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Meet the Chihuahua & the Xoloitzcuintle! | PetFoodDirect.com Nutrition Center
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Meet the Chihuahua & the Xoloitzcuintle!


Many wonderful things hail from the Mexican culture, such as delicious cuisine, beautiful art and lively music. However, for pet lovers, Mexico may be most famous for bringing us two loveable and memorable dog breeds. To get in on a little South of the Border puppy love, let's learn more about the two most famous Mexican dogs: the Chihuahua and the Xoloitzcuintle, or Xolo.

Chihuahua

Named after the state of Chihuahua in Mexico this tiny breed has a long history shrouded with myth and a complicated archeological record. Clay pots depicting dogs very similar to the modern Chihuahua have been found dating back to around 1300 AD although some evidence points to such dogs having existed hundreds of years prior. Clearly the historic record does show that tiny dogs, much like the modern Chihuahua, were an integral part of Mexican history.

Today the Chihuahua is one of the most popular family pets in American and consistently ranks high in the AKC dog registration lists although since 2002 its ranking has dropped from 9 to 18 in 2012. The AKC recognizes just two varieties of the breed;the Smooth Coat Chihuahua and the Long Coat Chihuahua. Both are identical physically with only their coats varying in lengths. There is no official tea-cup or pocket size Chihuahua according to the AKC and the Chihuahua Club of America. The AKC standard does disqualify any Chihuahua greater than 6 pounds from the show ring and, although there is no height restriction, a well balanced, slightly off-square (a bit longer than tall) dog is preferred.

Some Chihuahuas are born with a soft spot in their skull, called a molera, a condition once thought to prove genetic purity. The Chihuahua Club of America states that perfectly healthy pups may be born with a molera and it does not predispose the dog to hydrocephalus, a dangerous sometimes fatal condition sometimes seen in Chihuahua pups, nor does it prove genetic purity.

An active, spirited dog the Chihuahua, with proper care, may live into its late teen years. Lifelong dental care and a strict diet to prevent obesity are essential to maintain this little dog's health and happiness.

Xoloitzcuintli

Pronounced SHOH-loh-eets-KWEENT-lee, this dog is also known as the Mexican Hairless. The Mexican Hairless comes in three sizes, toy, miniature and standard, and may be hairless or coated. Originally recognized by the AKC in 1887, the Mexican Hairless was dropped by that registry in 1959 because the breed was thought to be extinct. It was readmitted to the AKC in 2009 and shown at Wesminster for the first time in 2012. Its popularity is slowly growing in the United States with the hairless variety especially gaining a small but passionate fan base.

Pronounced SHOH-loh-eets-KWEENT-lee, this dog is also known as the Mexican Hairless. The Mexican Hairless comes in three sizes, toy, miniature and standard, and may be hairless or coated. Originally recognized by the AKC in 1887, the Mexican Hairless was dropped by that registry in 1959 because the breed was thought to be extinct. It was readmitted to the AKC in 2009 and shown at Wesminster for the first time in 2012. Its popularity is slowly growing in the United States with the hairless variety especially gaining a small but passionate fan base.

Generally a healthy breed with few known inherited disorders, the Xolo’s hairless skin must be kept clean and protected from the sun. Xolo’s with a coat needs only regular brushing and minimal bathing. The hairless Xolo usually has incomplete dentition but missing teeth will not prevent it from eating, playing or licking your face.

The Xoloitzcuintli Club of America describes the ideal temperment of the Xolo as “calm, tranquil, aloof and attentive.” He carries himself a bit like royalty and why not, with such an impressive history?



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