California Chihuahua Crisis

Chihuahuas make up 30 percent or more of the dog populations at many California animal shelters.

There's suspicion that fans took to the tiny breed to imitate Chihuahua-toting celebrities like Paris Hilton and Miley Cyrus. People then apparently change their minds.

In Oakland, a shelter official says they can get 10 of the 5-pound dogs each day. There are so many Chihuahuas at Oakland animal shelters, workers have started shipping them out of state. Meanwhile, shelters all over California built for big dogs are having to remodel to accommodate these little guys.

A New York ASPCA official says the problem appears to be specific to California. Shelters elsewhere would love to offer more of the smaller breed.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Vance on Dec 10, 2009 at 07:03 PM
    42million Ethiopians and Half are POPPED BELLIED.Dont make no since when Californians Gripe and Moan.
  • by Nathan Location: Eastern NC on Dec 10, 2009 at 06:38 PM
    I wouldn't mind having a pure Chihuahua. I've heard their dander is somehow beneficial to people with asthma and allergies, both of which I suffer from. Sounds strange but I've heard it from a few people. But people want so much for them so I haven't bothered. I'd take one for free or for the cost to neuter it (I'd prefer it male -- never had good luck with female cats/dogs, always great luck with male cats/dogs) and the necessary shots if it were reasonable. I hate seeing dogs as fashion accessories, too, but little dogs are lots of fun. They're not good for hunting, obviously, or home defense, but they're more playful and sociable than many breeds of larger dogs.
  • by gimme a break on Dec 10, 2009 at 06:03 PM
    Next thing you know the experts will be blaming the schools for the student's poor behavior and lack of motivation in life.
  • by Rrrrrr Location: Greenville on Dec 10, 2009 at 05:41 PM
    I hate em. I had one once with a smoking problem...he shook so much he could never light his own cigs.
  • by Jude Location: NC on Dec 10, 2009 at 12:55 PM
    They could learn something on the price of right filmed in California. Spay and Neuter your dogs, the problem can stop real quick.
  • by Tod Location: 7 springs on Dec 10, 2009 at 11:23 AM
    I have a large malamute shepherd mix and a medium sized chow lab mix both would love to eat some Chihuahuas dry food is so boring
  • by WHAT?? Location: SC on Dec 10, 2009 at 10:07 AM
    If anywhere on earth deserves a problem like this it would be California...
  • by please on Dec 10, 2009 at 09:52 AM
    It is ridiculous to blame Hollywood. They are allowed to have pets. It is the people that buy them and then get rid of them that are to be held responsible. Educate yourself and family before buying a pet. Even the Easter Bunny gets blamed when people return bunnies after Easter. We need to be responsible for our own actions.
  • by Vance on Dec 10, 2009 at 09:27 AM
    Drop kick the little ankle biters to Ethiopia.
  • by Tricia Location: NC on Dec 10, 2009 at 09:02 AM
    Chihuahuas are not stupid or good for nothing. They are very smart loving dogs. I have 2 now and so does a friend of mine and both of us would adopt more to save them from being put down. It's a shame people aren't more responsible.
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