Long Haired Chihuahua Differences, Coat & Breed Facts

Movies like “Legally Blonde” and “Beverly Hills” made Chihuahuas popular for their sassy, feisty and stubborn personalities.

Long haired Chihuahuas come with just the same fiery personality.

The only difference is their beautiful long haired coats!

They make cuddly and fury friends while keeping the reputation of a feisty lap dog. They are just as feisty, loyal and fiery as their short-haired siblings.

Keep reading to learn more about their appearance, grooming and differences. We also share what to expect if you are looking to make one your forever friend.

What Kind Of Chihuahua Has Long Hair?

Long Haired Chihuahua

A common misconception about long haired Chis is that they are a different type of chihuahua.

Long haired and short haired Chihuahuas are not separate breeds, the only difference is their coat length. They are both considered varieties of the same breed.

Short and long haired varieties are both classified under the name Chihuahua. It is the hairless variety which is considered a separate breed and is called the Mexican Hairless.

Coat length for this breed is determined by a single gene.

The short haired (i.e. smooth coat) is the dominant gene and the long haired is recessive. This makes the long haired Chihuahua less common, but it is still a purebred dog.

Long haired Chihuahuas are different from short haired just because of their coat length.

They are loved for their long coat which is just like the coat of a Papillion. They have fringed hair around their ears and long, feathered hair around their legs, body and tail.

Despite the difference in coat length both short and long haired dogs are almost identical in size, personality and health.

Both varieties are a small toy breed with a loyal, energetic and alert personality.

History and Popularity

Long Haired Chihuahua Running
This breed was introduced into America in the 1800s.

The original Chihuahua was a short-haired variety that came from ancient Aztec civilizations in Central America and Mexico.

Merchants would often sell this dog to tourists who would then bring these dogs back to the United States. Their name was coined from the Mexican State of Chihuahua in 1850 after the city most of the dogs were purchased from.

American breeders then began to experiment in mating short haired varieties with longer-haired dogs such as the Pomeranian, Pekingese, Yorkshire Terrier and Papillion.

Long haired Chihuahuas originated by mixing the short haired with toy breeds like the Papillion to achieve their beautiful long coat.

Once the long coat was established, they were no longer mixed with other breeds.

Long haired puppies can now be bred from purebred chihuahuas if the genetics are right. Sometimes long and short haired puppies can be born in the same litter.

In 1904 the American Kennel club officially recognized this breed.

Since then the long haired variety has been an established breed that is considered purebred.

They sky-rocked in popularity in 1990s when Taco Bell launched a commercial with a chihuahua saying “Yo quiero Taco Bell”. They have also been featured in many movies and TV shows such as “Legally Blonde”, “Beverly Hills” and “Sex in the City”.

These shows and commercials continue to contribute to the popularity of this breed.

Long Haired Chihuahua Appearance

White Long Haired Chihuahua
These long haired doggies are around the same size as their short haired siblings.

Long haired Chis should have a soft coat which is straight or wavy, but never curly.

Their coat is significantly longer than a short haired and is especially noticeable around their ears, neck, tail and legs. They have feathering on their ears, tail, hind legs, neck and feet.

This breed comes with triangular ears, a short snout, round body and big eyes. They are masters of the puppy-dog eye look.

They are extremely similar to the short haired, especially in size.

Both varieties are a small dog breed classified in the Toy Group and should weigh no more than six pounds. The toy group is characterized by smaller breeds with big personalities and the long haired is no exception!

Chihuahuas over six pounds are disqualified by the breed standard.

The World Record for the smallest dog in the world is a Chihuahua who was less than four inches tall and weighed only one pound!

Long hairs can also come in a smaller size, often called teacup.

This teacup variety is usually four pounds and only six to ten inches tall. Although still as fluffy, this smaller dog can have severe health problems due to their micro size. Many toy breeds can also have protective tendencies and tend to bark.

Both short and long haired chihuahuas can have either an “apple” head, which is the most common, or a “deer” head.

The standard head shape is described as being “apple-like”.

Their snout meets the crest of their forehead at a 90-degree angle, creating an “L” shape. Along with the “L” shape of their face, their eyes appear to be bugling.

With a deer-head their snout is slightly longer so it meets their forehead at a 45-degree angle instead.

Deer headed chihuahuas are not recognized are purebred.

Coat Colors

Chihuahua Colors
Their eyes are usually a dark and luminous color that creates a beautiful hazel in direct sunlight.

The colors of the long haired Chihuahua match that of their short haired friends.

Some of the most common coat colors are black, brown (chocolate), red, (clay) and fawn.

However, one amazing thing is that they can be almost any color.

They are usually are bi-colored, meaning that you see two different colors on their coat. However, they can even be tri-colored (like a Pibull) or just simply have one solid color.

Chihuahua color table
CommonRare
BlackBlack & Silver, Black & White, Black Sabled Fawn and Black Sabled Silver
Black and TanBlue
Blue and TanBlue & White
ChocolateBlue Brindled Fawn
Chocolate and TanChocolate & White, Chocolate Blue, Chocolate Brindled Fawn and Chocolate Sabled Fawn
CreamCream & White
FawnFawn Brindled Black
Fawn and WhiteGold or Gold & White
RedRed & White
Silver or Silver & White
White

The most eye-catching color combinations include black and tan, blue and tan, black and red and black and silver.

Long hair chihuahuas can also have beautiful markings and patterns. This includes brindle, which looks like tiger stripes, and merle which makes them look like a mini Australian Shepherd.

Sable is also possible where the coloration is lighter at the root than it is at the tip. This is often seen in the color of German Shepherds’ coats.

The long hair of this breed adds to the beauty of these color patterns and combinations.

Grooming

Grooming a long haired Chihuahua is far more intense than a short haired Chi.

The beauty of their long hair requires care and grooming.

These dogs do require more grooming and maintenance, but due to their small size this is manageable for most owners. They do best with an owner that can devote time to brush them daily.

They should be brushed every day in order to keep mats and tangles from forming.

A bristle brush or slicker comb is ideal to ensure that their long coat does not form mats, especially in areas of feathering such as behind their ears and tail. Brushing will keep their coat silky, soft and perfect for cuddling.

Daily grooming can also help to manage their shedding.

Getting your Chihuahua accustomed to being groomed as a puppy is crucial.

It is very important to be careful when holding them and handling them as they are extremely fragile. You must be careful around their molera, which is the soft spot of their skull.

Bathing is important when they are excessively dirty, but it is not good to bathe them too frequently as their skin could become dry and their ears could get irritated from water. If they need to be bathed, then avoid getting water into their ears.

Coat Genetics

The long haired Chihuahua is bred from a recessive gene which gives them their long fur.

This does not mean that the long haired is rare, more simply it is just less common. The recessive gene that gives our furry friend long hair is the only thing that makes them unique in comparison to short-hairs.

The gene that gives a Chihuahua short hair is dominant over the long hair gene. This explains the reason why it is more common to see the short haired variant!

A puppy needs the recessive long-hair gene from both mom and dad to have long hair.

Recessive genes are also responsible for long haired german shepherds.

Long Haired Chihuahua vs Short Haired Differences

Long and Short Haired Chihuahua
The long hair variety is fluffier in appearance to the standard short coat.

The standard short haired Chihuahua is the most common variety found in the United States. It is more popular than the long haired variety and is commonly thought of as the original.

Both the long haired and smooth coated are accepted by the American Kennel Club. They are classified as the same breed and only differ in scoring based on their coat fur length.

Based on fur length alone it is very easy to spot a long haired dog.

 Long HairedShort Haired
CoatSilkier and furrierShorter and coarse
AppearanceLonger and thicker with wavesShort and flat
PatternLonger fur all over their tails, legs, ears, faces, and even toes!Same length fur all over their tiny bodies!

Long haired Chihuahuas will generally have longer hair throughout their coat. It should lie flat or be slightly wavy, but not curled. They will also have feathering on their ears, feet and legs, hindquarters and tail.

The primary difference between the two types of Chis is coat length.

By looking at an adult you can easily spot the long hair surrounding the ears, neck, tail, and legs. Their long hair will be fully grown by six to nine months old.

One telltale spot where you can tell the difference in the coat is around the ears. The long haired Chihuahua will have long hairs coming out and around their ears and around the snout and faces.

A short haired will have a much finer coat which looks more like a labrador-type coat.

It becomes very hard when you try to identify long haired puppies.

Short and long haired chihuahuas can be born in the same litter. Both varieties often lose part of their coat during birth. Fur loss is common around the ears, chest, thigh, and back regions.

Some long haired puppies are born with more fur around the head and ears, but it is a possibility that the long hair doesn’t develop until they are over six months old.

By ten weeks old their coats should start to grow longer to the point where they are distinguishable.

A six-month-old puppy will go through a period of hair loss. They shed their puppy coats in patches and clumps, making room for their long haired adult coat to grow in.

Personality and Temperament

Black and Tan Long Haired Chihuahua Face

Do not let these famous pooches fool you, these dogs are more than just lap dogs.

Chis are feisty small dogs that have a lot of personality jam-packed in their small body. They are alert, inquisitive, energetic and adaptable dogs who are best suited for an owner who understands them.

There are no behavioral or personality differences between the standard and long haired Chihuahua. However, the feathering around their face and tail adds to their sassy personality!

If you ask an owner about their dog’s personality, most will have similar responses “A whole lot of personality in a small body.”

Chihuahuas are notorious for their huge personality and attitude.

They typically form a strong bond with their owner, but can be wary of people outside their “inner-circle”.

This tiny dog lives in a world where everything is bigger and scarier than they are, so it makes sense that they can have problems with fear-aggression. Rambunctious children, strangers and other dogs can all threaten them.

Owners should be aware of situations that may make their dog uncomfortable.

Long haired chihuahuas are fiercely protective over their owners and other members of their family. Aggression will also stem from their protective instincts. Due to this they are often difficult to train. They need a devoted owner who is willing to put in the time to train them.

Any type of Chihuahua is not typically recommended for families with small children.

They can live happily as an only child. They prefer to have one person with whom they can form a strong bond. To these lucky people, they can be a wonderfully loving, loyal and snuggly companion.

Although this bred enjoys being a lap dog sometimes, they also require quite a bit of exercise.

Owners should provide toys and activities for dog to stay mentally stimulated. Many love to participate in activities such as agility and fly ball. Even though these may only be suited for larger dogs, most activities can be scaled down to suit your pocket-sized pup!

Do Long Haired Chihuahuas Bark A Lot?

Long Haired Chihuahua Puppy Barking

A better question would be to ask “how loud are long haired chihuahuas?!”

These small dogs can put out quite the mighty bark for extended periods of time.

They are known to bark a lot in general and usually they uphold their reputation. Coat length does not affect barking.

Long haired chihuahuas are just plain vocal. Often their bark is described as more of a yap or a yip, because they do not always make a bark sound. Yipping can be triggered by many different reasons such as aggression, boredom, hunger, loneliness or affection.

They are an expressive and often loud companion.

Barking can escalate quickly and training is extremely important for a happy relationship.

Excessive barking and naughty behavior are almost breed characteristics.

Long Haired Chihuahua Puppies

On average a chihuahua will give birth to three puppies per litter. This number can be as low as one puppy or as high as six puppies, but the more puppies delivered, the harder it is on the mother.

Long haired Chihuahuas do not have their full coat until approximately nine months of age. However, by ten weeks of age their coat will begin to get longer and feather around the head, paws and ears. A long-haired puppy should, but does not always, have a fluffier looking coat.

Unfortunately long haired chihuahuas do not come at a discounted price.

They typically cost between five hundred and fifteen hundred dollars.

The price for a puppy will vary because some breeders charge differently based on litter size, health testing and color. For example, a merle puppy will probably be on the higher side of this price range.

Long haired puppies can be found from “backyard” breeders, puppy mills, shelters and private breeders.

Backyard breeding of long haired Chis is common so be sure to do your research before adopting one. Irresponsible breeders often breed them for their high price tag.

Finding a responsible breeder who cares more about genetics, health and pedigree is more important than coat length or price. In order to choose a good breeder, there are a few things to look out for:

  • The breeder should specialize in breeding Chihuahuas only. Some may even specialize in breeding just long haired puppies, but this is not likely.
  • Breeders should screen their dogs for cardiac, patella and eye health problems.
  • They should only have a few litters per year, much more indicates a puppy mill.
  • Their facilities and whelping box should be in the house, well-kept and clean.
  • The mother should be friendly and appear to be well taken care of.

The American Kennel Club and the Chihuahua Club of America both have resources to find reputable breeders in your area. Remember, just because the parents of a litter are registered with a Kennel Club, does not mean that the puppies are guaranteed to be healthy.

Known Health Problems

Long Haired Chihuahua Dog

Long haired and standard Chihuahuas are identical in terms of their life span and health.

Chihuahuas are relatively healthy compared to most dogs of the toy group. They average 12 years, but many healthy individuals live into their late teens and some even into their 20s!

Since they are such small dogs, extra care must be taken in everyday life with them. They are fragile dogs and can get hurt very easily. It is important for owners to be aware and on the lookout for some of the serious health conditions in this breed.

Luxating Patella, or slipping kneecap, is one of the most common health problems seen in Chihuahuas.

This condition is hereditary and can show up as early as six months of age. The kneecap will dislocate from its usual position in the knee joint and cause the dog to limp.

In mild cases the patella will return to normal on its own. However, if both legs are affected, surgery may be necessary to relieve pain.

Most chihuahuas are prone to heart problems due to their small size and overfeeding.

Some are likely to suffer from heart problems such as heart enlargement and congestive failure. It is uncommon them to have heart murmurs, but it is important to check with the breeder before purchasing.

A long haired chihuahua is more susceptible to trapping bacteria and viruses in their coat, especially close to their eyes, ears and mouth.

Long hair varieties are also not equipped for outdoor living and should always be monitored because they get cold very quickly. Even with the longer hair, they do not produce a lot of body heat.

Although not an inherited health problem, many struggle with obesity. This is often due to improper nutrition, over feeding or a lack of exercise.

Summary

Long and short haired chihuahuas are the same breed.

The only difference between the two is the their coat length.

A long haired chihuahua will be your loyal, fluffy companion, just like the Fluffy Frenchie!

These small but mighty dogs can make wonderful companions for owners who understand their charming, but sometimes defiant personalities.

They are alert and inquisitive dogs that require more training and work that some people initially think. They are most happy with one owner and are not usually recommended as family dogs because of their potential for fear aggression.

A long haired Chihuahua is sure to always bring excitement in your life with their good looks, fiery personality and passionate loyalty.

You will soon look forward to their happy yip after returning from a trip to the grocery store.

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