Chihuahuas are alert and amusing dogs with huge personalities.
You may want to own one after seeing their charming characters in movies or on TV.
However, before doing it, you’re left wondering whether chihuahuas shed for fear of finding hair all over your furniture.
So, do chihuahuas shed?
Yes, chihuahuas are low-shedding dogs that shed moderately all year round.
However, these dogs shed more during fall and spring when their coats change for winter and summer.
What triggers shedding in chihuahuas?
Are there ways to minimize the amount of hair shed by chihuahuas?
If you’re concerned about such questions, keep reading to learn how to live with a chihuahua.
There are two categories of chihuahuas; the apple head and the deer head.
No matter what type of chihuahua you own, it will have either a long-haired or short-haired coat.
Short-haired chihuahuas have coats that lie close to their skin and are easy to maintain.
These coats are thin and shiny with silky textures, making them ideal for people who are not into grooming their dogs regularly.
On the other hand, long-haired chihuahuas have thick and beautiful coats that flow down to their tails and thighs.
These types of chihuahua require more grooming than the short-haired ones.
Long-haired chihuahuas have thicker hairs around the underbelly, ears, tail, and mane.
Chihuahuas come in a variety of coat colors.
The most common colors are blue and tan, black and tan, red, white, cream, fawn, chocolate, and chocolate and tan.
These dogs can also have a coating mixture that blends the above colors.
It’s worth noting that coat color does not affect shedding in chihuahuas.
Undercoat and Topcoat
All chihuahuas have two layers of fur, the undercoat and the topcoat.
The undercoat is a soft layer of hair that helps protect them from cold weather and provides insulation.
On the other hand, the topcoat is the outer layer of fur that protects them from the sun and repels water.
Chihuahuas shed their undercoats when they are preparing for winter and summer.
This is to regulate their body temperature as the weather changes.
Factors that Trigger Shedding in Chihuahuas
You may notice that your chi sheds varying amounts of hair.
The variation is orchestrated by different factors like:
As we mentioned earlier, chihuahuas, like other shedding dogs, shed more during fall and spring.
This is because they are preparing their coats for winter and summer.
During fall, chihuahuas start preparing for winter.
Their undercoats shed the lighter summer coats to grow thicker ones.
The thick undercoats provide insulation against the cold winter weather.
In summer, the opposite happens.
They shed their thicker coats to allow for the growth of lighter ones that will protect them from the scorching summer sun.
Like humans, dogs also experience stress.
When stressed, their bodies release a hormone called cortisol, which triggers shedding.
There are many things that can cause stress in chihuahuas.
Some common causes include:
- Moving to a new house
- The loss of a family member or pet
- Having a baby in the house
- Being left alone for long periods
A diet lacking in essential nutrients can cause shedding in chihuahuas.
Dogs need a balanced diet that contains vitamins, proteins, and mineral salts for a healthy coat that sheds less.
A nutritious diet ensures the dog gets sufficient nutrients that keep the skin shiny with stronger hair follicles.
Some common causes of poor nutrition include:
- Eating table scraps
- Consuming a lot of processed food
- Consuming less nutritious foods like wheat
Hormonal imbalance, especially between testosterone and estrogen, is a common cause of shedding in chihuahuas.
The body sheds a lot as it struggles to restore hormonal balance.
Hormonal imbalances are caused by a variety of factors, including:
- Thyroid problems
- Cushing’s disease
- Pregnancy and lactation
- Old age
Ways to Minimize Shedding in Chihuahuas
It’s normal to get worried when your chi sheds excessively.
Luckily, you can minimize this shedding through:
Brushing is an excellent way to minimize shedding in your chihuahua.
Regular brushing removes dead hair and fur before they drop and fall on your furniture.
Brushing your pup between two to three times a week is enough to reduce the amount of hair they shed.
It also helps distribute the natural oils evenly on their coat, keeping their fur healthy and shiny.
You must use a soft-bristled brush on your chi to avoid hurting him.
Always brush your furry friend from head to tail.
This prevents hair and dirt from dropping into his eyes and ears.
Choosing the Right Shampoo
Washing your chihuahua with the wrong shampoo can cause excessive shedding.
Always use a dog-specific shampoo when bathing your pup.
A de-shedding shampoo is also excellent at reducing shedding in chihuahuas.
Feeding a Balanced Diet
A lack of essential nutrients in your chi’s diet can cause shedding.
You can reduce the amount your chi sheds by feeding him a balanced and nutritious diet.
The diet should contain all the necessary vitamins, minerals, and proteins that help maintain healthy skin and fur.
Feed your chihuahuas foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids, like salmon.
Omega-3 fatty acids are necessary for healthy skin and coat.
Avoid processed foods as they lack the nutrients needed for healthy skin and coat.
Checking for Health Conditions
Excessive shedding can be a sign of a health condition in your chihuahua.
If you notice your chi is shedding more than usual, take him to the vet for a check-up.
The common health conditions that cause excessive shedding include:
- Cushing’s skin disease
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Chihuahuas low shedding?
Yes, chihuahuas are low-shedding dogs.
However, they shed more during fall and spring as they prepare for winter and summer.
Are Chihuahuas hypoallergenic?
Chihuahuas are not hypoallergenic.
These dogs shed moderately throughout the year.
Chihuahuas are low-shedding dogs that shed throughout the year.
However, these dogs may shed heavily during spring and fall as they prepare for winter and summer.
The heavy shedding ensures that the dog develops a coat that can sustain it for the forthcoming season.
You can minimize shedding in your chi by regular brushing, feeding a balanced diet, and checking for health conditions like allergies regularly.