Why Are Chihuahuas The Second Most Euthanized Breed?

Did you know?

Chihuahuas are the second most euthanized breeds in America, second only to Pit Bulls.

Why the Second Most Often Euthanized Dog Breed?

How can these sweet, tiny little dogs be the second most often euthanized dogs breeds? First of all, what are some of the things you’ve heard about Chihuahuas? “Mean little yippie dogs”, “little ankle biters”, “Mexican pit bulls”, etc. Ask people you know if Chihuahuas are nice little dogs and find out what people think. I’ve even heard from supposed “Chihuahua experts” that some Chihuahuas are just born mean! Really? There are some pretty mean people in the world, how many do you think were “born” that way? Believe me when I say: Chihuahuas are not BORN mean, actually, it is quite the opposite.

Undesirable Behaviors

Chihuahuas are VERY loyal and protective. But due to those same wonderful qualities, they can be channeled into not so desirous behaviors by how they are raised and how they are treated.

black and tan chihuahua biting a hand why chihuahua are the second most often euthanized dog breed
Example of “protective” as an undesirable behavior

Many Chihuahuas are surrendered because owners just don’t realize that they may be unknowingly causing some of the negative behaviors in their dog, or how to change those behaviors once they have started. As a result, many Chi owners just surrender them out of frustration, thus making them one of the second most often euthanized dog breeds in the US. Consequently, it is my mission to inspire those parents that have Chihuahuas and to educate those that need help so that surrendering or re-homing their dog will not even be a consideration! And to inspire others to consider a Chihuahua if they are planning to adopt a dog.

Some Alarming Statistics

They’re tiny, they’re cute and they’re besieging animal shelters around the country, especially in California.

fawn and whit chihuahua behind a fence looking sad
This should never happen!

In Los Angeles, only pit bulls outnumber Chihuahuas in the city’s shelters. At the Peninsula Humane Society in San Mateo, 60% of the dogs awaiting adoption are pure or mixed-breed Chihuahuas. At the San Francisco Animal Care and Control shelter, Chihuahuas are 30% of the canine population and rising. At the East Bay SPCA, it’s 50%. Their fate is not much better elsewhere around the country, around the world, really.

Other Factors

These same pint-sized pups with outsize personalities became more and more popular after Reese Witherspoon’s character in the 2001 movie “Legally Blonde” carried her Chihuahua, Bruiser around like an accessory as she walked the halls of Harvard, pursuing her man (if you haven’t seen the movie — “spoiler alert” — she, gets her man, just not the one she thought).

Who remembers Paris Hilton’s Chihuahua, Tinkerbell, who was a regular in all five seasons of “The Simple Life”, and in 2004 published her “memoir” called “The Tinkerbell Hilton Diaries.” then came one of my favorites, the 2008 comedy “Beverly Hills Chihuahua,” about little Chloe, who gets dognapped in Mexico and has to escape from an evil Doberman.

“People get enthralled with the movies and think dogs have a certain type of personality,” ~ said Kathy Davis, interim general manager of the Los Angeles Animal Services agency.

Some people watch these movies and fall in love with the little “movie star” and as a result, run out and get one expecting theirs to be just like Bruiser or Chloe. They either don’t know how, or they spend very little time training and socializing this little dog and then they get disillusioned and the poor little pups, through no fault of their own end up in a shelter as one of the second most often euthanized dog breeds! I find that unacceptable! I’m sure you do too.

What can you and I do?

All it takes is a little understanding, time and know-how spent training and socializing and the Chihuahua is the most amazing, wonderful pet, best friend, constant companion, and awesome little dog.

tan and white puppy touching right paw to a human finger
Together, we can change the life of all Chihuahuas!

This website offers expert advice on everything Chihuahua. From health, wellness, caring for a senior Chi, to help with training and behavior issues. If you know someone that is struggling with raising a Chihuahua or if you have any questions about how to raise a Chihuahua, you have come to the right place. Let your friends and family know about us.

In conclusion, the only way to help clear the shelters is to always spay or neuter your Chihuahua. Also, do your homework before you get any breed of dog. Make sure that a Chihuahua will fit into your lifestyle and circumstances before you bring one home. Remember that deciding to bring a living breathing dog into your home is a lifetime commitment. If you have behavior problems with your Chihuahua, get help from a professional trainer. You can find lots of resources and help right here at ChiChis And Me.

We can learn much from each other. Please leave a comment below with any questions or concerns. Feel free to leave advice about something that you have learned. I read all comments and you will receive an answer within 48 hours.

Other ways you can help

Want to help? The best way to help is to donate to or volunteer at your local shelter or Chihuahua rescue organization. If you are unable to do that, you can also help me to educate others by sharing this post on social media, or forward to your friends and family and ask them to share. The more it gets shared, the more people will be aware of this sad situation and the need for more education. Share by clicking on one of the icons at the bottom of this page. Thank you

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