29 August 2023

Let’s talk about… Dachshunds: what are they?

  • Dachshunds, also known as Sausage Dogs, are a small breed that originated in Germany.
  • They were originally bred for hunting small game, particularly badgers, which is why their name translates as "badger dog" in German.
  • Dachshunds have a unique body shape with long backs and short legs, which makes them easily recognizable.
  • They come in different sizes, including standard, miniature, and kaninchen (rabbit).
  • On average, standard Dachshunds stand about 20-27 cm tall and weigh between 7-15 kg.
  • Miniature Dachshunds are smaller, standing about 13-18 cm tall and weighing between 3-5 kg.
  • Dachshunds can live for about 12-16 years.
Dachshund  Exercise Needs 2/5 Grooming Ease 3/5 Trainability 3/5

What is the temperament of Dachshunds like?

  • Dachshunds are known for their bold and curious nature.
  • They are often described as intelligent, independent, and sometimes stubborn.
  • They form strong bonds with their families and can be quite affectionate and loyal.
  • However, Dachshunds can also exhibit a strong prey drive and may be prone to chasing small animals or even moving objects.
  • Early socialisation and consistent training are important to help them get along with other pets and behave appropriately in various situations.
  • Dachshunds can be good family pets but may be more suitable for families with older children due to their small size and potential sensitivity to rough handling, particularly in the case of the miniatures.
Biscuit, the Dachshund
Biscuit, the Dachshund

How much exercise do Dachshunds need?

  • Dachshunds have moderate exercise needs and typically require around 30 minutes to 1 hour of exercise per day.
  • Regular exercise is important to keep them physically and mentally stimulated.
  • Daily walks, playtime in a secure area, and interactive toys can provide the necessary exercise and mental enrichment for Dachshunds.
  • It's important to note that Dachshund puppies have different exercise requirements.
  • As puppies, they should engage in shorter play and exercise sessions to avoid excessive strain on their developing bodies.
  • Consult with your vet for specific exercise guidelines based on your Dachshund's age and development.
  • Dachshunds generally reach full exercise capacity at around 12 to 18 months of age.
Herman, the Dachshund
Herman, the Dachshund

Do Dachshunds need a lot of grooming?

  • Smooth coated dachshunds have a short and smooth coat that is relatively low-maintenance.
  • They are moderate shedders and generally require weekly brushing to remove loose hair and keep their coat in good condition.
  • Some Dachshunds, particularly those with long-haired or wire-haired varieties, may require more frequent brushing and occasional professional grooming to prevent matting and maintain their coat's texture.
  • Like any dog, regular tooth brushing with a dog-specific toothpaste twice daily is ideal. If you can’t manage that often, just do it as often as you can.
Jasper, the Dachshund
Jasper, the Dachshund

Are Dachshunds easy to train?

  • Dachshunds can be independent thinkers and may exhibit stubbornness at times, which can make training a bit challenging.
  • However, with patience, consistency, and positive reinforcement techniques, Dachshunds can be trained successfully.
  • Early socialisation is crucial for Dachshunds to help them develop good manners, interact well with people and other animals, and become well-rounded dogs.
  • Short and engaging training sessions that focus on positive rewards, such as treats, praise, and play, can help keep them motivated and interested.
  • It's important to establish clear rules and boundaries and be firm but gentle in your training approach.
  • Remember to keep training sessions fun and interesting to prevent boredom and maintain their attention.
Luna, the Dachshund
Luna, the Dachshund

What do Dachshunds eat?

  • Dachshunds should be fed a high-quality dog food that is appropriate for their age, size, and activity level.
  • It's important to follow the feeding guidelines provided by the dog food manufacturer and adjust the portion sizes as needed to maintain a healthy weight.
  • Most adult Dachshunds do well being fed twice daily.
  • Dachshund puppies have different nutritional needs than adult dogs and should be fed a specially formulated puppy diet until they reach approximately 12 months of age.
  • Puppies should be fed 3-4 times daily until they are 6 months old when this can be reduced to twice daily.
  • The transition to adult dog food should be gradual and based on the advice of your vet.
  • Dachshunds have a tendency to gain weight, so it's important to monitor their food intake and avoid overfeeding or excessive treats.

Are Dachshunds healthy?

Dachshunds are generally healthy dogs, but like any breed, they can be prone to certain health conditions. Some common health concerns in Dachshunds include:

Bones and Joints

  • Hip Dysplasia - a condition where the thigh bone and pelvis do not sit together properly at the hip joint, which can lead to discomfort and arthritis
  • Intervertebral Disc Disease (IVDD) - in this condition the discs of the spine are abnormal and can slip out of place and put pressure on the spinal cord, which can lead to pain and/or paralysis
  • Luxating patella - this is when a dog’s kneecap moves out of where it should normally be


  • Cataracts - a common cause of blindness due to a clouding of the lens of the eye
  • Dry eye - an ongoing condition where the tear glands in the eyes don’t produce enough protective tear film, which can lead to discomfort, infections and damage of the eye
  • Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA) - this is when the retina of the eye breaks down, leading to blindness


  • Hypothyroidism - a condition where your dog does not produce enough thyroid hormone

This list is by no means comprehensive. If you have any concerns about the health of your Dachshund or want to discuss further if this breed is right for you, consult with your veterinarian.

BorrowMyDoggy loves Dachshunds

BorrowMyDoggy has 6926 Dachshund members

Information on this page should never replace advice given by your veterinarian. Potential health issues presented are given as a guide only and are not meant to be comprehensive. If you ever have any concerns about your dog’s health, contact your local vet.

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