What to do when Chihuahuas attack without a reason

In this article, we will discuss how to react when Chihuahuas attack without a reason. We will explain the basis of aggressiveness in dogs, and how to deal with an aggressive Chihuahua.

When Chihuahuas attack: aggression in dogs

Chihuahuas are known to be sometimes aggressive and attach without a reason, as they have more self-confidence and face situations more directly compared to other breeds; thus, these little dogs tend to be reactive because their perception of the world is more threatening.

Aggression can be exhibited through a wide variety of behaviors and for various reasons. Mainly, we observe two types of aggression, offensive, and defensive aggression. Risk factors for aggression include the age of the dog, the predictability of its attacks, the objects by which the animal reacts, the triggers or circumstances that cause the animal to cause aggressive behavior, in short, why do Chihuahuas attack?

Offensive aggressions are, mainly, those that we must try to correct. The expression of offensive aggression is controlled by the part of the dog’s brain that controls and regulates emotions, memory, hunger, and sexual instincts. 

This aggression is influenced by the perception of the environment (smell, hearing, sight, and pheromones) and the previous learning processes, that is, the socialization of the dog when it was a puppy and the experiences lived throughout its life.

Defensive assaults are similarly controlled by the brain but in a different region. They also control flight and fear blocking, as well as deadly bite, but do not control stalking or pursuing behavior.

The genetic basis of aggressiveness in dogs

Many studies show that there is a genetic basis for aggressiveness and that each breed has a different probability of being aggressive, that is, it is not present only in those considered “potentially dangerous dogs”.

A recent study in Golden retrievers showed that, in 80% of cases, aggressiveness is hereditary. Another study in Cocker spaniels has shown a genetic effect on aggression by showing that different coat colors are associated with different levels of aggression. In the English Springer Spaniel, aggressiveness is associated with the breeding male.

There is currently no reliable test to measure aggressiveness. The best information comes from people who live with dogs and have witnessed aggressive situations in real life. However, while there is an obvious genetic contribution to a dog’s level of aggressiveness, the environment also plays a role. Good socialization of the dog is crucial to avoid future behavior problems.

Redirected aggressiveness in dogs

Redirected aggression occurs when a dog in an aggressive state redirects aggression from one source to another. A dog that is barking at the door can redirect his aggression towards an owner who is pushing him back. Redirected aggression problems are more likely to occur when there is human involvement in the conflict during, for example, a fight.

However, whenever a dog enters a very intense state, redirection of aggressiveness can occur. Dogs that have a higher hierarchy within the home often redirect the attack to subordinate individuals.

Defensive attacks can also be redirected. For example, a dog that is frightened by the presence of strangers or that shows terror at loud noises may attack without warning the family member closest to him. The redirection of aggressiveness is nothing more than the misdirected release of the frustration that these situations cause them.

Why are all Chihuahuas so aggressive? 

Each dog is an individual; not all Chihuahuas are aggressive, but some are. Aggression most often has one of these origins:

  1. Pain. Many dogs are aggressive with the pain to keep people from touching what is causing them pain.  Have you tried picking up your chihuahua and getting bitten or pinched? Maybe his back hurt and you twisted him when you tried to pick him up.
  1. Learned behavior. Due to their small size, many people allow their Chihuahuas to get away with it. My best advice is to consider if your dog weighed 100 pounds, would you allow him to do what he does? No matter what the size of a dog, they all need a calm and confident pack leader; they need rules, routines, and training.

Similar to toddlers who are unhappy when things don’t go their way and who anger with frustration, many chihuahuas behave aggressively because it is the only way they know how to communicate effectively a firm “no”. If this behavior is left untreated, it will become the new normal, and it will negatively impact your relationships with your chihuahua, friends, and family.

  1. “Wiring”. Some canine brains are “wired” differently, which makes them naturally aggressive from childhood. It varies from dog to dog and is not a breed-specific problem. Sometimes this is due to poor reproduction and / or early trauma.

You know a dog’s brain works differently when that behavior can’t be changed with medication and training. Unfortunately, this can result in behavioral euthanasia for the safety of others, most commonly in large breed dogs.

What to do when Chihuahuas attack without a reason

Faced with aggressiveness problems, we must always go to a specialist who can apply the safest and most effective method for the dog and the people who live with him. Since aggressive behavior treatment can involve a combination of behavior modification techniques (habituation, counter-conditioning, and desensitization), drug therapy, surgery (such as neutering/spaying), or avoidance.

Each case is unique and the success of the treatment varies according to the diagnosis and according to their capacity and motivation, so the retraining of these companion animals must be carried out individually. Behavior modification is a useful tool for animals that elicit aggressive responses.

How to deal with aggressive Chihuahuas?

If your Chihuahua is aggressive, luckily, there are a number of methods you can use to stop the problem:

Control: You need to take control and set limits for your Chihuahua. Only allow your Chihuahua to be in specific areas of the house. If you don’t allow him to be in the bedroom, never leave him there. Establish feeding schedules, so you will combat aggressiveness for food. By being in control of his limits, your Chihuahua will feel secure and will be less likely to become aggressive.

Aggressive Chihuahuas with other animals: If your Chihuahua is aggressive towards another animal, then it is important to remain calm. If it’s safe, separate the animals. Don’t lose your cool or show affection to your Chihuahua after the incident. 

Instead, take your Chihuahua away from where the assault occurred and use assertive commands like “no” to let them know that the behavior was wrong. But never use physical abuse.

Aggressive Chihuahuas towards people: It is not a good sign if your Chihuahua is aggressive towards people. They may be small, but their bite can still hurt. This can be dangerous for young children. The best thing to do in this situation is to get professional help right away to help stop the behavior.

Never act scared: Try not to act scared around your Chihuahua. If you do this, he can let him have you as his alpha leader. This, in turn, can make your Chihuahua more aggressive. Instead, stay calm and confident in all situations. Your chihuahua will then see that you are his protector and will have no reason to become aggressive.

Stopping an aggressive Chihuahuas is possible, but it will take time and patience. Use the tips in this article to combat the problem. You will soon have a happy and healthy Chihuahua who will have no need to be aggressive. Take action today to help combat your aggressive Chihuahua.


One of the causes of aggression in dogs is the dominant behavior. If your chihuahua is behaving aggressively, he may think he is the dominant one. Establish rules so that your chihuahua understands your position as pack leader. (Remember, you don’t have to be mean or tough to be the alpha.)

If your chihuahua is behaving aggressively, he may think he is the dominant one. Establish rules so that your chihuahua understands your position as pack leader.

Has your dog bitten another dog or person several times? Comment, if you want, your experience, as we said in the article, the most valuable information is that which comes from people who share their home with a dog.

FAQ on What to do when Chihuahuas attack

Why is my Chihuahua so aggressive?

The most common reason why your Chihuahua is so aggressive is fear. Chihuahuas become aggressive when they face an unknown situation or an unknown person. They are small but need to show that they can defend themselves. 

Why did my Chihuahua bite me?

Your Chihuahua bit you in defense, or because it learned that it has to community its needs through aggression. 

Are Chihuahuas more aggressive than pit bulls?

Small dogs, like Chihuahuas, tend to be more aggressive than large dogs, that’s a fact. Blame it on an inferiority complex linked to their small size? It remains a mystery. 

Why do Chihuahuas bite their owners?

Chihuahuas bite their owners either as a defense mechanism or because they have not been properly educated and believe that to receive something, they have to attack. 

Why is my Chihuahua so mean?

If your Chihuahua is very mean, it is simply because you did not train it properly, or because it lacks socialization. It is very important to socialize your Chihuahua around other dogs, animals, adults, and children. You should start socializing when your pet is a puppy. 




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