First meal off mom
Always have fresh water available
Chihuahua puppies at play
Puppies can play king of the hill too
Male Chihuahua, Happy Trail's Camden
Female Chihuahua, Happy Trail's Blizzard
Provide your puppy with soft and hard chew toys
One of the most important issue regarding your Chihuahua Puppy Care is feeding. It is with question the most important thing you can do for your dog's health.
A puppy's weight should double or even triple during the first few weeks of their life. Then continue to gradually increase as they reach their final adult weight. Small breed dogs like Chihuahuas reach their adult weight between 9-12 months of age.
Milk from the mother is ideal for Chihuahua puppy growth. God knows what He is doing! If the mothers cannot provide enough milk, puppy milk replacer is the next best supplement to provide for your young Chihuahua puppy. Chi pups need 2 times more calories per pound than adult Chihuahuas need. For newborn puppies, calories are provided by the mother's milk or by milk replacer.
At 3 to 4 weeks of age, you can start weaning your puppy with a diet supplemented with a small amount of canned or dry commercial food that is saturated with whole milk and water mix. By 6 weeks the weaning process will be just about complete. Mom will still allow some nursing but not very often.
Weaned puppies should be fed 4 times a day until 3 months of age. Once your puppy is growing properly and gaining weight, reduce feeding to 3 times per day.
After 6 months of age, feed puppies 2 times per day.
Avoid giving table scraps to a puppy. Changes in diet or water can cause diarrhea. Feed your new puppy a food that contains more fish or meat than grain. Avoid overfeeding because this predisposes puppies to develop bone and joint problems, including arthritis.
How often to feed your Chihuahua?
- 2-3 months old should eat 4 times a day.
- 3-6 months old should eat 3 times a day.
- 6-12 months old should eat twice a day.
Avoid leaving canned food down all the time because this allows the antioxidants, fatty acids, and vitamins in the food to oxidize so that your pup receives less of the nutrients he or she needs and that you have paid for.
Gradually introduce a variety of foods and textures so your puppy will mature into an adult willing to eat a variety of healthy foods. Canned or homemade diets are closer to the natural diet that dogs would eat if in the wild and can be healthier than some dry food diets for many dogs.
Dry kibble food has one major advantage over canned food. It helps remove or lessen tarter build-up on the teeth, which can be a problem on small breed dogs like the Chihuahua. If feeding dry food is most suitable for you, supplement your growing puppy's diet with small amounts of sardines, yogurt, mashed sweet potato, spinach and pureed vegetables.
Use dog food specifically for adult and mature Chihuahuas over 8 months of age. Complete and balanced nutrition helps protect cardiac function, provide stool odor relief, and reduce tartar formation on the teeth and has a more pleasing taste to your dog
Feeding too many calories can harm your pup.
When growing puppies receive too many calories, and too much calcium, they can develop bone disease and arthritis including hypertrophic osteodystrophy (HOD), osteochondrosis (OCD) and hip dysplasia.
Because too many calories and too much calcium cause the bones to grow improperly, these will have painful legs and joints, lameness, and malformed bones when older. Sometimes these signs appear to be as rickets, which is a deficiency of calcium, but they are actually the opposite problem. If puppies with HOD, OCD, or the tendency to hip dysplasia are supplemented with calcium, their problems become more severe and their bones may be permanently damaged.
Always remember proper feeding is the most important issue of your Chihuahua Puppy Care. Affect your Chihuahua puppy's health in a positive way from the beginning by feeding quality puppy food.
After feeding your puppy with a soft moist foods consider brushing his teeth to prevent tarter (Calculus) build up that can lead to other canine dental diseases.
Provide a constant source of fresh, cool water.
Always provide water in a container that is heavy and can't be tipped, but not large enough for puppy to fall into. Heavy ceramic crock pot liners make good water bowls because they keep water cool, are easy to clean, and are too heavy to knock over. Stainless bowls and unbreakable glass bowls are superior to plastic. Plastic bowls cause some dogs to develop skin allergies and acne on their faces.
Young pups, birth to 2 weeks, sleep almost continually, other than feeding. The energy received from mom's milk is focused on growth. An eight week old puppy may still need 20 hours of sleep, and a 12-month old puppy may need 12-14 hours per day.
A proper dog bed provides support, security and comfort to your puppy. A correct size crate with soft washable bedding is a safe bed and will be a favored get-away space for your puppy.
Do not isolate your puppy from you and your family, its "pack", by putting the crate in the bathroom or garage to sleep. Do not continually change the location of its crate. Decide on a location the is convenient for you and easy for your Chi to access when it wants to sleep or rest. Wash bedding once a week or as needed.
Your puppy's bed/crate will be a familiar space when you travel and add a measure of protection in the event of an accident.
Toys & Exercise
Chihuahua puppies get plenty of exercise when they are still together with their litter mates. Jumping, running, biting, wrestling and tug-of-war is the order of the day. When a puppy goes home with its new owner it usual source of frolic is no longer available. Therefore it is important for you to provide interaction, play and exercise to keep the pup healthy and socialized in its new environment. Their natural inquisitive nature can and will get them into trouble if left alone and boredom sets in.
Fulfill your Chihuahua puppy's need to chew with toys (soft and hard) and rawhide sticks or knots of a size it can get its mouth around. These will keep your puppy busy and it will stay out of trouble. If the pup is chewing on something it should not, take a few minuets and play with it, substituting a chew toy for the object of its obsession at the moment. Once you have refocused its attention on the toy It will forget about the other item you did not want it chewing on.
Play with your new puppy frequently for short periods of time. Let your puppy decide how much and how fast the pace. Do not encouraging a puppy to overexert itself.
Playing with your Chi is a form of exercise, which will stimulate the bowels and bladder. So make plans for going out to potty after playing.