Thanks to their popularity and sometimes-difficult personalities, Chihuahuas are being dumped in animal shelters in the
San Francisco area in huge numbers. The diminutive breed comprises more than half of the dogs in some Bay Area shelters, according
to a Los Angeles Times story.
Gidget of Taco Bell fame along with Paris Hilton’s Tinkerbell
and other celebrity Chihuahuas brought an explosion of breeding and ultimately a glut,
particularly in fashion-conscious cities. Now people are unloading them because their
nervous, fragile personas aren’t easy to suffer.
Some of the dogs are being flown to shelters
elsewhere in the country that have none—and want them.
That hasn’t happened in Indianapolis,
says Tristan Schmid, spokesman for the Humane Society of Indianapolis. And he isn’t aware of plans
to bring them here.
Not that some of them wouldn’t be wanted. The Humane Society has adopted
out 70 Chihuahuas or Chihuahua-mixes this year.
People are abandoning large
dogs after selling houses and moving into apartments. Small dogs don’t raise concerns
of apartment managers like big ones do.
Still, Schmid cautions, while there’s demand for Chihuahuas,
it isn’t overwhelming.
The practical streak in many Indianapolis people is skeptical of purebred genetic
problems, Schmid says. And like other Midwesterners, many Indianapolis people like mixed breeds, he says, possibly a lingering
characteristic of the region’s rural heritage.
“People don’t look down on mixed breeds like they
do in other metropolitan areas,” Schmid says.
What has been your experience with Chihuahuas? Should the local
humane society take some of the dogs from the Bay Area?
Thoughts about purebred vs. mixed-breed?