How Fast Can A Chihuahua Run?

How Fast Can a Chihuahua Run?

About the Author: Nettie Finley, the Professional Dog Trainer at MyPetDoggie. Specializing in behavior rehabilitation, Nettie leads our team with her effective training techniques. As a certified canine behaviorist, she brings transformative change to challenging behavior cases. Her experience and expertise elevate our content, providing practical, insightful training advice for our readers. Also, she loves her Cavapoo!

“If having a soul means being able to feel love and loyalty and gratitude, then animals are better off than a lot of humans.” James Herriot (The world-famous veterinarian)

Chihuahuas are one of the most famous breeds of dogs. Its name is derived from the Mexican state of Chihuahua. 

As stated in the American Kennel Club, the Chihuahuas are the oldest breeds of Americans with their lineage connecting to pre-Columbian times. It’s the personality of Chihuahuas that sets it off from the other breeds of dogs.  Chihuahuas are graceful dogs with height ranging from 5-8 inches and a weight minimum of 6 pounds. 

The life expectancy of Chihuahua is 14-16 years. 

The Chihuahuas are loved by dog enthusiasts because they are the smallest of all purebred dogs. The Chihuahuas are intelligent dogs and how fast a chihuahua can run is astonishing. I am going to discuss it in detail in this article,  so read till the end. 

Owning a dog is a great responsibility. You are responsible for its nourishment, needs, and most importantly its health. For a healthy Chihuahua, 30 minutes of exercise daily is a must. 

How Fast Can a Chihuahua Run

Properly trained Chihuahuas can run as fast as 21-30 miles per hour which makes them one of the fastest dog breeds. Besides their little legs and small bodies, they can run faster than humans. The average man runs at a speed of 5.9 miles per hour and females at 5mph. 

How Fast Can a Chihuahua Run (1)
A chihuahua running on a sand

Do Chihuahuas like running?

An excellent form of exercise is running. Running can help you keep your Chihuahua fit, lean, happy, and healthy. This is the best way they can show their energy and expand it. 

Here is how you can make Chihuahua run daily:

  • You can take a Chihuahua for a walk with yourself. 
  • You can play a game of fetch with them for 30-40 minutes. 
  • Or simply some play and running in your backyard can do the task.

Tips For Training a Chihuahua to Run Faster

As I mentioned earlier, owning an animal comes with great responsibility. Training your animal regularly to run faster, and taking care of its needs and energy is very important for its happy and healthy life. 

Tips For Training a Chihuahua to Run Faster
A dog owner grabs his little chihuahua

Here, I am going to share a few suggestions with you for training your Chihuahua to run faster

Consult a Trainer:

Consulting a trainer can help you train your Chihuahua to run faster by doing his physical examinations. The ideal weight and healthy bones are a must for your Chihuahua to live healthy and run faster. 

The personal hygiene of your Chihuahua is as important as ours. Cut the nails of your Chihuahua often, most probably every week. It can help your Chihuahua use its body correctly, and maintain its posture and gait. 

The trainer may recommend giving joint supplements to your Chihuahua.  Because joint supplements can serve as a building block to grow and build tendons, joints, and ligaments. It will make your Chihuahua run faster. 

Warm Up and Cool Down:

Warm-up increases the blood circulation of your Chihuahua, before exercise.  Cooling down means to reduce heart rate and respiratory rate and bring it back to normal.

Warm-up and cooling down are important for the overall health of your Chihuahua and thus can help a Chihuahua to run fast. 

Gradual Conditioning:

Gradual conditioning is a psychological technique used to generate a particular behavior in your Chihuahua. You can pair up things that you want to develop in your Chihuahua. 

For example, you can pair up ringing a bell (stimulus) and running (behavior). In this way, the Chihuahua will run when the bell rings.  This is conditioning. 

General conditioning can thus help you to train your Chihuahua to run faster.

Play and Motivation:

Your Chihuahua can play better when it’s motivated. You can motivate it with food when it’s 7 months old and afterward, you can motivate it with gentle praise, giving your dog attention and toys. Yes, dogs also get motivated when presented with toys just like humans. In this way, the overall running of your Chihuahua can improve and it can be faster. 

Positive Reinforcement:

It is a psychological technique to generate a particular behavior. In this method to generate any desired behavior, we associate it with any reward. 

For example, you can generate a behavior in your Chihuahua that if it runs fast it can be rewarded with its favorite food or toy. 

Use a Long Lead:

When you take your Chihuahua to walk or run, you need to use a long lead. You need to train him to come back to you while the Chihuahua is roaming and exploring the world.  Train him to understand your commands and while training your chihuahua you need to be patient. 

As achieving anything worthy takes time, the same goes here you need to be patient and consistent, and your Chihuahua will start running faster. 

Interval Training 

Interval training is a type of exercise that involves a series of intense workouts followed by less intense workouts. The purpose of interval training is to build the muscles of your Chihuahua robust. 

Interval training elevates the heart rate and then brings it down, in this way, the Chihuahua gets stronger, healthier muscles with better blood circulation. 

Lure and Reward:

According to the American Kennel Club,  the most effective way to teach your Chihuahua is to lure and reward.  

Example: Hold a reward for your Chihuahua, it can be a toy or its favorite food, and generate your desired behavior by moving it around your Chihuahua. 

During practicing lure and reward, remember you have to train your Chihuahua in a way that when you are not using any food or toy, the Chihuahua can understand the motion of your hands. But don’t forget to reward them. 

Repeat this technique frequently to make it a part of your Chihuahua’s habits. 

Provide Mental Stimulation: 

Anything that stimulates your brain activity is known as mental stimulation. How can you stimulate your Chihuahua to run faster? 

  • Play games with your Chihuahua.
  • Allow your Chihuahua to play brain games with multiple dogs. 
  • Take your Chihuahua walk and allow him to sniff and explore on a walk. 
  • Give your Chihuahua a puzzle toy. 

Giving mental stimulation can enhance your Chihuahua’s intelligence, motivation, happiness, and energy. In this way, the Chihuahua can run faster.

Regular Exercise

A healthy body has a healthy mind. We all know that, so it’s time for you to work on the physical fitness of your Chihuahua. As a rule of thumb, 30 minutes of regular exercise is a must for your Chihuahua. 

Here are some exercises you can train your Chihuahua, so it can run faster and faster

  • Walking
  • Yoga
  • Play frisbee 
  • Playing hide and seek
  • Running or Jogging
  • Swimming 

Health and Nutrition:

The most important nutrient for your Chihuahua to stay healthy is an adequate amount of water. You should rest assured that your Chihuahua’s diet contains a sufficient amount of Carbohydrates almost 50% or more, fiber 2.5-4.5%, 10% protein, and 5.5% fat.

For your Chihuahua to start healthy, it is very important to plan its diet accordingly, the diet should contain all these nutrients in the required amount. 

How Quickly Can a Chihuahua Run After Training? 

Once you have made so much effort in training your Chihuahua you will be interested to know how fast it can run after training! 

How Quickly Can a Chihuahua Run
Chihuahua stands on his two feet

Although all Chihuahuas are naturally speedy runners on short sweeps. The Chihuahuas that have gone through remarkable training can surely win the race and have extremely high speeds. Normally, Chihuahuas can run up to 21 mph but trained Chihuahuas can reach a speed of 30 miles per hour. Making you happier.

Do Chihuahuas Make Running Partners?

Yes, a trained Chihuahua can be a good running partner for you. But due to its short legs and lean body, it can run only for 30 minutes effectively and happily. And 30 minutes running is enough for a Chihuahua. 

As the Chihuahua runs fast you have to keep pace with it. Chihuahuas can make your running enjoyable and can make you a fast runner too. 

How Does the Chihuahua Compare to the Fastest Dog Breeds?

The fastest Dog breeds include Greyhound, Saluki, Whippet, Vizsla, Jack Russell Terrier, and Doberman Pinscher. 

The fastest dog breed Greyhound can run at a speed of 45mph. 

The Chihuahua’s speed can vary, the untrained Chihuahuas can run at a speed of 5-10 mph. The trained Chihuahua can at a speed of 21-30 miles per hour which is far greater than humans. But when compared to the fastest dog breeds, they are far behind. 

How fast a Chihuahua can run compared to other breeds

Chihuahuas have thin legs and strong, energetic muscles that support their skeleton and help them in running fast. 

The maximum speed of a well-trained Chihuahua is 21-30 miles per hour which is far greater than human speed. Because of this,  Chihuahuas are one of the fastest breeds of dogs in the world.  

Here is a table comparing the speed of the top 30 breeds of dogs in the world

Greyhound45 miles per hour
Saluki45 miles per hour
Vizsla40 miles per hour 
Afghan Hound40 miles per hour
Ibzian hound25-45 miles per hour 
Jack Russell Terrier38 miles per hour
Dalmatian37 miles per hour 
Whippet34 miles per hour 
Borzoi35-40 miles per hour
Weimaraner35 miles per hour
Pharaoh Hound 35 miles per hour
German Pinscher33 miles per hour 
Doberman Pinscher32 miles per hour
Border Collie30 miles per hour
German Shepherd30 miles per hour 
Standard poodle 30 miles per hour 
Australian Shepherd30 miles per hour
Great Dane 30 miles per hour 
Italian Greyhound 30 miles per hour
German Shorthaired Pointers30 miles per hour 
Chihuahua21-30 miles per hour
Siberian Huskies28 miles per hour
Rat Terrier27 miles per hour
Brittany Spaniel25 miles per hour
Pit Bull Mixes25-27 miles per hour
Shiba Inu25 miles per hour
Basenji25 miles per hour
Icelandic Sheepdog22 miles per hour
Beagle20 miles per hour
Boston Terrier18 miles per hour

Why Does My Chihuahua Run Slowly?

Why Does My Chihuahua Run Slowly
A chihuahua shows his beautiful smile to his parent

Chihuahua running slow is horrible for the pet owner. Here, I am enlisting a few reasons that can slow down the running speed of your Chihuahua:

  • Not Properly trained 
  • Any parasitic infection
  • Pain
  • Malnutrition 
  • Exhaustion
  • Lack of energy 
  • Underlying health disorder
  • Age
  • Weakness

What Health Conditions Could Impact My Chihuahua’s Running Speed?

Chihuahua’s run naturally at a speed of 15-21 miles per hour. Certain health conditions can impact the speed of your Chihuahua. It is extremely significant to pay attention to your Chihuahua’s changing behavior, note the symptoms, and identify the underlying cause.  

In this section of the article, I am enlisting, thirteen health conditions affecting Chihuahua’s speed:

Orthopedic Issues

Luxating patella is one of the most common orthopedic issues of Chihuahuas. It is an inherited condition in which the kneecap pops out of its socket. A luxating patella can affect one or both rear legs. 

Luxating patella can be a big limitation in your Chihuahua’s health and you need to pay attention to it. So that your chihuahua can live a healthy life and run faster. 

Heart Conditions

Heart Conditions are one of the leading causes of your Chihuahua’s slow running. Common heart conditions in Chihuahua include cardiac muscle diseases, heart valve degeneration, irregular heartbeat, and congestive heart failure. 

Here are a few signs you can notice heart disease in your Chihuahua 

  • Lack of oxygen  
  • Excessive panting 
  • Low blood supply 
  • Reduced ability to exercise
  • Loss of appetite
  • Swollen Belly
  • Pale or bluish gums 
  • The most important symptom is coughing even at rest. 

If you notice any of the above symptoms in your dog, immediately book your appointment with a specialist veterinarian.  

Respiratory Disorders

The trachea, also known as the windpipe, is a ring of cartilage. It is essential for normal breathing.  Collapsed trachea is a disease in which the rings weaken and the trachea may collapse.  This disease is common in Chihuahua. This disease can impact the health of your Chihuahua and decrease its running speed.

Other respiratory diseases in Chihuahua include upper respiratory tract infection, rhinitis, lower respiratory tract infection, kennel cough, or a foreign body stuck in the trachea. 


Obesity or being overweight is a problem common in all living creatures.  The ideal weight for your Chihuahua is 5-6 pounds.  Identify the cause of obesity in your Chihuahua. It can be due to any disease simply overeating or an unbalanced diet. After identifying the cause, try to eliminate the problem either by treating the disease or balancing the diet. 

Dental Issues 

Oral diseases are common in Chihuahuas because they often play with toys. A tartar can build up on the molar teeth of Chihuahua and can cause infection in the gum and pain. 

Try to keep your Chihuahua’s teeth clean and healthy. Must plan a yearly visit to your Chihuahua Dental to avoid dental diseases. 

Muscle or joint Injury

Muscle tears and joint injuries are common in Chihuahua.  Chihuahuas can have pulled muscles, and it is heart-wrenching to see your Chihuahua limping around. 

The signs of muscle injury are pain, inflammation of the muscle, and bruising of the area. It is difficult to notice muscle injury at home if it is mild. 

The immediate action to reduce pain and inflammation should be rest and cold compressions. 

Neurological Disorders 

Just like Humans, Chihuahuas can have neurological disorders that can mark down their running speed to a lower level, as even they may not be able to walk properly. 

Some common neurological disorders in Chihuahua are epilepsy, congenital hydrocephalus (high-level Cerebrospinal fluid exerting pressure on the brain), dementia, and brain tumors. 

How can you sense the pain of your Chihuahua?

Pain is a natural emotion but Chihuahuas can’t express it the same way we do. So you have to notice your Chihuahua’s actions, behaviors, and physical symptoms. 

There are certain clinical manifestations that can help you identify any neurological disorder in your Chihuahua 

  • Stumbling (loss of balance)
  • Vision loss or blindness
  • Seizures
  • Loss of appetite
  • Persistent head and body shaking 
  • Difficulty walking 
  • Rapid eye movements 
  • Paralysis of limbs (one or more)

If you notice any symptoms, immediately consult your veterinarian. 

Endocrine Disorders

As humans have a chemical coordination system, similarly, Chihuahuas have the same. The endocrine system is responsible for the secretion of hormones and any imbalance in hormone production leads to malfunctioning and hence causes disease. 

Common endocrine disorders in Chihuahuas are 

  • Cushing Syndrome (Increased cortisol level)
  • Addison’s Disease (Decreased cortisol level )
  • Diabetes Mellitus (Decreased Insulin in the body)
  • Cancer of any endocrine gland. 
  • Diabetes insipidus (low level of Antidiuretic hormone (ADH) )
  • Hypothyroidism (low level of thyroxine)
  • Hyperthyroidism (high level of thyroxine)

Some general manifestations can help you identify any endocrine disorder in your Chihuahua

  • Increase or decrease urine production
  • Increase or decrease in thirst  
  • Changes in skin texture 
  • Low energy level 
  • Behavioral Changes
  • Change in eating patterns
  • Sudden changes in weight (gain or loss)
  • Change in blood glucose level 

If you notice any symptoms, consult your veterinarian 

Age-related Changes

With age, the machinery of the body gets weak and exhausted.  Certain health conditions can impact your Chihuahua’s overall health, particularly its running speed. These are 

  • Bone disorders (weakening and softening of bones) 
  • Weight gain (maybe you are not giving your Chihuahua healthy meals and regular exercise)
  • Weight loss (due to any other underlying health disease)
  • Cancer 
  • Dementia (loss of memory)
  • Arthritis (Inflammation of joints)
  • Dental issues 
  • Heart diseases
  • Liver Diseases
  • Kidney diseases
  • Pancreatitis (Inflammation of pancreas)
  • Infections 
  • Hypoglycemia (low level of glucose in blood)

If your Chihuahua is getting old, visit his Veterinarian regularly, follow the instructions, and take care of its diet. Most importantly,  plan out the exercise plan for your Chihuahua after consulting with its doctor. 


Arthritis is the inflammation of joints. Arthritis results due to damage or less smooth collagen. Due to this, when a Chihuahua moves its bone, the bones rub together, causing the joint to become painful, swollen, and inflamed. 

The most common cause of arthritis in Chihuahua is obesity. As Chihuahuas are small, having small sutures, even a little increase in weight puts additional pressure on their joints causing pain and inflammation. 

So especially in older age, you have to become more conscious about your Chihuahua’s diet and exercise plan.  


The literal meaning of Anemia is lack of blood. In anemia, the body produces less than the required number of healthy red blood cells. Anemia can impact badly on your Chihuahua’s overall health and running speed as well.  Here are a few reasons that can cause anemia in Chihuahua 

  • Insufficient production of red blood cells. 
  • Low level of Hemoglobin 
  • Bone marrow disorders 
  • Kidney diseases
  • Excessive blood loss due to any injury
  • Stomach Ulcers
  • Cancer

Some signs can assist you in pointing out anemia in your Chihuahua 

  • Laziness
  • Shortness of breath 
  • Increased heart rate
  • Elevated breathing rate 
  • Loss of appetite as a result of which weight loss occurs. 
  • Pica ( eating non-food items such as ice and sand)
  • The Most striking feature is the loss of the pink color of the gums.  

If you notice any of the above symptoms in your Chihuahua it can be concerning, immediately see your Chihuahua’s Doctor for better health. 

Nutritional Deficiencies

Malnutrition can impact your Chihuahua’s health badly. Carbohydrates, fibers, protein, water, vitamins, and minerals are equally important for Chihuahuas and humans. Malnutrition can impact your Chihuahua’s running speed extremely. 

Malnutrition is simply manifested by 

  • low energy and aggression
  • Loss of Hair 
  • Skin diseases 
  • Infection (low immunity)

In this case, consult your pet nutritionist to get expert advice. 


Just like humans, Chihuahuas are prone to allergens in their surroundings. Allergies can occur in the skin, legs, paws, and hind end. 

Long-term, untreated allergies can badly affect your Chihuahua’s running speed. 

Can You Take a Chihuahua Hiking?

Yes, you can. But, keep in mind that Chihuahuas are small breeds with thin, lean legs, so the path should not be too steep to climb or else you can hold them over the rugged spots. Don’t forget to take a leash, a lot of water, and a first aid kit. 

Can Chihuahuas Run Faster Than Humans?

Yes, Chihuahuas can run faster than humans. The trained Chihuahuas can run at a speed of 21-30 miles per hour which is faster than humans. 

Why Your Chihuahua Might Run Away and How to Stop It?

It seems a terrible nightmare to a Chihuahua’s owner, that his Chihuahua has run away.

Why Your Chihuahua Might Run Awa
A little chihuahua enjoys their parent’s hand

Here, I am going to enlist a few reasons why your Chihuahua might run away and how you can stop it. 

  • Because of loneliness. When you do not give your Chihuahua enough time or leave them alone for a long time, they may run away. 
  • Chihuahuas are small dog breeds with higher energy levels. If they are not using their energy to play with toys or exercise they may run away. 
  • Or maybe you are not giving them enough love they demand. 
  • You are not taking care of their needs such as food, and hygiene. 

Here, I am going to share a few amazing tips to keep your Chihuahua from running away. 

  • Love and care is a language understood and sensed by all creatures. So, love your Chihuahua and give it time as you give to your other friend
  • Take care of his needs such as food and hygiene
  • Play with your Chihuahua in your free time might be in the backyard for a few minutes
  • Take them for a walk or exercise every day with you
  • Give them puzzle toys to mentally engage them when you are busy
  • Lock your Chihuahua inside when you are far away from home

What Chihuahuas Can’t And Shouldn’t do-Physical Limitations

Physical limitations mean activities that “can’t be done at all” or are “very difficult to do” for your Chihuahua. 

The most important element is food. Here, I am shortlisting a few food items you should never give to your Chihuahua as reported by the American Kennel Club:

  • Chocolate
  • Alcohol
  • Caffeine
  • Fruit seeds such as pits and cores
  • Garlic 
  • Onion 
  • Ice Cream 

A few other physical limitations are:

  • Chihuahuas are small purebred dogs and they don’t hesitate to bark loudly. So “do not leave your small kids with your Chihuahua alone”
  • Similarly, as Chihuahuas bark a lot, if you work from home or don’t like loud noises, engage your Chihuahua in any puzzle game or toy while working or during family time. 

Can a Chihuahua Run a 5K?

A trained Chihuahua can run a 5K with you. But they will need breaks, a lot of water, and good food to build up their stamina. Chihuahua are intelligent and fun-loving dogs. Walking is a great mental and physical stimulation for them. So, yes, you can enjoy a long walk with your Chihuahua. 

But as Chihuahuas are small and physically lean, if you notice that they are excessively panting, you should slow down your walk. 


In this article, I have explained in detail about Chihuahuas. How fast can a Chihuahua run? How can you train him to run faster with different techniques such as positive reinforcement, lure, and reward? Further, I have explained which health conditions can impact a chihuahua’s running speed. I have also shared a list of foods you should never give to your chihuahua. In the end, we have concluded that Chihuahuas are one of the cutest dog breeds and can be your friend for long walks. 

I hope you have enjoyed reading the blog and got to know a lot about Chihuahua. If you have any queries, please let us know in the comment section.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You May Also Like