Dachshund Owner's Guide

Dachshund Owner's Guide: Advice from a Breeder

If you often see a little mini sausage on legs walking down the street, it’s no wonder. According to Forbes, the Dachshund is the 12th most popular breed in Australia

We think the word 'icon' is overworked, but the Dachshund, with it’s unmistakable long-backed body, little legs, and big personality is truly an icon of the dog world. 

Sizes vary, with standard-sized weighing 7 to 14 kg and miniature 5 kg or under.

And coats coming in one of three types: smooth, wirehaired, or longhaired.

FYI: smooth is the most popular in Australia. 

What do we love most about the Dachshund?

They’re feisty!

Considering their small size, the Dachshund will NOT get pushed around, making them a pretty funny and loveable breed, if we do say so ourselves.

Looking at welcoming a Dachshund into the family? Here are some of the internet's burning questions on the Dachshund, answered by the experts. 

What’s a Dachshund’s Temperament Like?

Dachshunds are smart, loyal and packed with courage - almost to the point of rashness. These little dogs have large barrel chests to give them stamina while hunting – a trait that can also translate into lots of running around and barking.

There’s a reason for Dachshunds’ unique body shape. Dachshunds were originally bred to be scent hounds, and their long slim bodies made them perfect for following smaller prey, such as badgers and rabbits, into their warrens. Their role was to flush out these underground animals for hunters. Today, their scent hound background means they love to sniff, dig and chase.

💡Pro Tip: Try a game of hide and seek with your Dachshund. Hide their favourite toy and let them sniff it out.

Important: Dachshunds are entirely devoted to their owners and make for extremely loyal companions. 

Are Dachshunds Good with Kids?

Yes. Provided they are well socialised from a young age.

Do Dachshunds Bark?

Dachshunds are known to be a vocal breed, so they have a tendency to be noisy if they’re not trained from a young age.

As scent hounds, Dachshunds are hardwired to pick up smells and chase prey, so good recall and lead training from an early age is recommended. Dachshunds can be easily distracted so training sessions may be more successful in short bursts indoors.

For a guide to some of the best harnesses for dachshunds, read here. 

Are Dachshunds Social?

Dachshunds are social dogs and do best with companionship. They are known for being clingy and loving, and they thrive on human attention. If left alone for long periods of time, Dachshunds can become bored, anxious, and destructive.

Their loyal nature means they can often come off as standoffish with total strangers. 

How Old Should a Dachshund Puppy be Before You Can Bring Them Home? 🐣

The Breeding Standards and Guidelines for Dogs Australia states a puppy must be 8 weeks old before being separated from their litter. So the general rule of thumb is anything OVER 8 weeks. Some experts are now saying from 10 weeks+ is preferable. Essentially, the longer with mum and siblings, the better.

💡Pro Tip: If you're looking at a breeder that is offering your puppy to you earlier, this is a red flag. It is not only illegal to release a puppy earlier than 8 weeks of age, but it is also not physically or mentally healthy for a pup to be separated so early from their mother and siblings.

For the best collar for your dachshund puppy, check out our guide, here

What are the Main Health Risks for Dachshunds?🫀

The Doxie is a fairly robust breed - although they can have health issues related specifically to their unique shape.

The three most common health issues that affect Dachshunds...

Intervertebral disc disease (IVDD) Back problems are one of the most common health issues in Dachshunds. Because of their short legs, their backs are a lot more fragile than in other breeds and sometimes even something as uneventful as stepping the wrong way can make their back hurt. Be mindful of limping - this can be an indicator of a back health issue.

Hip dysplasia Abnormalities in the hip joint can also affect Dachshunds. Although larger dog breeds are more prone to this condition, Dachshund puppies are sometimes born with this genetic condition too. Most owners will notice unusual symptoms before the puppy’s first birthday. These might include limping, stiffness, and atrophied thigh muscles which could all point to hip dysplasia. Fortunately, there are many ways to manage hip dysplasia in dogs, including physical therapy, anti-inflammatory medication and maintaining a healthy weight.

Obesity Obesity can affect any dog, no matter their breed. But in the case of Dachshunds, owners should be doubly vigilant of potential extra pounds. The small legs of these dogs cannot support too much extra weight. This could lead to or exacerbate the back issues they’re already prone to. Keep in mind that obesity can also be a symptom of an underlying disease such as hypothyroidism.

Do you Need to Groom a Dachshund?

A dachshund’s grooming needs depend on the type you have. Dachshunds have three different types of coats: short-haired, long-haired and wire-haired. Short-haired dachshunds don’t require much brushing, but long-haired dachshunds have hair that can get matted if not brushed daily.

Are Dachshunds Good Family Dogs in General? 👨‍👩‍👧‍👦

Dachshunds are generally even-tempered and affectionate, which combined with their smaller size makes them an ideal companion for children. However, they can be vocal and snappy if play gets too boisterous so they're usually better suited to slightly older children.

Why is the Dachshund Breed So Popular?

The most common reasons people tell me they are searching for a Dachshund are:

1. Their smaller size makes them great for apartment life

2. Moderate energy levels

3. Their cuteness!

4. Relatively low shedding

FAQs About Dachshunds

What is the temperament of a Dachshund?

Dachshunds are smart, loyal, and courageous, almost to the point of rashness. They have a strong prey drive due to their scent hound background and are known for their playful and feisty nature.

Are Dachshunds good with children?

Yes, Dachshunds can be good with children if they are well socialised from a young age. It is important to train them with positive reinforcement, which can be made easy by carrying around a treat pouch

Do Dachshunds bark a lot?

Dachshunds are known to be a vocal breed and may bark frequently if not properly trained from a young age. Early socialisation and training can help manage their barking tendencies.

What are the main health risks for Dachshunds?

The primary health risks for Dachshunds include Intervertebral Disc Disease (IVDD), hip dysplasia, and obesity. These health issues are often related to their unique body shape and short legs, making it important for owners to monitor their weight and avoid excessive jumping. Opt for a dog lead that gives them a bit of slack to walk with, like our hands free dog lead, which will allow them a bit more freedom of movement (ensuring no uncomfortable tugging).

How much grooming does a Dachshund require?

Grooming needs for Dachshunds depend on their coat type. Short-haired Dachshunds require minimal grooming, while long-haired Dachshunds need daily brushing to prevent matting. Wire-haired Dachshunds also require regular grooming to maintain their coat.

At what age can you bring a Dachshund puppy home?

A Dachshund puppy should be at least 8 weeks old before being separated from their litter, with some experts recommending waiting until the puppy is 10 weeks or older to ensure better physical and mental development.

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