Chi Apso: Sweet, Cute, And Agile

Chi Apso: Sweet, Cute, and Agile

“Chihuahua Lhasa Apso Mix”

The Chi Apso is a mixed breed dog of short stature, produced by crossing a Chihuahua with a Lhasa Apso. Loved for its spunky attitude and sweet demeanor towards its owners, this little dog is considered a fun companion to have at home.

After all, when you mix the sassiness of a Chihuahua and the playfulness of a Lhasa Apso, what else would you expect? Nothing less than a cute and agile Chi Apso who wouldn’t mind to settle down for some hugs!

This dog is known as a Chihuahua-Lhasa Apso Mix, but it’s also sometimes called a Lhasa Chi.


With origins in the 1980s, it’s unclear who first bred the Chi Apso and where, although many suspect the U.S.A. Over the last decade, offspring of purebreds have grown quite popular in the designer dog owner community.

Let’s take a look at the two parent breeds to see what mixtures of looks and personality may come out in a Chi Apso.


The Chihuahua’s origins can be found in a state in Mexico called Chihuahua, hence the name. After visiting Americans became enchanted with the small canine, they brought some home, giving them exposure to the rest of the world as a beloved breed.

Now, Chihuahuas rank as the 11th favorite among 155 recognized AKC breeds. Their alert and sensitive, yet energetic personalities make them keen to human bonds. Most often, they socialize deeply with a single person and may be reserved around others.

Appearance-wise, the Chihuahua is known for being small and adorable, standing at 6 to 9 inches at the shoulder. They can have either a smooth, shiny, fitted coat or a long-haired coat with a flurry tail.

Lhasa Apso

The Lhasa Apso’s origins can be found in a holy city in Tibet called Lhasa. Like the Chihuahua, they were exclusively found in that region until they were brought to America. In fact, they were bred by monks and nobility, considered as a sacred dog who fiercely guards and protects their owners.

This identity still stands today, as Lhasa Apsos are loyal and protective of their beloved humans and often aloof with those they don’t know. One would think they’d be regal dogs considering their origin, but the Lhasa Apso also has a playful and happy side to them.

As for appearance, this dog stands at 9 to 11 inches tall at the shoulder. Although they’re short, Lhasa Apsos are sturdy. They are easily recognizable with their long, dense, and flowing hair, which usually hides their eyes.


Taking after its parents but most commonly nestled in between them height-wise, the Chi Apso stands at 8 to 11 inches tall. Their coat may be like either parent, but it’s often thick, long, and double layered.

The colors can range from white to cream and golden brown to black. Depending on their immediate lineage, a Chi Apso could have either floppy or erect ears. When it comes to shape and size, however, they usually take after the Lhasa Apso, with Chihuahua-like facial features.

Combinations such as a Lhasa Apso’s face and a Chihuahua’s coat are also possible. It really depends on the dog’s parents.

Chi Apso: Sweet, Cute, and Agile

Life Expectancy

This small canine has an average lifespan of 12 to 15 years. This is most possible with mindfulness of common health concerns, to be discussed later.


The Chi Apso is a sweet dog who loves to receive affection. They have a penchant for fun and hugs, but they also have a spunky, independent streak.

Their day-to-day life is often lively and full of joy if properly given attention by the owner. Neither too excitable nor aloof, they’re quite flexible and can make a great family dog or companion for a lone person.

Usually, they take after the Chihuahua parent and are sensitive and touchy, so they won’t be as alert as the purebred Lhasa Apso watchdog. This is why owners have a Chi Apso as a fun friend rather than a house guard, although they do bark at strangers occasionally.

Their tolerance for solitude may range from low to very good. This is because their parents have differing tolerance, with the Lhasa Apso doing fine when left alone and the Chihuahua needing more love and attention. In the end, it depends on which parent the mix takes after.

With children, this little canine will fit right at home. Their fun-loving, lively nature will make them a great playmate for the little ones and their need for affection deems them the best cuddle buddy.

With other dogs, Chi Apsos may be reserved at first. They require early socialization to be able to comfortably interact with other animals they encounter, especially if they’re fellow household pets. Once socialized, this perky and friendly dog will play with others just fine.

Ideal Environment

Although the Chi Apso is lively, they don’t really need much room to roam or run around. They make excellent apartment dogs, as long as the owner is able to walk them every day.

These dogs have a moderate tolerance to heat. The rarer short-haired, thin-coated ones will naturally have a low tolerance to cold, while the long-haired, thick or double-coated Chi Apsos can handle cold pretty well.

Also note that these little canines are not hypoallergenic, so they may cause some distress to any family member allergic to dog fur.

Chi Apso: Sweet, Cute, and Agile


Their lifestyle may not be as active as other dogs’, but the Chi Apso still needs high quality dog food to sustain their small but perky bodies. Later in life, they may suffer from joint issues, so overfeeding should be avoided so as to not add any unnecessary body weight.

The standard meal size is a half cup of dry dog food, twice a day. As for the contents, it would be best if the dog food is low in grains and carbs, which may cause overeating to feel full.


A Chi Apso lives a slightly to moderately active lifestyle, so it won’t take much effort to keep them in good health. Toys are a great way for them to stay entertained if humans aren’t at home all the time. These are also good for them to exercise physically and mentally.

As previously mentioned, the Chi Apso is a perfect apartment dog. They don’t really need a yard to roam or wander around. Still, a walk outside per day will make them happy, especially if it entails a visit to a dog park with some playtime off the leash.

Basically, exercise is important, even for this slightly active canine. A physically and mentally stimulated dog is a happy and healthy dog!


Since the Chihuahua and the Lhasa Apso are relatively independent, their offspring the Chi Apso might be a little hard to train as well. First-time dog owners and trainers may find them a handful in this aspect.

However, with proper socialization and a firm and patient hand, these little canines may surprise you! They’re intelligent and loyal despite being spunky and fun. In fact, quite a few owners have said online that they’re not as untrainable as initially thought.

With dedication and consistency, you’ll have your Chi Apso trained after much hard work from both ends. Just don’t let them feel your frustration, as they’re very sensitive to owners’ moods. A strict reward system is key.


When it comes to maintenance, the Chi Apso only needs moderate attention. Shedding is perhaps the biggest grooming concern for owners, with loose dog hair around the house and on your clothes if left unattended.

Instead of a wire comb, a brush will help keep their coats maintainable. Brushing twice a week (or every other day if the coat is especially thick) will get all the loose hair, clumps, and tangles out of the coat during the grooming session rather than falling around everywhere all the time.

It’s also best to give your Chi Apso a bath on an as-needed basis, when their fur gets quite dirty. Just dog shampoo will do. Giving them a bath too often might be bad for the natural oils produced in their skin.

And like with all dogs, nails shouldn’t be cut too short, ears will need to be wiped every now and then, and teeth must be brushed twice a week. A professional groomer can do wonders if all the grooming needs pile up.

Chi Apso: Sweet, Cute, and Agile

Health Concerns

The day-to-day concerns that may affect a Chi Apso are shivering and allergies. The more serious conditions that often emerge later in life are joint pains and dysfunctions in the knees, kidneys, heart, or eyes. Obesity isn’t that much of a problem as long as you don’t overfeed your pet.

What you can do to ensure a Chi Apso’s good health is be informed of all their possible ailments. A proper breeder should show health clearances and supply information regarding a pup’s parents and their conditions.

It’s also best to pay the puppy a visit before purchasing or do some research on where you’re buying or adopting from, to make sure they were kept in good condition.

Where to Look for Chi Apsos

A Chi Apso isn’t as common as their Chihuahua and Lhasa Apso parents, so they might not be at your local pet shop. Good thing there is plenty of puppies for sale and grown dogs for adoption online.

The average price for a Chi Apso pup would be $300 to $700. Just make sure you get your little canine from a reputable breeder and not from a puppy mill that churns out mixes without care for their condition.

When it comes to mixed breed designer dogs, it’s best to do research.


The Chi Apso is a sweet choice for families, couples, and lone individuals alike. They’re small and affectionate – in short, a great house companion. Plus, they’re known to bond quite well with their chosen humans.

Best for apartment dwellers and experienced owners, the spunky and lively attitude of a Chi Apso will keep your days fun and bright. They aren’t as sociable and active as other dogs, often preferring to stick to their owners, but this could be a great fit for you and your household.

Most importantly, the love and loyalty you’ll receive from this little canine makes them worth all the trouble.

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