parents like to use puppy pads for housebreaking as well. Regardless of your method, start out that way and stick to it. Provide rewards and praise for your puppy when she does what you expect. The great thing about the Chiweenie is her intelligence; soon, she’ll understand that she is pleasing you, and the training will begin to “stick.”
Socialization of the Chiweenie is hugely important! Both the Dachshund parent and the Chihuahua parent tend to choose one member of their family as their “person.” They will bond more with this particular person, even though they accept other members of the family. This person will have more success at training the Chihuahua or the Doxie, and the dog will be more protective of this individual. There are those who think this trait relegates the Chiweenie to a one-person home or one with no children. However, socialization at a young age will help to alleviate this issue.
You can begin socializing with the Chiweenie as soon as you bring him home. Socialization includes exposing the Chiweenie to different people – especially those with children if there are none in your home – and to other animals. You may have to involve a few friends in order to properly socialize your Chiweenie. Ask your friends with children to come over regularly to visit with and play with the Chiweenie (NOTE: do not allow very small or inexperienced children to handle your Chiweenie without supervision). Ask friends who have cats or dogs to come over for play dates with your Chiweenie (of course, when it comes to cats, you may have to take your Chiweenie over for a visit, but teaching her to travel in a carrier will also benefit her!). Make these social calls consistent and regular in order to get your Chiweenie to accept other animals and children.
Chiweenies tend to live up to twelve years (sometimes longer). Most Chihuahuas and most Dachshunds are generally healthy; however, the Chiweenie offspring may inherit some health issues.
Some Chihuahuas are affected by low blood sugar. They will shake and may even lose consciousness. The key is to talk with your veterinarian about the proper treatment if you suspect your Chiweenie puppy may experience low blood sugar (sometimes they develop diabetes as a result).
The Dachshund parent may be affected by degenerative disc issues due to his elongated spine. Be sure to keep your Chiweenie from jumping off the furniture or other “high” places; this will eliminate many disc issues.
Both the Doxie parent and the Chihuahua parent may suffer from dental issues. Enlist your vet in assisting with the oral health of your Chiweenie.
Other common health issues in the Chiweenie include hypothyroidism, joint issues, and allergies.
1. Is a Chiweenie a good dog?
Because Chihuahuas and Dachshunds are both relatively good dogs, mixed breed Chiweenies are too! With proper training and socialization, the Chiweenie will not develop the more undesirable habits of either pet parent (being “yappy,” preferring one family member, etc.).
The Chiweenies are small dogs with high energies. They will need between thirty and forty-five minutes of daily exercise. Provide your Chiweenie with plenty of toys if you can’t commit to that much playtime (remember, you CAN break that down into two or more sessions).
If you provide the Chiweenie with enough playtime on a daily basis and you socialize him with other animals and other people, the Chiweenie is a perfect companion.
2. Are Chiweenies aggressive?
Not at all! They are playful and curious; however, with newcomers, they tend to be aloof and maybe a little leery of strangers.
If you socialize your Chiweenie properly, she won’t be aggressive.
3. How much is a Chiweenie dog worth?
This will depend upon the breeder. You may find a healthy and companionable Chiweenie for as little as $50, or you may pay up to $2,000 for this “designer” dog.
4. Do Chiweenies like to cuddle?
As a general rule, the Chiweenie would much rather play than cuddle. However, if you provide ample exercise for your Chiweenie, you may find she will climb into your lap for a nap.