There are 7 types of Chihuahua including the long-haired, short-haired, apple head, deer head, fawn, teacup, and merle Chihuahua. Named after a state in Mexico, the Chihuahua dog breed became popular due to its big personality despite being small in size (5 to 8 inches).
The Chihuahua stands among the most popular dog breeds to be registered with the AKC since the 1960s and boasts a lively, loyal, energetic, and alert temperament. These traits are what make them excellent family dogs and guards. You can enjoy living with your canine buddy for long as they have a life expectancy of between 12 and 20 years.
Did you know that the Chihuahua is the national symbol of Mexico? Yes, you heard it right and they are amongst America’s oldest dog breeds with a somewhat confusing history. They rank at 33 out of 197 in the American Kennel Club (AKC) breed popularity.
Let us look at the types of Chihuahuas available out there.
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How many types of Chihuahua are there?
When people say that there is one breed of Chihuahua, they are right. But that is not the case with types. If you have ever looked closely at the Chihuahua, you can agree with me that they do not look the same as you think from the first glance. That is because they are.
There are 7 types of Chihuahua and each Chihuahua has unique and distinctive markers which explain the varieties. In a nutshell, here are the 7 types of Chihuahuas:
- Long hair Chihuahua
- Short hair Chihuahua
- Apple head Chihuahua
- Deer head Chihuahua
- Fawn Chihuahua
- Teacup Chihuahua
- Merle Chihuahua
One of the things we love about these small dogs with a big disposition is their easy-to-care grooming needs among other things. And in this article, we shall look at the 7 types of Chihuahua so you can understand the differences between them as well as their history.
The two officially recognized varieties of the Chihuahua among most dog breeders and the American Kennel Club (AKC) include the long and smooth coat. The AKC documented Chihuahuas as a dog breed in 1924.
History of Chihuahua
As mentioned above, the Chihuahua dog breed is named after a state in Mexico but their history is somewhat unclear. However, there are two concepts surrounding the history of Chihuahua that try to explain how they came to be.
In the first concept, the Chihuahua is thought to have originated from Techichi, a South or Central American dog which dates back to the Toltec civilization. Carvings from the Toltec society in the 9th century C.E. portray a dog with a round head and large ears. These features make the Techichi look a lot like the Chihuahua.
After the Toltecs were overthrown by the Aztecs, they soaked up the Techichi into their society and it is supposed that they used them in temples for rituals such as burials. A red Techichi was killed, cremated, and buried with the corpses’ remains. The Aztecs believed this dog had magical powers for leading the spirits of the deceased to the underworld, seeing the future, and healing.
The Techichi disappeared in the late 1500s after the Aztecs were conquered by the Spanish.
In the second concept, Spanish traders are said to have come with a hairless dog from China which they bred with small Mexican native dogs, and the Chihuahua dog breed was spawned.
On the one hand, the popular Chihuahua (short haired) was discovered in Chihuahua State in the 1850s and brought to American visitors who had traveled to Mexico. The first Chihuahua, the Midget, was registered with the AKC in 1904.
The long-haired Chihuahua, on the other hand, is thought to be a cross with Pomeranians or Papillons and became popular in the 1930s/40s.
7 Types of Chihuahua
Now that you know the seven types of Chihuahuas, let us see the things that make them unique and different from each other. By the end of this review, you shall have decided on the type that suits your specific needs.
1. Long Hair Chihuahua
As the name suggests, long hair Chihuahuas have a long coat that comes in a range of different colors and stands out as the most popular and recognized in the dog breed. The long, soft coat is what makes them attractive and unique which explains why they are prominent.
With their somewhat flat or wavy coats, the long hair Chihuahua stands 15 to 23 cm tall at the withers and weighs between 1.8 kg to 2.7 kg. This type of Chihuahua comes in a variety of colors from black to fawn and is intelligent making them easily trainable pooches.
Unlike their short-haired counterparts, long-haired Chihuahuas have high grooming needs with regular brushing and bathing to keep them good-looking. However, they also shed a lot which is unsuitable for people with allergies but is easy to keep up with due to their size. Keep that in mind if you are allergic to dog hair.
2. Short Hair Chihuahua
The breed derives its name from the short and smooth coat and was the first in the dog breed to be registered with the AKC. According to history, American visitors to Mexico came back with a short-haired Chihuahua in the 1850s and it gained popularity in the 1890s.
The short hair Chihuahuas stands 15 to 23 cm tall at the withers with a typical weight of between 1 kg and 3 kg. Just like the long hair Chihuahua, the short hair counterpart feature in show-rings, are great companions and belong to the toy dog breed.
Due to their intelligence, all Chihuahuas are easily trainable and require early socialization to make them friendly. Although the short, smooth coat requires less grooming needs and no trimming, these Chihuahuas tend to shed extensively. So, if you have dog hair allergies, this type is not suitable for you.
Just like the name spells out, this type of Chihuahua features a distinctive apple-shaped head that has a 90° sloping forehead. At the mention of the word Chihuahua, the apple head type is what comes to mind as it reflects the true standards of the dog breed.
Believed to outdo all the other Chihuahua types in terms of intellect, the apple head Chihuahua stands 5 to 8 inches tall at the withers on average and weighs approx. between 3 lbs. and 5 lbs. They might come with either long or short coats as well as a variety of colors such as chocolate, fawn, cream, black, and gold.
Apple head Chihuahuas gained runaway success in Hollywood after being registered with the AKC in 1908 making them excellent family pets and companions. They tend to shed a lot which requires frequent grooming but their small size makes maintenance easy.
Unfortunately, apple head Chihuahuas are prone to hydrocephalus which is why you should have them checked before purchase or adoption. Read these 10 interesting facts about Apple Head Chihuahuas.
4. Deer Head Chihuahua
Deriving their name from the deer-shaped or hound-shaped head, this type of Chihuahua has a unique 45° sloping forehead. Additional characteristic features that distinguish the deer head Chihuahua from the other types include a narrower snout, long body, postage ears, and long legs.
A well-bred, hale and hearty deer head Chihuahua stands 8 to 12 inches on average and weighs between 4 lbs. and 7 lbs. As such, this type will be heavier than their apple head cousins. Like other Chihuahuas, the deer head type also sheds very much which calls for regular grooming.
Deer head Chihuahuas come in a variety of colors with fawn being the most common as well as shades of brown and liver being the most dominant. Other possible colors include gray, silver, white, and black.
5. Fawn Chihuahua
The name fawn is self-explanatory as it means that this type of Chihuahuas is mostly available in a single color – fawn. In fact, a fawn is a very common shade among young Chihuahuas. The main challenge with categorizing a Chihuahua as a fawn is the possibility of hues and shades. If you, however, have one with a tan or light brown color, consider it a fawn Chihuahua.
Typically, a fawn Chihuahua stands between 6 and 9 inches tall at the withers and an average weight of not more than 5.9 lbs. The fawn-colored Chihuahua can either be deer or apple-headed with a long or short coat. Classifying this type has sparked a hot debate as some people consider it a separate breed.
Anyway, like all other Chihuahuas in this list, the fawn color type tends to be a shedder so regular grooming and bathing are necessary to keep them in good shape.
6. Teacup Chihuahua
As the name suggests, teacup Chihuahua is a relatively tiny pooch that is very fragile but still makes a superb companion. Unlike their cousins who stand fairly tall, this type of Chihuahuas stands 9 inches tall or shorter with a weight of approx. 5 lbs. or less as adults.
The teacup Chihuahua is very popular due to its miniature size and comes with the same name and big personality as the standard type. The only challenge with teacup Chihuahuas is that they are prone to loads of health problems, especially their bones and joints. Also, their fragility makes them unsuitable for homes with small kids who cannot handle them properly.
Like other Chihuahua types in this list, teacup Chihuahuas can have long or short coats and come in different colors including tan, black, and red as well as merle or fawn patterns. They also shed a lot but are very easy to groom.
7. Merle Chihuahua
The last type of Chihuahua in our list today is the merle Chihuahua which refers to a color, just like the fawn Chihuahua. The merle color and patterns are attractive and eye-catching which makes many people think they are different but that is not the case.
Merle Chihuahuas stand between 6 and 9 inches tall and weigh no more than 5.9 lbs. They are multi-colored with brown, blue, or black with merle patterns on the coats and usually have bright blue eyes. Like with other Chihuahuas on the list, they can either come with deer heads or apple heads with either long or short coats.
Sorry to say this but merle Chihuahuas are predisposed to certain health issues and this worsens when you interbreed the type. It increases the risk of eye problems, deafness, and loss of sight.
There is yet another rare type of Chihuahua known as the pear-headed Chihuahua that derives its name from the flathead with a pear shape that gives it a strange appearance than the rest. Typically, pear-headed Chihuahuas are thought to be a copy of apple-headed and deer-headed Chihuahuas.
Their larger sizes, overly protruding muzzles, and flatheads make them largely out of favor but like the rest, pear-headed Chihuahuas make excellent, playful companions.
Different types of Chihuahua heads
There are two types of Chihuahua heads; the Apple Head Chihuahua and Deer Head Chihuahua. The main difference between these Chihuahua head categories is the shape. Other factors that come into play when it comes to the difference between the two heads include the size of the body and the probability of breathing problems.
- Apple Head
This type of head features a dome-like-shaped skull (round) as well as a short snout that joins the head at an angle of 90°. This apple head has a soft spot in the head (moleras) that looks like a toddler’s fontanelle. A good example of a Chihuahua with this type of head is the teacup Chihuahua.
- Deer Head
This type of head is narrow with a shape like that of a deer and a longer snout that joins the rest of the head with an angle of 45°. Although Chihuahuas with this type of head may have moleras – a soft spot in the head resembling a baby’s fontanelle – it is less common, unlike an apple head.
Different types of Chihuahua mixes
Chihuahuas have been mixed with other different dog breeds resulting in adorable mixed breeds. Their mixes are brave, protective, and loyal temperament that makes them sweet companions and excellent family dogs. Most Chihuahua weighs approx. 20 lbs. and can sometimes be yappy.
If you are looking for a mixed breed that will fight for your life to the teeth, Chihuahua mixes are a fantastic choice. Here are 15 examples of different types of Chihuahua mixes:
- Chihuahua Pit Bull mix (Chipit)
- Chihuahua Pug mix (Chug)
- Pomeranian Chihuahua mix (Pomchi)
- Jack Russell Chihuahua mix (Jack Chi)
- Poodle Chihuahua mix (Chipoo)
- Dachshund Chihuahua mix (Chiweenie)
- Yorkshire Terrier Chihuahua mix (Chorkie)
- Beagle Chihuahua mix (Cheagle)
- Rat Terrier Chihuahua mix (Rat-Cha)
- Shih Tzu Chihuahua mix (ShiChi)
- Chinese Crested Chihuahua mix (Chi Chi)
- American Bulldog Chihuahua mix (American Bullhuahua)
- Shiba Inu Chihuahua mix (Shiba-Chi)
- Staffordshire Bull Terrier Chihuahua mix (Chi Staffy Bull)
- Bichon Frise Chihuahua mix (ChiChon)
Types of Chihuahua Puppies
The types of Chihuahua puppies depend on whether the parents are long-haired, short-haired, deer head, apple head, teacup, fawn, or merle Chihuahuas.
Types of Chihuahua with Pictures
Here are pictures of 7 different types of Chihuahua with pictures:
From left to right: teacup Chihuahua, short-haired Chihuahua, apple head Chihuahua, long-haired Chihuahua, merle Chihuahua, and fawn Chihuahua.
Types of Chihuahua Colors
Are you wondering what type of Chihuahua colors your canine buddy is? If you did not know, knowing your Chihuahua’s color info is critical when it comes to dog registration. However, the color of a Chihuahua does not limit them from featuring in dog shows.
The Chihuahua dog breed is one amongst those with many types of colors including black sable fawn, red, black, chocolate, brindle, merle, fawn, blue, gold, gray & silver, and blue & tan. Examples of color patterns or markings include tan, black, white, and kiss.
Eye color types include dark (black or brown), luminous, ruby (dark under lighting giving it a red color) – AKC standards, as well as light tan or white.
Types of Long Haired Chihuahua
What are long-haired Chihuahuas?
Long-haired Chihuahuas is a toy-sized dog breed with somewhat wavy or flat and comes in a variety of colors, described above. These types of Chihuahuas have dripping ears with fringe, a large ruff that encircles the neck, and well-feathered legs.
The long-haired Chihuahua is pretty and compact measuring 15 to 23 inches tall at the withers and a weight of between 1.8 and 2.7 kg as adults. Long-haired Chihuahuas are less common than their short-haired counterparts.
Types of Chihuahua Terrier mix
The Chihuahua has been mixed with different terriers and the crossbreed is one courageous, charming, protective, loyal, playful dog that can be stubborn at times. These mixes are also very smart making them highly trainable.
Here are the 12 different types of Chihuahua Terrier mix:
- Yorkshire Terrier Chihuahua mix (Chorkie)
- Boston Terrier Chihuahua mix (Chibo Terrier)
- Chihuahua Rat Terrier mix (Chat Terrier)
- Smooth Fox Terrier Chihuahua mix (Smooth Chisoxy)
- Silky Terrier Chihuahua mix (Silkyhuahua)
- West Highland Terrier Chihuahua mix (Chestie)
- Patterdale Terrier Chihuahua mix (Chatterdale)
- Airedale Terrier Chihuahua mix (Chidale)
- Scottish Terrier Chihuahua mix (Scotchi)
- Wirehaired Terrier Chihuahua mix (Wire Chiwoxy)
- Cairn Terrier Chihuahua mix (Toxirn)
- Toy Fox Terrier Chihuahua mix (Taco Terrier)
What is the rarest breed of Chihuahua?
The rarest breed of Chihuahua is the pure white type as it must be bred from two pure white x Chihuahuas (which are rare to find) with no color stains on their coats and skin.
Technically, the term type in this context refers to the physical differences in the Chihuahua such as the shape of the head and coat length. All factors considered, the Chihuahua dog breed has two versions, including the long-coated and the short-coated.
If you just love having a Chihuahua for a companion or family dog, you do not have to look for these specialties as any type is suitable for you. But if you are a pooch lover like me, who wants the nuts and bolts for specific reasons, understanding these differences comes in handy.
Feed your Chihuahua with a properly balanced diet, exercise, and groom him or her well ensuring they remain healthy will make them happy. Hopefully, the article was informative. All the best as you choose your type of Chihuahua.
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Hi there! My name is Ben Domb, an owner of two pets and I am one of the co-founders of OurPets HQ. I have several years of experience as a pet care professional in the New England region having spent time in various roles including a stint at a veterinary hospital in Upstate New York, Syracuse area. I am a certified pet care professional and mostly spend my time researching pet nutrition and sharing my thoughts in various blogs and columns. With quarantine and COVID restrictions, I have been spending a lot of time a lot with my dogs and cat and loving it! I also run a small consulting business providing advice to parents on pet nutrition, and especially safe homemade options to try. You can reach me at firstname.lastname@example.org