Mixed Breeds

Pitbull Terrier Chihuahua Mix: Chipit Breed Information

Kelly Wilson

Last Updated: August 25, 2021 | 10 min read

Chihuahua Pitbull Mix

If you’re looking to welcome a dog into your family, you might want to consider the pitbull Chihuahua mix. The pitbull Chihuahua mix is an unusual mixed breed of dog that was created by crossbreeding a purebred Chihuahua and a purebred American pitbull terrier.

These pups are playful and full of life, making this pooch the ideal choice for an active family who is looking for a sociable, fun pet. The pitbull Chihuahua mix is also known as a Chipit and a Pithuahua. So, would the pitbull Chihuahua mix make the perfect canine companion for you and your family?

This is a unique breed that you are more likely to find in a rescue or shelter than directly from a breeder.  In this article, we take a close look at the breed, and we answer some of the most commonly asked questions that prospective Chipit owners have.

Parent Breeds

A pitbull Chihuahua mixed breed is commonly known as a “designer dog” when the two purebred breeds mate intentionally. The concept of creating designer dogs first appeared twenty or so years ago.The idea of crossbreeding was to combine the most desirable characteristics of two purebred animals to produce a hybrid.

Crossbreed dogs are typically healthier and more long-lived than purebreds. However, many staunch supporters of the purebred argue that too much crossbreeding dilutes the gene pool, and that can have negative implications for the future of certain breeds. So, on the face of it, mixed breeds are a great idea. However, crossbreeding does have a few drawbacks.

Firstly, you can never be sure which parent the puppies will most take after. So, you could finish up with a puppy who physically closely resembles his Chihuahua dad but has the temperament and personality of his pitbull mom. Secondly, some health conditions that are common to both parent breeds can be passed on to their progeny, rather than bred out. Let’s take a deeper look at each parent breed before diving in deeper with the Chipit mix.

American Pitbull Terrier

The American pitbull terrier actually originates from the U.K. and Ireland. Back in the 1800s, breeders began experimenting by crossing old-style bull-baiting dogs with lightweight terriers to produce a smaller-framed, less aggressive dog.

These early hybrid dogs then made the journey across the Pond to the United States with early pioneers and immigrants who used the animals for herding, hunting, and as companions. It’s those early canine migrants who are the direct ancestors of the American pitbull terrier we know today.

However, the American Kennel Club still does not recognize the pitbull terrier as a specific breed.Some countries, including the U.K., have banned American pitbull terriers, as the breed has a reputation for being bred and trained as an attack dog by criminals. Also, in the U.S., the breed is restricted in some states.

For example, in the city of Kearney, Missouri, a dog that carries five of eight pitbull characteristics is banned.The American pitbull terrier is not born aggressive. It’s people’s mishandling or deliberate training of the dogs that make them confrontational. Essentially, a well-socialized, properly trained pitbull is just as friendly, happy, and safe to be around as any other breed of dog.  Pits are also commonly mixed with other breeds, and some popular mixes include the lab pitbull mix, or the pitbull german shepherd mix.

Chihuahua

The American Kennel Club classifies the tiny Chihuahua as a toy breed. You might assume that the little Chihuahua is a placid lap dog. Well, you couldn’t be more wrong! Also, the Chihuahua is a confirmed barker and can be something of a menace if you have near neighbors who like a quiet life!

The Chihuahua is an extremely popular purse dog and can be seen in company with many celebrities and well-heeled folk around the world. The Chihuahua is also the National doggy ambassador of Mexico.

However, don’t let the breed’s cute looks fool you; these little guys are also known as “armpit piranhas,” and they can be very feisty! The Chihuahua doesn’t suffer fools gladly, and these pups won’t tolerate clumsy children and the unwanted attentions of other dogs.  Chihuahuas are popular mixes, sometimes by planning and sometimes not.  Other popular chi-mixes include the chiweene or the yorkie chihuahua mix.

Pitbull Chihuahua Mix

The pitbull Chihuahua mix is known for being a fun, lively, sociable dog. As we mentioned earlier, this rare crossbreed is also known as a Chipit or Pithuahua. The Chipit is recognized by the Dog Registry of America, Inc. and the International Designer Canine Registry (IDCR). However, the American Kennel Club does not acknowledge the breed at the current time.

A Chipit can grow to be up to 20 inches in height to the shoulder, weighing up to around 20 pounds. However, that’s an estimate, as some pitbull Chihuahua mixes can be smaller than this if they take more after the Chihuahua parent than the pitbull. Chipits are generally healthy and are quite long-lived too, often making it to 13 or 14 years of age.

Temperament

The Chipit is a livewire! These dogs love an active lifestyle, preferably one that’s shared with their human family. If you have a family with active kids who love spending time in the Great Outdoors, the pitbull Chihuahua mix could be ideal for you.

You’ll need to be prepared to spend lots of time playing with your Chipit. These pups do need lots of exercise and entertainment, as they can become destructive if bored. You’ll find that the Chipit can be a barker, especially when alerting his owner of strangers on his home property.

Although the pitbull Chihuahua mix is quite a small dog and can adapt to apartment life, the breed is happiest in a place where he has lots of room to play. A place with a garden or a large backyard where he can run around and burn off excess energy would suit the Chipit perfectly.

Chipits are very loyal to their owners and can sometimes be over-defensive when strangers approach, and they perceive a threat. For that reason, it’s essential that you spend time socializing and training your pitbull Chihuahua mix right from day one.

Although there is some evidence to suggest that American pitbull terriers are more likely to bite than other breeds, those statistics can be misleading. Many times, confusion and misidentification lead to false reports of biting incidents. Also, the pitbull’s reputation as a vicious bruiser can attract irresponsible owners who fail to train and socialize their dogs properly.

Both the pitbull and the Chihuahua are confident breeds that are also extremely intelligent. So, you could find you have a challenge on your hands when it comes to training one of these pups.

Size & Appearance

The appearance and size of a pitbull Chihuahua mix will vary, depending on which parent the puppy most favors. The Chipit typically grows up to 20 inches tall at the shoulder, weighing in at up to 20 pounds. The body of Chipits is often short, broad, and muscular with the characteristic short neck of the pitbull parent. Many Chipits inherit the small feet, long ears, and thin muzzle of the Chihuahua.

The distinctive dome-shaped head of the pitbull often brings out the familiar apple-shaped head of the Chihuahua. In some individuals that can look super-cute, although, in others, the head may appear disproportionately small or large. Of course, until your tiny, fluffy puppy matures, it’s impossible to forecast how he’ll turn out accurately! That’s what makes taking on a mixed breed pup so exciting!

Coat & Colors

The coat type of the Chipit breed can vary tremendously. If the parent Chihuahua is short-coated, the puppies will usually have the short, close, glossy coat that’s also common to pitbulls. However, if the Chihuahua parent is long-haired, the Chipit puppies may inherit that coat type. That said, it’s more usual to find a short-haired Chihuahua, as the long-haired variety of purebred is harder to come by.

Generally, the pitbull Chihuahua mix will be black, white, tan, golden, brown or even differing shades of brindle. In fact, the only color that you won’t find is merle.  With all that being said, this mix comes in a variety of different colors and can have shorter or longer hair.

Exercise & Living Conditions

The Chipit is full of energy! You’ll need to take your pitbull Chihuahua mix for at least two walks every day. Also, a couple of play sessions each day will help to keep your pup mentally stimulated and can prevent boredom from setting in. And don’t assume that your dog will run out of energy as he gets older! Even senior pitbull crosses have plenty of excess energy to burn!

Training

The pitbull Chihuahua mix is a highly intelligent dog that must be properly trained and well-socialized if he is not to become overly dominant in the household. Positive reinforcement is the way to go when training your Chipit. The Chihuahua can be rather stubborn, and that coupled with the pitbull’s energy and strength can make for a challenging combination to train. For that reason, the pitbull Chihuahua mix is not recommended as a pet for first-time dog owners.

Health

The life expectancy of a Chipit is typically between ten and 13 years on average, although some pups can live longer. Although the pitbull Chihuahua mix tends to be a pretty healthy breed, there are some health conditions to which these pups can be prone, including Patella Luxation, Hypoglycemia, Hip Dysplasia, Heart Issues, or even a Collapsed Trachea.

Patellar Luxation: Patellar luxation is an orthopedic condition that’s often seen in small dogs. Patella luxation often occurs following injury or trauma and causes one or both of the dog’s kneecaps to dislocate. Note that the condition can also be hereditary, appearing in young puppies of only a few months old.

Hypoglycemia:  Many small dog breeds, including Chihuahuas, can suffer from a condition called hypoglycemia. Hypoglycemia happens when the dog’s blood sugar level falls too low. That happens most often after an exercise session, when the dog misses a meal, or when some exciting event occurs. If you’re concerned that your dog might be suffering from hypoglycemia, you should contact your vet as a matter of urgency.

Hip Dysplasia:  Hip dysplasia is a common genetic condition in many breeds of dog that affects the hip joints, causing malformation. The resulting deformity causes the hip joint to disintegrate, leaving the animal with chronic and painful arthritis. Although minor cases of hip dysplasia can be managed effectively with drug therapy, more severe cases require surgical correction.

Heart Problems:  Although pitbulls are not prone to heart conditions, there are two cardiac problems that can affect Chihuahuas. Patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) and Mitral valve disease.  PDA is a condition that becomes apparent after the puppy is born. It affects a small blood vessel in the heart, causing it to fail to close correctly. Mitral valve disease develops in fully grown dogs. The condition happens when weakened heart valves permit blood to flow backward, placing the heart under considerable strain.

Collapsed Trachea:  The dog’s windpipe or trachea is a muscular tube that is supported by surrounding rings of soft cartilage. The trachea passes through the dog’s neck en route to the lungs. Tracheal collapse can happen when a dog pulls hard against a collar or choke chain. However, many small dogs are born with deformed or weakened tracheal cartilage. That can allow the windpipe to collapse, interfering with the dog’s ability to breathe.

Nutrition

The pitbull Chihuahua mix doesn’t require any fancy diet and will do well on high-quality, age-appropriate dog food. Although the Chipit does enjoy canned, wet dog food from time-to-time, your dog will do best on a diet of kibble.  It’s likely that because this mix is so active, it may need a food that’s fit for a normal-sized breed and not a food that’s engineered specifically for chihuahuas.

Kibble (dry biscuits) helps to scrape away accumulations of bacteria and plaque from your dog’s teeth as he crunches his meal. That cleans the teeth and can be very effective in preventing the onset of canine periodontal disease and gingivitis. Remember to provide your dog with unlimited fresh water throughout the day, especially when he has dry food to eat.

Grooming

The pitbull Chihuahua mix generally has a short, glossy coat that doesn’t take too much grooming. Ideally, you should brush your dog with a stiff-bristled brush twice a week to remove dead and loose hair, keeping your pup looking good. Although he is short-haired, the Chipit is a moderate shedder, so this pup wouldn’t suit a home with allergy sufferers.

As Family Pets

  • The pitbull Chihuahua mix makes a fabulous pet if you have an active lifestyle.
  • The Chipit is a friendly, affectionate, and loyal dog.
  • You will need to have plenty of free time available to spend exercising your Chipit.
  • These dogs do require lots of physical and mental stimulation to prevent boredom.
  • The pitbull Chihuahua mix can be quite a dominant personality.
  • Early socialization and training are essential.
  • The Chipit is the perfect size dog for apartment life.
  • However, access to outdoor space is essential for these lively, energetic pups.
  • The pitbull Chihuahua mix has a low-maintenance coat that doesn’t need much grooming.
  • These pups do shed continually throughout the year.
  • A Chipit is not a good choice for a home with allergy sufferers.

Puppy Prices

You typically won’t find too many licensed breeders for this mix, as they are more commonly found in shelters.  These pups are usually the offspring of two stray dogs that end up mating, as there isn’t typically a huge market for Chipit puppies when compared to other designer dogs.

Depending on where you find your dog, the prices for this puppy will vary.  Usually if you are adopting from a Rescue, you can find these pups from $100 all the way up to $500 depending on the organization.  If you find a designer dog breeder, expect to pay upwards of $800 for this mix and you should always check the papers of the parents if they are being marketed as a designer dog with purebred parents.

Rescue and Shelters

Although the pitbull Chihuahua mix is not a crossbreed that you’ll find in abundance, you might just strike lucky and find one of these super dogs that is in need of a home. There are many non-profit websites have lots of deserving pups of all shapes and sizes that are hoping to be adopted into a caring, loving family home. It’s likely you may even find this mix at your local shelter.

Some rescue centers operate a scheme that allows potential owners to take dogs on a trial basis for a month or so. If the dog proves to be a good fit for your family, you can apply to adopt him formally. However, if the two of you don’t get along, you can return the pup to the shelter until a more suitable home becomes available for him.

Final Thoughts

If you’re looking for a fun dog that would be a good fit for your lively, active household, a pitbull Chihuahua mix might be the perfect pup for you. Chipits are loyal, friendly, and sociable, although one of these sensitive dogs might not get along well with small children and other dogs. Also, the Chipit can be a yapper if he takes that trait from the Chihuahua side of the crossbreed.

The Chipit doesn’t need a huge amount of brushing to keep his short, glossy coat in good condition. However, these pups do shed, and that could be an issue for allergy sufferers in your household. So, now that you know all about the Chipit, it’s time for you to begin your search for the ideal canine companion!

Leave a Comment

18 Comments

Jan Knepper

July 27, 2021 at 9:48 pm

Thank you for publishing this article. Is has helped us in a number of ways.

We were very fortunate to receive one of these dogs via Animal Control Services in September of 2014. She was a 6-9 month old puppy when she came. I initially thought she was younger keeping the normal size of a Pit, that we normally adopt, in mind. We decided to name her “Daisy”, because the Animal Control Officer called her “Hazy”, because Daisy acted slightly differently than most puppies. She would climb on tables, desks, in window sills, etc. Her name was also based on the movie “Driving Miss Daisy”, because Daisy was driven around for almost a week by the Animal Control Officer after she was picked up as a stray.

Daisy, the little girl, who ended up looking like a small, slightly less than half-sized Pit became the center of our house & home. She was an absolute livewire. Her behavior was more or less exactly as described in this well-researched article. Daisy was different then the regular Pits we normally adopt. She had a personality to the max. Daisy was very smart, and very food-oriented. She learned to roll over in two evening training, before going to bed, with three cookies (Milk Bones) each evening. By the second evening, she was rolling over.

She was a bit feisty, certainly much feistier than the Pits we adopted before her. Her feistiness got her in trouble a couple of times with her adopted sister, a Pit-Pug or Pug-Pit. Daisy was spayed twice. An experienced veterinarian did not find her second ovary during the first spay. She also had one Kidney. I guess the thinking might have been that she might have had other medical abnormalities as one ovary. Daisy was with us for about 3 week before my wife, who had been house training her mostly, left for a Cruise. My wife is a Cruise Headline Piano Entertainer.

The first night home alone with Daisy and her adopted siblings, Daisy had several seizures. The second night a couple. Then nothing for a couple of weeks, during which my wife returned home and thought I made it all up. That was, until the evening before her next Cruise I woke up from almost sleep because Daisy who was sleeping on the bed started shaking again, and had another seizure. Shortly after Daisy was prescribed Phenobarbital. That helped with the seizures. We weened her off the Phenobarbital about 6-9 months later when she was fully grown. To our knowledge, she never had another seizure.

However, Daisy was very sensitive to Thunderstorms, loud bangs, etc. She was somewhat sensitive to unnaturally sounding digital voices. Daisy acted child-like. She would love to sit in my lap and lean against my chest and could sit that way for a whole movie or longer. She was very sensitive to movement while she was sleeping. If we moved too much while she was sleeping on the bed, she would get off the bed. Most of the time Daisy wanted to be around us. However, we do have a large fenced-in backyard that was her domain. Daisy absolutely loved car rides. She developed a routine to let my wife know that she wanted a car ride. During these Covidious times it became part of the standard morning routine. Daisy was very loyal. We both loved and probably idolized this cute little girl.

Unfortunately, I came across this website and this article for the first time just this week. I was doing research as Daisy at ~7.5 years of age, at this moment of this writing almost a week ago, suddenly died. Reading this article and learning about “Mitral valve decease”, then researching what “Mitral valve decease” is and what the symptoms are, I think that is what she, unknown to us, must have suffered from. The one clear indicator is that Daisy would have the habit of sitting down in the middle of a walk. Sometimes that was because she just wanted to go another way.

Other times she did not want to go anywhere. When I would encourage her to walk she would lay down. We thought this was just of the particulars of Daisy because Daisy clearly had her own mind. If she did not want to walk, I would pick her up and carry her. Another Daisy-thing was that even though she was house trained, and even in the middle of the night would go outside to take care of business, everyone and a while, in excitement, or if she had something on her mind she would do #1 in the house, never #2...

However, we were blessed with a beautiful creature for almost 7 years. She brought us much joy. We are growing through this period of sorrow and pain while dealing with the sudden loss. When we are ready, in months from now, to adopt a dog, we will very likely be considering another mix like this.

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Kelly Wilson

July 29, 2021 at 3:43 pm

Hi Jan, thanks for taking the time to tell your story. This just goes to show how much our dogs can really mean to us, and what a difference they can make in our lives. Sounds like Daisy was a fantastic dog. I'm truly sorry for your loss, and pray that you'll be able to welcome a new rescue into your home as soon as you feel emotionally ready to do so. Thanks again for sharing your experience with our readers.

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Lisa Redman

July 9, 2021 at 5:04 pm

I have a 4-year-old male his mother was a Chihuahua & dad was a brindle pit. I rescued him when he was 12 weeks old from a couple that was beating him because they would leave newspapers on the floor and he would play with them, they were going to take him to the interstate and put him out so someone would hit him with a car.

They gave him to me and he's the best dog, he loves everyone he meets & so loving. He's an inside fur baby but loves playing outdoors. He was also trained as a service dog for my husband that passed away on 11/2020. He misses him so much but I love him so much so he'll know he's always loved. Yogurt is the best dog I've ever had!!

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Kelly Wilson

July 13, 2021 at 3:36 am

Sounds like a great pup, Lisa! Thanks for sharing your experience with this particular mix!

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M

March 10, 2021 at 1:09 pm

I have a Chipit, and he is the best! About 20-25 lbs, shaped kinda like a doxie (longer than tall). He has short hair and sheds like crazy. He's a yippy tough guy at anyone who isn't in our household. Then when he realizes his yips are going nowhere, he just pees on them lol. Randomly gets the zoomies and goes crazy at the most random things, like a pot or the peanut butter jar.

He will eat anything that is edible, so you can't leave anything out. But he is so smart! For example, if his stuffy is mixed in with my kid's stuffies, he will rummage through to get his. He NEVER chews the kid's stuff. I don't work out of the house, and probably never will, which is good for him, cause he is CLINGY!!!

He's my 1st dog, and he's been a dream!!! My youngest child is 6, so I don't know how they are with really little kids, but he's awesome with mine. He tries to chew them up sometimes though lol. He just turned 1, and we've had him since he was 6 weeks (unfortunately, we thought he was 8 weeks when we got him, so he struggled with eating for the 1st week or 2 cause he must have still wanted milk, but with the vets help, he's all good now!). I can't recommend Chipits enough!!!

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Kelly Wilson

March 10, 2021 at 1:37 pm

That sounds like an awesome dog, M! Thanks for stopping by to share!

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Dustin Kaufman

February 15, 2021 at 9:06 pm

We currently have a 10-year-old Chihuahua who is the queen of the home. We are considering a Chipit, but I am afraid of our current Chihuahua getting upset or hurt by the new pup. We have the love time and attention to give. I just want to make sure its a great situation for us all. Not sure if we should get a girl or boy pup. Any thoughts, advice, or suggestions?

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Kelly Wilson

February 16, 2021 at 11:24 pm

Hi Dustin! I would say it's going to be solely dependent on the dogs, rather than the breeds. Some older dogs don't like younger pups. It's like a child going to see Grandma. The energy levels don't always mix well. Introductions on neutral ground are a must. Then watch for any signs of aggression from either side. Good luck with your search!

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Sandra Russo

January 24, 2021 at 1:52 pm

Romeo, my Chipit is the apple of my eye. He is white with black ears, a black rear end, and big black spot on his right side. He is VERY protective and won’t let anyone come near me that he doesn’t know. His bark would make you think he’s a big dog. But he’s just 35lbs and the sweetest thing in the world.

He has his favorites as to who he plays with. He plays rougher with my son; sweeter with my daughters and rather cuddle and play softly with me. I work from home, but when I leave he is the saddest and I feel bad. Would you describe that as separation anxiety?

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Kelly Wilson

January 25, 2021 at 4:28 pm

That sounds like an amazing pup Sandra! Yes, it sounds like your pup may have a touch of separation anxiety, which is common in both of the parent breeds. A good walk in the morning to tire out your pup will go a long way in getting rid of that. Good luck, and thanks for commenting!

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Rasheeda Ali

January 15, 2021 at 5:28 am

My sweet Olivia is 1/2 pit on the mothers side and 1/2 Chihuahua on the dads side. She is 5.5 months and 23.7 lbs. She is super cute and playfull. She turned out to be easy to train too, but i think having another trained pet in the house helped. She gets nervous at the dog park and keeps running between my legs like base when you play tag.

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Kelly Wilson

January 16, 2021 at 9:34 pm

Hi Rasheeda! Sounds like Olivia is an amazing dog! Thanks for taking the time to stop by and comment!

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Loretta Garner

January 9, 2021 at 5:27 pm

I've read all your articles and I hope to enjoy my Chipit - this is my first time owning one. I hope that she brings me much joy. I'm receiving her from my son in law. I am very excited that I'm getting her. Don't have a name for her yet but I will let you know how the progress is going. Thank you for your articles.

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Kelly Wilson

January 11, 2021 at 8:55 pm

Thanks for the comment, Loretta! Glad you were able to find your pup!

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Kiralee M williams

December 7, 2020 at 4:05 am

I have a pit/ chihuahua mix and listening to the size everyone has, really blew my mind. My boy will be 3 in March. He has short legs, the body of a pit, the head of a Pit, and the snout of a chihuahua. He weighs 48lbs. When he runs it looks like a Weiner dog. He's very intelligent, listens well, and protective. He is very needy, I have to work with him on personal space.

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Kelly Wilson

December 8, 2020 at 12:05 am

Sounds like a wonderful pup Kiralee! Thanks for stopping by to comment!

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DeAnna D Kiifner

October 29, 2020 at 2:47 pm

I was fortunate to have been given one of these pups. - The mother was a half/half, but the father was full chihuahua. Zola is now 5 yrs old, 30 lbs of amazing energy and THE love of my life. I had no idea I would find her listed as a 'designer' dog, but am thankful to see your site. She is everything you say. She has NEVER had a collar around her neck (always a harness if needed), and yes, she sheds continuously.

I hope she proves you wrong on the life-span. I've always thought that as a smaller dog, she'd live to be close to 20, but given that her back legs are so petite (definitely her chihuahua) and her chest and front legs are that of the Pitbull - I already worry about her back legs giving out. She does jump up and down from the sofa, but I always pick her up for car rides and when she's allowed to romp on the bed. Can you offer any advice on protecting her from injury? Thanks for providing this site.

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Kelly Wilson

October 29, 2020 at 7:50 pm

Hi DeAnna! Thanks for commenting and sharing your story. Sounds like you have a great pup! Keep in mind, our estimated life spans are just averages we've gathered. Your pup could very well extend well past our "estimated" life span, and I hope she does too!

Regarding protecting her from injury. Have you thought of putting together a doggy ramp for her to go up and down? That's what we do with our pups, and it definitely has discouraged jumping. Good luck!

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