Dietary needs of any dog are of huge importance. That is what dog parents should carefully consider when feeding their puppy. However, chihuahua feeding chart demands even more attention taking into consideration this breed’s uniqueness.
Small breeds like a chihuahua puppy naturally have special requirements in their feeding chart. Since this is a small dog and its energy levels vary in respect to typical dog breeds, you should know that their dietary intake is significantly smaller.
In other words, this toy dog requires just the right amount of food in order to preserve its healthy stature. In the next few chapters find out what’s the ideal type of food for your chi and what a healthy diet should look like.
Chihuahua Feeding Chart by Age
|Life stage/phase:||Age:||Oz per day:|| Calories per pound:
|puppy phase||first 12 months||2-4 oz per day||50 calories per pound
|adult phase||1-7 years||4-9 oz per day||40 calories per pound|
|senior phase||above 7 years||5-10 oz per day|| 30 calories per pound
|Life stage/phase:||Age:||Ideal Ibs:|
|puppy phase||first 12 months||0.7 - 6 Ibs|
|adult phase||1-7 years||2-6 Ibs
|senior phase||above 7 years|| 2-6 Ibs (the same as in the adult phase)
Chihuahua Puppy (First 12 Months)
Since chi physique is quite sensitive and it greatly depends on how they are fed, it is important not to put it in danger. Chihuahua puppy immune system often neglects variations in feeding habits and that’s why it is important to create a feeding routine as soon as you get your canin friend.
Puppyhood is a vulnerable age. It demands quality food and a proper feeding schedule. It is best if you feed your puppy 5 to 6 times a day. Its meals should be frequent and consistent, filled with quality nutrients. Remember that newborn chihuahuas are just a few ounces heavy and need plenty of nutrients to grow into a healthy dog.
A Chihuahua feeding chart in its puppy age should include healthy nutrients that come from rice, peas, oatmeal, vegetables such as sweet potatoes, spinach, or carrots. This is a natural dog food with a simple feeding formula. It’s easy on your puppy’s stomach, it is accessible in pet shops all around the world (in a dry kibble form) and your puppy will love it!
In the first couple of months you need to work on developing chihuahua’s healthy habits and keep track of how your puppy responds to certain products. Also, making an effort of always being on time is crucial, because chis tend to develop hypoglycemia if their meals are not properly organized.
That is why it is best to feed them first thing in the morning, around noon and in the evening. If this option puts so much burden on you (especially if you are working), then it is perfectly fine to leave an extra amount of food accessible to your dog.
Chihuahua Adult (1-8 years)
In this stage of life the food intake is already balanced and offers you a relaxing approach. Now you can limit the frequency of daily meals to 3 smaller meals with additional supplements or healthy snacks. Adult dogs are much less subject to vulnerability, except that now every change in the feeding chart should be carefully considered.
Since adult chihuahuas weigh 4-5 times more than the puppies, you should take care of their feeding amounts with respect to the pound of body weight index even more. You do not want to overfeed your canin, nor impact its health negatively. Believe it or not, a fat Chihuahua is a real thing!
Adult dogs of this breed are fed with the kibble size food, because it represents the perfect match for their physique.
For chis with a sensitive digestive system, all-natural food is the perfect choice. Without artificial additives or ingredients that will harm your puppy – you can always rely on organic formula that includes vegetables and fruits based meals.
However, regular meals are based on meat (chicken, turkey, duck) with addition of sweet potato, vegetables, vitamins and minerals. You can find them in carrots, broccoli, salmon oil, peas and fruits such as apples and blueberries. These vegetables contain significant doses of vitamin E too, which is an excellent antioxidant.
Chihuahua senior (Above 8 Years)
High-quality food is essential at this age, too. Maybe even more considering the age of your chihuahua and given the fact that they are even more subject to health issues. Chihuahua feeding charts at this age should consist of ingredients that contain omega 3 and 6, glucosamine and probiotics.
The base of these components is in blended rice, chicken and peas mixed with proper vegetables. Carrots, spinach, sweet potatoes come on top of this list. This is the best dog food for the chihuahua senior. It is the formula which is very digestible and when it comes to the health issues of chihuahuas, this is a big plus.
Some senior chis can experience intolerance to food that is manufactured. Or they simply do not like it. In this case home cooking is a good option. Chihuahua food demands a balanced diet, but this should not be a problem if you already have experience in the kitchen. Also, in this case you have full control of your pet’s grains (example – without gluten) and you can also save money.
Instead of commercial ingredients you can add some extra olive oil which is good considering the amounts of omega 3. Also, keep in mind that in home cooking you always use fresh ingredients.
Chihuahua Daily Routine: How Many Meals A Day?
As already mentioned in the previous part of this article, chihuahua daily routine is essential. Proper usage of time and resources reflects in balancing your chihuahua needs and develops its healthy habits.
A Chihuahua’s diet is based on three basic meals a day. Of course, this is not the case in terms of puppies because their dietary needs are much more frequent and demand constant food access and free feeding. However, once your chi passes a year, three meals should be just fine. Not yourself that snacks and supplements are not meals.
Another thing to bear in mind is a meal quantity. It is essential to stick to the feeding chart and not to make any deviations. Regular sized chihuahua can preserve a healthy weight if the meal is 40-50 calories per pound.
For more information on how these dogs’ size changes throughout years, check out our Chihuahua growth chart.
When Exactly Should Chihuahua Eat?
Be aware that your chihuahua’s energy levels depend on the food intake in every life stage. This is because they cannot process big portions of food immediately and their small physique demands a whole day of small-sized meals.
That is why the chi’s first thing in the morning should be breakfast. Proper nutrients will give them the energy to stay playful and active.
Around noon is the second time of the day these puppies demand feeding. It’s not hard to notice when the food isn’t on time since these fellows alarm you by cute, but noisy weaning.
When it comes to dinner, the best option is to feed them 1-2 hours before bed time. It gives them enough time to process the food and sleep good. This especially refers to old chihuahua who tends to have significant digestive issues when overfed.
Chihuahuas Dog Food
Since this toy breed is considered picky eaters, it is best to provide them with quality food that also has respectable flavor for your pet. Dog food should always dominate with fulfilling nutritional needs, balanced ingredients and healthy products. We bring you the best dog food options and feeding guide for your chi.
Protein Based Food
This type of food is best for adult chihuahuas and includes a full package of high-quality nutrients needed for a healthy dog. Its protein derives from multi-ingredient rich food grounded in turkey and chicken. Oatmeals and brown rice are also indispensable parts of the protein diet. It keeps your dog strong and active for long periods of time.
Balance Of Carbs, Fats And Proteins
This diet is perfect for all life stages of your chi. It contains a balanced range of protein, carbs and fats which are the macronutrients your chihuahua puppy needs in order to preserve energy and remain active. The three-component diet’s most essential ingredients are meat, green vegetables and brown rice.
This is a puppy chihuahua based dog food dominated by grain wheat, corn, sorghum, or barley. It is enriched with carbs and contains sufficient water amounts needed for food processing. It is the perfect food for development of chihuahua immune system and metabolism. In the latter stages of achi’s life, this type of diet is not recommended on a daily basis.
When it comes to the worst possible food that you can use for this is toy breed, than it is definitely the following:
-fillers (like wheat or cellulose)
-preservatives or any other artificial ingredients
-generic meat products
-any food with caffeine
-garlic and all types of onions
Importance Of High-Quality Food
Puppy food equals high-quality food. This is an ultimate guide for all dog breeders. We know that sometimes it is just inevitable to spoil your puppy with an extra cup of food that might just be a problem in the long run.
However, chihuahuas, unlike any other dog, demand perfectly balanced nutrition. Wrong feeding chart is one step away from severe health damages you can make to your puppy.
Dry Food VS. Wet Food
The best option is to make a balance between dry and wet food. Neither is good when used non-reciprocally.
For instance, dry food, such as biscuits, is good to maintain your chi’s jaw and canine strength. However, dry food must be chosen and adapted in respect to your dog’s teeth. Since this is a small dog, not every food will suit.
Another downside of dry food is that, if overused, it causes kidney malfunction. It is due to the lack of water and liquids in this type of food.
On the other hand, wet food is recommended for small chihuahua puppies. It is easily digestible in the early stage of life and helps your puppy get used to chewing.
As your puppy gets older, big amounts of wet food are not an option. Why? Simply because raw food contains big portions of protein and adult chihuahuas should avoid high intakes of it. It causes kidney diseases which are common for this breed.
Food Supplements For Your Puppy
The most important supplements for chihuahuas are vitamins. The first is multi-vitamin. It is mostly used in the latter stages of this puppy’s life, since it loses the full ability to process food without any trouble over time. Multi-vitamins supplement this defect and help them maintain their health.
The second one is Vitamin B. It is not uncommon for chihuahuas to lack the B vitamin. This is a serious issue because its deficiency causes severe fatigue and dog hair loss. The good news is that it is easily excreted through urine.
The third one is Vitamin A. With a healthy diet you can extract this vitamin from vegetables and fish oil. It helps your pet’s skin and hair to glow.
Additionally, Vitamin E is really important, too. It is a natural antioxidant that improves your puppy’s immune system.
Obesity And Health Problems – What To Do?
Bone issues and heart problems are another. If you ever get into trouble of having an overweight chi puppy, here’s what you should do:
Check Your Dog’s Activity Levels
Maybe the main root of your dog’s overweight does not lie in your feeding chart. You try to adapt the feeding chart in a way that helps your chihuahua lose weight, but it still does not go? Then the activity level is a problem!
You should develop a system in which your dog feels encouraged to play and run. Create a fun game and reward him with a small snack. Every dog loves activities – you just need to find a way!
Healthy Diet Is A Must
Creating your chihuahua’s feeding chart is the first thing to do after you get this breed.They are subject to a healthy routine and it shows. If you start feeding this toy puppy with bad food that does not have proper nutrients it will go in two directions:
-health issues common for this breed will surface
-their activity level will decrease immediately.
Food snacks like chocolate or big portions of protein are not an option. Especially if extracted from the leftovers of your own food. In the long run, your dog will not be happy.
Choose a feeding chart and stick to it.
Stop Overfeeding Your Dog
Chihuahuas have frequent and timely meals for a reason. It simply cannot absorb big portions of dog food. Every time you overfeed your toy puppy it will result in severe energy drops.
Chi dogs’ digestive system is problematic in this regard. It requires a full day of nutritional care and obesity will not occur only if your dog is properly well-cared for.
Bone diseases such as arthritis as the most common appear as a result of overweight chihuahua puppies. It affects their bone structure negatively and it stresses the body. Overweight chis are unhappy dogs!
How Much Dog Treats Are Acceptable?
If you notice your Chihuahua puppy refuses to eat dog food, but will eat treats, be careful here.
Chihuahuas should have no more than 1 or 2 treats per day. Every treat is considered as a snack. With the count of 3 meals per day, it creates a total of 5 smaller meals. This is fine if the dog has an active daily routine.
However, if you use treats as an incentive to their excellent activity levels, then even 4 or 5 treats is not a problem. Of course, the calorie count should be on – no treat should go over 5-6 calories.
Still, if you love spoiling your dog, you should consider organic treats like crunchy fruitable ones.
New Food – Ways To Adapt Your Chihuahua
There are some helpful tips to adapt your puppy to new food. And introducing the new food is good for their overall feeding chart which should be diverse and changed from time to time.
If your chihuahua puppy is a picky one and won’t adapt easily, here’s what you could do:
-fasting: you could skip one meal and see how your puppy reacts. An empty stomach will help them adapt to new food easily
-give them smaller portions: try to decrease their meals for one day, then introduce the new food
-usage of digestive aids: probiotics are perfect for this – they will ease their adaptation process and help their stomach in this phase.
The perfect weight for a healthy chihuahua dog is 3 to 6 pounds (1,8 to 2,7 kilos). This is the smallest breed in the world and overweighting them is not good.
Keeping their form inside proper dimensions means keeping them in shape. Every deviation means lack of movement ability and decrease of overall well-being of your chihuahua puppy.
Some breeds, like American or British chihuahuas, are even more sensitive when it comes to weight and their overall weight should not exceed 5,9 Ibs.
Chihuahua Dieting – Common Issues
All chi dogs have common issues when it comes to dieting. Here are some of them:
-hypoglycemia: this is an issue related to bad feeding charts breeders make. Hypoglycemia occurs when dog food does not contain proper amounts of nutrients. Also, skipping meals and an unhealthy daily routine is a trigger for this health issue
-tooth issues: chi puppies require proper sized food. This especially relates to dry food and its size. You should be careful when picking the right food for this breed.
-obesity and spinal issues: Obese chihuahuas tend to have spinal injuries and bone problems. Each pound extra should be worrying.
To find out more on this topic, check out our article on Chihuahua lifespan and possible health issues that could affect it.
Frequently Asked Questions
1. Is it okay if my chihuahua exceeds 6 Ibs?
No! You definitely should not overweight your chihuahua puppy. Every time you do that, you risk your dog a disease and lack of activity.
2. What are chihuahuas allergic to?
If you have one of these toy canines, you should definitely avoid grass and tree pollen. Chihuahuas are allergic to these and the contact results in skin allergies.
A Chihuahua feeding chart has to be set in respect to several parameters: age, ideal weight, health issues and activity levels. Each age has its own feeding routine and should be respected closely.
Chi dogs’ weight is sensitive since this is a small breed and their eating habits are somewhat different in respect to other dog breeds. Every deviation in their feeding chart results in common health issues, such as hypoglycemia, or bone disease.
Chihuahua puppies demand a good feeding routine and proper activity levels. Only by keeping all these components in order will you have a perfectly healthy chihuahua puppy.