If you want a big heart in a small package, consider bringing home a long haired Chihuahua. They are classic toy-sized dogs with long, soft, luxurious coats inherited through a recessive gene. Even though they look a little different than short-haired Chis, they share the same high intelligence and loving, confident personalities.
In this guide, we will tell you everything you ever wanted to know about the beautiful long-haired Chihuahua. We will go over personality, physical traits, how to care for these dogs, and where you can buy or adopt them.
By the time you finish reading this guide, you will be ready to get your own long-haired Chihuahua.
Long-Haired Chihuahua Characteristics
|Weight||No more than 6 pounds
|Life Span||14-16 years|
|Good with||Other animals (sometimes), older children
|Temperament||Alert, confident, self-reliant|
|Shedding amount||Low to moderate|
|Colors||Any (black, tan, champagne, white, brown, etc.)|
What is a Long-Haired Chihuahua?
A long-haired Chihuahua is simply a regular Chihuahua that happens to have long hair. Indeed, it is one of the two main types of Chihuahuas. The other, of course, is the classic short-haired Chihuahua.
History of the Long-Haired Chihuahua
The American Kennel Club (AKC) states that there is archaeological evidence of dogs similar to Chihuahuas found all around the globe. Nonetheless, the ancient civilizations most readily associated with the Chi were found in the Americas.
AKC says, “We do know that when the Toltecs held sway in Mexico about a thousand years ago, their breed of choice was the Techichi, a larger, heavier ancestor of today’s Chi. The Aztecs conquered the Toltecs in the 12th century. Historians credit the Aztecs with refining the Techichi into a smaller, lighter dog.”
Many of these dogs were concentrated in the State of Chihuahua in Mexico. So, when people in America took note, they started calling the breed by the name of that state. The AKC recognized Chihuahuas as early as 1908.
Fun Facts About Long-Haired Chihuahuas
Long-Haired Chihuahua Appearance
The long-haired Chihuahua is a toy-size dog that weighs under 6 pounds. The shape of the head is described as an "apple dome." The eyes are large and usually dark, but Chis with lighter hair may also have lighter eyes. The ears point up and out to the sides but perk more directly upright when the dog is paying attention to something. The muzzle is pointed, but short. This breed has a moderately long tail.
You can read more about the appearance of the Chihuahua in the AKC’s breed standard.
In the breed standard, the AKC specifies what the coat should be like, whether the smooth or long variety.
AKC writes, “In Long Coats, the coat should be of a soft texture, either flat or slightly wavy, with undercoat preferred.” Literally any color or combination of colors is acceptable for the coat.
What Else Should You Know About Long-Haired Chihuahuas’ Coats?
You might wonder why some Chihuahuas have short hair while others have long hair. The reason is genetics. The gene for long hair in Chis is recessive. That means that sometimes you can see some unexpected results in Chi litters. For example, you could have two parents with short hair who both happen to have that recessive gene. That means their offspring could have long hair, looking distinctly different from both of them.
On the whole, you are more likely to see Chis with the short, smooth coat than the long, fluffy one, but the long-haired gene is not rare, so neither are long-haired Chihuahuas.
Another useful thing to know about long-haired Chis is that the most voluminous, full coats tend to belong to male rather than female dogs. There can be exceptions, however. Sometimes an individual female will have a really fluffy coat, or a particular male will have a less fluffy coat than is typical.
What is the Temperament of Long-Haired Chihuahuas?
In its breed standard, the AKC says that the personality of a Chi should be similar to that of a terrier, and that the dog should be confident, alert, able to rely on itself, and have an attitude of “self importance.”So, yes, your Chihuahua knows it should be your spoiled lapdog and receive your attention at all times.
Are you feeling eager to bring home a long-haired Chi? Before you do, you must ensure that your home environment will be a healthy and safe fit for a Chi, and that your new pet will integrate well with your family. Let's take a look at what Chis need and offer.
Good news: Chihuahuas are toy-sized dogs, so they do not need much room to run around. You can fit a Chi into a small home or apartment with no problems.
Do Long-Haired Chihuahuas Get Along With Children?
In general, yes, Chihuahuas play well with kids. If your children are older, there should be no issues. However, a Chi might not be the best option for a pet if you have very young children. The issue is twofold:
You know your kids' personalities and maturity levels, so you will need to think this through and figure out whether a Chi will be safe with your children.
Do Long-Haired Chihuahuas Get Along With Other Pets?
In terms of how Chis get on with other dogs and cats, your mileage may vary. These little dogs are notorious for wanting to hog everything for themselves: space, attention, treats, you name it. As such, they can sometimes be unfriendly to other animals.
But a lot depends on socialization. If you can introduce a Chi carefully to other household pets and start socializing your Chi when he is young, that increases the chances he will get along well with his housemates.
The AKC does call Chis “clannish,” stating that they may like socializing more with other Chis than dogs of different breeds. So, having more than one Chi in a household can sometimes work out well.
Are Long-Haired Chihuahuas Loud Pets?
Yes, yes, and yes. Chihuahuas are perhaps the most iconic example of a “yappy” little dog. Be prepared for tons of barking.
Long-Haired Chihuahua Care
The next thing you need to consider before bringing home your own long-haired Chihuahua is whether you can keep up with your dog's daily care needs. Let's talk about exercise, grooming, training, and more.
While these dogs are playful and energetic, they are not too demanding regarding exercise. You just need to ensure your Chihuahua is getting about thirty minutes a day, whether walking or playing. Since their daily exercise needs are so minimal, Chis are an excellent choice for a busy owner.
Note that Chis get cold easily due to their diminutive statures. That means if you are taking your Chi out on walks during winter, you may wish to invest in a dog jacket to prevent shaking and discomfort.
One area where a long-haired Chihuahua will need more ongoing care than a smooth-coated Chihuahua is concerning grooming.
If you had a Chi with a short, smooth coat, you would only have to brush him once in a while.
But if you have the long-haired type of Chi, you need to brush his coat weekly at a minimum. If you skip regular brushings, the beautiful coat will quickly become matted. A metal slicker brush works well.
As with any other dog breed, you will need to keep up with nail trimming, ear care, and dental care. Now and again, you also will need to bathe your long-haired Chi. You might need to do this more frequently than you would for a Chi with short hair.
One of the many advantages of Chihuahuas as a breed is that they are easy to train, thanks to how intelligent they are. Be aware that Chihuahua's tendency to assert dominance over other animals in the household can even extend to you.
So, make it clear to your Chi while training that you are the alpha, not him. Of course, you should only use positive reinforcement while training your pet.
Diet and Nutrition
One of the health conditions Chis are prone to is obesity. For that reason, when you are choosing types and amounts of food for your Chihuahua, you must be careful not to over-feed him.
With respect to high-fat foods, you may be surprised by how quickly you can exceed a healthy amount. Be very strict about table scraps in particular.
Other than obesity, what are some health issues to which Chihuahuas are susceptible?
Most health problems that affect Chihuahuas can be managed if you identify them early and begin a treatment plan immediately.
That is one of the reasons why it is so important to take your Chi to the vet every year for a checkup, even if he appears healthy.
What Does a Long-Haired Chihuahua Cost?
The typical cost to buy a long-haired Chihuahua is about $500 to $1,500, making these dogs reasonably affordable. That said, prices can range as high as $10,000 if you are purchasing a dog from a particularly desirable breeding stock.
Where to Adopt or Buy a Long-Haired Chihuahua
If you want to purchase a Chihuahua puppy, it is essential to make sure you are going through a reputable breeder, and avoiding puppy mills, lease scams, and other shady practices.
One simple option is to search the AKC Marketplace. At the time of this writing, a search for Chihuahua puppies through the marketplace comes up with more than 170 results from a range of breeders across the country.
The AKC lists whether each breeder is an AKC National Breed Club member and certifies whether they meet specific standards for health screening, socialization, and more.
Another site where you can search for Chihuahua puppies for sale is Pawrade. This site does not list dogs bred at puppy mills and backs its listings with a "comprehensive health guarantee" as well as a guarantee against scams.
Here are some individual Chihuahua breeders we have seen on lists of reputable breeders:
Keep in mind that we have not personally vetted the breeders above. We simply have seen them reviewed favorably by other Chi enthusiasts.
Another option is to adopt a long-haired Chihuahua. Long-haired Chis are not particularly rare, so finding one available at a regional shelter or rescue should not be challenging. Adopting a dog can be more affordable, and it will ensure that a pet in need receives a forever home.
Pros & Cons of Long-Haired Chihuahuas:
To wrap up our overview of long-haired Chis, let's go over the advantages and disadvantages of these toy-sized dogs, starting with their benefits.
Although the numerous advantages of long-haired Chis outweigh the disadvantages, it is good to be aware of the potential drawbacks before getting one.
There's nothing like seeing a Chihuahua gazing up at you with large, round eyes, ears perked up, and a little tail wagging.
With its long, soft, luxurious coat, the long-haired Chi has a touch of extra charm with the same winning personality and easy care requirements as a smooth-haired Chi.
Whether your home is large or small and your schedule is busy or open, a long-haired Chihuahua can make a loving, loyal, alert, and intelligent companion for many years to come.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are long-haired Chihuahuas hypoallergenic?
No, long-haired Chihuahuas are not hypoallergenic. This is because they shed significantly (see below).
That said, there is no such thing as a truly hypoallergenic dog. All dogs produce some amount of hair and dander that may cause reactions in some people.
Do long-haired Chihuahuas shed?
Chihuahuas are usually classified as low to moderate shedders, but we do sometimes see people complaining about high amounts of shedding.
Your Chi will shed year-round, but you will likely notice an increase in the amount of shedding in spring and fall, as is typical for many dog breeds. The hair sometimes sheds in clumps, making it conveniently easy to pick up.
Do long-haired Chihuahuas have an undercoat?
Most of the time, long-haired Chihuahuas have a double coat. This is part of why they have a characteristically fluffy look. There are some exceptions.