Chihuahua Denial Syndrome

Chihuahua Denial Syndrome
"The large eyes compel my devotion, however, I feel ill at ease with the social implications..."

I have no official license to postulate, but I do occasionally observe what I think is a previously undescribed medical condition. In fact, I've suggested new medical terminology before. Maybe I'm wrong, I'm even less qualified as a psychologist than I am as a veterinarian (thanks, online veterinary school of Uzbekistan!). But sometimes you just can't deny that something exists anymore, and it's easier to write a post for your own blog than to go through peer review!

So! I submit to you, a new (human) mental disorder for inclusion in the DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders):

Chihuahua Denial Syndrome (CDS) is a disorder manifesting when individuals, despite clear evidence to the contrary, vehemently reject the notion that their canine companion is, in fact, a chihuahua. Affected individuals often engage in elaborate justifications, conspiracy theories involving canine ancestry, and persistent denial in the face of undeniable physical traits typical of chihuahuas. Typically, even mentioning the word "chihuahua" in the presence of an affected individual will result in immediate and aggressive verbal or physical assault.

That's merely my suggested wording, and I'm sure there's an official process for inclusion in the DSM. But make no mistake, CDS is real. You know how many chihuahuas I've seen in the vet clinic labeled as "Italian greyhound"? Or "Min-Pin"? One man with severe CDS was impressed that his corgi had particularly long legs.

It's amazing the length that people will go to fabricate any alternative breed for their diminutive, (often) aggressive, and periodontal-disease-ridden pet. Once, I mistakenly commented to a friend that I thought their rescue mutt was a chihuahua. Because it looked at me like this:

"Whooooo am I?"

We haven't spoken since.

I'll add another observation: CDS appears to mostly afflict the higher rungs of the socioeconomic ladder. Is it possible their subconscious will not allow themselves to be seen as sharing a household with a scrappy little Mexican desert dog? All I know is the other severely stigmatized breed that we from the shelters is always labeled as a "Lab Mix". Pshah!

Even though chihuahuas are the 34th most popular breed in America, CDS is relatively common, especially among the well off. I'd be willing to bet that the type of dog owners that would purchase a canine genetic panel would be shocked and dismayed to see Chihuahua DNA in their report. In fact, even money says those companies report it as something ambiguous like "ethnic terrier"

Which is a shame. I thought this stigma had been broken by the blockbuster franchise, Beverly Hills Chihuahua. Sure, some of them are devil dogs, but it's not like you can't have a killer golden retriever or a dumb border collie. I think it's time we proudly recognized the little trembling creatures from the deserts of Northern Mexico for what they are: Chihuahuas!

The power of Chihuahua compels you!
Greg Bishop

Greg Bishop

A veterinarian with unquenchable creative impulses. Unquenchable? Hmmm... creative "tendencies"? Well, it depends on how well I slept last night. Also a writer, illustrator and whatever-elser.