Adopting a Chihuahua is a great way to not only get yourself a great new friend but also give a second chance to a pup in need. If you are trying to decide whether to buy a Chihuahua from a breeder or adopt one from a shelter, here are a few things to keep in mind.
1. Just because a Chihuahua is in a shelter does not mean he has behaviour problems. The fact is that many really nice dogs end up at the pound through no fault of their own. One of the biggest reasons is that these cute little dogs have a serious overpopulation problem in the United States and there are simply more pups than there are homes.
2. When you adopt a Chihuahua, you are actually saving two lives! These sweet pups are the second most euthanized breed of the more than three million dogs being put to sleep in shelters every year. So when you rescue one, you are making room for another to be able to stay at the shelter longer, upping his chances of getting adopted, too.
3. Purchasing a Chihuahua from a breeder or pet store does not guarantee you a great dog. Unfortunately, most pet stores get their Chis from puppy mills where the breeding dogs are not only subjected to terrible abuse and neglect, but are overbred and inbred. This means that the darling doggy in the window could have a multitude of health issues.
4. Just because a Chihuahua is acting shy or scared or barks like crazy in the kennel, does not mean that that is who he is in real life. The pound is a very scary place for a little pup who has just lost everything and everyone he has ever known and it is very difficult for them to thrive in such places. Shelter staff put new arrivals through personality tests to make sure they are adoption-worthy.
5. Spend some time with the Chihuahua you are thinking about adopting. Most shelters have visiting rooms where you can get to know your potential new fur-baby and it may take several visits for you to really get to know what a dog might be like in the real world.
6. Adopting a Chihuahua not only saves his life but also saves you money! While adoption fees may seem high, they are still less expensive than purchase price and you get more bang for your buck. Adoption fees usually include spay/neuter, micro-shipping, and more.
7. Do your homework. Whether you are buying or adopting a Chihuahua, make sure this is the right kind of dog for you and your family by learning more about these special little dogs with big hearts and even bigger personalities.
8. The adoption process and application could take some time. You can’t just walk into an animal shelter, point at your favourite four-legged inmate and walk out with him in your arms. This can be frustrating, but if you think about it, it’s actually a good thing. This prevents you from “impulse-adopting” and gives you a chance to really get to know your chosen pup.
9. There will be an adjustment period. Your newly adopted Chihuahua will be ore grateful to you for rescuing him than you can imagine, he just might not show it! There may be some anxiety, some sleepless nights, and even some unwanted behaviour but, given enough time and attention, your little pup will soon feel like he has always been a part of your family.
10. Adoption is forever. If you can’t commit to providing a Chihuahua with a loving home for the rest of his life, then you should consider getting a goldfish. Unlike a goldfish, a Chihuahua will bond to you and love you forever, just like he believes you will love him. And, unlike a goldfish, Chihuahuas can live up to 18 years or more so it is important that you are ready for a long term commitment so that your new friend doesn’t end up back where you found him where next time his luck might not be as good.