Although the tiny toy-sized Chihuahua is a far cry from their wolfish ancestors, their biological needs are not quite as different from them as their appearance is. For a start, your pint-sized pup still needs food that puts protein first to help them maintain lean muscle and allow their body to produce new proteins.
Although your Chi won’t require a huge volume of food to power them through the day given their small size, they do need high-quality dinners that help to keep their little bodies healthy. Given your pup has the potential to live until they are twenty, a good diet is essential to protect them from common illnesses and age-related conditions like arthritis and heart disease.
The best dog food for a Chihuahua will:
- Help prevent age-related issues
- Help to maintain a healthy weight
- Provide stable energy and blood-sugar levels
- Protect fragile little joints
- Protect & clean tiny teeth
Healthy food for longer lives
It’s no secret that spunky little Chihuahuas are one of the oldest living breeds of dog. While these long lives mean more time with your best fur-iend, it does mean that that they are prone to certain illnesses as they advance in age such as arthritis and heart disease. Heart disease is the biggest cause of death for Chihuahuas and sadly is just considered natural after a certain age. Although a Chihuahua isn’t predisposed to some of these conditions, they are simply more likely to get them the longer they live. So how can you help prevent them?
Well, just like with people, a healthy diet and regular exercise are the key factors for a pooch to live a longer, healthier life. Since Chihuahuas are prone to some joint issues, keeping them strong is key. That’s why Pure packs in plenty of essential fatty acids (like omega-3). Despite being called “fatty” they won’t make your pup pack on the pounds. Instead, they are vital for many functions like regular joints and supple skin. Pure provides a balanced diet made from 100% natural, whole ingredients to provide the paw-fect balanced diet, designed by nutritionists and backed by vets to keep your pup happy and healthy for a longer life.
Help to maintain a healthy weight
It’s easy to overestimate how much a Chihuahua can eat, especially if they’re keen to put the food away. But a bit of chunk can cause mayhem for a Chihuahua, as the extra weight will put additional pressure on their little organs and dainty bones. Obesity can cause and exacerbate breathing issues, so should definitely be avoided for brachycephalic breeds like the Chi who are prone to breathing problems already. Plus, the extra weight puts a strain on their joints and increases their risk of injury, which is catastrophic when Chihuahuas are predisposed to problems like dislocating kees and damaged hips.
Lowering their carbs is the first step to maintaining a healthy weight, and cutting out calorific kibble is a great foundation for a fitter lifestyle. (There’s a lot of starch and empty calories in it.) Instead, opt for a dog food that has lots of quality protein and fibre to help your pup feel fuller for longer. Recipes that include sources of complex carbohydrates are also great for preventing your pooch from feeling hungry, while also helping to keep their energy levels steady throughout the day.
Giving your lively pup all-day energy
One of the most im-paw-tent things about your Chihuahua’s food is that it needs to provide plenty of slow-releasing energy. Chis have a very high metabolism, so they need regular meals packed full of nutrients and energy that will help to keep them alert and active.
Because of their high metabolism and lively nature, Chihuahuas are prone to hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar. To combat this, try to find a food with plenty of complex carbs that release energy slowly. Plus, dietary fibre helps to slow the intake of sugar, which will regulate your pooch’s blood sugar levels and keep them stable.
Kibble can be a nightmare for hypoglycemic dogs as the sugars and simple carbs (which are broken down into sugars quickly) cause spikes in blood sugar leading to hyperactivity, which is then followed by crashes and lethargy. Such crashes are catastrophic for Chihuahuas.
Pure provides plenty of quality protein and natural fats from whole meat, the paw-fect way to ensure your pup is getting all the energy they need. Our balanced recipes only provide complex carbs from nutritious sources, like sweet potatoes, which provide plenty of vitamins and minerals as well as energy. There’s also a healthy dose of fibre to make sure their blood sugar stays stable, and it keeps your pooch’s bowel movements regular too.
Nutrition that helps protect little joints
Chihuahuas are sadly at a greater risk of injury just because their bodies aren’t as sturdy as bigger breeds. Other than being fragile, Chis are prone to joint issues like luxating patella (dislocating knees) and Leggs-Perthes Disease (crumbling hips). So how can their dinner help keep them healthy?
Well, it will need to contain all the vitamins and minerals that keep bones strong, like calcium and vitamin D. Omega-3 is another great addition to reduce joint pain and maintain their function. But rather than foods that are fortified with synthetic nutrients, you can instead pick up nourishing dog food that’s naturally good for them.
Clean and protect tiny teeth
Although a Chihuahua’s teeth and jaws can be pretty strong, they are still only small. Chomping on hard kibble can damage your dog’s fragile teeth, not to mention, kibble isn't good for any dog's teeth anyway. (And it can be a serious choking hazard for Chihuahuas.)
Periodontal disease, also known as gum disease, is the most common infectious disease to affect dogs. A shocking 87% of pups have gum disease by the age of 3. That means something the dog is eating is wreaking havoc on their oral health. This is paw-ticularly bad news for Chihuahuas who are prone to gum disease and dental problems because their jaws are often overcrowded.
Say bye-bye to boring brown kibble
Kibble is the culprit in many doggy dental woes. It is packed full of sugars and simple carbohydrates that feed the bad bacteria which create acid that damages tooth enamel. For years it was sold with the idea that the crunchiness cleaned teeth, but this is unanimously seen as false by vets. Simply put by Dr Nick Thompson BVM&S, VetMFHom, MRCVS, “Kibble doesn’t clean teeth, it’s a myth.”
Fresh food for a healthy mouth
Meanwhile, fresh food like Pure Pet Food can help to keep your Chi’s mouth healthy. It has all the im-paw-tent nutrients like omega-3 which reduce inflammation, like gum disease, and vitamin D which strengthens teeth and bones and has been found to fight off periodontal disease. There are also antioxidants like vitamin A and C which have also been proven to reduce gum disease.
In fresh food, there’s no harsh processing to destroy the ingredient's goodness, which can happen in traditional dry dog food. It’s also easy to digest, so your Chi can absorb all the good stuff.
Plus, Pure food is mixed with water, so you can simply add a little more liquid to help wash away any food scraps left in your pup’s mouth. There’s also no sugar for bacteria to feed on.
Never any nasties
All owners should be concerned about feeding their dog cheap fillers and artificial additives. However, it’s even more im-paw-tent that a Chihuahua doesn’t eat junk because they have quite fickle stomachs, and don’t have the strongest constitution. They’re only little, so it takes much smaller amounts of irritants to cause upset stomachs and allergies. Plus, their high metabolisms mean that if they eat anything that disagrees with them, it will affect them much sooner than a big dog.
Highly-processed dog food like burnt brown biscuits don’t just contain artificial additives, there are dangerous carcinogens left behind by the Maillard Reaction that happens when the food is processed through extreme heat and pressure.
Luckily for your little one, Pure never has any nasties. Our nourishing food is all-natural and human-grade, making it good enough for you to eat. We also avoid common canine allergens and irritants like wheat, and there’s plenty of recipes sure to suit even the fussiest of pups.
How much should you feed a Chihuahua?
With Chihuahuas, there is a fine line between too much and not enough food. Their high metabolism and vulnerability to low blood sugar means that they need to eat nourishing food regularly. But they are still only small, so eating too much is probably going to make them overweight. Many owners overestimate how much food their Chihuahua needs. Not to worry though, because Pure takes the guesswork out. Our experts can advise you on the paw-fect tailored diet for your pooch, including the amount of food they should be eating every day.
Tell us more about your Chihuahua today and we can recommend a paw-sonalised diet that is proven to help keep your pooch in prime condition for a healthier, longer life.