Official Standard for the Chihuahua
Approved September 11, 1990
General Appearance.A graceful, alert, swift-moving little dog with saucy expression, compact and with terrior-like qualities of temperament.
Size, Proportion, Substance.Weight: A well balanced little dog not to exceed 6 pounds.
Proportion: The body is off-square; hence slightly longer when measured from the point of shoulder to point of buttocks, than height at the withers. Somewhat shorter bodies are preferred in males.
Disqualification- Any dog over 6 pounds in weight.
Head:A well rounded “apple dome” skull with or without molera.
Eyes- Full but not protruding, balanced , set well apart luminous dark or luminous ruby.( light eyes in blond or white colored dogs permissible.)
Ears: Large, erect type ears , held more upright when alert, but flaring to the sides at a 45 degree angle when in ropose, giving breadth between the ears.
Muzzle: Moderately short, slightly pointed. Cheeks and jaws lean.
Nose: Self colored in blond types, pink nose permissible.
Bite: Level or scissors. Overshot, or undershot bite or any distortion of the bite or jaw, should be penalized as a serious fault.
Disqualification - Broken down or cropped ears.
Neck, Topline, Body.Neck: Slightly arched, gracefully sloping into lean shoulders.
Body: Ribs rounded and well sprung ( but not too much “ barrel shaped”).
Tail: Moderately long, carried sickle either up or out, or in a loop over the back, with tip just touching the back. ( Never tucked between legs).
Disqualifications - Cropped tail, bobtail.
Forequarters.Shoulders: Lean, sloping into a slightly broadening support above straight forelegs that set well under, giving free play at the elbows. Shoulders should be well up, giving balance and soundness, sloping into a level back. ( Never down or low.) This gives a chestiness, and strength of forequarters, yet not of the “bulldog” chest.
Feet: A small dainty foot with toes well split up but not spread, pads cushioned. ( Neither the hare nor the cat foot.)
Hindquarters.Muscular with hocks well apart, neither out nor in, well let down, firm and sturdy. The feet are as in front.
Coat.Smoothcoat: the coat should be of soft texture, close and glosssy. ( Heavier coats with undercoats permissible). Coat placed well over body with ruff on neck preferred, and more scanty on head and ears. Hair on tail preferred furry.
Longcoats: The coat should be of a soft texture, either flat or slightly curly, with undercoat preferred. Ears: Fringed. ( Heavily fringed ears may be tipped slightly if due to the fringes and not to weak ear leather, never down) Tail: Full and long ( as a plume.) Feathering on feet and legs, pants on hind legs and large ruff on the neck desired and preferred.
Disqualifications - In Longcoats too thin coat that resembles bareness.
Color.Any color Solid, marked or splashed.
Gait.The Chihuahua should move swiftly with a firm, sturdy action, with good reach in the front equal to the drive from the rear. From the rear, the hocks remain parallel to each other, and the foot fall of the rear legs follows directly behind that of the forelegs. The legs, both front and rear, will converge slightly toward a central line of gravity as speed increases. The side view shows good, strong drive in the rear and plenty of reach in the front, with head carried high. The topline should remain firm and the backline level as the dog moves.
Temperament.Alert, with terrior like qualities.
- Any dog over 6 pounds in weight.
- Broken down or cropped ears.
- Cropped tail, bobtail.
- In long coats, too thin coat that resembles bareness.
Standards are written by breed experts, and they depict the ideal specimen of each breed. Rarely is there a dog that measures up to every specification of its standard. Instead the standard guides breeders, dog show judges, and students of the breed. The offical standard for each breed and any revision of the standard originates with the parent club( Chihuahua club of America) The standard is submitted to the AKC Board of Directors for approval.