20 Best Dog Foods for Chihuahuas in 2020

Best Dog Food For Chihuahua Puppies- Featured Image

Our pets deserve unwavering love and care to enjoy and live their life to the fullest. But, love is not enough if we do not provide them with the basic essentials of healthy food and nutrition.

Every breed of dog has specific nutritional needs depending on their size and other biological factors. Whether you’re the proud new owner of a Chihuahua, or you’re simply looking to change your dog’s food, you’ve come to the right place. 

In this article, we’ll suggest the very best dog food products for your Chihuahua so you don’t have to try them yourself.

We’ll also discuss the nutritional requirements of these feisty dogs, advise you on when and how much to feed them, as well as any health conditions these dogs may face. So without further ado, here’s our list of the 10 best dog foods that your Chihuahua definitely needs to try. 

Leading Dog Foods for Chihuahuas – Comparison

Top Choice
Wellness Complete Health Natural Dry Small Breed Puppy Food, Turkey, Salmon & Oatmeal, 12-Pound Bag
Purina Pro Plan FOCUS Puppy Small Breed Chicken & Rice Formula Dry Dog Food - (1) 18 lb. Bag
NUTRO ULTRA Small Breed Puppy Dry Dog Food (1) 8 lbs., Supports Brain Development; Rich in Nutrients and Full of Flavor For Small Breed Dogs
BLUE Freedom Puppy Small Breed Grain Free Chicken Dry Dog Food 4-lb
ROYAL CANIN BREED HEALTH NUTRITION Chihuahua Puppy dry dog food, 2.5-Pound
Key Ingredients
Deboned Turkey, Oatmeal, Chicken Meal, Flaxseed, Blueberries
Chicken, Brewers Rice, Dried Egg Product, Fish Oil
Chicken, Pumpkin, Flaxseed, Blueberries, Whole Brown Rice
Deboned Chicken, Peas, Flaxseed, Blueberries, L-carnitine
Chicken meal, brewers rice, brown rice, L-Carnitine
Our Rating
Top Choice
Wellness Complete Health Natural Dry Small Breed Puppy Food, Turkey, Salmon & Oatmeal, 12-Pound Bag
Key Ingredients
Deboned Turkey, Oatmeal, Chicken Meal, Flaxseed, Blueberries
Our Rating
Buy from Amazon
Purina Pro Plan FOCUS Puppy Small Breed Chicken & Rice Formula Dry Dog Food - (1) 18 lb. Bag
Key Ingredients
Chicken, Brewers Rice, Dried Egg Product, Fish Oil
Our Rating
Buy from Amazon
NUTRO ULTRA Small Breed Puppy Dry Dog Food (1) 8 lbs., Supports Brain Development; Rich in Nutrients and Full of Flavor For Small Breed Dogs
Key Ingredients
Chicken, Pumpkin, Flaxseed, Blueberries, Whole Brown Rice
Our Rating
Buy from Amazon
BLUE Freedom Puppy Small Breed Grain Free Chicken Dry Dog Food 4-lb
Key Ingredients
Deboned Chicken, Peas, Flaxseed, Blueberries, L-carnitine
Our Rating
Buy from Amazon
ROYAL CANIN BREED HEALTH NUTRITION Chihuahua Puppy dry dog food, 2.5-Pound
Key Ingredients
Chicken meal, brewers rice, brown rice, L-Carnitine
Our Rating
Buy from Amazon

Last update on 2018-03-11 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API


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The Best Dog Food For Chihuahuas in 2020

Based on your Chihuahua’s health condition and other biological factors, the nutritional requirements will vary. If you’re sure about its health, taste or preferences, here are some of the top-notch dog foods according to us, that can help in making your decision easier. 

#1. Nature’s Recipe

 Nature'S Recipe Grain Free Dry Dog Food 


The Nature’s Recipe dry dog food is an all-natural bag of deliciousness. It is made with real chicken which is an excellent source of protein for your Chihuahua’s muscles. It also contains nutrient concentrated sources of carbohydrate such as sweet potato and pumpkin instead of grains.

Finally, the added vitamins and minerals in this dog food puts the icing on the cake that are the health benefits your dog will receive from consuming this dog food.

What We Love About It

We love the fact that this dog food manufacturers have come up with a recipe that is suitable for Chihuahuas that are allergic to grains. Plus, It’s absolutely natural with no added flavors or colors.  

Pros Cons
  • 100% grain-free
  • Easy to eat, small kibble sizes
  • Perfect for Chihuahua’s with allergies.
  • Delicious flavor appeals to picky eaters.
  • Not for dogs allergic to pumpkins


#2. NUTRO Ultra 

 NUTRO Ultra Dry Dog Food - The Superfood Plate 


Delicious salmon, orchard picked apples, sun ripened blueberries, farm grown carrots, spinach and pumpkin, tropical coconut, chia seeds, leafy kale and the list goes on and on.

You would think that this was some sort of a healthy detox smoothie but you would be wrong. This is because the NUTRO Ultra Dry Dog Food now brings you its superfood plate perfect for the nutritional needs of adult Chihuahuas.

What We Love About It

It not only contains 15 superfoods scientifically proven to better health but it also contains beneficial proteins from chicken, salmon and lamb.

Pros Cons
  • Ingredients are non-GMO
  • No chicken by-product meal, corn, wheat, or soy protein
  • Unique recipe ensures a delicious taste
  • Small, easy to eat kibbles
  • The new formula might not suit all dogs


#3. Eukanuba Chihuahua

 Eukanuba Breed Specific Adult Dry Dog Food 


The Eukanuba Chihuahua dog food features dried beet pulp and prebiotic FOS. The latter stimulates the growth of beneficial gut bacteria. Together the combined effect of these ingredients improve digestion and nutrient absorption.

It also contains antibiotics which strengthen the immune system. Moreover to support his immune system, this dog food is filled with antioxidant and vitamins.  

What We Love About It

This dog food contains 3D Dentadefense system which reduces tartar buildup in 28 days thus reducing the risk of canine heart disease, common in Chihuahuas.

Pros Cons
  • Grain formula is fiber-rich and good for digestion
  • Contains the ingredient L-Carnitine which burns fat
  • Glucosamine promotes healthy bones and joints
  • Great for high energy and metabolism
  • Contains chicken by-product meal


#4. Merrick Lil Plates

 Merrick Lil Plates Grain Free Small Breed Recipe 


Merrick Lil Plates Grain Free dog food gives your Chihuahua the luxury of various flavors such as Chicken meal, turkey meal, beef, sweet potatoes, salmon oil, blueberries and more.

The meat or fish product is sourced from real animals and makes up 38% of the protein content in this delicious dog food. Moreover, it is loaded with vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants from its vegetable and antioxidant-rich ingredients.

What We Love About It

The small-sized kibbles are perfect for removing plaque buildup which may lead to heart disease in Chihuahuas.

Pros Cons
  • Glucosamine and Chondroitin support healthy hip bones and joints
  • Promotes stronger immune system
  • Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids healthy coat
  • Great taste makes it perfect for picky eaters
  • Comes in 4 different bag sizes: 4lbs. 12lbs. 20lbs.
  • Inconsistency in formula


#5. Royal Canin Chihuahua

 Royal Canin Breed Health Nutrition Chihuahua Adult Dry Dog Food 


If your Chihuahua seems to reject every kind of dog food out there, the Royal Canin Breed dog food is for you! This breed specific dog food is made just for your picky little Chihuahua.

Chihuahuas have tiny mouths and jaws so it is important that the kibble size is small enough to eat. Fortunately, this dog food has got it covered for you.

Furthermore, it has omega 3 fatty acids such as EPA and DHA that will keep your Chihuahua’s coat shiny and healthy. This dog food is suitable for purebred Chihuahuas 8 months and older.

What We Love About It

Chihuahua’s are known picky eaters. So they are quick to reject food given to them. Thus the Royal Canin Breed has specifically formulated its dog food with a pleasant taste and aroma to reduce chances of that happening as much as possible. Hence, this dog food is highly palatable.

Pros Cons
  • Has highly digestible proteins
  • Recommended by vets
  • No artificial preservatives, flavors or colors
  • Grains are a good source of fiber
  • Very expensive
  • Not suitable for dogs allergic to grains


#6. Wellness Core Natural

 Wellness Core Natural Grain Free Dry Dog Food 


The best way for your adult Chihuahua to get all his nutritional needs fulfilled in one bowl is for it to try the Wellness Core Natural Grain Free dry dog food. This delicious dog food is made with real chicken and turkey to supplement your dog with protein to increase muscle mass.

It has the perfect amount of fat to ensure that your Chihuahua does not gain excess weight. Chihuahua’s have high energy requirements. To promote this, each kibble is loaded with probiotics to help your Chihuahua make the most of every bite it eats.

What We Love About It

Ingredients glucosamine, hydrochloride and chondroitin sulfate are excellent for helping your Chihuahua maintain healthy bones and joints. This may go a long way to help prevent arthritis during old age.

Pros Cons
  • Grain-free option is great for allergic Chihuahuas
  • No wheat, corn, soy, meat by-products,
  • No artificial colors, flavors and preservatives
  • Flaxseed and salmon for healthy skin and coat
  • Fruits and veggies improve his overall nutrition
  • New package isn’t designed with zip lock


#7. Earthborn Holistic

 Earthborn Holistic Small Breed Natural Dog Food 


The Earthborn Company has made proper dog nutrition and saving the planet its priority. Their dog food consists of chicken and white fish which are high protein sources that support increased muscle mass and fat burning abilities.

This ensures your dog remains healthy and energetic. It’s tailored to support a small breed’s metabolism and long life expectancy with multiple proteins and minerals.

What We Love About It

Their passion for saving the planet has made them change their packaging to easily recyclable and BPA free. BPA is an industrial compound which can leach into food from plastic containers and can have adverse health effects on the body.

Pros Cons
  • Small, easy to chew kibble sizes
  • Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids promote skin health
  • L-Carnitine which promotes excess fat burning
  • Fiber-rich vegetables for nutrition absorption
  • Contains grains


#8. Taste of The Wild Appalachian Valley

 Taste of The Wild Grain Free High Protein Dry Dog Food 


Modern dogs have come a long way from their ancestors. Yet they both share a love for the wild. With the Taste of the Wild grain free dry dog food, you can now give your Chihuahua its first taste of the wild.

The ingredients feature venison, garbanzo beans, peas, lentils, etc. These antioxidant-rich foods increase muscle mass, strengthens the immune system, and keeps the skin and coat healthy.

The kibbles come packed with the K9 probiotic strain specifically made for good canine digestion. Dried chicory root helps sustain these beneficial bacteria.

What We Love About It

Unlike other dog foods on the market, the Taste of The Wild dry dog food provides your Chihuahua a completely different flavor. It features delicious farm raised real venison as the first ingredient.

Pros Cons
  • Rich in proteins and fats
  • The grain-free recipe
  • No grain, corn, wheat, filler
  • No artificial flavors, colors, and preservatives
  • Relatively cheaper than other brands
  • Contains beans


#9. Blue Buffalo Life Protection

 Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Natural Adult Small Breed Dog Food


The primary ingredients used to create the Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Dry dog food which is formulated for the high energy requirements of Chihuahuas are divided into categories like: High-quality protein- Real chicken, Wholegrains- Oatmeal, barley, brown rice, Vegetables- Green peas, sweet potato, flaxseeds, Vitamins and minerals.

These nutrient-rich ingredients undergo processing at low temperature so that their potency remains intact.

What We Love About It

Every bite of the Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Dry dog food kibbles, help in removing tartar buildup which prevents dog heart disease common to Chihuahuas.

Pros Cons
  • Antioxidants promotes strong immune system
  • Supports bone and joint health
  • Fiber-rich grains are good for bowel movement
  • Comes in 2 different bag sizes: 6lbs. and 15lbs.
  • No chicken by-product meals, corn, wheat, soy,
  • No artificial flavors or preservatives.
  • Kibble sizes are too big for small breeds


#10. Merrick Classic

 Merrick Classic Small Breed Dry Dog Food


Merrick Classic Small Breed Dry Dog Food contains farm-raised deboned chicken, blueberries, chia seeds, carrots, brown rice, oatmeal, barley, etc. to provide your Chihuahua with a balanced diet.

These nutrient dense ingredients promote muscle mass and good joint health while helping your Chihuahua maintain a healthy weight. Moreover for your Chihuahua’s healthy hips and joints, it contains important elements like- Glucosamine And Chondroitin.

What We Love About It

Potatoes are packed with carbohydrates and vitamins. However, feeding too many potatoes to dogs can result in obesity, and heart disease. Merrick Classic gladly presents you its potato free dry dog food for pet parents who would rather avoid potatoes.

Pros Cons
  • Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids keep the skin and coat healthy
  • Antioxidants strengthen the immune system
  • Great taste is perfect for picky eaters
  • Small, easy to eat kibbles
  • Relatively cheaper
  • Contains meal by-products


#11. Solid Gold Mighty Mini 

 Solid Gold Small & Toy Breed Wet & Dry Dog Food 


When it comes to providing your Chihuahua with the perfect nutrition, Solid Gold wet & dry dog food goes the extra mile. It contains 20 antioxidant-rich superfoods including protein-rich eggs and fish from the Atlantic and Bering seas.

The single sources of key protein ingredients are made from the highest quality meats. Moreover, the puppy food comes with 5 delicious flavors to cater to your Chihuahua’s tastes: beef, chicken, lamb, salmon, and turkey.

What We Love About It

The gorgeous, easy to eat heart-shaped kibbles are packed with probiotics and prebiotics to support healthy digestion.

Pros Cons
  • Rich in omega 3 and 6 fatty acids
  • No fillers, corn, wheat, soy
  • No artificial colorings and preservatives
  • Perfect for allergic Chihuahuas
  • Fiber-rich formula promotes good bowel movement
  • Antioxidant-rich superfoods strengthen immune system
  • Some dogs may get lethargic to pumpkins


The Best Dog Foods for Chihuahua Puppies

#1. Hill’s Science Small Breed Puppy

 Hill's Science Diet Puppy Food, Small & Toy Breed Chicken Meal & Barley Dry Dog Food 


Hill’s science diet gives your Chihuahua all the benefits of good nutrition and is highly recommended by veterinarians. Made with the freshest ingredients such as chicken, barley, apple, carrots, green peas and many more, this dry dog food will support your Chihuahua’s growth.

Furthermore, it is loaded with antioxidants such as vitamin C and E which strengthens the immune system as well as reduces your Chihuahua’s vulnerability to infectious diseases. This is suitable for puppies up to 1 year old.

What We Love About It

The ingredients include high quality fish oil rich in both omega-3 fatty acid and Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). DHA is scientifically proven to promote a healthy development of the eye and brain, as well as improve the learning ability of puppies.

Pros Cons
  • High-quality protein from beef, chicken, lamb
  • No artificial colors, preservatives or flavors
  • Small, easy to eat kibble sizes
  • Natural ingredients go through rigorous quality checks before manufacture.
  • Contains DHA for brain and vision development
  • Expensive product


#2. Purina Pro Plan Small Breed Puppy

 Purina Pro Plan Puppy Dry Dog Food 


Backed by 85+years of research done by scientists, veterinarians and behaviorists, Purina brings you its Focus variety specifically made for small breed dogs.

It comes in 4 delicious flavors like- chicken & rice, chicken with shreds, lamb & rice, and grain free- chicken. Antioxidants in this dog food strengthen your Chihuahua’s immune system.

It also contains added minerals and vitamins to supplement the healthy growth of puppy Chihuahuas. This dog food is for puppies who are under 25 pounds at maturity.

What We Love About It

The Purina Pro Plan is geared towards puppies of all breeds. However, in the case of small breeds, as your puppy ages you can continue to feed it this dog food. You won’t have to switch to a whole new brand when he grows up.

Pros Cons
  • Calcium and phosphorus promotes strong bones
  • DHA for healthy brain and eye development
  • Bite-size kibbles
  • Has a grain free flavor
  • Comes in 5 different bag sizes
  • Not grain-free.



#3. Royal Canin Chihuahua Small Puppy

 Royal Canin Breed Health Nutrition Chihuahua Puppy Dry Dog Food 


Royal Canin Puppy Dry dog food is perfect for Chihuahuas ranging from ages 8 weeks to 8 months old. It is formulated with a cocktail of antioxidants including vitamin E to strengthen the immune system and reduce vulnerability to illnesses.

Furthermore, it has just the right amount of fiber, and highly digestible proteins to reduce the smell of stools.

What We Love About It

As mentioned before, feeding a Chihuahua can be difficult since they tend to be picky when it comes to food but thanks to the added natural aromas and flavors this will no longer be a problem.

Pros Cons
  • Small, easy to eat kibble sizes
  • Stimulates appetite in fussy eaters
  • Improves the health of Chihuahua fur coat
  • Increases muscle mass
  • Promotes bone and joint health
  • Contains chicken by-product meal


#4. Blue Buffalo Freedom Puppy

 Blue Buffalo Freedom Grain Free Natural Puppy Small Breed Dry Dog Food 


This grain free alternative contains blueberries, cranberries, green peas, sweet potato, carrots and delicious high protein, deboned chicken. The ingredients are cold formed during manufacture so they retain their potency as time goes on.

Blue Buffalo Freedom Grain Free Dry dog food is loaded with antioxidants and vitamins to support a strong immune system and good health. The high protein content encourages high muscle mass and increases fat burning abilities.

What We Love About It

The Blue Buffalo Freedom Grain Free Dry dog food contains choline, DHA and ARA typically found in the milk of mother dogs which promotes proper cognitive abilities and good eye health.

Pros Cons
  • No chicken by-product meals or artificial flavors
  • DHA, ARA, and Choline support brain development
  • Perfect amount of protein and carbohydrate
  • Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids promote lustrous coat
  • Perfect for allergic Chihuahuas
  • Some Chihuahuas might not like the taste


#5. Wellness Complete Health Small breed puppy

 Wellness Complete Health Natural Dry Small Breed Dog Food 


With most commercial dog foods on the market, you would have to worry about the ingredients being mostly filler but fear not! The Wellness Complete Health Dry dog food is at your rescue.

This dog food has boiled down canine food science into 3 main nutritional needs: brain development, energy needs, and bone & muscle development. To meet these needs it contains the following ingredients:High protein turkey, Antioxidant rich spinach and blueberries, Flaxseed, Calcium and phosphorous.

What We Love About It

At its heart the Wellness Complete Health Dry dog food contains real ingredients. Its health benefit claims stems from the real turkey, salmon and oatmeal used to manufacture the product.

Pros Cons
  • No artificial flavorings, and preservatives
  • No meat by-products
  • Antioxidant-rich food promotes a strong immune system
  • Fiber-rich grains promote healthy bowel movements
  • Small, easy to eat kibble sizes
  • Packed with easy to digest carbohydrates
  • Not for Chihuahuas allergic to oatmeals


#6. KLNTA Tuffy’s NutriSource Small Puppy

 KLNTA Tuffy's NutriSource Dry Puppy Food 


KLNTA Tuffy’s NutriSource Dry puppy food is appropriate for puppies that are under 50lbs when mature and up to 18 months of age. It contains real chicken to supplement your pup’s protein requirements.

This is perfect for the growing needs of Chihuahua puppies. Even gestating and lactating mothers can be benefited by this highly nutritional dog food.

What We Love About It

It contains a combination of probiotics, which stimulate good bacteria growth and is excellent for healthy digestion.

Coated in a beautiful shiny material, this dog food contains 32% protein and 21% fat which is ideal for growing pups.

Pros Cons
  • Contains DHA for better eye health
  • Small, easy to eat kibble sizes
  • Has biotin which promotes a healthy coat
  • Comes in 3 different bag sizes: 6.6lbs. 18lbs. 35lbs.
  • Expensive


#7. Nutro Wholesome Essentials Small Breed Puppy

Nutro Wholesome Essentials Puppy Dry Dog Food 


Nutro Wholesome Essentials dog food brings you 2 delicious varieties of flavors which include farm-raised chicken and lamb.

This dog food is enriched with vegetables such as sweet potatoes and beetroots. It comes in 3 different bag sizes: 5lbs. 15lbs. 30lbs. Omega 3 fatty acid and DHA contribute to their healthy growth and development.

What We Love About It

Many pet parents believe that GMOs may have adverse health effects. Hopefully, this GMO-free alternative will put their minds at ease.

Pros Cons
  • Omega 3 fatty acids support healthy skin and fur 
  • Antioxidants reduce vulnerability to illnesses
  • Fiber-rich grains are excellent for good digestion
  • Calcium promotes strong bones and joints
  • No chicken by-product meal
  • No artificial flavors, colors, or preservatives
  • Some Chihuahuas may not like the taste


#8. Diamond Naturals Small Breed Puppy

 Diamond Naturals Real Meat Recipe High Protein Dry Dog Food 


At the center of Diamond Naturals’ goals lies their strong desire to give your dog the best nutrition. Thus, it brings you its dry dog food which provides your Chihuahua with real ingredients such as high protein chicken, and antioxidant-rich vegetables like kale, carrots, spinach, etc.

These nutrient-rich superfoods maintain your dog’s vitality and health. This product comes in 3 different sized bags: 6lbs. 18lbs. 40lbs.Each kibble is loaded with these probiotics to improve nutrient absorption and digestion.

What We Love About It

What makes Diamond Naturals dry dog food stand out from all other dog foods is its unique K9 probiotics. These are beneficial bacteria which are specifically developed to suit the environment of the canine digestive system.

Pros Cons
  • No corn, wheat, filler or  artificial flavors
  • DHA is good for the brain and eye development
  • Cruelty-free chicken meat
  • Antioxidants for a strong immune system
  • Balanced amount of fatty acids for healthy skin
  • Noticeable change in kibble sizes


#9. Blue Buffalo Life Protection Small Breed Puppy

 Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Natural Puppy Small Breed Dry Dog Food 


The Blue Buffalo Life Protection Formula Dry dog food promises your Chihuahua pup with real health benefits from real ingredients. Deboned chicken, green peas and carrots, blueberries, cranberries, flaxseed, sweet potatoes and brown rice, the Blue Buffalo formula has it all.

This nutrient-packed dog food ensures that your pup gets all the energy it needs to grow into a healthy adult.

What We Love About It

Blue Buffalo’s cold forming technique makes them a star among other dog food brands.

Here the ingredients go through processing at low temperature to keep the nutrients in the ingredient intact. This means your Chihuahua is getting the similar energy and nutrients it would get from eating the raw ingredients.

Pros Cons
  • Contains DHA for proper brain and eye development.
  • Antioxidants keep the immune system strong
  • Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids keep the coat healthy
  • No chicken by-product meals, corn, wheat, soy
  • No artificial flavors or preservatives.
  • Comes in 2 different bag sizes: 6lbs. and 15lbs.
  • Not for puppies with tear stain problems
  • Some Chihuahuas might not like the taste


Nutritional Requirements of Chihuahuas 

Nutritional Requirements of Chihuahuas The ideal diet of a Chihuahua consists of various macro and micronutrients. In this section, we’ll tell you about each of these nutrients and why they are crucial to your Chihuahua’s diet.


Feeding carbohydrates to your Chihuahua is a great way to give them an energy boost. The ideal sources of carbs for your Chihuahua should come from whole grains, starchy vegetables, and legumes.

However, we should also point out that the canine digestive system is not very good at absorbing carbohydrates. Therefore, you should avoid feeding your dog any low-quality grains like wheat based carbs, soy and corn as they are difficult to digest and may cause allergies.

Good sources of carbohydrates include peas, barley, oats, brown rice, and sweet potatoes.


Protein is one of the most important macronutrients your Chihuahua needs. It is a major source of energy and is responsible for many other important functions in the body, such as the growth and repair of all body tissues, and the production of hormones, enzymes, and antibodies.

Proteins are made up of molecules called amino acids. There are about 20 amino acids that exist today. Dog’s bodies tend to produce 10 amino acids but the remaining 10 have to come from the foods they consume.

These amino acids are called essential amino acids. Good sources of protein (and essential amino acids) include chicken, beef, turkey, salmon, and eggs.


Any excess calories in the body are stored as fat for later use. Every time the body needs more energy, it can draw on this fat reserve.

Fats are also important for the growth and proper functioning of body tissues, the formation of hormones like prostaglandins which reduce inflammation, as well as the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E & K) by the digestive system.

This macronutrient is essential for dogs like Chihuahuas who have very fast metabolisms.

Fats are made up of fatty acids. Omega 3 and 6 fatty acids are crucial for the brain and eye development of Chihuahuas. These fatty acids also ensure that the skin and coat remain healthy and lustrous.

Good sources of fat include fish and fish oils, such as salmon and herring, and edible nuts. Always choose dog foods that list the source of fats in their ingredients. Opt for products that use chicken or beef fats instead of ambiguous descriptions such as ‘poultry fat’.


Although fiber does not provide much nutritional value for Chihuahuas, it’s purpose is to add bulk and water to their feces. This prevents constipation and makes it easier for your dog to go to the toilet.

Some of the fiber they ingest is broken down into fatty acids which prevent the growth of harmful bacteria in the intestines. This helps the colon cells to heal from injury and reduces the risk of colon cancer.

Feeding a fiber-rich diet to your Chihuahua also gives your dog the feeling of fullness and helps with maintaining a healthy weight. Fiber also helps normalize blood sugar levels in diabetic Chihuahuas.

Good sources of fiber include rice hulls, soybean hulls, beet pulp, bran, and peanut hulls.

Vitamins and Minerals 

Vitamins and minerals are important to include in your Chihuahua’s diet. Look for dog foods which contain vegetables and fruits. Additionally, get food which mentions that the minerals are chelated.

This means that the mineral is chemically bound to proteins so it’s easier for your dog to digest. We’ll explain the function of each vitamin or mineral to explain why they’re necessary to include in  a Chihuahua’s diet:

Vitamin A

Found in leafy green vegetables, carrots, and fish oils, Vitamin A is good for the skin, hair, and eyes. Vitamin A deficiency causes poor vision and inhibits growth. An overdose may lead to bleeding, bone deformities, dizziness, throwing up, and hair loss.

Vitamin B complex

Vitamin B is found in whole grain cereals and liver. Meanwhile, Vitamin B1, B2, and B5 are responsible for the metabolism of fats, carbohydrates and micronutrients into energy, B12 is responsible for brain and intestinal health.

Meanwhile, B6 controls glucose production, red blood cells and nervous system function, as well as hormone balance, immune response, niacin formation, and gene activation. Vitamin B9  controls protein metabolism.

Deficiency of these B vitamins can cause hair loss, fatigue, skin problems, and anxiety. A severe overdose can lead to nerve damage but often any excess is excreted in the urine. 

Vitamin C 

Vitamin C is found in fruits and leafy green vegetables like broccoli. It strengthens the immune system and regulates energy levels. It is also an antioxidant that neutralizes free radicals and reduces inflammation and aging.

A Vitamin C deficiency causes poor oral health and wound healing, and arthritis. An overdose may lead to dogs having loose stools but often any excess is excreted in the urine.

Vitamin D 

Found in dairy and fish oils, Vitamin D regulates phosphorus and calcium which strengthens teeth and bones.

Vitamin D deficiency causes poor bone and eye health. An overdose leads to throwing up, dizziness and calcification of the heart muscles which can be fatal.

Vitamin E 

Found in nuts, seeds, vegetable oils, leafy vegetables, and meat, Vitamin E is another antioxidant which protects organs from oxidative damage caused by free radicals. It also strengthens the immune system, makes your Chihuahua’s coat lustrous, and aids in fat metabolism and cell functions.

Vitamin E deficiency causes retinal and muscle deterioration, and reproductive issues. Your dog cannot overdose.

Vitamin K 

Found in egg yolk, yogurt, and fish liver oil, Vitamin K is responsible for blood clotting in Chihuahuas. A deficiency leads to excessive bleeding from injuries and even miscarriages in pregnant dogs.


Found in yogurt, broccoli, cheese, and beans, Calcium keeps a Chihuahua’s bones healthy and strong.


Found in milk, meat, lentils, nuts, and beans, Phosphorus is needed for calcium metabolism and therefore healthy bone and tissue growth.


Probiotics found in dried fermentation products helps support a healthy digestive function and nutrient absorption.


Choline, found in eggs, liver, and peanuts, is an essential component of cell membranes. It encourages healthy brain and liver function.


Water is the most important part of your Chihuahua’s diet. It aids digestion, nutrient absorption, and the conversion of carbs and proteins into energy. It is also believed to flush out harmful toxins.

In general, your dog should consume an ounce of water for every pound of their body weight. Always keep a fresh bowl of water available for your dog to drink from as dehydration can lead to kidney stones, and even organ failure.

Calorie Requirements of Chihuahuas 

Calorie Requirements of Chihuahuas Chihuahuas are energetic creatures with long lifespans. To keep up with their active lifestyle, it’s important that they get all of their calorie needs fulfilled. Here’s how many calories you should be feeding your dog according to their age:


The best food for a Chihuahua puppy is their mother’s milk. Breast milk is nutrient-rich, easy to eat and digest, and there is no risk of overeating. However, if breast milk is not available to your pup, there are still other foods out there tailored for your puppy’s needs.

It is important to know why Chihuahua puppies might require so much energy. This is due to two main reasons:

  • Puppies, in general, tend to be full of energy and extremely playful. Giving your Chihuahua pup the right nutrition will provide them with the energy they need.
  • Puppies are growing all the time. Which is why it is important that their energy needs are met. Starved Chihuahuas end up with developmental problems and are more likely to get sick during old age.

Your Chihuahua pup should be getting an average of 280 calories per day. Make sure that these calories come from at least 55 percent protein, 20 percent fat and 25 percent carbohydrates.


Chihuahuas are usually indoor lap dogs. This means they don’t exercise as much as large breed dogs when they’re fully grown. However, Chihuahuas burn calories much faster than other toy breeds. Therefore, they need more calories to sustain themselves.

A typical adult with moderate activity levels should receive about 210 calories per day, sourced from 50 percent protein, 20 percent fat and 30 percent carbohydrates.


Aging Chihuahua’s metabolisms are slowing down. They don’t burn calories as fast and they become less active. This means their calorie needs decreases.

Senior Chihuahuas must be fed no more than 170 calories per day, sourced from 65 percent protein, 15 percent fat and 20 percent carbohydrates.Avoid overfeeding your senior Chihuahua as it may lead to obesity and other health problems.

Remember that calorie requirements differ according to how active your dog is. Take these measurements into account from the above suggestions:

  • Subtract 25 calories from the above suggestion if your Chihuahua is an indoor dog who gets little to no exercise. 
  • Add 60 calories if your Chihuahua is active which means they get at least a two-hour walk every day.
  • Add 90 calories if your Chihuahua is highly active which means they walk more than two hours every day.

Guide to Feeding your Chihuahua 

Guide to Feeding your Chihuahua This section helps to explain the kind of food you should be feeding your Chihuahua, how to feed them, when to feed them, and what foods to avoid.

What Should you Feed your Chihuahua? 

When you are looking to buy dog food from the supermarket, there are usually so many options that it can be overwhelming. Do you choose raw food, wet food or dry food? We’ll explain…

Wet food 

Wet food is usually found in tin cans and can be bought off the shelf. It contains water so this is a good option for dogs who don’t drink much. It is also soft and easy to chew so you will find that your Chihuahua has no problems eating it.

However, there are some downsides to wet food. Unlike dry food, it does not stimulate the teeth. In fact, it can cause plaque and tartar buildup which can lead to heart disease. It also perishes quickly and must be refrigerated once opened.

Manufacturers also add artificial flavors, colorants, preservatives, and unhealthy fillers to wet food products.

Dry food 

Most supermarkets sell dry dog food. Dry dog food is also relatively cheaper to purchase than wet food. It stimulates the teeth and removes plaque and tartar buildup. Dry food comes in bags and is very easy to store.

However, some manufacturers also add loads of artificial colorants, preservatives, flavors, and fillers into their recipes. The nutritional value of these ingredients are not very high and some may even have adverse health effects in the long run.

You also have to be careful to purchase only dry food that comes in small kibble sizes that your Chihuahua will be able to chew.

Raw food

Raw food is the ideal diet for your Chihuahua. The ingredients are fresh and there is never any danger of artificial additives because you’re making it all yourself. However, if you are a pet parent with a hectic lifestyle, it can be difficult to prepare food for your dog on a daily basis.

What’s more, raw food that has been improperly handled can breed germs such as salmonella. Your Chihuahua can end up with a stomach infection if they eat any contaminated food.

How Should you Feed your Chihuahua?

One thing to note is that Chihuahuas are notoriously picky eaters. However, there is a way to get around this. When feeding dry food, moisten the food with some water and warm it in the microwave. Be careful not to overheat it as it will burn your Chihuahua’s mouth.

Mix some fats such as a teaspoon of olive oil or shredded cheese into the dry food. Fats taste good to Chihuahuas but be aware that too much could lead to obesity.

Another option is to mix dry food with high-quality wet food to make the food more appealing. When you are transitioning your Chihuahua to new dog food, do not do so immediately or they may get sick.

Always introduce any new food gradually. Here’s how to do it:

  • 1st Week: The food bowl should consist of 75 percent of the old food and 25 percent of the new food.
  • 2nd Week: The food bowl should consist of 50 percent of the old food and 50 percent of the new food.
  • 3rd Week: The food bowl should consist of 25 percent of the old food and 75 percent of the new food.
  • 4th Week: Your Chihuahua can now eat 100 percent of the new dog food.

The following explains how Chihuahua puppies, adolescents, adults, and seniors should be fed:


During the first few weeks of their life, puppies should be fed their mother’s milk. However, if that is not available, make sure that puppies weighing under two pounds are given a constant supply of kibble.

This is called free feeding. Do this until they are three months old, and then stop and begin giving them meals. In general, Chihuahuas from three to six months old should be fed three to four meals a day to avoid the risk of low blood sugar.


From the age of six months to a year, Chihuahuas begin going through puberty. An adolescent Chihuahua should be fed two to three times a day.


Chihuahuas aged one year or more are essentially in their prime. Adult Chihuahuas should be fed twice a day.


Senior Chihuahuas should also be fed twice a day, but their portion sizes should be smaller or adjusted according to their activity level. Talk to your vet to ensure that the portion sizes you are giving your Chihuahua are just right.

Due to the long lifespans of toy breeds, it is difficult to determine when your Chihuahua becomes a senior. Your vet can help you determine this.

When Should you Feed your Chihuahua? 

When planning meals, instead of giving your pet two large meals, try and spread it out into several smaller portions. Make sure that the total amount still meets their calorie requirements.

For example, suppose your Chihuahua needs 210 calories a day. Divide this into three small meals and feed them 70 calories per meal.

Timing is of the essence when it comes to feeding your Chihuahua. When your puppy is under a year old, they have to be fed multiple meals a day. You can spread these meals out throughout the day to keep your pup energetic.

However, for adult Chihuahuas over the age of one, you should feed them once in the morning and once at night.

At times, you might be tempted to give them a big dinner to save time. Unfortunately, this is counterproductive as Chihuahuas cannot handle large meals due to their small stomachs. It may make your Chihuahua ill.

Chihuahuas will need to go to the toilet after dinner. Time their meals to ensure that your Chihuahua gets used to going to the toilet at more regular hours, such as 10 am and not at the crack of dawn.

What Foods Should You Avoid? 

Nowadays, commercial dog foods are filled with fillers, and artificial preservatives and flavors. These substances have little to no nutritional value and can cause your Chihuahua to pack on the extra pounds.

Therefore, you should steer clear of foods that contain large amounts of these ingredients. The following lists the kinds of foods that are toxic to dogs and should be avoided:


All kinds of chocolate, especially the dark variety, contains a substance called Theobromine which is highly toxic to dogs. Symptoms include throwing up, loose stools and muscle spasms.

Onions and Garlic 

These food contain a toxic compound called Thiosulfate which can trigger anemia in dogs. Anemic dogs have pale pink gums and unusually dark, tar-like stools, and they will get tired easily.


Dogs are naturally alert all the time. They do not require stimulants such as caffeine. In fact, caffeine is dangerous to dogs because it causes an alarmingly high heart rate.


Beware of bones, especially chicken bones, that are small enough to fit into your Chihuahua’s mouth. Munching on bones for too long can cause them to splinter or get stuck inside your Chihuahua’s mouth and digestive system. Eating bones can also lead to stomach upsets.

Grapes, Raisins, Cherries, Macadamia Nuts, and Avocados 

These foods are extremely harmful to your pet. Furthermore, grapes and raisins can cause kidney failure.


Xylitol is an artificial sweetener that causes an insulin spike which lowers blood sugar and triggers hypoglycemia in Chihuahuas. A very small dose can prove fatal so avoid this substance entirely.


While rational people would never feed alcohol to their pets, alcohol can be produced in the stomach by yeast. Avoid giving your dog any products that contain yeast, such as yeast dough.

Common Chihuahua Health Problems 

Chihuahua Health Problems You may be tempted to cut back on costs by buying cheaper food brands but this can be harmful to your Chihuahua’s health. A Chihuahua’s physical state is reliant on the kind of food they eat. Cheaper dog food brands contain low-quality ingredients which can be harmful.

Here are the types of health problems a Chihuahua may face:

Food Allergies 

A high wheat content in dog food can eventually trigger food allergies in Chihuahuas. Symptoms include itchy skin, excessive hair loss, and ear infections. If you are suspicious that your dog food may be causing this, conduct a food trial to be sure.

Remove the food from their diet completely if it happens to be the cause.


As mentioned before, Chihuahuas have high energy levels. However, their energy diminishes with age. Older Chihuahuas are much less active and have slower metabolisms. It can be easy to overfeed them at times with too many treats.

This gradually leads to obesity and other health complications like high blood pressure, joint injuries, and diabetes.

Limit the amount of food you feed your Chihuahua as they get older. Follow a strict meal routine to avoid the risk of overfeeding them and give them regular exercise. This will keep your dog in good shape and increase their lifespan.  

Oral Diseases 

The softness of a Chihuahua’s teeth might leave them vulnerable to oral infections. Infections eventually lead to tooth decay, and your dog will have difficulty chewing and swallowing.

This results in weight loss and if it isn’t treated, the infection might spread to the heart and lungs.

Preventative measures include buying special dog chew toys, brushing their teeth regularly, and taking them for professional teeth cleaning session every once in a while. Establishing a healthy oral hygiene routine early in your Chihuahua’s life also goes a long way.


Hypoglycemia is common in Chihuahuas up to 10 weeks old. Unfortunately, Chihuahuas are vulnerable to getting low blood sugar. Symptoms of low blood sugar include fatigue, dizziness, shivering, coordination loss, and even seizures. Keep some honey or sugar water at hand in case this happens.

To prevent fluctuations in blood sugar, pet parents may choose to give their Chihuahua a high glycemic index diet.

A high glycemic index means that the body takes more time to break down complex carbohydrates which means that the blood sugar remains at the appropriate level. This can also prevent diabetes.

Giving your Chihuahua a diet containing sweet potatoes, barley, and oats should do the trick. Additionally, setting up a meal schedule which includes regular meals and small portion sizes also helps.

Legg-Calvé-Perthes Disease 

The disease triggers the deterioration of the femur bones in the hips. This eventually leads to hip joints decaying and becoming inflamed. Unfortunately, scientists do not know what causes this condition.

If your pet is suffering from this disease, there are ways to manage it. Help your Chihuahua maintain their weight with regular exercise, and feed them a dog food that contains calcium, chondroitin, and glucosamine.

Mitral Valve Disease 

Mitral valve disease affects the heart valves, leading to thickening and degradation. This results in an irregular heartbeat. Symptoms include coughing, lack of energy, loss of consciousness and an inability to exercise.

Ensuring your dog stays at a healthy weight, choosing low sodium dog food, and introducing proper oral hygiene will help to prevent this disease. Supplement your Chihuahua’s diet with Vitamins E & C, Omega 3 fatty acids, Taurine and L-Carnitine to promote heart health.

Beef, chicken, and lamb are good sources of Taurine and L-Carnitine.

Kneecap Dislocation 

Luxating Patella is normally a hereditary condition but can occur if your Chihuahua overexerts themselves by jumping from high places. The kneecap slides out of position and the joint swells.

As a result, your Chihuahua will limp and whine when they try to put pressure on the injured leg.

Your vet may give your Chihuahua an X-ray to confirm the condition. Fortunately, some bed rest and anti-inflammatory medication will help solve a minor case. However, if the condition is serious, surgery might be required.

Lack of treatment will eventually manifest as arthritis and permanent crippling.

Other Health Problems 

This section lists other non-nutrition related health problems that Chihuahuas may suffer from:

Retinal Dysplasia 

Retinal dysplasia occurs when the retina is deformed. This is a congenital and inherited disorder which hinders vision. Fortunately, it is neither degenerative nor painful. Symptoms include clumsiness, personality changes, inability to recognize people and objects, and changes in eye color.

Unfortunately, there is no cure for this disease. Scientists have still been unable to find out why this happens. Prevention includes neutering your pet so that they cannot reproduce and pass the affected genes on to the next generation.

Afflicted Chihuahuas often develop advanced hearing and sense of smell to compensate for their poor vision. However, you should make your home a safe environment for your pet to ensure they don’t get injured.

Don’t let your dog near large bodies of water, such as the pool.

Collapsed Trachea 

The trachea consists of tracheal rings made of cartilage. Collapsed trachea is a congenital disorder which occurs because these cartilage are not strong enough and the rings collapse in on themselves.

Symptoms include a honking cough, bluish tint to the gums, heavy breathing and an inability to exercise.

This condition can be treated using cough suppressants, bronchodilators, corticosteroids (to reduce inflammation), and antibiotics. In severe cases, surgery might be required.

Owners should help afflicted Chihuahuas manage their weight, stop them from over-exercising, and reduce their exposure to irritants, such as smoke or dust and hot weather.


Glaucoma occurs when there is increased pressure on the eye, and fluids are not drained properly. As a result, the retina and optic nerve are damaged which can lead to blindness.

Symptoms include different sized pupils, mild to severe eye pain, bloodshot eyes, and increased sensitivity to light. Glaucoma is either hereditary or forms as a result of other eye diseases.

If your Chihuahua shows any of these symptoms, you should immediately rush them to the hospital. Medication is given to reduce eye pressure and pain. In severe cases, surgery might be required.

Corneal Dystrophy 

Corneal dystrophy is an inherited disease that affects the corneas of both eyes. It is a progressive illness. Symptoms include poor vision, opaque donut-shaped discoloration at the center of the eyes, excess fluid in the corneas, eye pain, and blueish eye color.

Unfortunately, this condition cannot be treated but it can be controlled. Depending on the cause of the symptoms, doctors may prescribe eye drops to help ease the symptoms. In serious cases, surgery might be required.

Lens Luxation 

Lens luxation occurs due to the deterioration of the suspensory fibers that hold the lenses in place. The lenses in the eyes then slide out of position. Symptoms include a change in the appearance of the eyes, lots of squinting accompanied by pain, eye redness, an inability to exercise, and depression.

If your dog displays any of these symptoms, rush them to the hospital immediately. This condition often occurs in conjunction with glaucoma. If treatment isn’t done within 48 hours, they may lose their vision permanently.

Patent Ductus Arteriosus 

The blood from the pulmonary artery and aorta are connected by a passage called the ductus arteriosus. This passage is supposed to close after birth but it remains open. As a result, oxygenated and deoxygenated blood mix together.

This may eventually lead to congenital heart failure and death. Symptoms include a blue tinge to the foot pads on the hind legs, severe lethargy, and an abnormal heart rate.

Your veterinarian may refer you to a veterinary cardiovascular surgeon who can help treat this problem.

Chihuahua Dog Food Buying Guide

What to Look for When Buying Food for Your Chihuahua When buying dog food, know that your veterinarian may not always have your best interests at heart. Although some vets live to see their animal patients thrive, you never know if the vet might just want to make a sale.

A good way to know is if the vet’s office sells pet food. Fend off overly eager vets by politely declining their offers to sell you their pet food. If you must buy the pet food, do your research first.

Avoid buying dog food from the grocery store even if they are labeled premium. These are usually filled with fillers. However, if you must buy from there, always check the ingredients. Don’t fall for the label!

Below are some of the things you should keep in mind when buying food for your Chihuahua:

Age Recommendations 

Chihuahuas have different nutritional requirements at the different stages of their lives. Therefore, it is important to choose foods which cater to your Chihuahua’s specific age group.

You may also want to choose a different kind of dog food for pregnant and lactating dogs as their nutritional needs will also be different. Doing this ensures your Chihuahua does not become malnourished.

Quantity and Quality of Meat 

Chihuahua food should contain 40 percent protein to supplement their protein needs. Always check the ingredient list. Foods which list meat as one of the first five ingredients have a substantial amount of meat in the food.

Real meat trumps meat meals so always choose dog foods that contain real meat. Avoid meat by-products at all costs as it may contain bones, fatty tissues, and other unsanitary body parts.

They might even be sourced from road kills and animals who died from diseases or were euthanized.

The quality and quantity of meat are important because Chihuahuas need a lot of protein in their diet. Real meat has the highest quantity of essential proteins.

Fruits and Vegetables 

Fruits and vegetables contain all the necessary minerals and vitamins that keep your dog healthy. Of course the kinds of vegetables and fruits used in food matters. Certain fruits and veggies such as superfoods are packed full of minerals and vitamins.

Dog food should contain 40 percent of vegetables and fruits sourced from sweet potatoes, green peas, spinach, and kale. Another 20 percent of the nutrition should come from carbohydrates such as pasta.

Avoid vegetables such as potatoes and corn. These are mostly used as fillers and will cause digestive upsets and allergic reactions in your Chihuahua.


Buying food for your Chihuahua can be hard in the beginning as they might not like certain tastes. Chihuahuas are taste-sensitive dogs. Flavor is important. Try beef, chicken, or salmon to see which one appeals to them. Your Chihuahua will let you know if they like the food or not.

Keep in mind that dog food should contain natural flavors, ideally straight from the ingredients. Avoid artificial flavoring as it may result in adverse health effects in the future.

Kibble Size 

As mentioned before, Chihuahuas have small jaws which can make it hard for them to chew large pieces of food. Make sure that the kibble you buy are small enough or specifically made for toy breeds or Chihuahuas.

It might even make a picky eater more likely to eat their food. The right kibble size also maintains dental health which prevents heart disease.

Specialty Formula

Luckily for you, some manufacturers have started making breed specific options. This means that the recipe is specifically tailored to suit the tastes and nutritional requirements of Chihuahuas. The kibble sizes are ideal for Chihuahuas’ tiny mouths.

Food Made in the United States, Canada, New Zealand, Australia or Western Europe

It can be harmful to Chihuahuas to ingest even a small amount of toxic substances. It is important that you buy dog food manufactured from the United States, Canada, New Zealand, Australia or Western Europe as they have strict regulations and quality controls.

Final Thoughts 

Chihuahuas may be small but their hearts and attitudes certainly rival that of any big dog. These affectionate and loyal creatures deserve our love and attention. And nowhere is this attention more necessary than when it comes to their dietary needs. Our furry friends need the best diet to be able to function properly.

Hopefully, this comprehensive guide has armed you with the knowledge you need to keep your Chihuahua in the best possible shape. 


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