Does your chihuahua follow you everywhere?


Does your chihuahua follow you everywhere?

Does your chihuahua follow you everywhere? If you pop to the loo does she wait outside? Have you wondered why your chihuahua feels the need to follow you around the house? Is it bad for her and should you try and curb the habit?

Chihuahuas seem to have a special talent for this behaviour, especially if you are their ‘designated favourite.’ Picking a ‘favourite’ is a chihuahua idiosyncrasy. Minnie wants to be with me all the time and is currently curled up in her basket at my feet. If I get up she is likely to follow me. Sometimes if makes me think twice about doing something as it seems a shame to disturb her. I am convinced both the dogs can silently teleport and just appear behind you.

The Velcro Chihuahua

There are several ideas about why your chihuahua likes to follow you about. To understand it we need to look at the situation from her point of view. Dogs are very social animals and feel happy and secure when they are in a pack or group. To your dog, you and the family are the pack. So, staying in a group makes them feel safe and secure.

She may be curious to see where you are going. Being very opportunist in nature she might see it as a chance to get some additional food. Especially if she sees you heading to the kitchen for a cheeky custard crème. Crumbs of guilt are very likely to come her way!

If the balance is right she will view you as the pack leader, and she may view your wandering as patrolling your territory. She will naturally want to be part of the patrol. Chihuahuas are especially territorial and take a dim view of security breaches. This is one of the reasons they bark so much and dislike strangers in the house. They are respected for their watch-dog abilities.

Your Chihuahua will expect to join you on patrol. They are very security conscious!

But according to ‘I Heart Dogs’, there is scientific evidence that shows your dog plain loves you and feels happiest when she is with you. So it could be she simply adores you.

When is it unhealthy anxiety?

However, the natural urge of your chihuahua to follow you everywhere can be something else. Is your chihuahua overly anxious when you are not in the room or go out? Does she whine, bark and show signs of stress when you are not close to her. Then it is possible she has separation anxiety. Long term anxiety can be bad for your dog in the same way it can be bad for people.

If your dog is completely healthy (check with your vet) and there is no underlying medical reason for her anxiety there are things that you can do to make her feel more secure when you are not there.

Create Some Time Out

Desensitize her to your absence by arranging short periods of time alone. Make sure she has something positive to do, like chew a bone or Kong. When you come back don’t make a huge fuss so she doesn’t feel something momentous has happened. Build these periods up slowly.

Reduce Stressful Noise

In addition to this try to cut the noise down. If your house is very noisy, you may have workmen in or a new baby or teens playing loud music or the TV. This may be causing her anxiety because she can’t settle and doesn’t feel secure. Turn the volume down and you could try some soothing classical music. Alternatively using CBD or other cannabis-related products that are safe for pets, can also be an option if she is suffering from anxiety. 

The upshot of our research seems to be if your dog is happy and healthy then don’t worry about it, just try not to trip over her!

Have you got any funny stories about your chihuahua following you about. Please leave comments below. We love your feedback.


9 thoughts on “Does your chihuahua follow you everywhere?

  1. sharon laas

    We rescued our little “Gabbi” 1 1/2 yrs. ago; and is the first Chihuahua I’ve ever had, so I wonder if this problem is predominant to her breed. She will go in my bathroom and pee if the door is left open; she is aware that this a no-no!
    Any ideas or suggestions other than keeping the door. What would cause this behavior?

    • Louise Kirby Post author

      Chihuahuas are very hard to toilet train, so don’t worry it nothing you are doing. Maybe put a pee pad down to save your carpet then start to work with her to get her to go out side.

      It is case of ‘catch her being good’ and make a huge fuss when she does it right and try and ignore the accidents. Take her out every hour or so to pee and encourage her like mad. If she gets it right make sure you have a reward on hand, it has to be given at the scene so she associates the reward with peeing outside. It may take a while as you don’t know her background but chis are clever and you will get there in the end.
      Regards
      Louise

    • Teri

      My two Chihuahuas both would go in the house, sometimes right after I let them go outside. I noticed that they always go in another room to do it out of my sight because they know it’s a no-no.
      My solution is to keep my bedroom door closed. I live in a one bedroom apt so I can see them any where out in the living area, so they won’t do it in front of me.
      Also, when I leave out, I restrict them to my kitchen with a baby gate. They will not go on the hard, uncarpeted floor.
      I also have them sleep at night in crates. If I let them sleep in the bed with me, they will inevitability jump down sometime during the night and relieve themselves somewhere. I made the mistake initially of buying crates that were too big for them and they both would go in a corner. I switched to extra small, just enough room for them to turn around and no more going in their crates. I keep their crates near my bed so they can see me and they are very happy to sleep there.
      If I see them start walking around near the door or turning in circles (a telltale sign,) I immediately take them outside. I always make a big deal when they go outside.
      I used to keep a pee pad out but half the time they missed and would go just over the edge. I read that continued pee pad use tells them that it’s ok to go in the house, so I stopped using them. Accidents inside are now rare.

  2. Cari Beilby

    My Tito follows me everywhere! Except when daddy’s home that’s his favorite person. Lil Mommies and Nikki woo woo are always by my side on the couch under the blanket. I love all of them so.

  3. sharon laas

    My little girl burrows wherever there are covers/blankets around. The first time, I was looking all over the house and outside, afraid that she had made an escape. Thankfully, she started to move and there she was! Now we don’t panic if she “disappears”!

  4. Theresa

    My dog Boss is very smart. But he can’t quite get it to pee outside. He goes on the pads alright. I have taken a used pad and rubbed it on rocks, bushes, Lamp posts etc. He ignores the smell of it and my constant verbal coaching. He goes to the pads when we come inside!! I even asked a neighbor to point out the spots where her dog goes so he could make his mark. Help!

  5. Alison

    I have a chihuahua called Max. He is a year old and is just the best. I found out they don’t like rain, but Max goes outside in all weathers! It did take a long time to train him. He used to go by the front door so I kept the door shut and he now lets me know when he wants to go outside.

  6. Anne

    Hola,
    I traded retirement for volunteer sciences teaching at the only English immersion high school in rural Guatemala. I love it here. And yes, it is safer here than most US cities!

    I got a 6 month old chihuahua from a local family 2 years ago. Gaby is fantastic, intelligent and obedient, most of the time. 2 years later, I got another puppy from the same doggy parents. Sofie is 2 months old. I saw her when she was only 1 month old. I told the family her name was Sofie. They called her Sofie all along. When I picked her up yesterday, she already knew her name, walks on a leash and uses pee pee pads!

    However…. Gaby was 6 months old when I got her and she did NOT know who the hell I was and did not do anything I asked her to do. She even ran away from me and it took me an hour to catch her! After about a week, she stopped running away, but was still cautious around me for another week. Sofie, on the other hand is a Velcro puppy. Granted she’s only 2 months old, but she LOVES me. She has to nap by my side and must be in the same room with me ALL the time. Is this normal? Is it because she’s only 2 months old as compared to Gaby who was 6 months old?

    I can’t believe how smart Sofie is. When I hang laundry on the line, she comes outside and follows me. When I take Gaby for a walk, Sofie walks along on a leash like a pro at 2 months!

    Sofie has a large dog kennel with a pet warming pad to sleep in at night. After a bit of whining, Sofie settled down and slept until 5am. I got up and put her immediately on the pee pee pad and she went. I have several pee pee pads around the house and so far, Sofie has gone on the pads.

    However, I am concerned about the time Sofie spends gnawing on chew toys. I get her small chew toys and she will spend hours chewing on them. She has tiny dagger teeth, and chews mostly with her carnassials. Is this normal?

    I consider myself very lucky to have 2 smart little dogs.

    Salud,
    Anne

    • Louise Kirby Post author

      Hi there,

      Gnawing on a chew is good for your dog and a natural and calming behaviour. It is important that she is not chewing anything plastic that is just meat flavoured. Natural chews are things like hooves, raw bones (take out the marrow) pigs ears, ostrich spaghetti, things like that. Chihuahuas do get attached and want to be with their human and while this is adorable you may run into separation anxiety if you are not around. so building gentle independence is a good idea.

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