Growth of Chihuahua Puppies

By Anne Rose

Toy breeds, like the Chihuahua, develop and mature more quickly than large breed dogs. When born, a Chihuahua generally weighs between 2.5 and 5.5 ounces. The breed standard for the Chihuahua requires a maximum adult weight of 6 pounds.

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Chihuahua
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Estimating Adult Size

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Estimating Adult Size
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The Chihuahua weight chart is a reliable guide for estimating a mature weight within a quarter of a pound. According to the chart, by Colonel V. D'Oyly Hammer in The Complete Chihuahua Encyclopedia, a Chihuahua puppy that weighs 3 ounces at birth will be approximately 3 pounds when full grown at 18 months. A 5-ounce newborn Chihuahua will weigh about 5.5 pounds at 18 months.

Tracking Weight Gain

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Tracking Weight Gain
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A Chihuahua puppy will gain between 1 and 2 ounces per week until between 8 and 10 weeks old. Then, weight gain can increase 2 ounces - or a bit more - per week, until maturity at 18 months. Puppies may gain weight in "spurts," a fraction more one week, less the next. Monitor average weekly weight gain, with the optimum 18-month weight as a goal. Puppies that are larger at birth will generally be larger adults, and will gain more weight weekly than small puppies.

Reaching Full Size

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Reaching Full Size
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Healthy puppies can gain weight steadily until they reach 90 percent of their estimated adult weight. Weight gain slows down around between 4 and 6 months, with some occasional growth spurts. Final adult weight depends on genetics, breeding and diet.

Feeding

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Feeding
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A Chihuahua puppy should be fed following the quantity instructions on the dog food. Amounts differ depending on the food's protein content, and whether it is wet or dry food. When a Chihuahua's growth slows down, adjust food quantity to shift to an adult feeding schedule. It is important for a Chihuahua's health to avoid overfeeding and obesity.

Individual Growth

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Individual Growth
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It is important to monitor the body weight and behavior of each individual Chihuahua puppy. A very active puppy may be thin and require additional calories. It is useful to chart your puppy's weight gain, watching for a consistently upward direction. Weight loss or an usual spike in weight gain may be cause for concern. Consult a veterinarian for professional advice.