As a small dog, Chihuahuas are prone to anxiety and stress, which makes them clingy. They like to be held by their owners as that provides them with a sense of security and a feeling of belonging.
But is that all the reasons that they want a hug? Let’s find out what’s on their minds.
Their Small Size Makes Them Feel Vulnerable
As a result of their size and timidity, Chihuahuas tend to be wary of strangers, making them feel uncomfortable around unfamiliar people.
They’re very sensitive and get stressed out easily. It is because of this that they are naturally drawn to their owners and want to be close to them, so that they can be cuddled and guarded.
When they’re in the hands of their owners, they feel safe, secure, and protected. They enjoy this feeling. And it’s something they will always yearn for.
They can let off their guard and enjoy the warm embrace that was given to them.
Cuddling Eases Their Separation Anxiety
Due to their affectionate nature, Chihuahuas are prone to separation anxiety when their owners are absent for an extended period of time.
It is for this reason that your Chihuahua wants to cuddle with you the instant he sees you again. I’m sure he misses you terribly!
You need to keep in mind that a day for a dog is different from humans because an hour of human time is equivalent to 7 hours of dog’s time.
Therefore, even if you are away for only 3 hours, your Chihuahua might feel like you have been gone for almost 21 hours!
That’s why he will likely feel nervous, and may even become aggressive or destructive while you are away.
Upon your return, he will be so happy to see you again and will run up and jump on you, asking for a hug.
He wants to be close to you, and make sure that you will not be out of his sight again.
This is often a sign of separation anxiety and needs to be addressed.
It is important to take the time to comfort him, soothe his fears and provide him with the love and attention that he needs.
Set aside some time to have a nice and warm cuddle with him. Giving a rub on his belly will offer him great comfort. By doing so, you will reassure him that you’re not abandoning him.
Build his confidence to be alone through training and provide him with a crate so that he can retreat to it when he feels anxious about being alone.
Keep him busy in the crate with his favorite toys and that should ease his anxiety.
They Feel Cold and Need Warmth
Chihuahuas have the greatest difficulty in maintaining their body temperature out of all dog breeds.
They get cold easily since they are so tiny and don’t have much fat to keep them warm.
This is especially true in the winter when the weather turns cold. You will likely find that your Chihuahua will be very clingy when the temperature drops because he wants your body heat to keep him warm.
He will want to be near you at all times and crave your cuddling.
So keep a lookout for signs that your Chihuahua is feeling cold, such as
- He appears to be shivering.
- He is hunched over, with his tail tucked between his legs.
- He looks distressed or anxious.
- He is curling up into a tight ball.
- Every part of his body feels cold to the touch.
Make sure that he has a cozy and comfortable place where he can keep himself warm.
Put a heat lamp near his crate or get him a thick blanket, so he can snuggle under it.
Alternatively, you can get a dog coat for him to keep him warm. Make sure the coat fits him well and doesn’t cause him any discomfort.
This Is The Behavior You Taught Him When He Was Young
The upbringing of a Chihuahua shapes its personality. If you had constantly held him in your arms when he was still a puppy, that might have influenced his behavior.
He would love to be carried around and always be in your arms no matter how old he gets.
Having grown into adulthood, the dog would certainly want the same “treatment” that you have given him since he was a pup.
In order to correct this behavior, you have to teach him that by not having you hug him, he gets more rewards.
You can achieve this through positive reinforcement training.
Positive reinforcement training is a method of behavior modification that works by rewarding a behavior with some type of pleasure or reward. It is one of the most effective training methods available.
When it comes to dogs, the best way to teach them something is by praising them for doing the right thing.
Here’s how it works:
When you get near your Chihuahua, he will act out and want you to hold him.
Turn your back on him and ignore his barking and pestering.
Once he has calmed down, reward him with a treat and praise him for being a well-behaved dog.
By doing this, he will learn that pestering you to hug him will make you unhappy, and he will not get your attention. As long as he stops this behavior, he will receive a reward (such as treats, attention, and praise).
As a result, he’ll associate not pestering you with a good experience.
Infection or Injury in His Paws Makes Walking Difficult
If your Chihuahua is suffering from some physical discomfort such as injury or infection to his paws, that could make him resent walking and want you to hold him instead.
You will notice that he appears reluctant to move at all in the house and is persistently licking his paws.
The purpose of licking his paws is to relieve pain or discomfort.
Aside from suffering from cuts caused by sharp objects, dry skin on his paws can also cause irritation and itching. This may result in a fungal infection.
Visually inspect his paws to determine whether there are any signs of bleeding, sores, redness, swelling, infection, or any other abnormalities of the skin.
You should seek veterinary care as soon as you notice any of these signs. The veterinarian will be able to confirm the diagnosis and prescribe the appropriate treatment.
Pack Mentality – To Stick Together
Dogs are accustomed to living in packs, as their ancestors, wolves, have been doing so for many, many years. As a group, they live together, hunt together, snuggle together, and are even known to sleep together.
Even today, dogs still experience this same sense of belonging because of this pack mentality. That’s why you’ll see dogs following each other like a pack of wolves in the dog park.
As their pack leader, they definitely crave your cuddling since that gives them a sense of security, warmth, and love.
It is through cuddling that dogs once again experience their sense of belonging in the pack.
This explains why your Chihuahua is always trying to get a hug from you and likes to stay with you.
What Is the Proper Way to Hold a Chihuahua?
You should make sure that you support the body of a Chihuahua when holding him. Because his legs are thin and small, it is not recommended to pick him up or hold him by his legs.
The way to pick him up will be to:
- Support his upper body by sliding one hand between his front legs and under his chest. With your other hand, place your palm behind his rump.
- As you stand up, make sure you have a solid grip on your dog. When you carry your dog, keep him close to your chest so that he will feel secure.
What’s the Best Place to Touch Chihuahuas?
Chihuahuas love to be stroked on the back of the neck, underneath the chin, and at the tail’s base. They also like having their shoulders and back massaged.
They dislike having their ears, nose, legs, or tail caressed.