Dachshunds, German for badger dog, were bred long and low in order to crawl down holes to flush out badgers. They are muscular, with short legs, long bodies and most of them have shiny coats although there are also long-coated and wire-haired Dachshund varieties. Dachshunds come in three sizes, standard, miniature, and “rabbit”. They were tenacious hunters, and, naturally, still have the hunter’s instinct, which sometimes makes training them a challenge.
Like all pets, your pet Dachshund will need regular visits to the veterinarian, fresh water, grooming (coat and nails), affection, and discipline. The sleek coated dogs are very easy to groom and keep clean. About all they need is the occasional bath, cleaning of the ears, and brushing with a mitt or rubber brush. The long-coat variety need a little extra combing and detangling with a soft-bristle brush.
You’ll find that that your pet Dachshund is loyal to your family and desires companionship. They can be suspicious of strangers, so socialization and appropriate training on how to behave around others, besides their families, is important. They are brave and strong dogs who do not befriend other breeds easily. The instinct to hunt is a strong one, so don’t be surprised to see your Doxie chasing squirrels, birds, rabbits, and other small animals. When walking with your pet Dachshund, a leash is always mandatory. With such a strong sense of smell they can sometimes smell items that are buried, hence, they are fond of digging holes in the yard.
Unusually clever, these dogs can also stubborn which makes housebreaking particularly tricky. Also, males will mark inside for territorial reasons or if agitated. Do not give up, you can become the leader of the pack if you persevere. Remember, a pet Dachshund can also be energetic, affectionate, out-going, and fun-loving.
Feeding your pet Dachshund is pretty much the same as feeding other breeds. If you are able, it’s advisable to feed them home made food. This way you make sure what kind of meat and vegetables they are getting. Whether you’re able to make their food or you buy it for them make sure you get the best you can afford. Be sure your pet always has clean, fresh water especially if you decide to feed them dry food.
Pet Dachshund owners need to take particular care with their pets’ backs. Since their spinal column is unusually long, picking them up in the wrong way, not keeping their weight in the normal range, over-exercising, and any other activity that might cause stress to the back should be avoided. The breed can also have knee problems (slippage of the patella).
A short walk each day, good leadership from their owners, consistent training techniques, understanding, good nutrition, clean water, frequent grooming, annual check-ups, and kindness will allow you to have a wonderful life with your pet Dachshund. This little half-a-dog high, and a dog-and-a-half long dog will prove to be a loyal friend who will make you smile a lot. All in all you will find it hard to resist this adorable and lovable breed.