About the Xoloitzcuintli Dog Breed

The Xoloitzcuintli is a hairless dog breed that originates from Mexico. Today, the Xoloitzcuintli is recognized by the American Kennel Club (AKC), and the Fédération Cynologique Internationale (FCI).

The breed is also known as Xoloitzquintle, or simply Xolo. The Xoloitzcuintli has a long and storied history, and is considered to be one of the oldest dog breeds in existence. Unlike most other dog breeds, the Xoloitzcuintli is not named after its place of origin, but rather after the Aztec god Xolotl. Because of their unique appearance, Xoloitzcuintlin are also known as the Mexican hairless dogs, naked dogs, or skin dogs.

Mexican Hairless Dog Breed Characteristics

The breed come in three size varieties – toy, miniature, and standard – and can either be hairless or have a short coating of hair. While the hairless variety is more popular, all three varieties make excellent companion animals. Xoloitzcuintlin are intelligent, loyal, and affectionate dogs that adapt well to city or country living. They are relatively easy to care for, although their exposed skin does require some extra attention.

What Does a Xoloitzcuintli Look Like?

The Xoloitzcuintli, or Mexican hairless dog, is a small to medium-sized breed with a slim build and characteristic hairless appearance. The Xoloitzcuintli comes in three sizes: toy, miniature, and standard.

  • Toy Xolos weigh 10-15 pounds and stand 10-14 inches tall at the shoulder.
  • Miniature Xolos weigh 15-30 pounds and stand 14-18 inches tall.
  • Standard Xolos weigh 30-55 pounds and stand 18-23 inches tall.

All Xolos have erect ears and a long, tapering tail. Their bodies are lean, and their legs are proportionately longer than their bodies, giving them a distinctive, elegant appearance. The Xoloitzcuintli has a long, narrow head with almond-shaped eyes. The skin is loose and wrinkled, especially around the head and neck.

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Xolos come in two varieties: smooth-coated and hairless. Smooth-coated xolos have a short, fine coat that lies close to the body. Hairless Xolos have no coat at all. Both varieties can be any color or combination of colors. The coat may be gray, black, brown, or red, and may be solid-colored or mottled. Some individuals continue to be hairless throughout their lives, while others may acquire a fine downy fuzz as they age. Because of the general lack of hair, Xoloitzcuintlin are considered hypoallergenic.

Xoloitzcuintli Puppies

Xoloitzcuintli puppies are absolutely adorable. They are also unique, as they are nearly hairless. Xoloitzcuintli puppies are playful and loving, but they do require some special care. Because they have little or no hair, they are susceptible to sunburn and skin irritation. As a result, it is important to provide them with shade and protect their skin with sunscreen when they are outdoors. Xoloitzcuintli puppies also need to be bathed regularly to keep their skin healthy and free of bacteria.

Xoloitzcuintli Health Risks

While Xoloitzcuintli is generally a healthy breed, there are a few health risks that potential owners should be aware of.

Skin problems are a common health concern for Xoloitzcuintli owners. One of the most common problems seen in the breed is skin allergies, which can cause itchiness and discomfort. Hot spots are another common issue, and they can be very painful for your dog. These lesions are typically caused by bacteria or allergies, and they often require antibiotics to heal. Dry skin is also a common problem for Xoloitzcuintli, and it can be caused by a number of factors, including genetics, diet, and environment.

Xoloitzcuintlin are also prone to dental problems, and their exposed teeth can be damaged by chewing on hard objects. Finally, Mexican hairless dogs are susceptible to sunburn, so it is important to provide them with shade and sunscreen when they are outdoors.

Can Xoloitzcuintli Live in Cold Regions?

In fact, the Xoloitzcuintli was originally bred as a companion animal for humans who lived in the colder regions of Mexico. However, while the Xoloitzcuintli can tolerate cold weather, it is not advisable to keep them in excessively cold climates. The Xoloitzcuintli’s skin is very sensitive, and without hair to protect it, the dog is susceptible to frostbite and other injuries.

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How to Groom a Mexican Hairless Dog?

The Xoloitzcuintli is a unique breed that does not require extensive grooming, but just like any other dog breed, Xoloitzcuintli needs to be at least a little groomed.

The first step is to brush their teeth regularly, using a dog-specific toothpaste. It’s also important to trim their nails on a monthly basis, using a sharp nail clipper designed for dogs. For the hairless variety, regular baths are essential in order to keep their skin healthy and free of irritants. The coated variety will also need occasional baths, but they will require less frequent grooming overall. The Xoloitzcuintli is an easy breed to bathe; simply rub down the dog with a wet cloth or give it a quick shower. 

Xoloitzcuintli Temperament

When it comes to temperament, Xoloitzcuintlin are known for being loyal, affectionate, and protective of their owners. They are also intelligent and trainable, although they can be stubborn at times. Because of their guarding instincts, Xoloitzcuintli may not get along well with other animals. However, with proper socialization from an early age, they can learn to coexist peacefully with other pets. The Xoloitzcuintli is an intelligent and alert breed that is quick to learn new commands. They are also distrustful of strangers, which makes them excellent watchdogs.

Xoloitzcuintli Dogs in Legends

Xoloitzcuintlin, or Mexican hairless dogs, have been revered by the Aztec people for centuries. In Aztec mythology, Xolotl was the god of fire, lighting, and deformities, and he is often depicted as a dog-headed man. According to legend, when the world was created, the gods sacrificed themselves so that humans could live. Xolotl was condemned to be a guide to the underworld for all the dead souls. In another story, Xolotl transformed himself into a Xoloitzcuintli to avoid being caught by the sun god; however, he was discovered and turned into a stone.

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Today, many people believe that Xoloitzcuintlin have healing powers and can ward off evil spirits. Some even believe that these dogs can cure illnesses such as asthma and rheumatism. Whether you believe in these legends, there is no doubt that Xoloitzcuintlin are unique and fascinating creatures.

How Much Does a Xoloitzcuintli Cost?

Unfortunately, they are also relatively rare, which can make them quite expensive. Depending on the size, color, and temperament of the dog, Xoloitzcuintlin can cost anywhere from $500 to $2000. As a result, potential owners should be prepared to make a significant investment if they are interested in owning one of these beautiful and unusual dogs.


The Xoloitzcuintli Club of America (XCA) is an organization for Xoloitzcuintli breeders, owners, and enthusiasts in the United States. The XCA was founded in 1986 to promote the responsible ownership and breeding of Xoloitzcuintlin, and to preserve and protect the unique history and heritage of the breed. The XCA is dedicated to educating the public about Xoloitzcuintlin, and works to placement of homeless Xoloitzcuintlin into loving homes. The XCA also supports research into the health and welfare of the breed. Membership in the XCA is open to anyone who shares our love of these amazing dogs.

Xoloitzcuintli Is Perfect For You!

Xolos are intelligent, affectionate dogs that enjoy being around people. They are also relatively easy to care for, as they do not require much grooming. If you are looking for a unique and loving companion, the Xoloitzcuintli may be the perfect breed for you.

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