9 Ways To Keep Your Chiweenie Active
A Chiweenie is a Chihuahua mix coveted for its energy and spunk as well as its undying love and loyalty. This particular dog breed is a Chihuahua Dachshund, to be exact, and it’s similar in size and weight to the Yorkshire Terrier. In terms of smaller dogs, this breed is ideal primarily for seniors and singles as they’re happiest with one dog owner. However, according to Perfect Dog Breeds, if they’re properly socialized from puppyhood, they make excellent family dogs. So, if you’re in the market for a small dog, a Chiweenie is a great option for any dog lover.
If you already own a Chiweenie, whether it be a Chiweenie puppy or an adult dog, it’s important to keep them active. According to Puppy In Training, this Chihuahua mix needs 30-60 minutes of vigorous exercise daily. From walks around the neighborhood to trail hikes and trips to the dog park – there are many ways for a dog owner to provide both mental and physical activity regularly. And with a lifespan of 12-16 years, proper diet and exercise will give your pup the best chance at a long and happy life.
Exercise is also highly ideal for this breed considering their risk of getting a luxating patella (dislocated kneecap or patella). When they maintain an ideal weight, they’re much less likely to experience this issue. Below are the top 9 ways to keep your Chiweenie active. And by the end of this article, you’ll have the tools needed to provide your Chiweenie dog the best chance at a comfortable and rewarding life.
Top 9 Ways To Keep Your Chiweenie Active
1) Take a Walking Tour of Your City
Perfect for a Chiweenie puppy or senior dog, walks are a free and fun way to burn energy. Not just that, but Whiskers to Tails Petsitting says regular walks help to relieve stress, prevent obesity, improved digestive and urinary dog health, better mental health, and the promotion of a stronger bond between you and your little dog. Ultimately, regularly scheduled walks are the foundation for physical and mental health. Better yet, consistent walks also serve to benefit you in many of the same ways! And while walking may sound boring at first, there are plenty of ways to spice it up so you look forward to your regularly scheduled stroll.
For starters, plan your routes differently from time to time. Rather than circling the block you live on day after day, try changing it up. From local parks and trails to new neighborhoods and varying landscapes, it can be fun for the dog and pet owner to explore new areas. Otherwise, you might try taking your Chihuahua mix to an off-leash area nearby and letting them run free, or making a pit stop to grab some water or an ice cream cone. Either way, a walking tour gets you and your Chiweenie out of the house and enjoying the fresh air.
2) Swim and Explore a Local Beach
In the spirit of exploration, Chiweenie and dog owner alike can agree on the appeal of hitting the beach from time to time. If you happen to live in an area that permits it, dog-friendly beaches provide not only large open spaces but the opportunity to go out into the water for a different kind of fun. While Your Crossbreed Dog doesn’t recommend sending a Chihuahua puppy out into the water solo, with a little assistance, there are many benefits to be gained from some water aerobics.
If you’re lucky, you might just find a beach WITH a dog park. Even if not, you’ve still got all the space you need for endless activities, including frisbee, nose work, flyball, fetch, paddleboarding, and more. Keep in mind, if you take your Chihuahua Dachshund to a human beach, you should keep them on a leash. And there’s a handful of things you should bring along to ensure they’re taken care of all day. Just pack some of their favorite dog food, plenty of water, some toys or a ball, towels, and sun protection. The American Kennel Club recommends dog sunscreen.
Found at plenty of local retailers and department stores, sunscreen is as important to your pup’s health as it is to us humans! Also, like us, you should be careful about how long you have your Chiweenie out in the heat. To avoid such unpleasantries as heat stroke and sunburn, your Chihuahua shouldn’t be fully exposed to the sun for longer than 20-40 minutes.
3) Visit the Dog Park
The majority of cities and even small towns have something to offer in terms of a dog park. And no matter what we’re talking about landscape-wise, your Chihuahua Dachshund will ultimately thank you for the freedom and the chance to socialize with other dogs, whether it be a Great Dane or Siberian Husky. Some span miles while others are more confined due to what’s available in terms of space – but no matter what, a trip to the dog park is a guaranteed way to keep your small breed pup properly active. If you’re not familiar with the dog-friendly parks in your area, a quick internet search is a great way to get started.
While the dog park is great for practically any sociable breed, Spirit Dog Training says your average Chiweenie is going to get along great and socialize with any dog they come across. Keep in mind, however, that much like any other breed of dog, it’s your job to get them used to other pups early on – especially because of your Chihuahua’s small size. One such way to get them socialized is to buy them a companion dog. And keep in mind, they typically do better with smaller dogs rather than with larger dogs.
Should you discover a lack of dog parks in your area, a fenced-in yard is a fine place to let your little dog socialize. Whether you have a viable backyard or know another dog owner that does – getting your pup together with friends’ dogs in an open space is a great alternative to the dog park.
4) Teach Them Commands
It never hurts to teach your dog a new trick. Hills Pet says despite popular belief, even older dogs CAN learn new tricks. This fun and educational opportunity is perfect for any dog owner looking to strengthen the bond and level of trust they have with their Chiweenie. Additionally, it’s fun for both parties and nurtures your Chihuahua’s cognitive abilities. In fact, no matter what age the dog is, command or trick training results in better overall health. More specifically, it improves their stamina, balance, and concentration, while building muscle tone and stamina. Finally, it helps their confidence.
Sit, stay, roll over, high five – these common commands are considerably easy to teach any dog with some patience and dedication. And deciding which trick will be easy for your dog depends on their personality. For instance, if your Chiweenie is vocal, teaching them to speak or bark on command is likely gonna be easiest. Alternatively, if they often lead with their paws, a shake or high five may be more ideal. When it comes to the training process itself, VetStreet recommends several helpful tools like clickers, treats, leashes, and the like.
When it comes to the Chihuahua Dachshund, in particular, they’re just as able to learn tricks as an Australian Shepherd, Golden Retriever, or Border Collie. No matter the breed, your dog will ultimately thank you for the mental stimulation with healthy, lifelong companionship.
5) Play Flyball
Is your little dog a fan of games? Naturally, most dogs’ playful spirits wouldn’t allow them to pass up the chance to showcase their natural instincts. So, whether you’re tired of walks or simply wish to issue a new kind of challenge, flyball is a great game to teach any dog breed. Not only is it a fun activity for the both of you, but there’s also a slew of other benefits to flyball, and to games in general. In fact, teaching your Chihuahua Dachshund mix a variety of games actually keeps their heart healthy, teaches problem-solving, relieves stress, and strengthens their prefrontal cortex. The only dogs who shouldn’t play flyball are those with a health problem or medical condition that doesn’t permit running.
But, what is flyball exactly? Pet Place explains it as a great option, especially if your dog is quick and enjoys playing fetch. And because retrieval is in your dogs’ nature, this game is great for more than just exercise – it allows them to indulge their canine instincts and it provides plenty of socialization. If you think your Chiweenie might enjoy learning flyball – there are a few simple steps to the game.
With a 51ft course, two humans, and at least four dogs, including your Chihuahua, flyball involves a relay race with two teams, complete with four hurdles and a tennis ball. Each dog must activate a spring-box and eject the ball, ideally catching it in the air and returning it to its respective team. Then the next dog gets a turn. In the end, the first team to complete the race without error is the winner. As you can see, this game will not only stimulate your Chihuahua mentally, but it can also keep them at a healthy weight when practiced regularly.
6) Practice Nose Work
According to Rover, nose work is the secret to promoting a calm and happy demeanor in your Chiweenie. If you’ve never heard of nose work don’t worry, you’re definitely not alone. This activity is perfect for all our furry friends, especially those who face reactivity issues. So, what is nose work? Simply put, nose work encompasses a dog’s natural desire to hunt. Not only does it utilize its ability to find specific scents, but identifies its source also. And what’s better than nurturing your furbaby’s natural instincts? And if you do happen to have a reactive small dog, nose work makes it possible for them to enjoy playing with others without getting overwhelmed.
If you’re wondering how to go about teaching a small dog how to work on this skill, the answer is relatively simple. And it starts with just some simple work at home – perhaps similar to something your Chiweenie has done in the past. To get started, allow your little dog to watch you hide the scent, placing a treat or favorite toy within a container or otherwise out of your dog’s sight. Next, instruct them to ‘find it’ and watch them as they try to uncover the scent and retrieve the reward within. Once they’ve gotten the treat or toy, be sure to give them plenty of praise so they are encouraged to play again and again.
Starting out, if your pup has never practiced this skill with you, you want to make it somewhat easy. Begin by “hiding” the treat or toy within sight. As your Chihuahua starts to pick up on the concept and expresses an eagerness to continue, you can gradually increase the difficulty of the game by hiding things in more challenging places. In addition to verbal praise upon retrieval, you can also offer a second treat if you so desire.
7) Take a Vacation
It’s no secret that humans like to travel. From the mountains to the oceans and everywhere in between, new experiences in unfamiliar and exciting territories are highly rewarding for a number of reasons. But have you ever thought about vacationing with your dog? If not, you might be surprised at just how much your Chihuahua puppy thanks you for the opportunity. Plus, as a dog owner, when you consider how short their lives are in comparison to ours, you’ll see how new sights, sounds, and smells could enrich their lives as they do ours. Luckily today, many transit and hospitality companies allow and even cater to dogs, so it’s no longer necessary to leave them behind.
If you decide to take your companion dog on vacation, there are several factors to consider including the environment and weather, how you’ll travel, lodgings, and what you will do once you arrive at your destination. After all, the overall look of vacation completely changes when it involves your dog. But from national parks and trails to campsites and beaches, there are plenty of options both near and far that don’t require much adaptation. So, if you’re a dog lover who also happens to enjoy travel, any of these locations are perfect getaway options for you and your mixed breed fur baby.
8) Teach Your Dog to Put Away Their Toys
Right off the bat, this might not sound like the most fun activity. However, it’s a great idea for teaching discipline and encouraging mental stimulation in your Chiweenie puppy. No matter how stubborn your dog is, this is a skill any dog breed can manage. Plus, it saves you the time of cleaning up after them following a hard day at work! Chewy says teaching your dog to put their toys away is easy, in fact, and requires only a few actions on your behalf to get them motivated. And because it incorporates other familiar skills, it provides you Chiweenie with plenty of opportunities to learn.
If you want to teach your Chiweenie puppy to put their toys away, the first command you want to focus on is drop. And once you have an appropriately sized box in place and several objects lying around the floor, you can begin. Positioning yourself next to the box, hand your dog a toy and instruct them to drop it. Once they get the hang of it, lead them to drop it in the box with a treat or another toy depending on how toy-driven your Chihuahua is in nature.
If they have trouble getting the toys in the box, place a treat inside the box so they must stick their head inside to get it. That way, they associate putting things in the box with positive results! Finally, practice tossing toys further from the box and instructing their retrieval. In the end, it will be easy for them to understand the concept of cleaning up their toys.
9) Incorporate Food Puzzles into Playtime
Senior dogs and puppies alike enjoy food puzzles and there are many different options out there for different-sized dogs and various levels of challenge. If you’re unfamiliar, a food puzzle is a hard rubber/plastic device with holes on its edges and compartments on its front and back in which you store treats or your pup’s best dog food. It’s then up to your furbaby to figure it out, opening the compartments or otherwise releasing the rewards within. Because a Chihuahua Dachshund is such a small dog, you’ll want to use an appropriately sized food puzzle. Luckily, popular pet stores carry a nice variety, so, you can find the perfect one for your little dog.
Whether you add more walks, hikes, swims, or puzzles into your daily routine, getting your Chiweenie moving and stimulated isn’t a hard task. Try out these 9 ways to get your pooch moving today! You won’t be disappointed, and your Chiweenie will certainly enjoy the added attention.