Chihuahuas are cute little dogs, that seem perfect to have in the house with a family. They are so small you can take them anywhere, or even carry them in your bag if they get tired and don’t want to walk. Having a chihuahua would seem a great idea for people looking for a low-maintenance dog.
There are a couple of questions, though, that are not easy to answer when it comes to this breed; the first one is What is the bite force of a Chihuahua? and the second one is Can a Chihuahua harm a person? Most people would think that Chihuahuas are not capable of hurting someone, because they are just too small to be a hazard.
In this article, we will try to shed some light on this matter, since these are not silly questions that can be ignored. This aspect can be something important to know for people who are thinking of getting a chihuahua. There is nothing better than having a furry friend in the house, but it is wise to gather as much information as possible before making a commitment.
Are Chihuahuas Biters?
Chihuahuas, despite their size, are known to have quite a temperament and in certain conditions they can bite. After all, they are proper dogs and biting is something that can happen. One of the main reasons a Chihuahua can bite is for fear. This is especially true if a Chihuahua never socialize properly with other dogs when he was a puppy. Whenever a dog is kept away from his peers and doesn’t have a chance to learn how other dogs behave, this can make him become a fearful adult dog. This is why it is so important to take a puppy around and let him meet older dogs, so that he can understand how to behave and not fear them. If a Chihuahua hardly ever meets other dogs, it is very likely that when he will see one he will feel threatened and to defend himself he will start to bark, growl, and bite.
The bite force of a Chihuahua is estimated to be around 100 PSI (pounds per square inch). Just to give you an idea of how strong this is, you can think that a human bite is approx 130 PSI, while the bite of a lion is about 1100 PSI. This means that a Chihuahua is not capable of seriously harming a person, but he can certainly hurt or scratch a body part. When it comes to children, though, this could be very different. If a small child gets bit by a Chihuahua, the consequences can be more serious. It has been reported of kids having their fingers permanently damaged by the bite of a chihuahua. Of course, these are extreme cases, that hardly ever happen, nonetheless it is possible. Not to say that little children who don’t know how to play with a pet should not be left unattended with a dog, whether big or small.
Why Are Chihuahuas So Cranky?
There are many reasons why a Chihuahua can become aggressive towards dogs or humans. The main one, as we have just seen, is fear, but there are other reasons as well:
- Pain. It is possible that a Chihuahua becomes aggressive because he is in pain and has health issues. Especially if the pain is located in a specific part of the body and this gets touched, the Chihuahua could bite to avoid being touched again. If you think your Chihuahua is being aggressive because of some kind of discomfort, you must take him to the vet as soon as possible.
- Puppy teeth. If you have a Chihuahua puppy, the fact that he is biting could be due to teething. All puppies go through a period of their life when they experience discomfort and pain because their teeth are growing. To ease the pain, they might try to bite objects. This behavior is normal and there is nothing to worry about. If you don’t want your pup to bite you or your things, there are toys you can give him, so he can bite them instead.
- Hormonal imbalance. This can happen after a Chihuahua gives birth, since the estrogen hormone levels are much higher than usual during this period. This is a passing phase that lasts just a few weeks and then things should go back to normal. If the aggressive behavior lasts longer than a month, a trip to the vet is recommended.
Why Does My Chihuahua Keep Biting Me?
If you notice your Chihuahua has formed a habit of biting you even when nothing seems to trigger the behavior, there could be a case of miscommunication between you and your dog. This can be caused by not having set clear boundaries with your dog, especially during playtime. If a dog is used to giving little bites to the owner while playing, he will probably repeat this behavior even when he’s doing other things. It is important for a pet parent to correct the biting behavior anytime it happens and make clear that biting is not acceptable.
Chihuahuas are adorable small dogs that are easy to maintain and can bring so much joy to a family. They usually are calm and easy to get along with, but in rare cases, they can get aggressive and bite. This behavior is often caused by the way the pup has been brought up by the owner, with limited or no socializing. Luckily, they are so tiny that even when they bite they don’t do much damage to adults, since the bite force of a Chihuahua is limited. Nonetheless, a bite from a Chihuahua can be painful and can have more serious consequences for children.
If you have a Chihuahua that bites other dogs or humans, you should take him to see a certified dog trainer, that can help him change this habit. If instead your dog is usually calm, but all of a sudden he has changed personality and has become more aggressive, this might mean he has some health problems, that you should chaeck with your vet.