How big will a chihuahua get?
Chihuahua are one of the smallest dog breeds. The smallest chihuahua ever recorded weighed 12 ounces full grown, in fact that set the smallest dog record for any dog breed. I have seen chihuahuas that way 12 pounds so there is a range of sizes when it comes to chihuahuas.
How long do chihuahuas live?
Chihuahuas have one of the longest average life spans of any dog breed. It is not uncommon to see an 18-year-old chihuahua. I think one reason for their longevity is being so little their heart does not have to works so hard to pump blood to a small body. They also live a very sheltered and pampered life because most spend 99% of their life indoors out of most dangers and diseases.
Being so small, what is the biggest concern a chihuahua owner has about their dog?
I can imagine that stepping or sitting on such a little dog is on the top of a chihuahua owner's mind, especially when their pet is a puppy and always under foot. But the most commong inury I see is not caused by getting stepped on or sat on but rather from jumping off the bed, sofa, or lap. Jumping down from say a sofa does not seem to be that big of a deal, but if you are a chihuahua it is like falling out of a second story window. That little fall can result in a broken leg or more.
Are chihuahuas good pets for families with children?
As a rule, chihuahuas and small children are not a good combination. There is a real possibility of a small child dropping the chihuahua, tripping and falling on it, or in other ways injuring them. That goes double for puppies. They are a fragile breed and one that I would say are meant for older children and adultsl. Besides that, most chihuahuas do not appreciate small children.
Being such a small breed, is it difficult to teach them tricks and commands?
Not really. It is true that smaller dog breeds would rather be held and cuddled than learn to shake hands and fetch, but they will learn commands just like bigger dogs do, though it may take a few more teaching episodes and more patience. Like so many things in life your results are proportional to your efforts, with chihuahuas you need to have a little more persistence in your training efforts.
I would think that house training a little dog can more of a challenge in the winter. It is often too cold for a little dog to go outside, what is your advice?
Paper training or training to use a puppy pad are the best bets. Use a pet crate for night time and also when the puppy cannot be watched closely.