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What were Chihuahuas Bred for?

Portrait of a brown, tan and white chihuahua on a grey background

The Techichi dog, an ancient breed of canine, is the ancestor of chihuahuas. The Chihuahua’s forebears were initially bred for various uses, including food, companionship, and participation in religious rites and ceremonies. However, contemporary Chihuahuas are now only bred for companionship. The history of the Chihuahua is far more complex than most people realize. Keep reading to know why Chihuahuas were bred and learn why they are so aggressive.

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Were Chihuahuas Bred to Be Eaten?

Dog eating is currently prohibited throughout most of the western world. It’s still frowned upon, even in regions of the world where eating dogs is permitted (such as Korea). This impression, meanwhile, did not always exist globally. Dog meat consumption was not outlawed in the majority of the western world until the early 1900s.

Having said that, Chihuahuas (Techichi dogs) were further developed for use as food. According to claims, the beloved dogs of the ancient Mayans provided around 10% of the meat they consumed. It is difficult to understand why these folks choose to consume such a sacred pet.

This impression, meanwhile, did not always exist globally. However, other experts contend that the civilization was forced to turn to such consumption due to severe food shortages. Major western world did not outlaw the consumption of dog meat until the. We still need solid evidence to support this viewpoint.

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Were Chihuahuas Bred for Sacrifice?

Cusco, Peru - June 24, 2015: Men Dressed In Traditional Inca Costumes For Inti Raymi Ceremony Sacrafice

Chihuahuas were often used in religious rites and ceremonies since they were Techichi dogs’ descendants. Tragically, this implies that Chihuahuas were offered up as sacrifices at venerated Toltec rituals.

Evidence also points to the ancient Toltecs and Aztecs’ belief that these little canines guided the dead’s souls to the underworld. The Techichi dogs were frequently interred beside their deceased owner and family members. Despite the impression that these canines were mistreated, that was not the case. These canines were properly taken care of when they weren’t being slaughtered or buried. Those creatures were adored by the Toltecs.

Due to their involvement in religious rituals, the people viewed these dogs as sacred animals. Chihuahuas were among the most well-liked companion animals.

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Were Chihuahuas Bred for Hunting?

Hunter with a rifle sitting behind a haystack in a field watching turkeys in the distance

One of the oldest dog breeds is the Chihuahua, and like other ancient breeds, it was created with a specific purpose in mind. But this is when the details start to become murky.

The Chihuahua is incredibly small, compared to the other historic breeds. According to some historians, they have never been employed for herding livestock, hunting, or any other dog-related activity. They suggest that Chihuahuas were primarily bred as sacrifice dogs. However, other experts tend to differ from this opinion and claim that these tiny pups were created for hunting.

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Were Chihuahuas Bred to Kill Rats?

Rat on a rustic, worn board on a barn or shed wall

These dogs have a history of helping people in catching and killing rats. Hence, some people consider Chihuahuas to be much more than family companions. In their native land (Mexico), Chihuahuas are brave ratters that hunt down squirrels, rats, and other rodents. Their instinctual intellect is this collection of inborn abilities.

This breed still possesses these hunting instincts despite being domesticated. A Chihuahua can be your finest tool if you’re dealing with a rat infestation in your house. Remember that these canines are exclusively employed as ratters in Mexico’s more rural regions.

Why Are Chihuahuas So Aggressive?

Portrait of a Chihuahua growling

Chihuahuas are naturally territorially and fiercely protective of their owners. This behavior can sometimes look aggressive as the dogs are feeling threatened and trying to defend themselves. They may bare their fangs, snarl or bark at the potential threat, and may even bite. Therefore, any new strangers must maintain their composure and patience when around Chihuahuas. Some of the biggest reasons that can make a Chihuahua aggressive are discussed below.

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Territorial Aggression

Despite their small size, Chihuahuas are excellent watchdogs because they guard their territory and people. They’ll attack strangers in the dog park or at home. A Chihuahua should not be expected to be sociable by everyone who meets them for the first time.


Black and tan chihuahua in a harness sitting on a person's lap looking scared

Since Chihuahuas are such little canines, other animals and people seem enormous to them. They often experience dread around new faces, and aggressiveness is only a form of coping. They only feel at ease among their owners and are hostile toward others. Chihuahua puppies require socialization and training to help them feel secure among strangers.

Health Issues

Chihuahuas are prone to several medical conditions. These include achy disorders including Legg-Perthes disease, hip dysplasia, patellar luxation, cardiac issues, and hip dysplasia. A Chihuahua that seems aggressive might be in a lot of discomfort. Due to their tiny size, these dogs’ bones and joints can be rather delicate. A Chihuahua that suddenly gets hostile may have medical problems.

Lack of Exercise

White, black and tan, overweight chihuahua sitting on a scale

Because they are so little, many people assume Chihuahuas don’t need to exercise, yet inactivity can result in various behavioral and physical problems. Chihuahuas have a lot of energy, and exercising helps them let it out. They risk becoming bored and picking up harmful habits if they don’t get enough physical activity or mental stimulation.


When your dog is in heat, behavioral changes are frequent. When in heat, Chihuahuas can exhibit aggressive behavior in both males and females. Your pet’s temperament will improve, and aggressiveness will be reduced with spaying or neutering.


Red Chihuahua looking up at the camera looking nervous

Several things might make someone anxious, which makes them violent. Anxiety can be brought on by separation, prior trauma, and significant life changes for your Chihuahua. Aggression can act as a coping mechanism for anxiety, just like fear does.

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