A designer dog, such as the Pomeranian Chihuahua mix, is not a purebred dog, but a crossbreed. Some people are very critical of the whole concept of designer dogs, but the fact is that all dogs are effectively descended from crossbreeds, and today’s purebreds are just yesterday’s crossbreeds with a known more recent ancestry. As soon as some varieties of wolves first became domesticated, more than 15,000 years ago, human beings no doubt began experimenting with dog breeding in an attempt to reinforce each animal’s most desirable traits, and that has continued to this day.
So there is nothing fundamentally wrong with wanting to own a designer dog, but before committing to a purchase it is best to find out just what you could expect from your new canine family member.
Other names for the Pomeranian Chihuahua mix
In many cases this hybrid dog will be a first generation crossbreed, the offspring of a purebred Pomeranian and a purebred Chihuahua. There is a wide variety of accepted names for the mix, including Pomchi, Chi Pom, Chiranian and Pomahuahua.
The American Kennel Club does not recognize mixed breeds, so you will not be able to register your Pomchi there. However, you can register your Pomeranian Chihuahua mix at the American Canine Hybrid Club (Chiranian), Designer Dogs Kennel Club (Chiranian), International Designer Canine Registry (Pomchi), Designer Breed Registry (Chiranian) and Dog Registry of America.
Genetics and designer dogs
One of the benefits of buying a purebred puppy, rather than a hybrid, is that is possible to predict the size, personality and appearance of the adult dog with a reasonable degree of accuracy. But the result of mixing two breeds, especially in the first generation, is harder to foresee. All dogs inherit a combination of dominant and recessive genes from their parents. Where both inherited genes are dominant, perhaps the gene for body size, the puppy will no doubt grow to a size similar to that of both parents. If there is a combination of a dominant and a recessive gene, the dominant gene will prevail, producing a closer likeness to one parent at the expense of the other.
Your Pomchi or Chiranian could also be a multi-generation cross rather than a first generation hybrid of a Pomeranian and a Chihuahua. A multi-generation cross puppy, for example the offspring of a Pomchi and a purebred Chihuahua, would have a genetic mix that was not a 50/50 combination of the two breeds, but 25% Pomeranian and 75% Chihuahua. On the other hand, A Pomchi dam and a Pomeranian sire would produce the reverse – a puppy that was 75% Pomeranian and only 25% Chihuahua. It would be wise to ask the breeder to identify the exact genetic mix of the Pomchi or Chiranian he proposes to sell to you.
Comparing the traits of Pomeranians and Chihuahuas
- Breed type Pomeranians and Chihuahuas are both Toy breeds.
- Height An adult Pomeranian can reach between 7 and 12 inches in height. Chihuahuas are generally smaller, typically measuring between 6 and 9 inches.
- Weight Pomeranians range in weight from 3 to 7 pounds, while the slightly lighter Chihuahua should not weigh more than 6 pounds.
- Appearance The coat color of a Pomeranian may be orange or red, or a mix of white, brown, black and gray. Chihuahuas have an even wider range of colors and markings, including solid colors or a mix of black, sable, brown, blue, silver, gold and merle.
- Coat type Pomeranians have two coats: a long-haired, coarser outer coat and a soft, thicker coat underneath. Chihuahuas can have either a single, short and smooth coat, or a long-haired coat that may or may not have an undercoat.
- Shedding Pomeranians shed their coat hairs a lot and require constant grooming. Smooth coat Chihuahuas actually shed more than long-haired ones, but still much less than Pomeranians do.
- Life expectancy Poms and Chihuahuas both enjoy the small breed advantage of a long life span. Poms generally survive for between 12 and 16 years. Chihuahuas have the longest life expectancy of all dog breeds and can live as long as 20 years.
- Health weaknesses A Pomeranian, while generally healthy, needs regular teeth cleaning to discourage plaque formation. Chihuahuas are not tolerant of cold and can be picky eaters, but must be fed at frequent intervals in order to keep at bay their tendency to suffer from hypoglycemia.
- Original purpose of breed Pomeranians were bred as show and lap dogs from the larger German Spitz variety. Chihuahuas appear to have originated in Mexico, as pets for members of the upper class, and they are named after a Mexican state. Their diminutive size is quite natural, not the result of selective breeding.
- Temperament Although intelligent, playful and inquisitive, Pomeranians are also stubborn and rather aggressive, inclined to bark at strangers. Chihuahuas are animated little creatures, devoted to their owners but not good with children.
So it’s clear that there a quite a few marked differences between the two breeds, making the task of forecasting just how your Pomchi puppy will turn out very difficult indeed. However, the Pomchi Club of America is able to offer some general conclusions about what to expect from this crossbreed. They say that it will be alert and intelligent, and weigh between 5 and 12 pounds. It will have dark, round eyes and erect ears of a medium size. Its furry tail will be quite long, carried flat on the back or in a loop. It may have a double or a single coat of almost any color.
Pomchis or Chiranians are known to be difficult subjects to housebreak, given the stubbornness in their Pomeranian heritage, but their intelligence makes them responsive to firm training and the learning of new tricks. They make an ideal indoor pet in an all-adult household, requiring only moderate outdoor exercise. One downside is that they can become anxious and whiny if left alone for long periods, but this is true of most small breeds. Now that you are fully informed about the potential of the Pomeranian Chihuahua designer dog, all that remains is to choose your breeder carefully and prepare your home to welcome the newest and tiniest family member.