The Mexican Hairless Dog
Xoloitzcuintles (correct term for the Mexican hairless) are the ancestors of the Chinese Crested dog. It was originally bred from a mixture of “old world” dog breeds. This unusual breed comes in 3 sizes ranging from standard to toy and all 3 can appear in a single litter. The belief is that the gene creating the Mexican hairless was a random mutation in ordinary dogs at the time, however a coated variety does exist. They are the national dog of Mexico and their use was for almost anything from companionship to hunting and were often even eaten at banquets!
Being a breed that has developed over thousands of years has ensured that they are not prone to any breed related illnesses. Although their lack of hair obviously makes them less able to cope with cold weather. Their hardiness also gives them a long-levity, 15 or even 20 years is not unheard of. There has been discoveries of these dogs in Aztec tombs which date this breed to be over 3500 years old.
The Mexican hairless is highly intelligent, high energy, sensitive and has a strong prey drive. They therefore need a calm owner who will train them correctly through to adulthood (2 years for this breed). They require much stimulation not only from physical exercise but also mental games. Owners must provide this, if not they can easily become bored or show aggression to those outside it’s own family. Also their agility makes them great escape artists. However when in the right environment they are loving and loyal pets, often selecting one member of the household as a favorite.
While this dog breed certainly has unusual looks it is also very popular. This is because the lack of fur means there is no shedding, no fleas and reduces allergies for those who suffer with them. Those that suffer from arthritis may also find this breed reduces the pain due to it’s warm skin. In short, this breed has many amazing qualities. Many still believe, like the Aztecs did, that the Mexican hairless has healing powers. It is certainly a dog you would probably want in your pack.