Kountry Tyme's Chihuahuas
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A.K.C. Chihuahua Standard

General Appearance
A graceful, alert, swift-moving little dog with saucy expression, compact, and with terrier-like qualities of temperament.

Size, Proportion, Substance Weight-A well balanced little dog not to exceed 6 pounds. Proportion-The body is off-square; hence, slightly longer when measured from point of shoulder to point of buttocks, than height at the withers. Somewhat shorter bodies are preferred in males. Disqualifications-Any dog over 6 pounds in weight.


Head
A well rounded "apple dome" skull, with or without molera. Expression-Saucy. Eyes-Full, but not protruding, balanced, set well apart-luminous dark or luminous ruby. (Light eyes in blond or white-colored dogs permissible.) Ears-Large, erect type ears, held more upright when alert, but flaring to the sides at a 45 degree angle when in repose, giving breadth between the ears. Muzzle-Moderately short, slightly pointed. Cheeks and jaws lean. Nose-Self-colored in
blond types, or black. In moles, blues and chocolates, they are self-colored. In blond types, pink nose permissible. Bite-Level or scissors. Overshot or undershot bite, or any distortion of the bite or jaw, should be penalized as a serious fault. Disqualifications-Broken down or cropped ears.

Neck, Topline, Body
Neck-Slightly arched, gracefully sloping into lean shoulders. Topline-Level. Body-Ribs rounded and well sprung (but not too much "barrel-shaped"). Tail-Moderately long, carried sickle either up or out, or in a loop over the back, with tip just touching the back. (Never tucked between legs.) Disqualifications-Cropped tail, bobtail.


Forequarters
Shoulders-Lean, sloping into a slightly broadening support above straight forelegs that set well under, giving a free play at the elbows. Shoulders should be well up, giving balance and soundness, sloping into a level back. (Never down or low.) This gives a chestiness, and strength of forequarters, yet not of the "Bulldog" chest. Feet-A small, dainty foot with toes well split up but not spread, pads cushioned. (Neither the hare nor the cat foot.) Pasterns-Fine.

Hindquarters

Muscular, with hocks well apart, neither out nor in, well let down, firm and sturdy. The feet are as in front.


Coat

In the Smooth Coats, the coat should be of a soft texture, close and glossy. (Heavier coats with undercoats permissible.) Coat placed well over body with the ruff on neck preferred, and more scanty on head and ears. Hair on tail preferred furry. In Long Coats, the coat should be of a soft texture, either flat or slightly curly, with undercoat preferred. Ears-Fringed. (Heavy fringed ears may be tipped slightly if due to the fringes and not to weak ear leather, never down.) Tail-Full and long (as a plume). Feathering on feet and legs, pants on hind legs and large ruff on the neck desired and preferred. Disqualifications-In Long Coats, too thin coat that resembles bareness.


Color

Any color-Solid, marked or splashed.


Gait

The Chihuahua should move swiftly with a firm, sturdy action, with good reach in front equal to the drive from the rear. From the rear, the hocks remain parallel to each other, and the foot fall of the rear legs follows directly behind that of the forelegs. The legs, both front and rear, will tend to converge slightly toward a central line of gravity as speed increases. The side view shows good, strong drive in the rear and plenty of reach in the front, with head carried high. The topline should remain firm and the back line level as the dog moves.


Temperament

Alert, with terrier-like qualities.

DISQUALIFICATIONS

Any dog over 6 pounds in weight. Broken down or cropped ears. Cropped tail, bobtail. In Long Coats, too thin coat that resembles bareness.

 
* Approved September 11, 1990 Effective October 30, 1990


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The illustration (picture) below is of Taylor, one of our own Chihuahuas. The (molera) fontanel, often referred to as the "Soft Spot" is the same, as you would find on a human baby's head. It can vary in shape and size. In the past, it was often used to identify the purity of a Chihuahua. The American Kennel Club still includes (mentions) the molera in the Breed Standard today.

It is important for New-Comers to the Breed to understand, that though not every Chihuahua will have an open fontanel, that indeed many of them will. Do not let this alarm you. I assure you that this is perfectly normal.

Unfortunately, some veterinarians are not familiar with or aware that the molera is common among the Chihuahua Breed.

Though a veterinarian may be highly educated and qualified in the (medical field) treatment of animals, this does not necessarily mean they are familiar with every aspect (characteristic) of the Chihuahua Breed or any other Breed for that matter. Why should they be?

For most common procedures, the physical appearance of a dog does not necessarily determine how they should medically be treated. Unless you are lucky enough to find a veterinarian that is Chihuahua owners themselves, I honestly doubt if they will be able to tell you, what the maximum weight standard is for the breed or what degree (angle) their ears, should be held at when standing in an alert position. The same holds true for the presence of the molera.

Unfortunately, there are still some veterinarians today, which truely misdiagnose this breed. Through their concern over the (soft spot) opening in the head, they will often suggest to the new puppy owner that their puppy has a condition known as hydrocephalus (water on the brain).

This has caused many (pet owners) new-comers to the breed a tremendous amount of unnecessary worries and tears. There is nothing like taking your new puppy to the vet for the first time. To be told, they have something wrong is devastating for the new puppy owner.

The concern over this issue is such that the Chihuahua Club of America has written an article to enlighten and educated the new Chihuahua owner. http://www.chihuahuaclubofamerica.com/molera

They inform us that through the observations of many Top Notch Veterinarians and Devoted Breeders, there is adequate medical evidence to support that the size or presence of an open fontanel (molera) in the Chihuahua and/or other Toy Breeds, does not necessarily mean it should be associated with the condition known as hydrocephalus.

If your Chihuahua is bred according to the written "A.K.C. Standards", the head should take on the appearance of being "Apple Domed" (nice and round). A hydrocephalic puppy will generally have an enlarged dome (head). This is because of water that has built up. However, this does not justify connecting the head of a hydrocephalic puppy, to that of a normal Domed Head with a molera present.

Should your veterinarian suggest that your new puppy has a deformity simply because of an open fontanel, he is most likely doing so because of this well-known medical condition. This does not always mean your puppy has been accurately, diagnosed.

Hydrocephalus is a condition that the Owner of any Toy Breed should be familiar with. Often, a hydrocephalic puppy will not have the best coordination. This is because the pressure (water) on the brain can throw off their equilibrium. They may also loose their ability to hear.

When the day finally comes for you to take your new puppy home, look for the simple signs. When you speak or clap your hands, does your puppy respond? Remember a deaf ear can still feel vibrations so stand still and call for your puppy. Are they alert and playful? Is their appetite normal or non-existence? Keep in mind that whenever a puppy enters into a new environment, they will not always eat as well as they did in their old home. Once they get adjusted to their new surroundings, they should regain their normal eating habits.

Before you schedule an appointment with a veterinarian, make sure they are familiar with the Chihuahua Breed. Check to see if they are accustomed to seeing (treating) Chihuahua puppies on a regular basis, especially ones of very petite sizes. Be prepared to give your vet a full report on the behavior and actions of your new puppy.

For the first few days, try to spend as much quality time with your puppy as possible so they will gain a sense (feeling) of security and trust with you and with (in) their new home. If the (your) Breeder has only allowed you a mere 24 to 48 hours to have your puppy checked by a licensed veterinarian, then you may not have time to really get acquainted with them before their first visit to the vet. Remember to educate yourself on the Breed, as well as the Breeder you select.


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No Matter The Size, "A Chihuahua Is NOT Registered Or Recognized As A Teacup."

The weight of a Chihuahua seems to be a primary interest for the New Pet Owner. Many new-comers to the Breed often get caught up in that popular term "Teacup." The internet is full of (so-called) Teacup Puppies for sale. This is not only done within the Chihuahua Breed but many other small Breeds.

There are tons of people out there raising Chihuahuas these days. Unfortunately, so many of them are doing it for all the wrong reasons. In your search for a new Chihuahua Puppy, you are likely to encounter someone who may try to pass their puppies off as T-Cups.

Please be aware there is not, nor has there ever been a Chihuahua registered as anything other than simply a Chihuahua. Anyone (breeder) who will tell a perspective buyer any other wise is unfortunately misleading them and the buyer should be aware of this." It is however, a good way to test the knowledge and honesty of a breeder.

The truth is there is NO BREED registered as a Teacup. Often, this is simply the Runt of the Litter that a Breeder or individual has taken upon (themselves) to label as such. This terminology and other popular labels such as (Pocket Size), (Toy), or (Miniature) are misleading and often used to entice the buyer that does not know any different. Therefore, it pays to do your homework ahead of time. Research the Breed you are considering adding to your family.

Many people end up being just another statistic simply because they have not taken the time to educate themselves. If you come across a Breeder or individual that CLAIMS to raise Teacups, a RED FLAG should automatically go up. If they will mislead you about the accuracy of a puppy's size, what else will they mislead you about?

The Chihuahua Club of America has done an excellent job of explaining about this misconception. Please take a moment to read their article pertaining to and Titled "TEACUP MYTHS". http://www.chihuahuaclubofamerica.com/teacup

In short, they explain that indeed there are some Chihuahuas, as well as other Breeds that can remain much smaller than (others) their littermates do. This brings us back to "The Runt of the Litter". They conclude by informing us that The Breed Standard does not categorize and/or label Chihuahuas by their individual size and that all the "Additional Labels" used to describe a particularly small Chihuahua is misleading and may cause unnecessary confusion for new-comers to the breed.

The Chihuahua comes in two varieties or coats. (Long Coat or Smooth Coat). The American Kennel Club includes the Chihuahua in the Toy Group along with many other Toy Breeds such as the Shih Tzu, Pekingese, Pug etc. This is primarily for record keeping and showing purposes.

The Chihuahua is indeed known to be the smallest breed in the world. To be eligible for participation in dog show events they must not exceed 6 pounds. However, regardless of their individual (size) weight, ALL CHIHUAHUAS registered with A.K.C. are simply registered as a Chihuahua and are recognized and included as part (one) of the many Toy Breeds.




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(Low Blood Sugar)

This is a central nervous system disorder caused by low sugar. It occurs mainly in Toy breeds between six and twelve weeks of age. Often it is precipitated by stress.

The first signs are those of listlessness and depression. They are followed by muscular weakness, tremors (especially in the facial m
uscles) and later convulsions, coma and death. The entire sequence is not always seen. The dog may appear to be depressed or may be weak, wobbly and jerky; or the puppy may be found in a coma.

Hypoglycemia can occur without warning when a puppy is placed in a new home, or while being shipped. It might appear after a puppy misses a meal, chills, becomes exhausted from too much playing or has a digestive upset. These upsets place an added strain on the energy reserves of the liver and bring on symptoms (if the dog is susceptible).

Puppies that are weaned on rice and hamburger are more likely to develop hypoglycemia. Their diet is deficient in certain ingredients needed to sustain the liver.

A similar condition occurs in adult hunting dogs when hunting. Care should be taken to feed these dogs before hunting and increase the protein in their diet.

Treatment is directed at restoring blood levels of glucose. Begin at once. Prolonged or repeated attacks can cause permanent damage to the brain. If a puppy is awake, give Karo syrup, honey or sugar in water by mouth. You should begin to see improvement in thirty minutes. When unconscious, a puppy will have to be given a dextrose solution intravenously. It may be necessary to treat for swelling of the brain. A veterinarian should be called at once.

Prevent recurrent attacks by feeding a high-quality kibble diet and add to it sugar, syrup or honey. See that the puppy eats at least every eight hours and receives a daily vitamin.

Breeders should wean puppies on a balanced diet. Food supplements should not exceed 10 percent of the total ration. Owners of Toy puppies should not overtire them or allow them to chill.

A condition exists in which hypoglycemia is persistent of periodic. It is caused by an enzyme deficiency and is not responsive to treatment.

 
*Taken from the Dog Owner’s Home Veterinary Handbook by the Authors,
Delbert G. Carlson, D.V.M. and James M. Giffin, M.D.


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