How long do Chihuahuas live? A guide

how long do chihuahuas live

Chihuahua owners take pride in owning these American purebred dogs. The adult Chihuahua is the smallest dog in the world. These cute little purse dogs are famous for their huge personality and being Mexico’s national symbol. Generally, this tiny creature is the most adored small-sized dog breed and receives attention for being the devoted companion.

 Moreover, this tiny pup is one of the oldest and smallest dog breeds. They weigh between 4 to 8 pounds, just like a newborn baby. They come in many different coat colors. They are easy to train and groom and are quite apartment-friendly. They can be an excellent choice for first-time pet owners.

However, owning a Chihuahua comes with its own set of difficulties and challenges. These cuties need extra care and protection to increase their lifespan and ensure good health. Especially, the teacup Chihuahuas breed has many health problems.

Before adopting these small dogs as lifelong furry friends, many pet parents inquire about how long Chihuahuas live.  

This charming and sassy breed can live up to 20 years with a solid immune system and a healthy diet. However, the quality of life determines their lifespan. This article will provide you with all the information about this premium breed. What is their life expectancy, common health problems, how to deal with them, and how can you help your Chi live the best and the most extended healthy life?

Let’s go!

Common Chihuahua health problems :

These small dogs tend to have many health issues. So let’s get into the details of these common health problems. 

Dental problems

chihuahua lifespan

Because of Chihuahua’s lifespan, they are prone to dental problems. Therefore, their dental care is vital. Clean your dog’s teeth regularly. A Chihuahua’s teeth are not so strong and somewhat soft, making them vulnerable to bacteria that can cause early tooth decay.

To combat the issues of early tooth decay, preventive measures for ensuring oral hygiene and dental care can increase the quality of your Chi’s life. If you want your tiny dog to enjoy its food without any pain, we recommend taking extra care of your Chi’s dental hygiene.


Obesity can be life-threatening for dogs. These purse dogs don’t do much exercise, so they are prone to weight gain. A healthy weight of this toy breed is between 4 to 8 lbs.

If it is more than the expected weight, your tiny friend is going through serious health problems. So, take your Chi to your vet regularly to check their weight.

Moreover, obesity can cause them to have heart disease and diabetes.

Heart Conditions

Heart conditions such as heart valve disease can take your Chihuahuas’ life. This causes a heavy strain on the heart. Other symptoms include panting, tiredness, and coughing.

Your vet can catch this heart disease early by listening to your pet’s heart murmur.


It means that your Chi has low blood sugar level than other dogs. This could be fatal if left untreated. It’s better to take veterinary advice if you have a hypoglycemic dog.

Moreover, these dogs are always sleepy and tired. They shake and feel cold; it’s essential to add some honey to their dog food.

Bone and joint problems

A Chi suffers from joint problems more than the average dog. These small breeds tend to have Patellar luxation, which can cause limping and a change in their gait. If left untreated, it can cause arthritis.

On the other hand, osteoarthritis can be extremely painful for many Chihuahuas. In addition, it is terrible for a dog’s quality of life and makes them stressed and depressed.

As a responsible owner, take veterinary guidance in such cases if you want your Chihuahua to live long lives.

Factors that aid Chihuahua in living a long and healthy life

Small dog breeds can live longer than larger dogs, and many factors determine a long dog’s life. If you want to ensure that your cute tiny creature lives longer life and thoroughly enjoys its health, the following are the factors you can consider for a better quality of life:


lifespan of chihuahua

The small size does not mean that they consume less food than medium or large-sized dogs. Comparatively, toy breeds are more sensitive to their nutritional needs than any other dog breeds. Dog food plays a crucial role in improving the quality of life and increasing the lifespan of your dog. Go for a diet specially formulated for toy breeds. Look for nutritious ingredients and have all the essential vitamins and minerals that support their immune system for good health.

Physical safety

how many years do chihuahuas live

It is the most vital step you need to take care of while roaming around the town with your little pal. Always have your dog on a leash when you are out; otherwise, they can get a severe injury. It is even better if you have a vest, harness, leash, or collar with reflective trims to make your Chi visible enough to the vehicles.

Always have a collar with an ID around it so you can be reunited if it gets lost. You can also install a microchip for geolocation.

Preventative healthcare

Prevention is better than cure. Always make sure that you get your Chihuahua vaccinated. Keep on with the vaccination booster until the dog is in adulthood. It will prevent many diseases.

Spaying and neutering

These dogs live longer than other dogs as males neutered tend not to have testicular cancer, and spayed female Chihuahuas don’t get ovarian cancer.

It’s better than when they reach adulthood and have their babies, and you get them spayed and neutered for a better, healthy, and long life.

Exercise regularly

Indeed, Chihuahuas don’t need as much exercise as other breeds, but daily exercise is the key to living a healthy and long life. Unfortunately, Chihuahuas are one of many dogs who don’t get enough exercise because of their small size.

What is the average Chihuahua lifespan?

how long do chihuahua mixes live

Small dogs live longer than other large dog breeds. For example, the average lifespan of a Chihuahua is between 15 to 20 years.

Megabyte is the oldest Chihuahua in dog history. It had an exceptionally rare, long, and happy life of 20 years and 265 days.

What kind of Chihuahua lives longest?

There are two main types of Chi’s, Teacup Chihuahuas and regular-sized Chihuahuas. Many pet lovers think that teacup Chihuahuas live longer, but this is not true. On the contrary, they have a shorter lifespan than the regular ones because of their tiny size, and they are more prone to hypoglycemia.

A regular-sized Chihuahua comes in two breed varieties smooth-haired Chihuahua and long-haired Chihuahua. They all have a longer lifespan.
To know about more types of chihuahuas check out our article.

What do most Chihuahuas die from?

Other health problems could also be a reason, but most Chihuahuas die from heart failure. A Chihuahua puppy is prone to heart valve disease by birth. So you have to get them checked regularly and keep them in a healthy weight range.

Final Thoughts

So, how long do Chihuahuas live? A lot of factors determine how long one will live. A Chihuahua’s lifespan is dependent on its physical health and diet. They will live their best with a nutritious diet, preventive healthcare, and physical activities to l keep them in good shape throughout life.

So, invest in your dog’s good health and active life. These tiny pups are one of the longest-living dogs but need good care. 

We hope this article has addressed all your queries and provided you with all the necessary details and information you needed. If you have any more questions, please ask them in the comment box.

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Noah Tess
Noah Tess is a mother to a baby girl, two adorable huskies, and a toy poodle. When she's not busy taking care of her family, she's blogging about the newest pet trends and products. She's a member of the team here at dog cafe, a blog devoted to giving pet parents the best information on keeping their fur babies happy and healthy. When Noah's daughter was born, her world became infinitely more precious. Her baby was saved by the rescue huskies, she knew she owed them everything. That's why she does so much research into finding the best diets for her toy poodle "toffee" and her huskies, Jack and Snowball. Noah has a unique perspective on life that comes from being a mom - it's amazing!

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