|I'll throw some wood on the fire! The point of this whole discussion is: yes, Chis come in all shapes and sizes and temperaments. What no one has specifically said is: Deer chihuahuas do not conform to AKC standard. Thus, they don't win in conformation.
The AKC has a standard for every breed of dog. These standards are decided upon by a diverse group of breeders, judges, etc. The standard is reviewed (and possibly revised) on a routine schedule. The standard exists as the "blueprint" for the particular type of purebred dog. The standard is the epitome of the breed. Only dogs that closely resemble the standard should be bred. If owners of purebreds who deviate from the standard continue to breed them, the deviations become more pronounced. Eventually you will get a dog who does not look like what the standard says this particular dog should look like.
Are they still Chihuahuas? Yes. Are they still lovable? Yes. Do they still need a home? Yes. Is the deer chihuahua a different breed of Chihuahua? No. The term is used to describe body or face type, such as you would describe a person as big boned, oblong face, square jaw, etc. However, within the "breed" of human, let's even go so far as to say of Northern European descent, we do not say the big boned square jaw humans are a different breed from the small boned, large forehead humans.
The AKC standard, or "blueprint" says (I'm just high lighting pieces here) "A well balanced little dog NOT TO EXCEED 6 lbs. Disqualification: Any dog over 6 pounds in weight.....Head - A well rounded "apple dome" skull, with or without molera. Expression - Saucy ...Muzzle - Moderately short, slightly pointed. Cheeks and jaws lean..." The standard goes on to describe body, topline, neck, forequarters, hindquarters, coat, color and gait.
Why all this description? Why be so concerned with how a dog looks? "To someone who doesn't understand dog showing it may appear that it is just a "beauty contest". Actually, the dogs are being judged on a lot more than just their pretty faces. They are being judged on their correct movement, size and structure. A dog that is correctly conformed moves correctly and efficiently, therefore using less energy. It's fine to have a hunting dog that has all the instincts, but if its conformation isn't correct it will burn too much energy moving and won't be able to hunt as long as a dog that is correctly conformed. Also, if someone is truly interested in breeding good working dogs then testing for hereditary problems takes on just that much more importance. What good is a herding dog with great working abilities if it has hip dysplasia and can hardly get up and walk? There is a saying around the dog fancy that "form follows function". This proves itself to be true time and time again with an increasing number of dogs achieving both conformation show degrees and working titles. As for the politics in dog shows, yes, it is there. Just as it is in any activity where a large number of people are involved in competition. Politics can be found every where from the African Violet Society, to the Little League games to the kennel club dog shows. While there are a few "bad apples", the vast majority of dog show judges are out there to judge the dogs to the best of their ability. "
So if the dog doesn't conform to the standard? They are still lovable companions, but they should only be pets, NOT breeding stock. Enough pet quality pups are produced from serious breeders to supply the demand. "Backyard breeders" or people who breed because they happen to have two dogs with AKC papers produce dogs who deviate farther from the standard and possibly have genetic defects such as collapsing trachea, slipping patella, heart murmurs (and yes, well bed dogs can have these problems, too, but a responsible breeder will not continue a breed line that contains genetic defects.)
I know I get wordy, but another way to think of it is by thinking of horses. If someone breeds Palominos (the gold colored horse with the white mane and tail) and happen for some strange genetic reason, to get a black horse with gold mane and tail, it is still a horse. And it actually came from Palomino parents. But the breeder does not start saying, "Oh, it's just a different Palomino breed - a black Palomino".
We fanciers of the Chihuahua breed are just trying to keep the public informed about breeding because it's important to us to keep the Chihuahua true to it's heritage. Chis are the only NATURALLY OCCURRING toy breed, the smallest breed and the only native North American breed. It has a heritage surrounded in mystery, but once they showed up, they have become one of the top 20 favorite dogs.
I do not breed, but I have 6 wonderful, not conformationally correct Chis, ranging from 3 lbs. to 9 lbs. (and the largest one is the dog with the distinguished pedigree - but genetics threw her a loop, lol!)
To those that have rescued a Chi - Thank you! To those that want to purchase a Chi, please do not be duped into paying more money for a "teacup" or a "deer" or a "cobby". This is a breeder trying to impress you with labels to take more money from your pocket...