How Can I Tell What Kind of Chihuahua I Have?

By Shara JJ Cooper

Chihuahuas are the oldest breed of dog in the Americas and they are also the smallest. The chihuahua is an intelligent dog that is widely bred for the public. The breed varies in type by the shape of its head, color and coat. These dogs are not distinguished by their weight and size even though some breeders market them as "tea cup" chihuahuas. These are simply smaller chihuahuas, not a specific type. Judge your chihuahua by its outward appearance to determine its type. The results can range from a tan, appleheaded, smooth-coated chihuahua or a black, deer-headed, long-haired chihuahua.

Examine the dog's head to see what shape it is. A dog with a round, dome-shaped head is an "appleheaded" chihuahua. These dogs are wider on the top of the head than lower by the jaw. Deer headed chihuahuas are a variation of the those that resemble a mature deer. Most breeders stick to either appleheaded or deer headed chihuahuas so a litter will not have a mix of head types.

Look at the coat of the chihuahua. These dogs are either smooth-coated or long-haired. Long haired chihuahuas have hair that is about 2 inches long. The majority of chihuahuas are smooth-coated but some long-haired dogs are available.

Identified the color of the chihuahua. Coats come in five colors: tan, red, black, white or splashed (multi-colored). However, the American Kennel Club recognizes many color variations including: black, black and tan, blue and tan, chocolate, chocolate and tan, cream, fawn, fawn and white, red, black and red, black and silver, black sabled fawn, black sabled silver, blue, blue and white, blue brindled fawn, blue fawn, chocolate and white, chocolate blue, chocolate brindled fawn, chocolate sabled fawn, cream and white, fawn brindled black, gold, gold and white, red and white, silver, silver and white and white.