how long is a chihuahua pregnant for

How Long is a Chihuahua Pregnant For?

Taking care of any dog means added responsibility and dealing with a litter of puppies, even ones as small as Chihuahuas, is even more work than you would imagine. Many people who have never dealt with a pregnant canine and their gestation are unsure of the duration of time that a dog is pregnant. That’s when the question of “how long is a chihuahua pregnant for”, comes up.

All breeds of dogs, including chihuahuas, are pregnant for the same amount of time; typically around 63 days.

How Long is a Chihuahua Pregnant For?

The length of time that a canine is pregnant averages around 63 days and can range from 57 to 69 days. A chihuahua will fall in this average time frame since the breed of dog does not dictate how long she will be pregnant.

Does The Breed Affect How Long A Dog Is Pregnant?

Some larger or giant breeds are prone to carrying their puppies and giving birth a little earlier than average, usually closer to 59 or 60 days. This is believed to be caused by the size and number of pups in the litter.

How Do I Know My Chihuahua Is Pregnant?

Many people, especially those intentionally breeding, are excited and interested in knowing if their dog is pregnant once the mating has occurred. Unfortunately, there is no urine test for them to pee on like what human women have, so other methods are necessary for confirmation.

Blood Testing – Relaxin

There is a blood test that may be performed around 35 days after mating, which looks for the production of “relaxin”. This is a hormone that is produced by the ovary and placenta and is released when the female is pregnant.

chihuahua gestation period

The reliability of this test is not great, as many false negatives are seen when performed too early in pregnancy. If she only has one or two puppies, there can be a false negative as well. This test will also not be helpful in identifying the number of puppies.


Using the method of ultrasound can be very effective after about 28 days after mating. This does not mean that it is a simple task to count fetuses. Positioning can make it very difficult to tell how many puppies the female is carrying.

Radiographs or X-Rays

Radiographs, more commonly referred to as X-rays, are the recommended and most accurate method of counting how many puppies a female is carrying.

Doing radiographs is beneficial and should be performed on all pregnant dogs in the last 2 weeks of gestation. It is important to have a rough idea of how many puppies the momma dog will have, that way you know when she is finished giving birth.

It is also important that the radiographs are taken no sooner than 47 days post-conception. This is because the unborn pups’ bones haven’t entirely been mineralized and they cannot be seen at the radiograph.

How Long Will My Chihuahua Be Pregnant For? Important Care Tips

A pregnant female will certainly need some extra TLC. Ensuring that you know exactly what to feed her and what her activity levels should be restricted to is crucial. Also making sure that both dogs, the male and female, are healthy prior to breeding, is responsible and recommended.

What Diet Should I Feed My Pregnant Chihuahua?

After the first month of gestation, her caloric intake will increase quite a bit. It would be pertinent to provide her with some additional food, some veterinarians even suggest giving her puppy food for additional calories and nutrition.

Should I Give Her Any Supplements?

If you are feeding her a complete and balanced diet then supplementing with additional foods or products is not necessary. Providing additional calcium can be detrimental to the development of puppies and should be avoided.

Some veterinarians recommend giving either a diet that is rich in Omega-3 Fatty Acids or a supplement to aid in milk production. It is still very important that you consult with your dog’s veterinarian prior to starting her on any kind of supplements, especially while pregnant.

How Long is a Chihuahua Pregnant For

Can She Still Play Like Usual?

Even though she is pregnant, she will still want to act like a dog and have spurts of energy and excitement. Many first-time breeders are unsure what precautions they should take when caring for a pregnant dog.

Allowing your pregnant dog to play and be active in the first 4 or 5 weeks of gestation is fine. But after that 5-week mark, it would be best to slow her down and keep her from going too hard at playtime.

Is It Ok To Do Short Walks?

Walks are ok, just in short distances once she is in the final stretch of her pregnancy. It is good to have some exercise after all. Just like with humans, a woman is more likely to give birth on time if she has some light activity, like walking, on a daily basis.

How Long is a Chihuahua Pregnant For? What about a Whelping Box?

When dogs, and most animals for that matter, are close to giving birth they will start to “nest”. This is an instinctive behavior that happens when she is preparing to deliver by setting up a designated area for labor and whelping afterward. Many breeders will use this same area as a place to raise the puppies over several weeks.

How Do I Design A Whelping Box?

There are several things to know when designing your dog’s whelping box. First, it needs to be in an easy to clean and warm area. The whelping box should also be comfortable and easily accessible for the mother, as she will spend a lot of time there over the next few weeks.

Ledge Or Rail

Having a ledge, lip or rail that surrounds the whelping box is necessary. The mother will need to be able to come and go as she pleases while the pups remain confined to their safe area.


The size of the whelping box, while it may seem silly, is actually very important. We don’t want the puppies to have too much room or the mom to have too little. Ideally, their designated whelping area should be about 1.5 to 2 times the size of the mother.

vet holding a chihuahua newborn

Having too little room means she will be less comfortable, making her move around to stretch which can disrupt the warmth and comfort of the puppies. If there is too much space in the whelping box then the puppies can scoot too far away, potentially resulting in them becoming hypothermic.

Comfortable Materials To Lay On

The most ideal materials to use inside a whelping box are going to be those that are easily cleaned and disinfected as well as moisture-wicking. Puppies make a lot of mess, so having the area set up to be cleaned quickly and easily is much more convenient.

Avoid things like straw, hay or any other kind of wood shavings as these can cause irritation to the eyes, mouth and skin of the newborn pups.

Blankets, sheets or other soft material are nice to have, but if the puppies manage to wiggle underneath them, then they need to be removed. They can be unintentionally stepped on or smothered by the mother.

Heat Source

Having a heat source is very important when dealing with newborn puppies. They are extremely susceptible to hypothermia since they cannot appropriately regulate their body temperatures. This needs to be closely monitored in the first weeks of life.

Many breeders simply lay down a heating pad in the center of the whelping box, this encourages the puppies to stay away from the edges where they are at a higher risk of being smothered by their mother.

Heating Pads

Using a heating pad that is in your closet for a sore shoulder muscle is not what you would put in a whelping box. These do not circulate the heat properly and have coils that become very hot and can potentially burn the puppies. If you choose to use one anyway, making sure there are many layers in between it and the newborns is crucial.

A water or circulating heating pad is more ideal. This way the temperature doesn’t concentrate in specific spots, causing burns or wounds to the puppies or dam.

Heat Lamps

Heat lamps are safer but not as direct as some heating pads. Sometimes you will have to provide additional heat sources along with the heating lamps if the litter and whelping box are very large.

What Should I Expect When My Chihuahua Goes Into Labor?

Not only does the question of how long will my chihuahua be pregnant for is important but also what you should expect during labor.

chihuahua puppy

Once that time comes, the first stage of labor is a long one. Usually, the female will pace and seem restless, sometimes they even vomit. These situations are normal. Don’t panic and make sure she has plenty of water. This part of labor can last anywhere from 8 to 16 hours.

How Often Should She Be Delivering Puppies?

The dam will deliver one pup close to about every hour, give or take about 15 to 30 minutes. She will usually strain for close to 10 or more minutes per puppy. Do not be alarmed if she takes a break in the middle of birthing her large litter, this can sometimes last about 4 hours.

If she does not produce another puppy for about 30 minutes or more of hard straining or she takes longer than a 4-hour break when you know there are more pups to come, then it is crucial to call your veterinarian. This could potentially indicate a life-threatening issue of dystocia which will require surgery to remove any stuck puppies.

Do Chihuahuas Usually Need C-Sections?

If dystocia (difficulty giving birth) occurs and a puppy is stuck in the birth canal, then surgery will most likely be necessary to remove him. On some occasions, if the pup is partially exposed, the vet can free him without doing surgery.

Chihuahuas are not prone to a high risk of dystocia, so rarely will one need a C-section. However, if the female was bred with a male that was much larger than her, it is possible she will have difficulty giving birth and will require surgery.

How Long is a Chihuahua Pregnant For? Final Thought

Be sure to monitor your new momma dog carefully for any signs of foul-smelling vaginal discharge or lack of thriftiness. Both the mother and pups are in a delicate state for the first few days after whelping.

How Long is a Chihuahua Pregnant For? We hope you have the above helpful!

chihuahuas growling

Chihuahuas Growling: Going Against Nature

Why are these Chihuahuas Growling so much! It might seem tough, being the smallest guy around.

Does it seem like your Chihuahua is more aggressive than other dogs in the neighborhood? Why exactly does your little guy growl so much? Is your dog growling becoming a problem?

Chihuahuas aren’t Naturally Aggressive

Your adorable little Chihuahua is actually named after the Mexican state of Chihuahua, with its capital Chihuahua City. Chihuahuas were bred for many years as fantastic human companions and loving, social pets!

Experts think the breed descended from a similarly small-sized dog bred by the Mexican Toltec peoples, called the Techichi, stretching as far back as the ninth century A.D. These now extinct Techichi likely descended from dogs that have roots landing in Asia.

While these little dogs were bred for human companionship, like so many other small breeds around the world, they can be reserved toward other animals and strange people. That is assuming they aren’t socialized at a young age.

They weren’t bred specifically to be aggressive with other animals. Even larger rodents could pose a threat to these tiny guys. They certainly weren’t bred for any kind of protection work.

So, what reason do they have to be naturally aggressive at all?

chihuahua growls as owner gets close to his food

The Stereotypical Chihuahua

A roommate’s girlfriend moved in with us many years ago, bringing her son and tiny 10-pound adult Chihuahua, Melvin, with her. This was back in my early 20’s.

For perhaps the first week and a half, Melvin would quickly scutter in some corner of the house every time I approached or utter a consistent stream of growls and yips when he wasn’t able to.

Eventually, I began desensitizing and counterconditioning him to my presence, using treat rewards. At that point, he warmed up and we became best friends!

I would never have had to devote much effort at all had Melvin not been so antisocial. Dogs are a naturally social species, and friendship should have developed the very first time we met.

Chihuahuas Growling: Melvin and Other Dogs

It was clear his handler had never bothered to socialize him with other people. Melvin was pretty unfriendly with other animals, also.

His owner would frequently let him outside to potty off-leash (which isn’t a good practice without a fence or other barrier). After all, Melvin was so small, and couldn’t run very fast.

chihuahua behavior problems

Whenever Melvin happened to see another dog being walked nearby, or any stranger simply walking, he would rush up to face it, uttering a constant stream of angry barks. It didn’t matter if the dog was 10 times Melvin’s size!

Thankfully, other owners always did have their dogs leashed. He wouldn’t have lasted but a split second or so had confrontations ever escalated.

Melvin and The New Beagle

Several years ago, I had brought an 8-week-old Beagle rescue home. He was about the size of a cup holder, much similar to Melvin’s size, though he grew up quickly.

Knowing how important social experiences were for any puppy, especially at a very young age, I was worried. I’ve always exercised great care when socializing my puppies, but they were never forced to grow up around angry little dogs.

Melvin wasn’t nice, to say the least. I was terrified he would ruin my efforts with Volly! He never actually bit my puppy but was constantly threatening.

In the end, I always incorporated enthusiastic praise, play, treats and other rewards every time Melvin was around. Even though Melvin wasn’t ever anything but aggressive, Volly would just think he was playing!

What She Did Wrong, and How to Avoid It

Melvin was never socialized. His handler clearly never devoted any kind of effort in that part of his development. Either this or he was traumatized as a young puppy and no effort was ever devoted to treating that trauma.

Had she simply spent the tiniest bit of effort introducing Melvin to other dogs and people when he was a young puppy, teaching him that social encounters are rewarding, he wouldn’t have grown so aggressively antisocial and constantly anxious.

Always socialize your puppy!

owner training a chihuahua

What is Small Dog Syndrome?

You might have heard this called a Napoleon Complex, and it refers to small dogs who misbehave or behave aggressively. These are the ”‘ankle biters” of the world!

These types of behavior are all too often ignored by owners (perfectly true in Melvin’s case). Owners of “ankle biters” rarely put any effort into correcting them, which is one reason why they persist. These are behaviors that wouldn’t be tolerated in larger breeds, easily sending a seventy-pound dog to the shelter.

Can you imagine what would happen if a 100 lb. English Labrador, or a Pit-Bull of any size, were to run upon a child and begin viciously barking his head off? It would be terrifying! Any mother would be furious such a dog was allowed to roam untethered.

Yet this behavior is easy to imagine with any Chihuahua, or at least the stereotypical Chihuahua. Most of us have heard stories of small dogs acting out like this.

Why is it forbidden if a human-sized dog acts this way, but accepted if a small or toy breed does?

The small dog probably won’t send you to the hospital if he or she bites you, and nothing weighing 6-10 lbs. is very frightening.

The Wrong Kind of Correction

Melvin’s case is a perfect one to examine because his handler did almost everything you could do, the wrong way, short of physically abusing him.


She would scream at him when he ran out to threaten any passing stranger or animal, which never accomplished anything other than encouraging his anxiety.

In Melvin the Chihuahua’s mind, her screaming probably meant this new threat was making his handler just as uncomfortable. He wouldn’t have understood the screaming was directed toward him personally.

If you need to correct your Chihuahua, be very careful not to scream or shout. This often makes our dogs feel more anxious. Calm corrections and rewarding methods of reinforcement are much more effective.

“For most behavior problems, especially those associated with fear or anxiety, the use of punishment is contraindicated since, even if it suppresses the undesirable behavior, it may further aggravate the pet’s fear and anxiety without teaching your pet anything new” (Horwitz, Debra. DVM). – Introduction to Desensitization and Counterconditioning

Do Chihuahuas Need Vaccinations?

All dogs of any size should be vaccinated! Puppy vaccinations are especially important because puppies, like toddlers, are extremely vulnerable. A bad flea infestation could be deadly to such a vulnerable animal.

chihuahua is barking

Parvo kills countless puppies every year and is nearly always fatal to young pups if untreated.

Rabies vaccinations are legally mandated in most states across the U.S. In many established countries of the world, Rabies has been all but eradicated. So why is it the only Vaccine all U.S. dogs must get?

Rabies Vaccinations are legally mandated because it is arguably the deadliest virus known to man and is nearly always lethal once contracted. Animals testing positive are automatically euthanized, so feared is this virus.


Why Do Dogs Growl

Growling is a form of communication for our dogs, as you’ve probably guessed. Dogs can’t speak our languages, and if your Chihuahua is growling you may have either missed or ignored any visual cues.

Chihuahuas growling is an expression that they are uncomfortable or unhappy. But why is our dog unhappy in the first place? What is making him or her feel unhappy?


Fear-based anxiety can cause our dogs to growl. Imagine a dog afraid of strangers. This dog begins growling as strangers approach. This is the dog’s way of saying “You’re making me feel uncomfortable. Back off!”

How would you avoid this situation? Socialize your dog with strangers while he is a puppy! Socialization is extremely important to a dog’s psychological development and would help you avoid several issues in addition to growling.

Sadly, many dog owners fail to ever socialize their dogs, then wonder why their dogs are acting fearful or aggressive around strangers. This isn’t any different with Chihuahuas, or any other dog breed.

Possessiveness & Agression

All domesticated dog breeds have inherited this instinct from their ancestors, who had to often either guard or bury their food so other predators didn’t steal it. The key is not to simply take away food while your dog is eating or take away toys while your dog is playing.

If you get into the habit of doing this, your dog could become possessive, to the point of biting owners. Other dogs simply issue that growl as a warning sign.

Thankfully, resource guarding is very easy to treat! You’ll simply need to make a trade. Offer your dog something more valuable, like a tasty or rare treat, if you must approach his food bowl when he is eating. Eventually, the dog won’t fear your approach because he relates it to the treats.

Chihuahuas Growling: Territorial Behavior

Sometimes a dog will growl when he feels the need to defend his territory from a potential “threat”. Imagine a mailman approaching from the road. This could even be another dog. How does your own dog respond?

Delivery people will often carry treats for this very reason!

chihuahua is growling

Chihuahuas Growling: Pain

Injured dogs will often growl out of a defensive instinct. Your Chihuahua might be saying “I’m injured, in pain, and afraid. Stop hurting me!” In other words, your pup is telling you to back off.

Are Chihuahuas growling every time someone tries to pet them, or even just come near, and you aren’t sure why this is happening?

If you can’t explain a strange dog behavior, your next course of action should involve ruling out medical causes. Schedule a veterinary examination!

If your usually well behaved, social dog is growling or unusually aggressive, it’s very important you consult a veterinarian to identify any health issues!

Why are Chihuahuas Growling More than Other Dogs?

If you actually think about it, Chihuahuas seem like they might be more aggressive, on average, than other breeds. When most people use the expression “ankle biters”, Chihuahuas probably come to mind. There are a couple of different theories for this.

Irresponsible Breeding

We have a very sad and dire animal overpopulation problem in America. Hundreds of thousands of dogs are euthanized annually. Most of these dogs are totally healthy and many are well behaved.

There are simply too many dogs bred each year, and not enough resources to care for each one. Chihuahuas are a popular breed and there is money to be made by breeding them.

A problem exists when amateur breeders skimp on breeding costs, such as not genetically testing the dam and sire or breeding just any male and female, instead of strictly well behaved, healthy and sociable dogs.

Sometimes, Chihuahuas can be genetically prone to aggression. This doesn’t mean they will always become aggressive. Even dogs genetically prone to aggression can become very sociable if raised properly.

Chihuahuas Growling: Lack of Socialization

Many Chihuahuas genetically prone to aggression could usually turn out to be wonderfully well-behaved dogs if they were socialized well as puppies.

Teach these puppies that other dogs, strangers and other animals mean great things and are fun to be around, while they are young!

If you’ve done that with your Chihuahua (or any breed) successfully at an early age, he won’t have any reason to become aggressive as he grows older. Your Chihuahua would know he has more to gain by being friendly.

There is one huge problem. Many Chihuahua owners simply never socialize their puppies. They might think “He will only ever weigh 15 pounds. Why should I bother?”

Because the breed is so small and delicate, many owners don’t want to take them outside or around other animals. This makes sense from a safety perspective, but you can’t socialize if your dog is confined to the house his entire life.

69.6% of Chihuahuas tested with the American Temperament Test Society passed, as one of the lowest scores of all breeds tested.

chihuahua behavior problems

Chihuahua behavior problems: how to deal with them

If at an early age the puppy is not appropriately trained, Chihuahua behavior problems can turn a cute and pleasant companion into a harmful and capricious dog.

Indeed, we love these cute Chihuahua dogs for their beautiful face and nice appearance. However, even these beautiful creatures can develop some whims and bad habits, from which they should be weaned.

And it is unlikely that you, as the future owner of a Chihuahua, would like to have a naughty pest that gut everything in its path and leaves unpleasant traces behind.

Chihuahua bad habits

Common Chihuahua behavior problems

The most common bad habits of this breed include the following:

  • A tendency to coprophagia (eating your own feces or the feces of other dogs)
  • Spoiling things around
  • Gnawing and chewing on foreign objects
  • Begging for food from the owner or strangers
  • Barking or howling for no reason
  • Intense digging in the ground
  • Aggressive behavior towards other people – throwing at them and even trying to bite
  • Harmful behavior while walking (especially while walking on a leash)

It should be understood that such bad habits appear due to improper upbringing of the dog. And the most important thing is that it is much more difficult to wean a dog from bad habits than to accustom him to correct manners in the early stages of education.

Teaching the correct behavior before the final formation of the dog’s character is the most correct approach. An older Chihuahua will still allow himself to be re-educated, but will offer strong push back, which cannot be said about a puppy who enjoys exploring the world and is ready to quickly learn what is good and what is bad.

puppy Chihuahua behavior

Sometimes desperate owners resort to terrible methods of training such as electric collars, which are activated to force the dog to do something. However, in practice, this method is not only cruel, but also rather ineffective. After all, your dog, instead of loyalty and love for the owner, will treat him with fear and distrust. Sometimes this develops into rage and aggression, so you will definitely not get a faithful dog with such methods.

Achieving the correct behavior from a dog is possible only by relying on natural canine instincts. Cruelty never develop the values in a dog what we look for, which is unconditional loyalty and sincere love.

Fighting Chihuahua behavior problems the right way

Emptying and peeing on the floor in the house

Chihuahuas are naturally clean dogs. So the owner of this breed should not worry too much about such problem as they are generally not in the habit of leaving feces and puddles of urine in the house.

All that is required to successfully train a Chihuahua to manage his needs. To do this, it is enough to know that the process occurs mainly immediately after a meal, one and a half to two hours after such meal, or immediately after sleep. As soon as the Chihuahua starts spinning and looking for a place to relieve himself, the owner should show him a rag or disposable absorbent diaper.

After the puppy has done its job, this rag should be thrown away, and a new one should be put in place. It will take no more than a week to reinforce the habit of going to a designated place. Puppies learn quite quickly. You should not scold your dog if he did not go to the diaper. It is recommended to collect feces with a diaper, put it in the designated place and show it to your dog.

In order for the Chihuahua puppy to learn to relieve himself outside the house, you need to take a diaper with you during a walk, put it in a deserted place and show it to him. After a couple of times such a trip to the “street toilet” will teach your dog that emptying is possible outside and he will learn to endure until the next outing.

Coprophagy tendency

Here we can give only one piece of advice. If you have not been able to solve this problem yourself, then you should definitely contact a veterinary clinic. The doctor will advise and help you understand the reasons for this behavior.

Often times the reasons are caused by any of the following:

  • Lack of any vitamins and minerals
  • Lack of attention from the owner
  • Presence of helminths
  • Pancreatic insufficiency

The veterinarian will most certainly figure out the reason for this behavior and prescribe the correct treatment.

Bark and howl for no reason

To cope with this bad Chihuahua habit, you need to know the cause of this behavior. Perhaps the dog is simply afraid to be in the house alone or is trying to attract the attention of the owner due to a lack thereof. We recommend that you look closely at what preceded the dog’s barking or howling, and whenever possible, get rid of sources that negatively affect the dog’s mood. Chihuahuas often express boredom, fear or stress this way.

The habit of ruining things

It is believed that this occurs for the following reasons:

  • Problems with microflora
  • Discomfort in puppies during teething
  • Helminthiasis
  • Avitaminosis
  • Ordinary boredom

If your pet is teething and thus saves himself from pain and discomfort, you need to buy special sticks or rubber bones for him.

importance of training a Chihuahua

If a Chihuahua baby chews on shoes and things only in your absence, then he simply does not have enough attention. The best way out is to clean up your things before leaving, or to take the dog with you, if possible.

If there is a tendency to gnaw on everything even after purchasing special toys for dogs and providing more attention to your dog, then only a veterinarian can figure out the hidden reasons.

Intense digging in the ground

If it so happens that the puppy has fallen in love with the flower or garden beds in the yard and starts digging into them while walking, do not get mad at your dog and shout at him. Simply take your dog away from such places several times so that he understands that his behavior is prohibited.

Unfriendly behavior towards people

Owners often confuse their puppy’s usual play with other people with aggression. However, if this behavior causes discomfort and resentment in others, then it is quite easy to deal with it. Here are some basic rules:

Wean your puppy from playing with your personal belongings or clothing. If the playing dog has clamped a part of your clothes with his teeth, gently free yourself up and go to another room. This way, without aggression, you show him that this behavior is not welcomed.

Buy dog toys that will be much more interesting for him to chew and bite. Do not provoke your puppy into aggressive behavior. Do not play games that might induce him to bite you.

Chihuahuas understand everything very quickly. And if your canine friend bit you lightly, you should react showing pain and discomfort so he will understand that you did not appreciate what he did and he will learn not do it again.

correct bad behavior of a Chihuahua

Erratic walking

When you take your dog out for a walk, it is best to carry treats. Teach him not to run forward or under your your feet by rewarding him good behavior with a treat.

The Chihuahua will stop pulling the leash if you tug on it and then immediately release the tension. In this case, the length of the leash should be reduced. Repeat this until the dog gets out of the habit of making sudden movements on the leash.

It is worth remembering that in a new environment, dogs become more disobedient because they want to learn everything about their new world. Chihuahuas are no different! In such cases, you should not punish the dog.

Simply redirect his attention with his favorite toy or entertain him with a game he likes. Every response should be accompanied with positive emotions.

Begging for food

It is very easy to break the habit of begging for food. The first rule is to feed your dog before you sit down at the table. Second, your dog should eat only at a consistent and set time of the day. Trust me, your Chihuahua will quickly get used to his meal schedule. Third, teach your puppy to eat only from a bowl and make sure the floor is clean so that he does not get into the habit of eating off the floor.

If the dog nevertheless keeps running to the table during your meal, then command him to walk away so he will understand that he is not getting food at that time.

And once again we remind you of the most important thing in preventing Chihuahua behavior problems. You should start training a Chihuahua early, at the age of two months at the latest. By doing so, you will get a cute, obedient and loyal canine friend!

Video Corner


chihuahua watery eyes

Chihuahua watery eyes: Causes and solutions

The excessive and abnormal flow of tears is called “epiphora”. Chihuahua watery eyes can happen for various reasons, and it is necessary to detect the origin and to stop it as quickly as possible.

Chihuahua watery eyes  – Congenital origin

Several anomalies of the various components of the eye can be at the origin of epiphora.


Entropion is an abnormality of the upper or lower eyelids. It presents a curling of the free edge towards the interior of the eye and this causes friction of the bristles against the cornea and constant excessive tearing. Entropion can be one-sided or two-sided.

Chihuahua watery eyes

Entropion is most often visible from a young age, if it is not very important it can attenuate over time until it hardly bothers your chihuahua anymore. But if the entropion persists or if it is already very important at puppy’s age, surgery is necessary. It consists in removing the excess skin, in order to find a normal position of the eyelid.

Chihuahua watery eyes due to ectopic eyelashes

An ectopic eyelash is a condition that results a poor position of the eyelash, which in turns pushes through the conjunctiva towards the cornea. This causes irritation of the cornea and discharge from the eye.

It can become painful for the dog if the friction causes a corneal ulcer.

The treatment will consist in removing the ectopic cilium, either by regular depilation or by cryosurgery. The application of liquid nitrogen (anti-wart product) to the eyelash, under general anesthesia can also be considered.

corneal ulcer in a chihuahua

Watery eyes caused by tear duct

Various glands secrete the tears which are evacuated in the nostrils by the lacrimal duct which opens at 2 points on the palpebral conjunctiva.

These ducts may not be perforated at birth and the puncture points poorly positioned, resulting in a failure to evacuate the tears which then flow outside the eye.

Watery eyes caused by an infection

All parts of the eye can be the site of inflammation and infection, the cause of which must be determined in order to effectively treat the condition.


The conjunctiva is the mucous membrane lining the inside of the eyelids. Its inflammation can be more or less severe: conjunctivitis.
The ocular discharge is more or less important because the conjunctivitis can range from simple redness (hyperemia) to complete dema of the conjunctiva.

Several origins are possible: viral, bacterial, allergic or toxic and treatment will involve eliminating the cause, treating the inflammation and superinfection if it exists.

Chihuahua ectopic eyelashes


It is an inflammation of the eyelids, sometimes associated with other symptoms. It may be due to an eye infection, the excessive tearing of which causes inflammation of the eyelids. However, often times, it is a skin disease that affects the eyelids to the point of causing epiphora: staphylococcal infection, scabies, demodicosis or atopy.


It is an inflammation of the interior of the tear duct which causes purulent secretions, unilateral or bilateral. It can be due to the presence of a foreign body or to a dental infection, leading to superinfection. An examination will determine the cause and type of treatment.

All these infections and inflammations will generally be treated by applying antibiotic and anti-inflammatory eye drops.


Trauma to the eye may result in injury resulting in the epiphora. The most commonly observed traumas are the presence of a foreign body and corneal ulcer.

epiphora in a chihuahua

Foreign bodies

Foreign bodies can cause more or less significant lesions, from simple conjunctivitis to deep ulceration. When the eye runs, it is necessary to check the absence of foreign body, otherwise the condition may deteriorate and aggravate the lesions.

For example, a thorn stuck in the cornea can cause a small ulcer, but if you start rubbing the eye, you can drive it deeper. You should also look carefully under the third eyelid, which in the case of intense pain, should be done by light local anesthesia. Following the removal of the foreign body, all the components of the eye will be checked in order to treat any associated lesion.


The corneal ulcer is a lesion reaching the cornea in depth. This “hole” can be more or less deep and must be treated as quickly as possible.

The causes of ulcers vary from foreign bodies, scratches, wounds, viruses to corrosive products. The treatment varies according to the depth of the ulcer, from very regular application of eye drops to surgery. This is not a pathology to be taken lightly, you must consult the veterinarian very quickly.

The longer you wait, the bigger the ulcer develops, increasing the risk of losing the eye.

Be careful not to treat this condition yourself, because steroidal anti-inflammatory eye drops should be avoided in the event of a corneal ulcer and could aggravate the condition.

Factors causing Chihuahua watery eyes

Chihuahua watery eyes – Final word

Factors causing Chihuahua watery eyes (epiphora) are quite varied and have different levels of severity. We see that for the same “runny eye” symptom, the origins and recommended treatments are quite different.

Therefore, it is really important to quickly consult your veterinarian in order to carry out a complete examination of the eye. He will be able to detect the cause of the epiphora and to treat it as well as possible.