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Discussion Starter #1
I know this is an odd question but I have a good reason for asking.

I'm not Diego's first person. His first people couldn't keep him so I took him in December and that's another story. They kept him until he was nine months old.

They're pretty young and he was their first dog. While we were talking the girl told me he was four weeks old when they got him.

I was...well, shocked. I've been around dogs all my life and I've always thought they should be at least eight weeks old if not older before being separated from their mothers and given away or sold.

The woman they got him from (I don't know her and they wouldn't tell me who she was) insisted that he was old enough at four weeks and said that Chihuahuas are usually given/sold at that age.

I was wondering if that was common practice or if she was handing them a line because she wanted him gone. I'm pretty sure she didn't give them full information about his lineage. His vet thinks that in addition to Chihuahua and Pomeranian he likely is part Feist, the breed that is the root of rat terriers and Parson and Jack Russells.

I guess I was thinking if he was too young to have been taken from his mother then that might play into his separation anxiety and his food issues. But Chihuahuas really are very different from other breeds, so I thought I'd ask here.
 

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Four weeks is ridiculous! I believe 8 weeks is the earliest puppies can go to their new homes, but 10-12 weeks is better. The longer they are with mom and siblings, the more they learn and become better adjusted. Good luck with Diego! :)
 

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Yeah 4 weeks is far far too early!!
The earliest should be 8 weeks but i personally think 10 weeks is better for the pup
 

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Oh wow 4 weeks is way too young!
What is she on?
Seems like she justs wants pups out her hair as soon as possible, unreal!
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Thanks, guys.

I'm really emotional about animals and I get mad every time I think about her handing the tiny guy off or worse deciding to re-breed her dam that fast. That's sick.

Being given/sold that young hasn't seemed to affect his physical health except I wonder if he'd be even bigger if he'd had more time with his mother.

I just sometimes think that's a factor in his emotional health. He's pretty independent when he knows where I am but if there's even a closed door between us he goes off screaming. And he jumps on everything he can find as if it's food.

I mean, I've caught him eating lint. Lint. Ew.

I guess he's just gonna need some time.
 

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bless Tulula went 2 days early but she was eating well and fine without her mum was fully independant and Tracey wanted her early for the school holidays. Billy went exactly at the age of 8 weeks and i kept Arnie for an extra week because his owners were on holiday :)
 

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That "breeder" is FOS!! Chihuahuas, because of their small size, should actually be kept LONGER than most other breeds. Eight weeks is a minimum for "average" sized pups. The tinier ones (IMO) should be kept closer to 12 weeks.

Marley was a larger pup at 8 weeks (2 1/2lbs) and I felt guilty for bringing him home the night before he turned 8 weeks. 4 weeks is ridiculous though!!

It could be the reason for his seperation or it could be related to how his first owners went about raising him. The biggest thing with taking pups away from the mother/siblings too early are bite inhibition & other social behaviors. Simply because - at 4 weeks they're just able to start walking around & playing with other pups.

Good luck with your pup - you've come to the right place & it sounds like he's in the right hands now. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #10
That "breeder" is FOS!! Chihuahuas, because of their small size, should actually be kept LONGER than most other breeds. Eight weeks is a minimum for "average" sized pups. The tinier ones (IMO) should be kept closer to 12 weeks.

Marley was a larger pup at 8 weeks (2 1/2lbs) and I felt guilty for bringing him home the night before he turned 8 weeks. 4 weeks is ridiculous though!!

It could be the reason for his seperation or it could be related to how his first owners went about raising him. The biggest thing with taking pups away from the mother/siblings too early are bite inhibition & other social behaviors. Simply because - at 4 weeks they're just able to start walking around & playing with other pups.

Good luck with your pup - you've come to the right place & it sounds like he's in the right hands now. :)
Oh boy.

He's terrible with my Australian Shepherd, Gabriel. I mean, Diego chews on him and grabs and pulls with his teeth. Gabriel for some reason thinks he's cute. I have to break them up all the time because Diego will not stop and Gabriel won't complain until the biting really hurts.

He's aggressive with other animals. He's slowly getting better but for awhile I thought he'd never make any progress with any of my other pets except Gabriel. He's slowly coming around with Calista, one of my cats but this is because she is a big lovebug. She'll slap in his general direction if he's too pushy but then (as she is doing right now) she'll rub up against him.

He's not well socialized.

The thing is, I think he thinks about it. Sometimes after I've removed him to keep him from causing real harm or being harmed he'll snuggle up and lay his head against my chest and sigh, literally sigh.

Maybe I should have hesitated before taking him but his next stop was a shelter and I couldn't stand that.
 

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The breeders I know, don't let the pups go until 12 weeks of age.
 

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I believe 8 weeks is earliest but 12 weeks is best. If they go any earlier they will lose crucial learning from littermates and mom, that may cause issues later.
 

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I would think 10-12 weeks - you would have to question why a breeder would want to pass them on before that ? Do they need the money fast, can they not cope with the pups?
 

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I think 10 to 12 wks also but i do really prefer 12 wks!!

And 4 wks they are only being introduced too food properly!!

I would definately think that this can cause issues in dogs being let go early because they do learn rules from there siblings and there mums!!!
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I'd like to thank everyone for replying.

I can't do anything to fix him having been taken so early. I'm not angry at his first people; they're young, this was their first dog and they believed everything they were told. The rest of it, well hard times came to a lot of people and at least they didn't dump him at PetSmart. And they both cried when they gave him to me.

I shouldn't be shocked at an unethical breeder; I know they exist. I suspect it's him being a mix that made her want him gone fast. Part of me worries about his dam; if she's just into the money I doubt she got proper care or rest before being bred again.

All I can do is take the best care of my gang that I can. And he can be sweet when he's not plotting to rule the entire world. :D

Thank you all again.
 
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