With yet another breed specific movie on its way into theatres, rescues and shelters across the nation are starting to get worried. You’d think a film like Beverly Hills Chihuahua would be harmless family entertainment, but just like similar movies in the past (e.g. 101 Dalmatians), what is supposed to be fun can turn into a tragic story.
As proven by Disney years ago with 101 Dalmatians, the sale of the particular breed goes up after the film’s release, and many of those dogs end up abandoned once the novelty wears off.
According to Robert Cabral of California-based animal welfare group Bound Angels, nearly 8,000 Chihuahuas found themselves up for adoption on Petfinder.org by the day of the LA premiere for Beverly Hills Chihuahua. Time will only tell what that number could change to after the release of the film nationwide, and once the novelty of the movie and the breed die away.
Chihuahuas certainly are cute, but they can be a handful. They are known to be loyal to a single person and best with other Chis but good with other pets nonetheless (although liking other animals is always specific from dog to dog). Some are more assertive than others, but they can be quite temperamental. They are not particularly good with strangers. The smaller Chihuahuas and the puppies in particular are very delicate and can be injured easily.
If you are thinking of getting a dog and a Chihuahua is on the top of your list, keep all of the breed traits in mind and don’t overlook the local animal shelter—an estimated 30-40 percent of shelter dogs are purebred, and rescue groups exist across the country specializing in Chihuahua and Chihuahua mixes. Visit TailsInc.com for a list of shelters and rescue groups in your area.