Do you own a Chihuahua dog, and you’re worried about his increasing weight? Maybe you’ve heard about some negative effects of obesity in dogs. Or you’re the kind of person that does not like your canine being overweight. Perhaps you’re also clueless on how to help them slim down.
There’s no need to worry because you’re in the right place. In this article, you’ll get to know important facts about your fat Chihuahua and things needed to keep him healthy and in perfect condition.
Before jumping into full details, please note that dogs’ weight (including Chihuahuas) plays a big role in their overall life expectancy. Thus, you need to pay serious attention to every piece of information in order to make your Chihuahua live longer.
Now, let’s roll…
How to Tell If Your Chihuahua Is Fat and Overweight?
According to the American Kennel Club (AKC) breed standards, a healthy Chihuahua should not exceed a weight of 6 pounds. So if you’re looking to know whether your Chihuahua is fat and overweight, there’re quite a few ways to find out.
Firstly, you should thoroughly examine the abdomen of your pooch. If you observe and confirm he has an abdomen tuck, then he is overweight. Another way to tell if your Chihuahua is fat is by touching specific areas such as the shoulders, spine, and hips.
Once you discover some kind of difficulty when feeling his bones, then he’s definitely overweight. You’re unable to conveniently reach the bones because they’re completely surrounded by thick fat.
Lastly, carefully examine your dog’s waist. To do this, stand right above your pooch and look down at him. If he appears to have a waist, the dog’s body will be partly smaller from the back of his rib cage to the hips.
In contrast to both British and American breed standards, pet Chihuahuas often grow larger. The Chihuahua dog breed is generally small. But if they’re allowed to become fat, they tend to grow up to ten pounds.
Check out this video to learn how to determine if your Chihuahua is at a healthy weight.
Why Do Chihuahuas Get Fat?
Chihuahuas gain weight due to some things we do normally take for granted. Some common causes of obesity in fat Chihuahuas include:
Of course, everyone loves their furry canines and want them to have the best life. So we go ahead and feed them with the right proportion to ensure they’re satisfied. However, what we think as a moderate meal can be too much for a Chihuahua.
Unlike other dog breeds, Chihuahuas require fewer calories per day because they’re a smaller breed. Therefore, overfeeding will easily have a huge impact on their weight and size.
Allowing your Chihuahua to eat from your plate
Sharing meals with your Chihuahuas can be quite harmful to their health if care is not taken. Even though it may be tempting, you should try as much as possible to avoid it.
This is because the number of calories, fat, and sodium present in human foods are just too high for a Chihuahua to safely consume on a regular basis.
Not enough exercise
Another common reason Chihuahuas get overweight is because they get too little exercise. Even if you give them the right amount of food, there are chances they still become fat if they’re not physically active.
A typical Chihuahua should be walked 1 to 2 times daily. You should also ensure to carry your canines less. This will prevent it from getting too relaxed and lazy during exercise.
As the saying goes, ‘too much of everything is bad,’ so you should be careful not to over-exercise your canine. However, fat Chihuahuas will need constant exercise in order to slim down.
Maintaining the same diet as it grows
If these furry companions are continuously given the same amount of food without changing, it may lead to an overweight condition. Chihuahuas need changes in their diet as they increase in age.
They’re required to take fewer calories per day per pound of body weight. Ensure you lower their calorie intake by 10 to 60 calories per day while still helping them maintain an active lifestyle through constant exercises.
7 Reasons Why Obesity Is Dangerous in Fat Chihuahuas
Obesity is a serious condition that shouldn’t be taken lightly by owners of Chihuahuas. But unfortunately, many owners are unaware of the grave dangers obesity poses to their dog’s health.
So they either overlook or ignore their Chihuahua’s weight problem. And this brings up a number of health issues that leave your canines’ health at risk.
Now let’s see some of the main reasons why obesity is dangerous in fat Chihuahuas:
- Difficulty Breathing: The lungs of fat Chihuahuas might not be able to function well. The extra fat in the chest of the dog limits the expansion of the lungs. Thus, makes the lungs unable to function properly to their full capacity.
- Joint Problems: The weight gained by a fat Chihuahua places excessive pressure around their bones and joints. And this causes them to develop arthritis at a very young age. Apart from arthritis, fat Chihuahuas are susceptible to several other bone and joint problems. Unfortunately, these problems affect their state of health and overall quality of life.
- High Blood Pressure: Obesity in fat Chihuahuas increases their risk of developing high blood pressure, which can be very dangerous and life-claiming. Also known as hypertension, high blood pressure negatively affects the activities of all organs and tissues in the body system. As a result, gives room to serious health conditions and even failure of vital organs.
- Type II Diabetes (Mellitus): Just like we humans, obesity significantly increases the risk of developing Type II Diabetes in a Chihuahua. Type II Diabetes can be difficult to manage, but it may require your pooch to receive insulin injections each day to keep up with the body’s demand. Or else, it may lead to other deadly ailments.
- Back and Spinal Problems: Obesity causes Chihuahuas to experience serious back and spinal problems that affect their quality of life. As they gain more weight than their body can handle, it places excess strain and stress on sensitive areas on their lower back. This may ultimately lead to fractured bones, torn ligaments, or slipping of the spinal disc.
- Heart Disease: Fat Chihuahuas are at great risk of developing heart disease, which is supposed to be the deadliest of all. The extra fat affects the proper functioning of the heart as it forces the heart to pump more blood so it can reach the vital organs in the body. It also places extra pressure on the organs and thus increasing the risk of developing heart disease.
- Decreased Quality and Length of Life: From the previous reasons above, it’s clearly evident that the overall health and quality of life are decreased in overweight Chihuahuas. Fat Chihuahuas are very much at risk of dying at a younger age than those with ideal weight.
How to Help an Obese or Fat Chihuahua Lose Weight?
There are different ways to help a fat Chihuahua lose weight; they include:
Increasing Their Activity Levels
It shouldn’t sound strange to you that an increase in your dog’s activity level can help them lose weight. Of course, Chihuahuas are a very small breed, but that doesn’t mean we should overlook the need to exercise them regularly.
Many Chihuahua owners assume it’s okay to keep them locked up in a small apartment and only take them out when they need to use the bathroom. However, this shouldn’t be the case because Chihuahuas need a lot of time and space to run around and have fun, just like other dog breeds.
Make sure your fat Chihuahua gets enough exercise throughout the day (1-2 times a day). You should try and take him for a walk on good days, and when the weather is unfavorable, you can engage in indoor games.
Cut Out Treats
Treats might be the main reason behind the rapid increase in your Chi’s weight. Try and cut out treats altogether until they slim down. It can be sometimes difficult not to indulge in them, but we should consider a healthy option with low sugar and fats.
Change Your Dog’s Diet
This is something you must not fail to do because it’s integral to your dog’s weight loss. Ensure to get products that contain high fiber as it can help reduce your canine’s food intake. Rather than load your Chi with food, purchase products that contain rich nutrients and health supplements.
Always Feed With the Recommended Portions
It’s very important to make it a habit to feed your pooch right because Chihuahuas easily gain weight due to their small size. Oftentimes, Chihuahua owners are unaware of the recommended portions to feed their pooches.
The best way to get the right information about your dog’s feed is to consult your vet. You can also improvise by checking the appropriate daily serving at the back of your dog food packaging.
Check out this weight loss adventure of an overweight Chihuahua. This Chihuahua used to weigh three times what she was supposed to, and she found her perfect mom to help her lose weight.
This is another video of a 30-Pound fat Chihuahua mix lose half her body weight.
Health Issues That Can Cause Weight Gain in Chihuahua
It might sound new to you, but some health issues can also lead to weight gain in Chihuahuas.
Some of these health issues include:
We should know by now that obesity can cause diabetes, but the disease itself can further cause a dog to become too weighty. So as it seems, diabetes itself may come as a cause or an effect.
It’s essential to get this condition treated as early as possible as it may lead to many health problems. Just make sure you follow every feeding, exercise, and medical recommendation given by your vet to help control this issue.
Failure to attend to this health issue can result in lame limbs, blindness, or death ultimately.
Obesity in Chihuahuas can be caused by a thyroid issue. The thyroid serves the purpose of metabolism, and when it stops working, a Chihuahua can increase in weight rapidly. Other signs of thyroid disorder include cold intolerance, dulling of the coat, and excessive shedding.
After diagnosis, this condition can be treated with a daily dose of synthetic thyroid hormone.
This is a health issue that affects a canine’s adrenal gland. Apart from obesity, other signs of this disease are weakness, fur issues, white scaly skin patches, and more.
Cushing’s disease can be treated by removing adrenal tumors and medication.
How Much Food Should a Fat Chihuahua Eat Per Day?
It’s essential to feed a fat Chihuahua with the right amount of food. This will help them slim down and keep them healthy throughout their entire life.
Nevertheless, most Chihuahua owners find it challenging to know how much food they should feed their pooch each day. And this is one of the reasons it’s difficult to maintain a healthy Chihuahua weight.
- The very first thing to do if you want to know the amount of a fat Chihuahua’s feed is to determine its weight. The best way to know this is to consult your vet.
- Then you should check the recommendations for feeding amount at the back of the dog’s food. A feeding chart on your canine’s package will be quite helpful.
- When looking at the feeding-amount recommendations, use your fat Chihuahua’s estimated weight.
- The amounts recommended on the package’s feeding chart are how much your fat Chihuahua should be feeding per day.
Generally, Chihuahuas ranging in size from 4 to 10 pounds should eat roughly ½ to 1 and 1/3 cups per day (depending on how many meals you’re providing, which in most cases should be three).
Still confused about how much you should feed your Chihuahua? Check out this video to learn more.
Commonly Asked Questions
What Is a Good Weight for a Chihuahua?
A good weight for a Chihuahua ranges from 3 to 6 pounds. However, both American and British breed standards state that Chihuahua’s weight must not exceed 5.9 pounds.
How Do I Make My Skinny Chihuahua Fat?
If your Chihuahua is suffering from weight loss and needs to gain a few pounds, there are several health tips that can help him gain weight.
- Higher Protein or Fat Food: Feeding your skinny Chihuahua using a higher protein and fat food will help your canine gain a few pounds over a period of time. When you practice this method, you’ll begin to notice an increase in your Chihuahua’s weight within a few weeks.
- Extra Food Treats: Another effective way to help your skinny Chihuahua gain weight rapidly is to give him extra food treats during the day and before sleeping.
- New Feeding Plan: People who often eat less than a few hours before bed are expected to gain weight. This same rule applies to Chihuahuas. So you can effectively increase your dog’s weight by giving him a smaller amount of food in the morning and a larger point before bed. As a result, your dog’s body stores fat during sleep and thus becomes fat.
- Pumpkin and Sweet Potato: These two are excellent weight gaining secrets for your skinny furry companion. You can try adding pumpkin and sweet potato to your Chihuahua’s diet if you don’t want to include more meat protein to his diet.
- More Exercise: Oh yeah, this may sound really confusing right now. It’s true that exercise is associated with losing weight and not otherwise. So what’s the point in giving more exercise to a skinny Chihuahua. Your answer is here! Regular and active exercise will help your dog maintain his weight after adding a few pounds. It wouldn’t be so good if your canine starts to get overweight – it’s not healthy.
At What Age Are Chihuahuas Fully Grown?
Just like other small dog breeds, Chihuahuas typically attain full growth and stop growing by 10 to 12 months. However, your Chihuahua’s weight can still change from time to time, depending on his health, diet, and physical activity levels.
What Is the Heaviest Chihuahua?
The heaviest of all Chihuahua dog breed is Gracie. Her weight came in at a whopping 42 pounds. Because of her hefty size, she couldn’t even complete short walks that her owners had to carry her home afterward. But with the help of a trainer, Gracie was able to lose 30% of her body weight.
Chihuahuas are a lovable and interesting breed to own. And we wouldn’t like to let any harm or anything bad happen to them. The more reason we should always be on the lookout for them and ensure they live the best life.
But if your furry companion is already a bit chubby, don’t despair! It might not be an easy and convenient task to help your pooch lose some pounds. You just have to face it; it’s not a hopeless endeavor.
Utilizing the tips and tricks explained here will surely help you achieve positive results. There’s a need to monitor everything from the amount of food and treats to the amount of exercise they usually participate in on a daily basis.
Be intentional about your Chihuahua’s health and physical condition. Don’t be tempted to spoil him by giving him a little extra treat when he stares at you with those big brown eyes. Or letting him skip walk because he looks so happy and content napping on the couch.
Keep in mind that the only way you can truly love them is by offering them good health and long life with a correct diet, exercise, and companionship.
My name is John Carter and I absolutely love pets, especially cats and dogs. I’ve got a Bachelor of Science degree in Animal Behaviour and Welfare and have several years’ experience working in animal shelters and rescues. My passion for animals started at a very young age as I grow up on a farm with several horses, cows, cats, chickens, and dogs on our property.