You’re less likely to get away with a good boy or a pat on the back while training a chihuahua- it will need a treat! And since these little troublemakers require extra care on their diets, you need to be very wary of what you give them for snacks.
This article discusses everything you need to know about offering treats to chihuahuas, including what to consider while choosing treats and the best treats to buy and prepare yourself.
Is it Fine to Give Chihuahuas Treats?
While smaller dogs need to eat less, it’s safe and healthy for every dog to get treats. Snacks help a dog maintain its satiety levels until the next meal, allowing it to stay energized and more likely to exercise.
In addition, lack of food can quickly cause hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) in small breeds such as chihuahuas. Hence, giving your chihuahua regular treats also helps ensure it meets its nutritional requirements.
Things to Consider While Getting Dog Treats for Chihuahua
Here are some special considerations to make while choosing dog treats for a chihuahua:
Size of the Treat
Treats made for bigger dogs could be difficult for a chihuahua to chew and swallow, sometimes even causing choking hazards. Hence, the treat needs to be small.
Some treats have more calories than others. It’s a good idea to give low-calorie treats to smaller dogs so you can feed them often without making them obese.
Quality of the Ingredients
You should prioritize treats made of organic ingredients and ones that have few contaminants.
In addition, the label should clarify how the ingredients are sourced; for example, ‘animal fat’ could mean any animal, while ‘chicken fat’ would specifically mean chicken.
Some treats are hard, while others are soft. Both are useful in different situations.
Soft treats don’t take much time for your dog to finish and are better suited when it needs a quick bite. This could be while training or reinforcing a new behavior.
On the other hand, hard treats take between 30 mins to even hours to eat. They can be given when you want your chihuahua to focus on a single activity for a long time, for example, when you’re working from home and don’t want disturbance.
Filler ingredients are ingredients that are added to increase the amount or size of the treats but offer very few nutritional benefits to a dog. But as they provide extra calories, they should be avoided, especially in the case of small dogs like chihuahuas.
Some filler ingredients to prevent in dog treats include corn, wheat, and soy.
Best Ready-Made Yummy Dog Treats for Chihuahuas
Now that you know what to look for in Chihuahua treats, here are the best dog foods you can buy as treats for chihuahuas:
The best thing about Fruitables Skinny Mini Dog treat is that a single treat consists of only three calories.
These disc-shaped biscuits are oven-baked and come in six flavors: apple bacon, grilled bison, pumpkin and berry, pumping and mango, watermelon, and rotisserie chicken.
Like Fruitables’ other products, the skinny mini dog treats also have a great smell. Another thing to note is that they have no filler ingredients, also making them nutrition dense. Finally, you can buy these bite-size training rewards in packs of five and twelve ounces.
- Great taste
- Healthy treats with low calories
- Value for money
- Perfect size and soft for small pets to eat
- The smell could be too strong for some dogs
As its name suggests, the Purina Busy is made specifically for small dog breeds like chihuahuas. They’re shaped like tiny bones and have real raw meat in the center. With no harmful chemicals, they’re easy to digest, and the chewing is long-lasting.
There are two alternatives for this product, one that does and one that doesn’t consist of beef hide. The beef hide-rawhide is derived from farm-raised cattle and is wrapped in chicken jerky. Note that the product also contains pork.
- Long lasting chew
- Made with ingredients that dog like
- With crude protein, fat of at least 6%, 1.5%, and fiber, and moisture of a maximum of 1.5% and 15%, these treats are healthy
- Has some fillers, including corn syrup and corn germ meal
- High in calories
Natural Balance has put extra effort into achieving a high-quality standard with its dog training treats. They contain no fillers, colors, or preservatives and use real animal meat. The flavors include duck, chicken, salmon, and turkey.
The sizes are perfect for a chihuahua to chew, or you could also get away by breaking a treat into two. Furthermore, since it’s only 3.5 calories a treat, it’ll help your pet to maintain a healthy weight.
- No fillers
- Small pieces
- Soft for the dog to chew
- Generally liked by picky dogs
- On the expensive side
- Only available in 5.3 ounces canister
- Could become hard when stale or if not stored properly
The fido naturals doozie bones are healthy, delicious, and helpful for your dog’s dental care. They consist of ingredients, including sunflower, chia, and flax seeds, whose high fiber content can also improve your pet’s digestive system.
These three-inch biscuits have been designed for dogs 4 to 8 pounds, meaning they’re comfortable for your chihuahua to munch on.
In addition, since they’re pressure molded, they can pass your dog’s system more easily than baked goods.
You can also try the fido belly dog bone, which is a similar product.
- Can help with a variety of dental issues like plaque, bad breath, and gum problems
- All natural ingredients
- It isn’t a chew snack; the dog can finish it fairly quickly
- The smell could be unpleasant for some
- Picky eaters may not exactly like it
Containing real meat, the Buddy Trainer dog and puppy training treats could just be your pet’s favorite snack.
It’s available in two flavors, including bacon and chicken. In addition, there are no filler ingredients, and many buyers have reported their dogs really starting to get active to eat the treat.
The best thing about this product is its calorie count; with only 1.5 calories per piece, you can get generous now and then. The prices are also good for the quality and the 500 treats inside each packet of 10 ounces.
Note: For some reason, the company sells a bigger product (Chicken Liver flavored) under the same amazon product link. Be careful since it may not be ideal for a chihuahua.
- Contains real meat, so highly delicious and easy to feed picky eaters
- Consists of some preservatives, as seen on the packet label
- Has ingredients that could trigger food allergies in some dogs
One of the best training treats, Full Moon Organic Chicken are ‘human-grade,’ meaning that they are even safe for humans to consume. Now, this may not sound ideal, as if the company is trying to create pet food for people. However, the sole purpose of the USDA approval for Full-Moon is to show how serious they are about their product’s quality.
These organic chicken training treats are made with real chicken sourced from family farms in the USA. They don’t have artificial preservatives or fillers, the other ingredients being only paprika and flax seed.
- Healthy and natural
- Real meat, so it’s highly nutritious
- Less than 3 calories per product
- Since the product is all-natural, you need to be careful while storing
- May not keep your dog busy for long
The Milk-Bone Mini’s Flavor Snacks Dog Treats come in bone-shaped pellets and four flavors, including beef, chicken, bacon, turkey, and sausage. This treat is another good treat that can help your dog with dental problems; its hard texture can help reduce tartar and bad breath.
While the package label ‘made for all dogs could be concerning’ for small dog owners, you shouldn’t worry since you can break them for chihuahuas. But do pay attention to the energy content- there are five calories in each treat.
- You can buy refills
- Many nutrients have been added to the product
- Various flavors inside the same packet
- Hard, so will keep your dog occupied
- Some chemicals and preservatives
Crazy-Dog Train Me! is one of the best options if you’re looking for a low-fat training treat. They contain no grain, come in bacon flavor, and are designed to reward your dog rather than filling it with snacks.
While buying the treat for your chihuahua, make sure you get the ‘minis’ variant. They contain only 1.5 calories per treat, while the regular ones can have as much as 3 calories per treat.
- Can be used for frequent treating
- Bite-size pieces
- Refills available
- Not completely natural
As their name suggests, Cesar softies are soft and savory and come in three delicious flavors (porterhouse steak, applewood smoked bacon, and grilled chicken).
Moreover, all three flavors are available within the same packet, so there are tasty variations even for the pickiest eaters.
But do remember that despite being small, these treats are still relatively high in calories (about seven per treat). Hence, they’re snacks for special occasions rather than something you should treat your chihuahua during training.
- Delicious flavors
- Soft enough for dogs with weak teeth to chew on
- Can dry if not stored properly
- Can be pricey
Finally, Try This Homemade Treat for Chihuahuas
Don’t want to buy a packaged treat? Or are you unable to do so at the moment?
Well, finally, here is an easy recipe for a homemade treat that chihuahuas seem to love. And the best part of all, it only uses three ingredients that you should easily be able to get in your nearest grocery.
- Oat flour
- Sweet potato or pumpkin puree
- Natural peanut butter (make sure there are no chemicals)
- Boil about half a cup of sweet potatoes and mash them. Alternatively, you can simply get some canned pumpkin puree.
- Add about 2 tbsp peanut butter to the potato or the pumpkin. Mix them finely.
- Put a cup of oatmeal flour and two eggs. Adjust the amount of flour such that the mixture has a consistency similar to while making a cookie.
- Roll the dough to ¼ inches thick. After that, use a cookie cutter to cut it into bite-size pieces. If you don’t have one, simply use a knife to make small square treats.
- Bake the dough at 400 Degrees Fahrenheit for about 10 to 15 minutes. Baking it for longer makes it harder.
- Store in an airtight container.
FAQs Related to What are the Best Treats for Chihuahuas
Finally, here are some other tips related to treating a chihuahua:
How Often Should I Give My Chihuahua Treats?
As per the American Kennel Club, Treats should make only up to 10% of calories of a dog’s daily food intake. Having said that, a healthy chihuahua weighing about 4 to 5 pounds can get about 20 calories from treats daily.
What Nutrients Should I Look for in a Dog Treat?
The nutrients that should be on the treats depend on how balanced your dog’s overall diet is.
According to studies, a dog’s daily diet should be at least 50% of carbs and 2.5% to 4.5 % of fiber. Additionally, 10% of its calories should come from protein, and 5.5% should be fats.
If you’re assured that you’re already feeding your chihuahua all these nutrients, then you can get more flexibility while choosing a treat. But make sure that the food doesn’t have a lot of sugar or fillers
The list above includes all the best snacks chihuahua owners can give their pets, from soft to crunchy treats and natural chews.
All of them should work to calm your dog or make training sessions more fun, but always regulate how much food you give to your dog. Avoid too many treats, and don’t forget to look out for allergic reactions.