“Best friends come in all shapes and sizes. But the best ones come with short legs, and torsos.”
Yes, I am talking about the lovely Dachshund breed of dogs, which are often nicknamed wiener dog or sausage dog because of their ling and narrow build. This short-legged, long-bodied breed belonging to the hound family is a lively breed with a friendly personality and keen sense of smell.
The Dachshund, meaning “badger dog” in German were first bred in the early 1600s in Germany. The goal was to create a fearless, elongated dog that could dig the earth from a badger burrow and fight to the death with the vicious badgers. Packs of Dachshunds were even used to trail wild boar. Today their versatility makes them excellent family companions, show dogs, and small-game hunters. There are three varieties of Dachshund: the shorthaired, the wirehaired, and the longhaired. The Dachshund’s body is long and muscular with short legs. It has an elongated head and a slight, convex skull that is arched with protruding eyebrows. The muzzle is long and the jaw is robust with non-pendent lips. The almond-shaped eyes are dark red or brown-black. The mobile ears hang long on its cheeks. The body has a strong protruding sternum and a moderately retracted abdomen. The tail is carried in line with its back. The short-haired Dachshund’s coat should be shiny, sleek and uniform. Dachshunds have soulful eyes and complex facial expressions. Their lungs are large for a dog this size and they have a barrel-like chest. Because of these things, Dachshunds have a loud, deep bark that sounds as though it comes from a much larger dog. And they do like to bark, which is something you might consider if you have neighbors who could be annoyed rather than amused by the antics of your brave little Dachshund. No matter what their size, Dachshunds are a delightful addition to any family, which is why they have ranked near the top of most popular dogs lists since the 1950s. Dachshunds are ideal family companions. Additionally, many people show them in conformation, obedience, agility, field trials, and earthdog trials. They are also hard-working and well-appreciated therapy dogs. The Dachshund is a versatile companion. With his variety of sizes, colors, coat types, and personalities, there’s a Dachshund to suit almost anyone.
These are active dogs with surprising stamina; they need to be walked daily. They will also enjoy sessions of play in the park or other safe, open areas. Be careful, however, when pedestrians are about because Dachshunds are more likely to be stepped on than more visible dogs. They should be discouraged from jumping, as they are prone to spinal damage.
To be kept in mind:
Longhaired Dachshunds need brushing and combing to prevent mats and tangles, and some minor trimming. Wirehaired Dachshunds need regular clipping. All three Dachshund coats shed doggy odor, though the wirehaired sheds less than the other two. But Dachshunds are not hypoallergenic dogs at all, and many individuals have a noticeable doggy odor. If you think your dog is shedding excessively, changing his diet will probably help.
The daring, adventurous and curious Dachshund is fond of digging, hunting, chasing game, and tracking by scent. It is a true combination of terrier and hound. Although the dog is playful with children, time spent with them should be attended to by adults, since the Dachshund does not have a wealth of patience for being mishandled — unintentional though it may be. Dachshunds have a lot of stamina and energy. They love to take a walk or play outdoors with other dogs, and they like to hunt and dig. They are also active inside the house and can do well in small living quarters so long as they get a moderate amount of daily exercise. Two half-mile walks a day (about 10 minutes each) is about right. Occasionally, when time is short, a game of fetch will meet their need for activity.
The Dachshund, which has an average lifespan of 12 to 14 years, occasionally suffers from diabetes, gastric torsion, deafness, seizures, patellar luxation, keratoconjunctivitis sicca (KCS) and Cushing’s disease. The major health concern affecting the dog is intervertebral disk disease (IVDD), causing spinal cord problems due to the Dachshund’s elongated body. Obesity will increase the risk of spinal injury. Eye tests should be included as part of the regular physical check-up, especially for “double dapples,” or Dachshunds with two different colored eyes, which are prone to hearing and visual problems. Dachshunds are prone to having epileptic seizes. In dogs that are affected, it’s thought that the condition is either genetic or brought about as the result of a fall or a hard blow to the head. If your Dachshund has seizures, take him to your vet to determine what treatment is appropriate. In many cases, epilepsy can be controlled with medication. If you’re buying a puppy, find a good breeder who will show you health clearances for both your puppy’s parents. Health clearances prove that a dog has been tested for and cleared of a particular condition. Many Dachshunds live a good long life, but unfortunately 1 in every 4 Dachshunds will become crippled or paralyzed in middle age from disk disease. The vertebrae in their long back has simply been stretched to the breaking point and is genetically weak. In Dachshunds, you should expect to see a health clearance from the Canine Eye Registry Foundation (CERF), certifying that the eyes are normal. Health clearances are not issued to dogs younger than 2 years of age. That’s because some health problems don’t appear until a dog reaches full maturity. For this reason, it’s often recommended that dogs not be bred until they are two or three years old.
If you want your dog to live a long, healthy life and seldom need to visit the vet prepare healthy meals, get only the right vaccinations (not the ones that are either useless or risky), prevent fleas, ticks, and heartworm safely, getting dangerous (to dogs) products out of your home, healing or improving current health issues.
Did you know?
- Dachshunds are always alert and their big, deep dark bark makes them superb watchdogs.
- The right way of holding him correctly- once arm tucked beneath his hind end and one supporting his front end at the chest, keep the body in horizontal position. (This would also help in protecting his back)
Many dachshund puppy owners soon find that potty training their dachshund is a little different to other breeds. It is true that some Dachshunds can be harder to fully potty train and if the owner has not learned the correct methods some might never be fully trained. Dachshunds often appear to be potty trained for a few months and then suddenly start peeing in the house again.
They are very loyal and very loving to their people and most Dachshunds think they are the size of a Great Dane. They are proud, curious, fearless (in many instances) and they own their people and their homes therefore they must announce any stranger (even if it’s just someone walking down the road).You can’t help but love their expressive faces and demeanor even when they have been “bad.” Dachshunds are smart but tend to be stubborn, and this can sometimes make housetraining a little challenging. Don’t give up on your dog, it usually sinks in really well by 7 months.
Dachshunds are like potato chips – you can’t ever just have one! They are faithful and loving and always put a smile on my face.