Chihuahuas are the smallest dog breed out there, but if you are adopting one, you will still need to be able to monitor their growth.
Using a Chihuahua size chart is one of the best ways to compare where your Chihuahua is in size to where the average Chihuahua of the same age is at.
We have broken down everything that you need to know about Chihuahua growth through the developmental stages, and what to expect as your pup turns into an adult.
We also will look at what affects the growth of a Chihuahua. This is what you should know.
When Do Chihuahuas Stop Growing?
Considering the petit size of a Chihuahua, you can wonder when a dog of this stature will stop growing.
As you will see looking at a Chihuahua growth chart, Chihuahuas grow quickly in the first few days and weeks of life. But they will slow down their growth early on as well.
In general, Chihuahuas will be done growing around 9 months of age, but you will see a huge slowdown in growth starting all the way back at 6 months.
Because they are adults in size at such a young age, you will want to stop them from eating puppy food at 9 months to prevent weight issues.
Chihuahua Size Chart
A Chihuahua weight chart is the best way to monitor the growth of your puppy and ensure that he is growing at a steady rate and not dropping off of his growth curve.
Weight charts work by comparing your dog’s age and weight to the averages for the same breed to get a baseline.
For example, if your Chihuahua puppy weighs 19 ounces, or just over a pound, at 8 weeks, you will know that he is on the smaller side of average.
Using this baseline, you can now predict how big your Chihuahua will weigh when he has finished growing.
A Chihuahua who is 19 ounces at 8 weeks should weigh about 41 ounces at 20 weeks and reach about 3.5 pounds as a full-grown adult.
The Chihuahua size chart can also help you see when your dog has fallen off of his growth curve. Say your pup is 19 ounces at 8 weeks, but then when he is weighed at 12 weeks, he weighs the same amount.
That could give you a clue that your dog has fallen off of his growth curve and you should speak to your vet.
It works the other weigh too, if your dog has put on a lot of weight quickly, you will also want to check with the vet.
Chihuahua Weight Chart
Chihuahua Puppy Development Stages
Birth – 2 Weeks
When your Chihuahua puppy is a newborn, he will weigh somewhere between 2 and 5 ounces and only be around 3 inches long.
They are small enough to hold in the palm of your hand. Don’t fret, however, as they do speed up in weight gain, gaining between 5% and 10% of weight every day.
They are still small dogs, however, and need to be kept with their mothers at this age for the best nutrition and attention.
3 Weeks – 12 Weeks
In general, Chihuahua puppies have a massive growth spurt between 3 weeks of age and 12 weeks of age. You will see a lot of growth in a short period of time.
By the time that your Chihuahua is 12 weeks, he should already weigh about a third of his final adult weight.
Around 6 weeks old, your pup should be weaned off of his mother’s milk and puppies are normally rehomed by 8 weeks old.
4 Months – 9 Months
Between 4 months and 9 months old, your dog will grow a lot slower, but will be completely grown by the time that he reaches 9 months.
Your dog might gain as much as 2 pounds during this time period, but considering it is over the course of 5 months, the changes will happen slowly, so you might not notice the changes as they are happening.
You can still feed the Chihuahua puppy kibble at this point, but not beyond the 9-month mark.
10 Months – 18 Months
Your Chihuahua puppy will not grow anymore past the 9-month mark. If he is continuing to gain weight at this point, then you are setting yourself up for an overweight dog.
It is incredibly difficult to get an overweight toy dog to lose enough weight to be healthy.
They cannot exercise the same way that large breeds do and they already eat so little that diets are difficult. Pay attention to prevent weight gain before it happens.
As we said above, your Chihuahua should not be gaining any weight after he is 9 months old.
The changes you will see as he becomes an adult is much less in the growth department, but instead in behavioural changes.
Your dog should slow down in puppy behaviour. Your dog might be an adult in size at 9 months old, but he will still be a puppy until he is a year and a half.
How Big Do Chihuahuas Get?
Looking at a Chihuahua puppy, you might be wondering what determines your dog’s final size.
Of course, you can follow the Chihuahua growth chart to help you get a good idea about his adult size, but that is not the only way to do it.
The next easiest thing is if you have access to your puppy’s parents. If you can look at the dog’s parents, you will see how big your dog should be based on genetics.
If you don’t have access to a dog’s parents or cannot see how big they were, you can get a DNA test which might help you understand what kind of Chihuahua you have.
In larger dogs, you can look at a puppy’s paw size and get an idea of how much growing he would need to do before his paws become proportional, but this will not work with Chihuahuas as they are too small.
Male Vs Female Chihuahua Growth Chart
As is the case with most dog breeds, there is a little bit of a difference between male and female Chihuahuas in their size. In general, male Chihuahuas are larger than their female counterparts.
When looking at their weight, males and females really are so close that there is not a noticeable difference. In height, however, there is a difference.
Male Chihuahuas will grow to heights of between 7 and 9 inches, whereas females will stand slightly shorter at 6 to 8 inches.
You can measure a dog’s height by having them stand on all-four legs and measure from the dog’s back down to the ground. You should be able to do this with a standard ruler to measure a Chihuahua.
Male Chihuahuas have more muscle mass in their torsos as well, where the females have wider hips than males. Remember the breed is so small, however, that these differences might not be noticeable at all.
Will Neutering/Spaying My Chihuahua Affect His Growth?
The old standby when it comes to spaying or neutering your dog was to have your dog fixed before he reached sexual maturity.
The goal was to prevent pregnancies before they could be able to have one or make one.
More recent science has shown that spaying or neutering a dog before he has finished growing or before he reaches sexual maturity can cause joint issues later on, as they were not finished growing before the dog was altered.
This effect seems to happen with large breeds, but science has not shown the same is true for small breeds.
It is best to discuss the pros and cons with your vet to make the right choice for your family.
Papillon Vs Chihuahua Size
Both Papillons and Chihuahuas are small breed dogs, so you might be wondering how they compare when it comes to size. There are some differences between the two breeds.
Chihuahua males weigh about 4 to 6 pounds when they are fully grown at their adult weight.
Papillon males are still small but weigh more than the Chihuahuas do. The average weight range for an adult male Papillon is between 8 and 10 pounds.
Height-wise, Chihuahuas are still smaller. The male Chihuahua will stand between 6 and 10 inches, while the Papillon will stand between 7.9 inches and 11 inches.
Factors That Affect Chihuahua Growth
Genetics & Gender
There are several factors that affect Chihuahua growth, but the biggest factor is genetics and gender.
If your Chihuahua has parents who are small, then there is a likely chance that your dog will also be small.
Additionally, female Chihuahuas are slightly smaller than males, so you will also need to think about gender in a dog’s size prediction.
You should keep these in mind when working out how big your dog should be.
It is the case with all growing mammals, but nutrition is always important for proper development.
If a dog does not get the right nutrients, his bones might not be able to develop as well as they should.
It might not make your pup appear any smaller when he is young, but when he ages and arthritis sets in, he may begin to hunch and appear shorter.
Physical Activity & Health
Dogs who are in poor health will not have the energy to grow as well as he should.
Good health also can include physical activity. When a dog is allowed to become overweight and not physically active, he will have extra weight pressing down on his joints and bones, resulting in stunted growth.
Given how small a Chihuahua is, being overweight can be detrimental to his development and growth.
How Much To Feed A Growing Chihuahua Puppy?
It can be incredibly stressful to work out how much you should be feeding your growing Chihuahua puppy. The first thing to pay attention to is what kind of food that you are feeding your dog.
You need to be feeding your pup food for puppies. Puppy food is higher in calories and nutrients.
Between the age of 2 months and 9 months, you will want to continue with the puppy food. In general, Chihuahua puppies need between ¼ and ½ cups of food each day, split into three to four meals.
It might seem like it is a lot of food, but they do have fast metabolisms, so they burn it off quickly.
They do continue to have a fast metabolism even after they finish growing, but as their growth slows down and stops, they will naturally gain more weight, putting them at risk of obesity.
How To Tell If Your Chihuahua Is Underweight Or Overweight?
If you have been following your Chihuahua growth chart in order to get a good idea about whether your dog is remaining on his growth curve, but you find out that your dog has drifted off of his growth curve, you might be questioning whether your dog is overweight or underweight.
First, remember that there can be slight deviations off of the growth curve if your dog is in the middle of a growth spurt or about to have one.
But if it looks like there has been a big change from his growth, then you need to assess.
In a healthy weight, after the initial roly-poly phase of puppyhood, you should be able to see a waist behind the ribs.
If you can actually see his ribs through his skin or his spine is jutting upward, then you likely have an underweight god.
Meanwhile, if there is no waist and you cannot feel the ribs under the skin then your dog is likely overweight.
If you have any concerns about whether your dog’s weight is not right, make an appointment with your vet and have your puppy evaluated.
Your vet can guide you to increase calories or with a diet plan to help him slim down.
How To Properly Weigh My Chihuahua?
The Chihuahua weight chart will only work if you actually weight your puppy. You should weigh your puppy every other week to keep track of his growth and see if he has fallen off of the growth curve.
Regular weigh-ins will also allow you to catch any deviations from the growth curve immediately so that they can be resolved.
The easiest way to weigh your puppy is to first weigh yourself while holding the puppy. Jot that down. Then, weigh yourself again without the puppy. The difference between the two weights will be what your Chihuahua weighs.
Chihuahua Genetics And Common Health Problems
Unfortunately, all pure-bred dogs have a risk of developing genetic issues or health problems. There are some health conditions that are more common for Chihuahuas than others. Here are the most common health problems for a Chihuahua.
- Spinal Problems: The first common health problem is spinal problems. Because they are such delicate dogs, they can be injured in ways that larger dogs cannot.
- Patellar Luxation: The second common genetic condition is patellar luxation, which is the dislocation of the kneecap. A vet can help you manage this.
- Tracheal Collapse: Another common condition for Chihuahuas is the tracheal collapse. The trachea is made up of cartilage, which means it’s flexible, but in Chihuahuas, the cartilage is weak and prone to collapsing.
- Dental disease: The final condition that we are going to mention for a Chihuahua is dental disease. Don’t be surprised if you need to have some of your pup’s teeth removed as the dental disease advances.
Adopting a Chihuahua can be both exciting and stressful. Remember that beyond using the Chihuahua size chart, you should also keep up with regular veterinary visits.
Also, since there is so much variety with Chihuahua types, you will need to keep in mind the type of Chihuahua that you have and use the appropriate growth chart for your needs.