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Golden Retriever Chihuahua Mix (Golden Chi)

Nicole Cosgrove Profile Picture

By Nicole Cosgrove

Golden retriever dog and white short hair Chihuahua dog_Phuttharak_shutterstock

Height: 20-25 inches
Weight: 15-30 pounds
Lifespan: 11-12 years
Colors: Gold, white, tan, fawn
Suitable for: Adults and families with older children, those looking for a loyal companion
Temperament: Gentle, Calm, Aggressive, Stubborn, Loyal, Affectionate

The Golden Chi is a hybrid, designer breed that mixes two popular breeds: the Golden Retriever and the Chihuahua. The two breeds are very different in almost every way, except their color. The crossbreed is still new, which means that we have to look at the parent breeds to determine the likely characteristics of this particular cross.

The Golden Retriever is a loving dog that will get along with everybody it meets. He has plenty of energy and is intelligent, will get along with children and other animals, and makes for a very popular family companion for all of these reasons.

The Chihuahua does not give his love as freely as the Retriever. He makes you work for it. Once he warms to a person, though, the Chihuahua will form a very close bond. He is also intelligent but is a lot more stubborn than the Retriever, which makes him harder to train.

We can assume that the Golden Chi will fall somewhere between the two breeds. It is likely that he will be standoffish around strangers but will become warm and playful once he gets to know them.

Divider 1Golden Retriever Chihuahua Mix (Golden Chi) Puppies – Before You Buy…


What’s the Price of Golden Retriever Chihuahua Mix (Golden Chi) Puppies?

Golden Retrievers and Chihuahuas cannot breed naturally. The process of creating the Golden Chi hybrid breed is complex and expensive, so while this breed is still relatively uncommon and not highly sought after, puppies are expensive. You should expect to pay a minimum of $2,000 and potentially as much as $3,500.

Choosing this type of breed means that you will have to do a lot of research, not only to ensure that the breed matches your lifestyle and requirements but to find a reputable breeder. The cost of the puppies means that you may find some disreputable breeders passing other crossbreeds off as Golden Chi in a bid to make more money from their breeding.

Ask lots of questions, only deal with breeders that can show you proof of the puppy’s breed, and also ensure that you can see evidence of health checks and screening.

Because this breed is not purebred, they are not recognized by kennel clubs, nor are they recognized by hybrid kennel clubs. You will have to call breeders to locate one that is dealing with this breed.

The rarity of the breed means that you are unlikely to find them in rescues or local shelters. If you do, ensure that you get as much history as possible, and meet the dog before you take him home with you. If you already have dogs, ensure that you introduce your existing dog to the Golden Chi before you take him home. Adoption costs are usually around $300 which is a lot cheaper than buying.

hepper-dog-paw-divider 53 Little-Known Facts About Golden Retriever Chihuahua Mix (Golden Chi)

1. Golden Retrievers Are Excellent Search And Rescue Dogs

Golden Retrievers are commonly used as search and rescue dogs. They have an excellent sense of smell and they are keen tracking dogs. They love to swim, have plenty of energy, are intelligent and they like to please their humans. This combination means that they can be trained as service dogs, guide dogs, therapy dogs, and search and rescue dogs. Although the Golden Chi is unlikely to follow the same path, primarily because of the difficulty in breeding the line, they do retain many of these beneficial properties. Your puppy could be a keen swimmer with lots of energy and a desire to please.

2. The Chihuahua Is The Smallest Breed

What makes the Golden Chi such an unusual cross is that it combines the large Golden Retriever with the miniature Chihuahua. The Chihuahua, which hails from the region of Mexico with the same name, is the world’s smallest breed. A purebred typically weighs around 5 lbs and is 8 inches tall. Crossing it with the Golden Retriever means that the resulting hybrid will be around three times the size, weighing a minimum of 15 lbs and standing at least 20 inches off the ground.

3. The Golden Chi Cannot Be Bred Naturally

The difference in size between the two breeds means that the Golden Chi cannot be bred naturally. Instead, a veterinarian has to artificially inseminate a female Golden Retriever with the sperm of a male Chihuahua. The size of the resulting breed means that it cannot be inseminated into a female chihuahua. This difficult process is the reason that the designer breed, the Golden Chi, can cost as much as $3,500 per puppy.

golden retriever and chihuahua_cynoclub_shutterstock
The parents of the Golden Chi. Left: Chihuahua, Right: Golden Retriever. Image Credit: cynoclub, Shutterstock

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Temperament & Intelligence of the Golden Retriever Chihuahua Mix (Golden Chi)

The Golden Chi can be withdrawn around strangers but once he warms to people, he will form a close bond with his family and friends. Expect the breed to be approximately three times the size of the Chihuahua and half the size of the Golden Retriever.

Are These Dogs Good for Families?

The Golden Retriever is famed for being one of the best family companion pets. He is known to love people of all ages, will love to spend time playing with older children especially, and he will enjoy any time you give him outdoors. The Chihuahua, on the other hand, is not as well as suited to life with children. He can be a bit grumpy, and if your son or daughter does not yet know how to behave around dogs, it can lead to aggression from the Chihuahua breed. It is likely that your Golden Chi will fall somewhere between these two extremes. Expect it to take time for your puppy to befriend all family members and when they do, you can bet they will become an integral and loving member of the family.

Does This Breed Get Along with Other Pets?

Similarly, whether your Golden Chi gets along with other dogs, cats, and other furry family members, will depend on whether it takes after the Retriever or the Chihuahua. Introduce them gradually, take things slowly, and don’t try to push your pets too quickly.

Divider 4Things to Know When Owning a Golden Retriever Chihuahua Mix (Golden Chi):

The Golden Retriever Chihuahua Mix sheds less than a Retriever and is a little less feisty than a Chihuahua. He offers the perfect compromise between these two breeds, but he may not be suitable for all families and owners. Consider the following factors before welcoming one of this breed into your home.

Food & Diet Requirements

Expect to feed approximately 2 cups of good quality food per day to your Golden Chi. The exact amount you feed will depend on the age and size of your dog. Active dogs also require more food. You should measure the food and provide it over two meals during the day. If you use food or treats as a training aid, take this into account when calculating how much food to give.


Expect to give your hybrid at least 45 minutes of exercise a day. The Goldie has high energy requirements, and while the Chihuahua is a lively little dog, he doesn’t require too much daily exercise to keep him in good shape. Walks should be sufficient, although the breed may benefit from dog agility and other canine sports classes.


Golden Chis usually adopt the loving nature of the Retriever but the stubbornness of the Chihuahua. Unfortunately, this stubbornness does tend to prevail when it comes to training. So, while you will have an intelligent hybrid breed on your hands, they can prove difficult to train. You should attend training classes because these give you the tools to further train your dog, and they also teach some of the basic commands. Early training is especially important if you want your Golden Chi to live with children. Socialization should also be considered important, otherwise, your Golden Chi could adopt the standoff nature of the Chihuahua parent breed.

Grooming ✂️

One of the likely reasons for combining these two breeds is to reduce the grooming requirements of the otherwise popular Golden Retriever parent breed. They have a lot of hair, and it does tend to shed profusely. The hybrid breed’s coat is approximately half the length of the Golden Retriever, so while it is still quite long and will require weekly brushing, it is considerably easier to care for. It will shed but this will be less than you would experience from a purebred Retriever.

Other than a weekly brush, you should only have to deal with regular maintenance. This means that you will need to trim your dog’s nails when you notice them get long. You will also have to brush their teeth three times a week. This is especially important because poor dental hygiene is an issue with smaller breeds like the Chihuahua.

Health and Conditions

Minor Conditions
  • Hypothyroidism
  • Eye conditions
Serious Conditions
  • Osteosarcoma
  • Hypoglycemia
  • Elbow dysplasia
  • Hip dysplasia

Male vs Female

There is little known difference between the male and female of this hybrid breed. Upbringing is more likely to factor into the behavior of the breed, while the dominant parent breed will determine the size and physical appearance.

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Final Thoughts

The Golden Chi is a very rare designer breed. It has to be bred by inseminating a female Retriever with the sperm of a male Chihuahua, and this must be done artificially. The resulting breed will usually adopt traits from both parent breeds, and this usually results in a medium-sized dog that is a little reluctant around strangers but that is loving and devoted to his family.

The rarity of the breed means that you will have to pay $2,000 or more for a puppy of this breed, and it is likely to take a lot of research and effort to find a reputable breeder. The Golden Chi requires less grooming and maintenance than the Golden Retriever, and may not be as stubborn and grumpy as the Chihuahua. In fact, this hybrid makes an excellent family pet.

Featured Image Credit: Phuttharak, Shutterstock

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