The Aztec Dog, whose original name is Xoloitzcuintli, is one of the most unique dog breeds in the world. One of its most peculiar aspects is the total absence of hair all over his body.
Despite its long history and prestige, it is still quite rare outside of Mexico, the country from which it comes and where it is a dog highly appreciated for its beauty and temperament, balanced and loyal.
Index of contents
- 1 Aztec Dog History
- 2 A curious name
- 3 Aztec Dog Character
- 4 Physical characteristics
- 5 Absence of hair
- 6 How to educate an Aztec Dog?
- 7 Health and race
- 8 Exercise and diet
- 9 Skin care
Aztec Dog History
It has been defined as “the first dog in America” since there are archaeological tests that show that this breed has existed for more than 3,000 years, being the first domesticated dog on this continent.
Clay statues and ceramic pieces shaped like this dog have been discovered in ancient Mayan and Aztec burials. These peoples worshiped the Xoloitzcuintli as if it were a divinity and attributed all kinds of magical powers to it.
A curious name
The word Xoloitzcuintli derives from the combination of the name of Xolotl, the Aztec god of the underworld, and the term itzcuintli, which means dog in the Mexica language. Its pronunciation is complicated, that is why it is usually called simply Xolo.
In English-speaking countries, this breed is simply called the Mexican Hairless Dog, a highly descriptive name that however also applies to specimens that do have hair, about one in five.
Aztec Dog Character
The Xolo is a calm dog, suspicious of strangers but very affectionate with his family, especially with the member you choose as your favorite. Puppies are very active, although as they mature their character becomes calmer.
The Aztec Dog is noble and very faithful. It is also an excellent watchdog, although it will not bother us with its barking if there is no good reason. It is very territorial and does not usually make good friends with other dogs.
Its height at the withers ranges from 50 to 75 cm, with a weight ranging from 11 to 18 kg. There is a smaller variety, the Azteak Toy Dog, whose size and weight are approximately 60% lower than the standard variety.
The Xolo’s body is compact, with a slim head highlighted by its raised triangular ears and almond-shaped eyes, almost always dark brown. The color of the nose matches that of the skin or coat, in the case of Aztec dogs with fur.
The image of the Aztec Dog became very popular throughout the world as it was represented in numerous pictorial works by Mexican artists Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo.
Absence of hair
The total absence of hair is one of the characteristics that define the Aztec Dog. This is due to a genetic characteristic of this breed that is also associated with absence of premolar teeth.
In any case, not all copies of Perro Azteak are bald. Approximately 20% of them have a warm coat, generally short and rough, or limited to certain areas of their anatomy such as the head and tail, always ocher or orange.
How to educate an Aztec Dog?
The best way to train a Xolo is to use a structured method and be very consistent. It should be trained with gentle positive reinforcement techniques that encourage this intelligent and sensitive dog to learn quickly.
Thanks to its docile nature, a severe look is enough to reprimand our Aztec Dog and call him to order. The results of the training will always be better if the dog has been properly socialized during its stage as a puppy.
Health and race
Although this is a very healthy breed, some problems such as patellar dislocation, elbow dysplasia and / or hip and certain digestive disorders related to the liver. Another especially sensitive element in this breed is the skin.
The Aztec Dog is one of the longest-known dog breeds known, and can live up to 20 years.
Exercise and diet
A daily walk or vigorous playtime is enough to meet your exercise needs. The patio or garden where our Xolo is must be fenced because it is an athletic dog and a great jumper who will always try to escape.
Because of his propensity to be overweight, it is important to monitor the feeding of this dog and follow the guidelines recommended by the vet. Obesity in the Aztec Dog can cause, among other disorders, major problems in its joints.
The Aztec Dog’s bare skin is especially vulnerable to changes in temperature and other external factors, so it is necessary to pay special attention to it and take care of its correct hygiene at all times.
It is necessary to apply a protective cream to the dog to avoid burns or sunstrokes as well as to bathe him with lukewarm water with certain regularity. It is also necessary to shelter or find a warm place for winter days or if we live in cold weather.