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The Chi-poo: A Playful and Adorable Poodle Chihuahua Mix - PawSafe

The Chi-poo: A Playful and Adorable Poodle Chihuahua Mix

Photo of Tamsin De La Harpe

Written by Tamsin De La Harpe


The relatively new designer breed, the Chi-Poo, can combine the best traits of its parent breeds, the Chihuahua and the Poodle. This results in a captivating canine companion that captures the hearts of dog enthusiasts worldwide 

 If you’re considering getting a Chi-poo, it’s important to know that these adorable Poodle Chihuahua mixes require special dental care. Due to their genetic makeup, they are prone to dental issues. But don’t worry! With regular mouth rinses and proper dental hygiene, you can keep your Chi-poo’s smile healthy and bright. 

Let’s dive into the world of Chi-poos and explore what makes them so adorable and lovable! George Hoppendale’s Chipoo manual advises this article to give you an in-depth guide into the breed. 

Like many other Poodle mixes, such as  Doxiepoos, Mini Goldendoodles, and Corgipoos, Chi-poos will most likely have an allergy-friendly coat. Their low-shedding coats are highly sought after, and their small sizes make them apartment friendly. 

Check out this cute Chi-poo having fun

The History of the Chi-poo: A Blend of Chihuahua, Poodle, and Doodle Dogs

Chi poos have a history intertwined with their parent breeds and the broader development of designer or mixed dogs, such as the popular “doodle” mixes.

The History of the Chihuahua

The Chihuahua, known for its small size and big personality, is believed to have originated in Mexico. The exact origins of the breed are somewhat mysterious, but it is named after the Mexican state of Chihuahua. 

The ancient civilizations of Mexico, including the Aztecs and Toltecs, highly valued these tiny dogs. Chihuahuas were believed to possess sacred qualities and were used in religious ceremonies. The ancient Techichi believed to be closer to deer-head Chihuahuas, were refined by Aztecs and later by modern breeders. 

During the 19th century, Chihuahuas were discovered by tourists and brought to the United States. The breed gained popularity, especially after being favored by celebrities and socialites. Today, Chihuahuas are cherished as lovable companions and are one of the most recognized dog breeds worldwide.

The History of the Toy and Miniature Poodle 

Poodles have a long history dating back to ancient times. Standard Poodles are believed to have originated in Germany in the 15th Century as ware retrieving dogs. 

However, the Toy and Miniature varieties, which are the ones often used in Chi-poo breeding, have distinct backgrounds.

The Miniature Poodle was developed in France in the 1700s or 1800s by selectively breeding smaller Poodles to create a compact version of the breed. The Toy Poodle followed closely in the 1900s as the smallest, formally recognized Poodle. However, some breeders claim to breed Teacup Poodles.

Doodle Dogs History

The term “doodle” refers to mixed breed dogs that are specifically bred with Poodles. This trend gained momentum in the late 20th century when breeders started crossing Poodles with other breeds to create dogs with hypoallergenic coats and desirable traits.

The most famous and influential Poodle mix is the Labradoodle, which emerged in Australia in the 1980s. The goal was to create a guide dog with a low-shedding coat suitable for people with allergies.

 The Labradoodle’s success sparked interest in other Poodle mixes, leading to the creation of various “doodle” breeds like the  Bordoodle (Border Collie + Poodle) and the Cockapoo (Cocker Spaniel + Poodle).

Chi poos have other names that are almost as adorable as they are, including:

  • Choodle;
  • Chipoodle;
  • Poochi;
  • Poochie;
  • Poohuahua;
  • Wapoo;
  • Chi-a-poo;
  • Chidoodle; and
  • Chihuahuadoodle.

Keep in mind, that with the boom of Doodle dogs, has come a boom in unethical breeders cross breeding Poodles to cash in on the trend. If you are looking for Chi-poo puppies for sale, we strongly recommend that you first contact a rescue organization specializing in Poodle mixes or Doodles first.

Chi-poo Physical Characteristics: Adorable Looks, Coat Types, Colors, and Size

The Chi-poo, being a mix of the Chihuahua and Poodle breeds, exhibits various physical characteristics that combine traits from both parent breeds. Let’s explore what a Chi-poo typically looks like, including its coat types, colors, and size.

What do Choodles Look Like? 

Choodles are small-sized dogs with compact and well-proportioned bodies. A Chi-poo will probably remind you of a Chihuahua but with a Poodle’s teddy bear fluff, or just a slightly wiry longer coat. But some may look a bit more like a small Poodle instead of a Chihuahua. 

They mostly have a rounded head shape resembling the Chihuahua. Their ears can be floppy and feathered like a Poodle or more erect like a Chihuahua’s. The muzzle can be medium in length and may have a slight underbite, similar to a Chihuahua.

Coat Types

The coat of a Chi-poo can vary depending on the traits inherited from the Chihuahua and Poodle breeds. There are typically three main types of Chi-poo coats:

  1. Curly/Wavy Coat: This coat type is similar to the Poodle. It is dense, curly, or wavy and has an allergy-friendly quality, making it suitable for individuals with allergies. You will also get this coat more often if the Chi parent is a long-haired Chihuahua. Regular grooming and occasional professional trimming are required to maintain this coat.
  2. Short Coat: Some Chi-poos inherit the short, smooth coat characteristic of Chihuahuas. This coat type is low-maintenance and requires minimal grooming, such as occasional brushing, to keep it clean and tidy.
  3. Combination Coat: In some cases, Chi-poos may have a mix of both Poodle-like curly/wavy hair and Chihuahua-like short hair. These individuals may require moderate grooming, including brushing and occasional trimming.

Colors: Chi-poos come in a wide range of coat colors, and both parent breeds can influence their coloration. Common colors include:

  • Cream;
  • White;
  • Black;
  • Brown;
  • Tan;
  • Chocolate;
  • Silver; and
  • Parti-color (combinations of two or more colors).

Each Chi-poo’s coat color and pattern can be unique, adding to their overall charm and individuality.

How Big Do Poochis Get? 

As for the size of a full-grown Chi-poo, it can vary depending on the size of the Poodle parent used in the breeding process. 

Generally, Chi-poos fall into the small size range. On average, a full-grown Chi-poo stands between 6 to 12 inches (15 to 30 cm) tall at the shoulder and weighs around 5 to 15 pounds (2 to 7 kg). However, some Chi-poos may be smaller or larger, depending on their genetic makeup.

Chihuahua Poodle Mix Temperament, Personality, Intelligence And Trainability

How do Chi-Poos Behave? 

Chipoodles are known for their lively, funky, and playful personalities. These feisty canines are affectionate, social, energetic, loyal, courageous, curious, and intelligent. They thrive on your attention and feel complete when they’re the star of the room. 

They crave human companionship and love being a part of their family’s activities. These dogs often form strong bonds with their owners and enjoy snuggling up or sitting on their laps. 

Chi-poos tend to be protective and may exhibit some traits of their Chihuahua parent. One of the most distinct Chihuahua behavior they may inherit is fearfulness, resulting in the known Chihuahua shaking. A study on canine fearfulness showed that Chihuahuas ranked the highest in fear while Pembroke Corgis ranked lowest. 


Chi-poos are generally intelligent dogs, inheriting this trait from their Poodle lineage (the Chihuahua is typically a little below average in working intelligence). They are quick learners and enjoy mental stimulation like snuffle mats. This intelligence makes them receptive to training and allows them to pick up commands and tricks relatively easily.


Due to their intelligence and eagerness to please, Chi-poos are typically trainable dogs. But they do not have long attention spans and do not do well with too many corrections. Positive reinforcement methods work best with them, such as using treats, praise, and rewards for desired behaviors. 

Early socialization and obedience training are important to help Chi-poos develop good manners and become confident canines. It is worth noting that Chi-poos may exhibit a stubborn streak at times, so patience and consistency in training are key.

Compatibility with Families and Children

Chi-poos can make great family pets. They are generally good with children, especially when they are raised and socialized with them from an early age. However, due to their small size, it’s important to supervise interactions between Chi-poos and young children to prevent accidental injuries. 

General Care for Your Chi-poo: Exercise, Diet, and Grooming

Caring for your Chi-poo involves meeting their exercise needs, providing a balanced diet, and maintaining their grooming requirements. Let’s delve into these aspects to ensure your Chi-poo remains healthy and happy.

Exercise Needs

Aim for at least 30 minutes to an hour of exercise daily, but adjust it based on your Chi-poo’s individual energy levels and size. Always supervise them during outdoor activities to ensure their safety.

Dietary Needs

 Feeding your Chi-poo a balanced diet that’s highest in protein (at least 25%). Choose high-quality dog food that is appropriate for their size, age, and activity level. 

Their Chihuahua size makes these mixes susceptible to stomach issues if they eat diets riddled with fillers, by-products, and chemicals. Aim to feed them 3 to 4 times daily since they are susceptible to hypoglycemia (low blood pressure). 

Grooming Requirements

Grooming needs for Chi-poos can vary based on coat type and length. Here are some general guidelines:

  1. Coat Maintenance: If your Chi-poo has a curly/wavy coat resembling the Poodle, regular brushing is necessary to prevent matting. Aim for brushing at least two to three times a week.
  2.  Professional grooming every six to eight weeks can help maintain their coat’s health and appearance. If your Chi-poo has a short coat resembling the Chihuahua, occasional brushing to remove loose hair and keep the coat clean is sufficient.
  3. Bathing: Chi-poos generally require bathing every three to four weeks or as needed. Use a gentle dog shampoo and conditioner specifically formulated for their coat type. Be sure to dry them thoroughly after bathing to prevent skin irritation.
  4. Ear Care: Check your Chi-poo’s ears regularly for signs of infection, redness, or wax buildup. Clean their ears with a veterinarian-recommended ear cleaner to prevent infections. Avoid using cotton swabs, as they can cause injury.
  5. Dental Care: As mentioned earlier, Chi-poos are prone to dental issues. Establish a dental care routine by brushing their teeth regularly with dog-friendly toothpaste or using mouthwash. Additionally, provide dental chews or toys that promote dental health.
  6. Nail Trimming: Trim your Chi-poo’s nails regularly with dog clippers to prevent them from becoming too long and causing discomfort. If you are unsure about nail trimming, seek professional groomer or veterinarian assistance.

Getting Along with Other Animals: Chi-poos can get along well with other animals when properly socialized from an early age. However, their compatibility with other animals, such as dogs or cats, depends on individual temperament and socialization. 

Common Chi-poo Health Issues: Caring for Your Chi-poo’s Well-being

Like any other dog breed or mix, Chi-poos can be prone to specific health issues. While individual Chi-poos may vary, it’s important to know about common health concerns that can affect them. Here are some health issues that Chi-poos may be susceptible to:

  1. Dental Problems: Dental issues, such as tooth decay, gum disease, and early tooth loss, are common in Chi-poos due to their genetic predisposition. 
  2. Patellar Luxation: Chi-poos can sometimes develop patellar luxation, which is a condition where the kneecap temporarily dislocates. It can cause limping or lameness. Regular exercise and maintaining a healthy weight can help reduce the risk of this condition.
  3. Eye Problems: Some Chi-poos may be prone to various eye issues, including cataracts, progressive retinal atrophy (PRA), and dry eye.
  4. Hypoglycemia: Due to their small size, Chi-poos can be prone to hypoglycemia (low blood sugar), especially as puppies.
  5. Allergies: Like both parent breeds, Chi-poos may be susceptible to allergies, including food allergies and environmental allergies. 
  6. Collapsing Trachea: Chi Poos may inherit a weak trachea, leading to a condition known as collapsing trachea, causing coughing and wheezing
  7. Portosystemic or liver Shunt: Abnormal blood flow in the liver.
  8. Heart Problems: Heart murmurs, congestive heart failure (CHF), or mitral valve disease.
  9. Legg-Calve-Perthes Disease: Degeneration of the hip joint, leading to pain and lameness.
  10. Hydrocephalus: Excessive cerebrospinal fluid in the brain.

You also need to make sure your Chi-poo gets their vaccinations for contagious disease such as Kennel Cough.

Ideal Home for a Choodle

  1. People living in apartments or small spaces;
  2. Allergic households since they’re more allergy-friendly than other breeds (but keep in mind that not all Chihuahua Poodle mixes are hypoallergenic);
  3. Adults supervising Chipoodles around kids;
  4. Regular schedules since they’re prone to separation anxiety; and
  5. People with a mildly active lifestyle. 

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) 

Do Chi-poos require a lot of exercise? 

Chi-poos have moderate exercise needs. Daily walks, interactive play sessions, and mental stimulation are important to keep them happy and healthy.

Can Chi-poos be left alone for long periods? 

Choodles thrive on human companionship and may experience separation anxiety if left alone for extended periods. They are better suited to households where someone is present most of the time.

Are Chi-poos good with children?

Chi-poos can be good with children, especially if they are raised and socialized with them from a young age. Supervision and teaching children how to handle small dogs gently are essential.

Are Chi-poos easy to train? 

Chi-poos are generally intelligent and trainable, but they can also be stubborn sometimes and don’t have long attention spans. Positive reinforcement methods and consistency in training yield the best results.

Do Chi-poos bark a lot?

Chi-poos, like their Chihuahua parent, can be prone to excessive barking if not properly trained and socialized. Early training and positive reinforcement can help manage their barking tendencies.

Do Chi-poos shed a lot? 

Chi-poos typically have low to moderate shedding. Those with a curly/wavy coat tend to shed less compared to those with a short coat. Regular brushing helps minimize shedding.

How long do Chi-poos live?

On average, Poohuahuas have a lifespan of 12 to 15 years. With proper care, diet, and regular veterinary check-ups, they can live a long and healthy life.

Do Chi-poos bark a lot? 

Poochies, like their Chihuahua parent, can be prone to excessive barking if not properly trained and socialized. Early training and positive reinforcement can help manage their barking tendencies.

How much do Chi-poo puppies cost? 

The cost of Chi-poo puppies can vary depending on factors such as breeder reputation, lineage, location, and demand. On average, they can range from a few hundred to a few thousand dollars.

Where can I adopt or rescue a Chi-poo? 

You can check local animal shelters, rescue organizations, or breed-specific rescue groups such as IDOG rescue that specializes in Doodles. Additionally, online adoption platforms and classified listings may have Chi-poos available for adoption.

Are Chi-poos good dogs? 

Chipoodles can make great companion dogs for the right owner. They are known for their affectionate nature, intelligence, and playful personalities. However, it’s important to consider their needs and temperament to ensure they are a good match for your lifestyle and preferences.

Final Thoughts 

The Chi-poo’s temperament combines the affectionate nature of the Chihuahua with the intelligence and playfulness of the Poodle. These dogs are loving, lively, and intelligent, making them delightful companions. With proper training, socialization, and exercise, Chi-poos can thrive in a loving home environment and bring joy to their owners with their endearing personalities and eagerness to please.

Meet Your Experts

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Tamsin De La Harpe


Tamsin de la Harpe has nearly two decades of experience with dogs in rescue, training, and behavior modification with fearful and aggressive dogs. She has worked closely with veterinarians and various kennels, building up extensive medical knowledge and an understanding of canine health and physiology. She also spent two years in the animal sciences as a canine nutrition researcher, focusing on longevity and holistic healthcare for our four-legged companions. Tamsin currently keeps a busy homestead with an assortment of rescue dogs and three Bullmastiffs.

Tamsin de la Harpe has nearly two decades of experience with dogs in rescue, training, and behavior modification with fearful and aggressive dogs. She has worked closely with veterinarians and various kennels, building up extensive medical knowledge and an understanding of canine health and physiology. She also spent two years in the animal sciences as a canine nutrition researcher, focusing on longevity and holistic healthcare for our four-legged companions. Tamsin currently keeps a busy homestead with an assortment of rescue dogs and three Bullmastiffs.