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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi There,
I'm new to the site, been browsing for a little while.
A little background info...we recently lost our old min pin to cancer and are looking to add a chihuahua to our home to fill the void that our old girl left. I was not completely thrilled about getting into puppy stages and so I thought we would try an adult dog or rescue. We found a beautiful little girl that had been brought back to the breeder due to family illness - she had a darling personality and was eager to meet people and a real cuddler but after 2 weeks she started biting the kids. Showed some very strange behaviours and after much debate decided that she just was not the best addition to our family. Now the breeder has offered us a puppy as a replacement because she feels so terrible about the whole thing (was never aware of the biting). Beautiful little girl and I am considering now that perhaps a puppy is a better option to have the pup grow up with the kids and hopefully not have a biter on our hands.
HOWEVER....the puppy is 15 weeks old and we met her today. She was very timid. Was not willing to let us pet her and stayed near us but never close enough that we could touch her. After 20 minutes I was able to pick her up but she fought me for quite awhile. After 10 minutes she somewhat settled but was never completely thrilled with me.
So my question is.............. is this simply a socialization and exposure issue? Or is it more likely her personality? I am really hoping to choose a chihuahua that is keen to meet new people and absolutely not a biter with the kids. Now I am nervous and not sure she is the pup for us. Breeder says she actually has a rather comical and outgoing personality once she is used to you being around.
I would love to hear from others who have started with a very timid pup - Did they come out of their shell?

Thanks in advance for your input!!

Carmen
 

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I have a little girl (4.5 months, got her at 8 weeks) who's quite shy, but not so shy that she won't let people pat her. She just shakes and pulls her scared face which is tip of the tounge out and eyes with a mornful expression. I put in a lot of work with her (puppy school, walks in a busy dog park every day) and she has improved a lot with new people but she's still scared with other dogs - even my mum's 10 week old Maltipoo puppy terrifies her, she loves our other Chi though. I would be concerned about the environment she has come from if the breeder has produced 2 dogs with such fear/agression issues, they are obviously not well socialized. Also at 15 weeks that pup has pretty much past the key socialization window, it's not that nothing can be done from this point but it will be harder.
If I were you I would look for a puppy from another breeder aged between 10 and 12 weeks who has been raised in a home environment with someone who is there full time with them rather than in a kennel.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you so much for your reply! That was my fear, that perhaps she is past the point of optimal socialization opportunities. I am sure we could make her more comforable with us but worry she would be fearful of strangers and possibly even become a fear biter. Obviously not the best way to start out. She does come from a reputable breeder actually. She raises all naturally in her home running around(not kennelled). The returned dog was 2 years old and a perfectly lovely little dog with a starnge habit of nipping at faces when you hug her - tolerates all kinds of snuggles and being carried and very loving but hates faces/heads near her. Weird hey...and oviously not easy to deal with with children, even though she loved the kids!. Atleast not an ideal way to start out with a dog that will spend the next 15 years with us. And the puppy - just a timid one of the bunch I guess as all of the others were very friendly and all jumping in our laps the whole time. So I guess I was just mostly wanting to verify that for the most part, a fearful puppy suggests a fearful adultÉ
 

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Great advice from Sarah. I would also agree that you should keep looking. How old are your children?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
My kids are 5 and 7 years old but are truly very gentle. I am confident in them with a tiny pup but I am hoping that we can find a puppy that is accepting of children. They know how to handle a tiny dog and are supervised and such but it still requires a degree of patience from any dog. Anyone here have chis with children?
 

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Mine came to me from my daughter, and he's a crossbreed but very tiny at 2lbs 8ozs, he is great with my granddaughter of almost 2 years old.
He has never bitten but is rather timid and won't allow her to pick him up, rather sensible I think, mind you he doesn't really like us picking him up either.
He wasn't socialised at all as a puppy other than with my daughters other terriers when she got him as a very young pup and has taken us quite a whle to get this far but he is getting better and better every day.

To be honest I wouldn't advocate a chi for such young children unless you were looking at the very large chi's of above 10lbs. Even children brought up with tiny/small dogs can be overwhelming for smaller chi's.
Although min pins are't that much bigger than a chi, I have one of those as well, they are a lot more robust and tolerant of children I've found.
Our rescue min pin of around 11 years is absolutely fantastic with all kids, we've had him 4 years and he was not brought up with kids at all, he is the best we have around the grandkids....he hates men thoughuntil he gets to know them, due to being abused by a former male owner but that's not his fault!
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I have considered other breeds. And may still be open to another breed if it was the right pup but do love the chihuahuas.
We had the last chi here for 2 weeks and the kids handled her very well. (She was 3.5lb and quite outgoing).I do not feel her biting was related to the kids but more a dpg behaviour issue since she nipped at adults too).
Perhaps I should post another post about opinions on whether people feel chis can be raised successfully with children...hmmm...
 

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My, now nearing 9 month old, female Chihuahua was very timid for about the first week after we had her home. She was 6 weeks old when we picked her up, and needless to say she was TINY! Now - she is the most social Chihuahua that I have ever met. She runs up to everyone and greets them with her tail wagging, other dogs included! Not shy at all! We had people in and out of the house and traveled with her to many places very early on in her life, so I think that socialization really helped her to come out of her shell. A timid pup may just be nervous about new people, but if you introduce her often to other people and dogs, she will be just fine! Just think how big you must look to her, if you were that tiny you'd be a little scared, too ;) hahaha
 

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I'm glad. You just know when a dog isn't going to be the right fit in your home. You will find the perfect pup for your family eventually :)
 

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I have considered other breeds. And may still be open to another breed if it was the right pup but do love the chihuahuas.
We had the last chi here for 2 weeks and the kids handled her very well. (She was 3.5lb and quite outgoing).I do not feel her biting was related to the kids but more a dpg behaviour issue since she nipped at adults too).
Perhaps I should post another post about opinions on whether people feel chis can be raised successfully with children...hmmm...
It's not that chi's, or other tiny breeds, can't be brought up with smaller children at all. Our LeStat is great with Courtney although we never chose to either have him or Courtney here full time so it's not a decision we made to have a chi with children.
My main concern where children are concerned is rarely the 'family' children but the fact they will have friends who will inevitably visit, maybe not 'dog savvy children' and whilst playing the little dogs can be hurt or frightened accidentally.
As I say a bigger chi can be a great pet whilst being able to cope with children, and their friends, much better but still having the cheeky chi temperament!
I don't know...maybe I've seen too many small/tiny dogs that have not had responsible owners who have allowed them to be bullied by their children....also it's not always easy to remember to move the dog into a different room when children are running around!
It's too easy for an accident to happen!
 

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In a rush, so didn't read the thread, so forgive me if it has already been said:

It would concern me if the same breeder produced both a dog that was biting your kids, and a puppy that was excessively timid. Sounds a little like temperament issues run in her line.

This assumes, of course, that the kids were being gentle. :)
 
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