Doxie, Weiner Dog, Hot Dog, Sausage DogFamily: Canidae "Blue"Canis lupus familiarisPhoto © Animal-World: Courtesy Roger Greenhaw
The Dachshund, bred to flush out badgers, is long and muscular with short legs giving it an elongated 'weiner' or 'sausage' appearance.
The Dachshund, whether a Standard or a Miniature Dachshund, is a lively and entertaining companion dog. They are often mischievous, and are quite bold. Dachshunds travel well and are loyal and protective. When selecting a Dachshund, it is important to check for back problems. They may also develop heart disease, diabetes, eye problems, epilepsy, or urinary tract problems.
Background The modern Dachshund originated in Germany, and references to the breed can be found in books dating back to the early 1700s. Originally much larger than they are today, breeders succeeded in giving the breed shorter legs that were more suitable for digging. The Dachshund was brought to the United States in the late 1800s.
There are long-haired, wired-haired, and short-haired Dachshunds, as well as Standard and Miniature Dachshunds. Although not recognized by kennel clubs, some breeders also breed Toy or Mini Dachshunds. These dogs are under 12 inches and weigh 8 pounds or less.
Description The Dachshund is long and muscular with short legs. Its head is long, with dark eyes and long ears. The breed may have short, long, or wiry hair. Color variations include solid tan or yellow, bi-colored black, brown, gray, or chestnut, and piebald, speckle-streaked, or harlequin. The term 'Dapple' describes Dachshunds with merle coloration and the term 'Wild Boar' describes Dachshunds that are dull gray intermingled with black in color.
Standard Dachshunds are 14-18 inches tall and weigh about 20 pounds. Miniatures are up to 14 inches tall and weigh around 9 pounds.
Care and Feeding Many breeders suggest feeding Dachshunds puppy food throughout their lives. Their diets should include horse meat, beef, wheat, and yellow corn. Care should be taken to avoid overfeeding, as these dogs are prone to obesity.
Grooming requirements depend on the dog's coat. Long-haired Dachshunds need daily brushing. Wire-haired Dachshunds should be brushed regularly and trimmed twice a year. Short-haired Dachshunds can simply be rubbed down with a damp cloth.
Dachshunds need regular checkups to keep them healthy. Vaccinations should be given on the following schedule:
- 6-8 weeks: Distemper, Leptospirosis, Hepatitis, Parainfluenza, Parvo, and Corona virus (DHLPPC)
- 10-12 weeks: Second DHLPPC
- 14-16 weeks: Third DHLPPC and rabies
- Annually: DHLPPC and rabies booster
Dachshunds shed moderately, so regular vacuuming is required. They also have a bit of an odor, necessitating regular shampooing of the carpet and cleaning of furniture.
Social Behaviors Dachshunds are friendly and outgoing, and they get along well with familiar people. They are best suited to adults and older children. Dachshunds get along fairly well with other pets, but may become jealous of them.
Common Health Problems The most common health concern for Dachshunds is back problems. Intervertebral disk disease is quite common. Their long spines are easily injured, so it is important to take precautions to prevent them from getting hurt.
References "Dachshund", Wikipedia, Copyright 2008
"Dachshund", Dog Breed Info Center, Copyright 1998-2008
Cusick, William D., "What to Feed a Dachshund", Referenced online, 2008
"Dachshund Puppies for Sale", Copyright PuppyFind.com, LLC, Referenced online, 2008
Dachshund Club of Metropolitan Atlanta, "Site Glossary", Copyright 2003, Referenced online, 2008