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Rat Terrier & Chihuahua Mix- Rat Cha, Breed facts and Info

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You’re in luck if you’ve ever looked at a Rat Terrier and thought, “Yeah, it’s cute, but it’s too big.” The Rat-Cha is a mix between an American Rat Terrier and a Chihuahua.

Even though Rat-Chas are small, they have big hearts. Their fierceness can put much bigger dogs to shame, which can be a good or a bad thing. The Rat-Cha can be a good guard dog, but you have to watch out that it doesn’t get too mean.

The Rat-Cha isn’t a very common breed, and they may get the bad reputations of both of their parents. We made a guide to this breed so you can find out the truth about these sassy little pups and put an end to these myths.

Rat-Cha History

source: Pinterest.com

The Rat-Cha is a popular designer breed because both of its parent breeds are also very popular. Even though the pup is popular, there are no detailed accounts of their breeding programs or history. This is probably because Rat Terriers and Chihuahuas have only recently started breeding together, and because Rat Terrier-Chihuahua mixes can look different from one another.

The Chihuahua comes from Mexico and is also an American dog. The Chihuahua, which was called a “Techichi” back then, has been talked about as far back as the 9th century in Mesoamerica, where the small dogs were bred as both vermin hunters and pets. The Techichi was so loved that when their masters died, they were often buried with them.

During the Spanish invasion of the Aztec State, the Techichi became less common, but the small, hardy dogs stayed in the area and were found living in the Mexican state of Chihuahua in the mid-1800s. This is where the breed got its new name. By the end of the 1800s, Chihuahuas had made their way north to the United States, where they were recognized by the American Kennel Club in 1904.

The American Rat Terrier is an ancient breed that has existed in America. Some of the other well-known breeds in the breeding program were the Manchester Terrier, the Bull Terrier, the Old English White Terrier, and the Fox Terrier. The goal of the breed programs was to make a small dog that looked like a Terrier and was good at catching rats and getting into tight spots.

Even though the American Kennel Club didn’t recognize them until 2013, they have been bred in the United States for a long time. A Rat Terrier was in the movie The Little Colonel with Shirley Temple. President Theodore Roosevelt chose a Terrier because he wanted a rat dog to get rid of the rats in the White House. The Rat Terrier looked different in different parts of the United States, too.

Appearance

Just like other mixed breeds, the Rat Terrier Chihuahua Mix has traits from both of its parents. Even though it’s hard to know exactly what a litter of Rat Terrier Chihuahua Mixes will look like, there are some things you can expect to see.

Size

The Chihuahua and the Rat Terrier are both pretty small dogs. So, the number of times these two breeds get together is also pretty small. Rat Terriers grow to be between 10 and 18 inches tall and weigh between 10 and 25 pounds. The Chihuahua is much smaller than the Yorkie. It stands between 6 and 10 inches tall and weighs between 4 and 6 pounds. When breeding, it’s usually best if the Rat Terrier is the mom and the Chihuahua is the dad. This can prevent problems during pregnancy caused by having big puppies in small bodies.

The Rat Terrier Chihuahua mix usually grows to be between 12 and 18 inches tall when it’s full grown. It can also weigh anywhere from 12 to 25 pounds. So, this mix is much more like the Rat Terrier in size than it is like the tiny Chihuahua. Again, these numbers are not set in stone. The best way to figure out how big the mix will be is to look at how big the parents are. The fact that they are small could also mean that they live longer. This mixed breed usually lives between 10 and 15 years, which is the same as both the Rat Terrier and the Chihuahua.

Coat and Colors

When it comes to the color of their fur, they can be many different shades. The Rat Terrier can have a coat that is tan, brown, black, white, or blue. They can also be two or three different colors and have different marks that make each one unique. The Chihuahua can also come in tan, black, or brown, among other colors.

Because of this, the Rat Terrier Chihuahua mix can come in a wide range of colors and patterns. Many have shades of white, brown, and black, making them tricolor. Some may only have one color, such as tan or black. Their fur can also be short or long, depending on how their genes are made. If their coat is more like a Chihuahua’s, their hair might be shorter. But if there is more Rat Terrier in them, their coat might be longer. Because they have short coats, be sure to keep them warm in cold places.
The ears of the mix are like those of its Rat Terrier and Chihuahua parents in that they stand up and always seem to be alert. When they are resting or not doing anything, their ears may also fall across their head. Most of the time, their face and head look a lot like a Chihuahua’s, with a similar head shape and clear facial features. Their black nose and dark, round eyes go well with everything else about them. Even though they are small, they have strong legs that can carry them far and keep them running and playing all day.

The temperament of the Rat-Cha

Rat-Chas are smart dogs, but they don’t use their intelligence as much as many other smart dog breeds do.

Instead of doing puzzles or spending hours learning new commands, these dogs just want to sit in the lap of their favorite person and get lots of attention. That’s all there is to it, and it doesn’t take much thought.

But when it comes to things like housetraining, they show how smart they are. These dogs get the idea very quickly, so you probably won’t have many accidents.

Rat-Chas tend to be very loyal to one person and wary or even aggressive toward others. Because of this, the dog’s owner often has a very different view of the dog than people who don’t know it.

Even though they aren’t very dangerous, you should try to stop them from being as aggressive as possible. It’s also for their own good. You never know when they might pick a fight they can’t win, like with a bigger dog.

Is this dog the right choice for my Family?

Rat-Chas usually get close to one person. That means they won’t get along with the rest of the family very well, and they might even be mean to them.

If you have small children, this can be a big problem. You don’t want your kids to be afraid to come up to you because you have a bad-tempered dog in your lap, so either work on making the Rat-Cha like kids or get another dog.

We usually recommend the second choice, but if you want a dog who is completely devoted to you and no one else, the Rat-Cha can’t be beat.

Does Rat-Cha Get Along With Other Pets? 

Rat-Chas don’t have the same pack mentality as many other breeds, so they might not feel the need to bond with another dog. They can be mean to other dogs, especially if the other dog comes near their favorite person. As you can imagine, this doesn’t usually end well for the Rat-Cha.

Even if you can get your Rat-Cha to accept another puppy, that doesn’t mean they’ll play with it. Rat-Chas like to do things their way, so play bows and other similar requests are often ignored. This can make the other dog unhappy.

Rat-Chas have a strong desire to hunt, so they might try to catch cats or other small pets. Being around other people can help with this, but don’t expect miracles.

You can teach your Rat-Cha to get along with almost any other animal with enough training and socialization, but if you decide to get a Rat-Cha, it’s best to keep it to yourself.

The Rat-Cha Care

Rat-Chas don’t need much care, but that doesn’t mean there aren’t important things you should know before getting one.

Diet

From the way they look, you might guess that Rat-Chas don’t eat much. But they are even less interested in food than you might think, and if you don’t remind them, they may forget to eat.

Even though these dogs often don’t want to eat, they can become overweight. This is usually because they eat too many treats while lying on their owner’s lap rather than because they eat too much kibble.

You should feed these dogs healthy food that is high in protein but not too high in calories. You should only feed them at set times and pick up the food when they’re done. Free feeding should be avoided.

Exercise

You might not think Rat-Chas need much exercise since they are happy to spend all day in your lap and watch Netflix. But the breed has a surprising amount of energy.

They also have really short legs, which makes it easy to tucker them out. They should only need one or two short, fast walks to get rid of any extra energy.

Keeping them physically tired is another great way to help with aggression problems, but it’s not a replacement for regular training.

These dogs like to play, but only if they get to decide what to do. They usually don’t like being forced to play games, so it might be hard to get them to chase a ball or pull on a rope.

Training

These puppies need to be trained and introduced to people. You may think about skipping it because their attacks don’t do much damage, but that would be a mistake.

From the first day, you bring them home, you should work on making them less aggressive. Introduce them to lots of different people, places, and animals, and be sure to praise and reward them when they act calm and sure of themselves.

Rat-Chas have a lot of trouble-guarding resources, which is often your attention. Use your training time to work on this problem. Don’t let them get possessive about food, toys, or your lap, or you could end up with a ticking time bomb.

Even though it’s important to train your Rat-Cha, don’t expect it to be as obedient as a Golden Retriever. Most of the time, these dogs don’t like to learn a lot of tricks. That doesn’t mean they can’t be taught, just that they won’t be as interested as some other breeds.

Grooming

Rat-Chas have short, bristly coats, and they don’t ea a lot, almost about half as much as other dog breeds. You should brush them at least once a week or so, but don’t expect miracles. Most of the time, it’s best to just vacuum up their messes every once in a while.

The teeth of these dogs are very prone to problems, especially as they get older, so take the time to clean their teeth. If you can, you should brush them every day, and you shouldn’t give them things like bones that are very hard.

You’ll need to cut their nails often since Rat-Chas don’t usually move around enough to do it themselves. When you need to, you should take a bath.

Rat-Cha Male vs. Female

Male Rat-Chas are usually a bit bigger than their female counterparts, but they’ll never be mistaken for big dogs. The male and female should both be small, light, and easy to carry.

If female Rat-Chas aren’t spayed or neutered, they can be more aggressive and guard their food and toys, especially after having puppies. Most hormonal problems can be fixed by spaying or neutering the dog.

Health Concerns

The Rat Terrier Chihuahua mix may be more likely to get some health problems than other breeds. These are things that either the Chihuahua or the Rat Terrier can have trouble with. For example, a fast metabolism could cause hypoglycemia, or a spinal injury could cause pain in the back. They could also have problems inside their bodies, such as bladder or kidney stones or a knee condition called luxating patella.

A Rat Terrier Chihuahua Mix may also have health problems like hip dysplasia, eye problems, and other problems that are common in Rat Terriers. As with many mixed breeds, the process of breeding may make it less likely that genetic diseases will be passed from the parents to the puppies. Because of this, hybrid breeds can often be healthier and live longer than standard breeds.

Quick Breed Summary Table

Weight 10 – 15 pounds
Height 10 – 16 inches
Size Small
Coat Type short or long
colors a wide range of colors and patterns. Many have shades of white, brown, and black, making them tricolor
Amount of Shedding  They don’t shed much
Nose Black
Ears stand up
Temperament suspicious of strangers, Protective, fierce, affectionate.
Life Expectancy 12 – 18 years
Hypoallergenic No
Intelligence Yes
Kid-Friendly They need training
New Owner Friendly No
Activity level very active
Breed Recognition None

Last Word

Even though Rat-Chas are small, they have big personalities, and these stubborn dogs have no trouble making themselves known.

Rat-Chas can be aggressive and have other behavior problems, so not everyone should own one. However, their love for their owners makes them popular pets.

Rat-Chas are great for people who live alone in apartments because they don’t need much space and prefer to spend most of their time curled up on the lap of their favorite person. This dog isn’t great for working out, but if you’re looking for someone to watch “The Bachelor” with, a Rat-Cha is hard to beat.

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