Dachshunds are long-bodied, short-legged dogs that are classified in the hound group in American Kennel Club (AKC) competitions. Nicknamed “wiener dogs” or “hot dogs” because of their long, slender bodies, Dachshunds come from German breeding; the German name means “badger dog”.
Known for its feisty, yet friendly personality, the dachshund is a popular dog breed. This playful, energetic little dog makes a fun companion and enjoys taking walks and playtime in the park or backyard. It excels at competition events due to its determined nature. Because of its lineage for seeking badgers and its paddle-like feet, this wiener dog is also known for its digging, so don’t be surprised to discover a few holes in the yard should you bring a dachshund home!
Devoted family pets, they often enjoy traveling with their human companions and usually ride in vehicles very well. Because of their feisty, determined temperament, these dogs need guardians who act as pack leaders, with a firm but kind leadership role, maintaining control over the household pets.
A variety of coat lengths and colors
There are three types of dachshunds, classified by their coats: shorthaired, longhaired and wire-haired. The appropriate coat for a shorthaired Dachshund is smooth and shiny. Longhaired varieties need daily brushing and grooming of their sleek, slightly wavy hair. Wire-haired dachshunds have a short, thick, rough outer coat with a finer, softer undercoat. This variety also has a distinctive beard and eyebrows and should be professionally trimmed twice a year.
These wiener dogs come in a variety of colors and patterns of color. Their coats may be a solid color to include red, black, or dark or light brown. Other coat colors and patterns include dapple (merle), brindle and piebald. Dachshund coats can be one color, two colors, or tri-colored. A distinctive pattern known as wild boar also exists, where each hair shows colors such as red, brown and black.
Dachshunds come in three sizes: standard, miniature, and toy. However, both the American Kennel Club and the United Kingdom’s Kennel Club only recognize the standard and the miniature.
Dachshunds of the standard size usually weigh 16 to 32 pounds (7.3 to 14.5 kg) and stand 8 to 11 inches (20 to 27 cm) tall at the shoulder.
Miniature dachshunds usually weigh less than 11 pounds (4.9 kg) and are only 5 to 7 inches (13 to 18 cm) tall at the shoulder.
The toy variety can be up to 12 inches (30 cm) tall and weigh 8 pounds (3.5 kg) or less.
Health and activity
Dachshunds live, on average, 12 to 15 years. They are prone to spinal problems due to the elongated size, and they should be discouraged from jumping on couches of other pieces of furniture. Instead, provide it with doggie stairs to allow it to get onto tall furniture.
These dogs can experience other health problems, including heart disease and diabetes. They also tend to become overweight, so they need plenty of exercise. This breed excels at various competition events, such as agility, Earthdog, tracking, and obedience, as well as conformation. Daily walks or playing fetch in the park will also offer a dachshund the exercise it needs to stay as healthy as possible.
The Dachshund is a popular small breed that can make a wonderful family pet and traveling companion. They are considered clever, curious, affectionate and amusing little dogs. Because of their size, they can easily live in small homes or apartments. However, they do need regular exercise, and events such as agility and tracking competitions allow these dogs to expend energy, maintain a healthy weight, and use their natural instincts and abilities.