How Much and How Often Should Chihuahuas Eat? (Explained!)

Chihuahuas should eat 2-6 times per day in amounts ranging from 1/8 to 1/4 cup per meal according to their size and age. See chihuahua feeding chart below for specifics.

Chihuahua Age

Daily Amount of Food

Number of Daily Meals

Puppy (0-1 years old)

1/8-1/4 cup (19-39g)

4-6

Adult (1-7 years old, 2-5 pounds)

1/8-1/4 cup (19-39g)

3-4

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Adult (1-7 years old, 6-10 pounds)

1/4-1/3 cup (39-52g)

3-4

Senior (8 years old or older)

1/8-1/4 cup (19-39g)

2-3

The rest of this article will explain how to determine the proper amount of food and the number of meals per day to feed a Chihuahua.

How much should your Chihuahua eat every day?

Thanks to their fast metabolisms, puppies need more food per pound than adult dogs, but larger adult Chihuahuas will probably need more food than a Chihuahua puppy. Senior Chihuahuas typically fall somewhere in the middle, needing less food if they are inactive and prone to obesity, or more food if they are active and not overweight.

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How important is weight when considering how much to feed your Chihuahua?

Your Chihuahua’s weight is just as important as its age when considering how much to feed it. According to Preventive Vet, a dog that weighs between 2-5 pounds should not be fed more than 39g of food per day, while an active dog that weighs between 5-10 pounds may need up to 52g of food.

What is the ideal weight for a Chihuahua?

According to the American Kennel Club, a healthy adult Chihuahua should weigh between 3-6 pounds, but a Chihuahua’s height and body type can make its ideal weight fall outside of the standard. Consult with your veterinarian to determine your Chihuahua’s ideal weight; the vet will check your dog’s ribs and waist to make sure they are covered with a healthy amount of fat.

Should you assume that your Chihuahua needs a lot of food to start with?

You should always start feeding your dog at the lower end of the suggested feeding range and then adjust the amount based on activity level and metabolism. For example, you should start feeding an adult Chihuahua about 39g per day and then increase the amount until your dog is satisfied without becoming overweight.

Should you ever feed your Chihuahua less than the recommended amount?

If your Chihuahua is prone to overeating and isn’t active enough to burn the extra calories, you should consider providing less food than the recommended amount. For example, a senior dog that dislikes going for walks and isn’t very energetic may need even less food than a dog the same age that is more excitable.

Are Chihuahuas more likely to be overweight or underweight?

Due to their naturally small size, Chihuahuas are far more likely to obese than they are to be malnourished. A single pound of extra weight on a tiny Chihuahua translates to a major step toward obesity, so your dog’s diet needs to be carefully monitored and adjusted if your Chihuahua does gain weight.

What signs of overfeeding should you look for in your Chihuahua?

As with determining your dog’s ideal weight, checking your Chihuahua’s ribs and waist are key indicators of its health. Look to make sure you can still feel the spine and ribs of your Chihuahua without any fat getting in the way, and observe if the waist is plainly visible without being noticeably fatty.

How often should you feed your Chihuahua?

Because Chihuahuas are too small to store energy as well as larger dogs can, they are at risk of becoming hypoglycemic and need to be fed several times throughout the day in order to keep their blood sugar up. Feed your Chihuahua at breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and if it appears to be tired, consider adding snacks in between meals as well.

Should puppies be fed more often than adult Chihuahuas?

Like all growing animals, Chihuahuas in the puppy stage need food more often than their adult counterparts. You can start off by feeding your puppy about four times per day, then feel free to increase the number of meals up to six feedings per day if needed to keep up with the puppy’s faster metabolism.

Do Chihuahuas need to be fed on a schedule?

Most dogs find comfort in knowing when to expect their next meal, and Chihuahuas are no exception, so you should do your best to feed your Chihuahua at the same time every day. If you have to be out of the house at lunchtime, use a timed treat dispenser to make sure you Chihuahua gets its midday meal.

How do treats affect how much and how often you feed your Chihuahua?

A good rule of thumb for dog owners is to avoid being impulsive when giving treats to their pooches, so you should limit treats to rewards for good behavior and successful training, and for when your Chihuahua is socializing outside of the home. If you treat your dog a lot between meals, make sure to adjust the amount at feeding time appropriately.

Can you feed your Chihuahua table scraps?

Feeding any dog table scraps is typically frowned upon, and Chihuahuas can be especially affected by this habit because of how easily they can become overweight. Especially don’t feed your Chihuahua from the table if it has just eaten a meal or if it is already overweight and you are trying to limit its diet.

What are the signs of hypoglycemia so that you can know if you need to feed your Chihuahua more often?

If your Chihuahua is ever lethargic or restless, if it has trouble walking normally, or if it experiences muscle twitches or seizures, feed it immediately to see if this is a temporary condition. If your dog is unable to eat, try rubbing a sweet liquid like honey or corn syrup on its gums, then take it to the vet.

What can happen if you feed your Chihuahua too much or too often?

Overfeeding your Chihuahua can have long-term effects on your dog’s health, because obesity is known to lead to health complications that can limit a dog’s lifespan. In addition, overweight dogs have a lower quality of life because the extra weight they are carrying can lead to back and joint problems and even arthritis.