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The dachshund is a short-legged and long-bodied dog breed under the Hound Group. It is a scent hound bred to flush out live games such as badgers. The origin of the name dachshund came from the German word dachs (means badger) and hund (means hound). The dachshund comes in varied colours with a base colour of either red or cream. They can be black, chocolate, grey, and fawn with tan or cream markings. This active scent hound is clever and courageous, but can be stubborn as well. It has a lifespan of up to fifteen years.
Are you thinking of getting a dachshund? Here is a brief background of this dog that has captured the hearts of each home it graces.
The dachshund originally came from Germany and first existed during the sixteenth century. It was bred to hunt badgers, and because of this role, this dog is literally called in German as the badger (dachs) hound (hund). The dachshund was prized for its ability to follow scent and determination to dig and hunt burrowing animals. The lineage of the dachshund is unclear, but records claim that Schweisshund, (a type of bloodhound), basset hound, and beagle contributed to its heritage.
The breed was brought to England in 1840 when Prince Edward of Saxe-Weimar, a British military officer of German parents, gifted the breed to the Royal Family. In 1859, the Dachshund breed became widely popular after the first ever dog show held in England. Queen Victoria helped its ascent to fame, being a huge fan of the breed.
World War II, however, saw a decline in the breed as it fell from favour, being a dog with a connection to Germany. Luckily, few breed enthusiasts helped the breed to survive and regain its popularity in the UK. Today, the dachshund is still amongst the most popular small dogs in the UK, with its charming looks and loyal nature.
Often called the sausage dog, the dachshund has short legs and long bodies. It has a compact and well-muscled build with powerful front legs that are paddle-shaped, perfect for digging. It weighs 16–32 pounds and stands 20–27 centimetres. The dachshund has a head that is narrowed with an arched skull and less prominent stop. With dark eyes, this dog breed has a complex expression that is almost soulful. It also sports a barrel chest, perfect for a loud and deep bark that is typically a characteristic of large dogs. The dachshund uses it well as it likes to bark.
The dachshund comes in three coat varieties: smooth short-haired, long-haired, and wire-haired. Accepted colours under the Kennel Club breed standard are black, cream, tan, brindle, chocolate, dapple, shaded red, and silver that is often combined for a two-colour coat. The dachshund is a low-maintenance breed because it doesn't shed much. Nevertheless, weekly brushing is important to keep loose hairs from falling. The wire-haired dachshund is an exception. Its wiry hair needs stripping at least twice a year.
It is important to keep an eye on the dachshund’s droopy ears since they are more prone to bacteria build-up, which will potentially be infected if not cleaned. Long-haired and wire-haired dachshunds often have excess hairs in between pads, which must be trimmed regularly as well.
The dachshund is a lively, intelligent, and loyal dog. It is also determined and courageous to the point of recklessness. It forms a strong attachment to the owners and loves nothing more than to cuddle. However, when out and about, the dachshund can be a menace as its instinct to hunt remains strong that it neglects to heed commands. With this said, the dachshund is not ideal for first-time owners because it needs people who can train it well to recall commands above all else. Early socialisation is super important for the dachshund.
As mentioned, the prey drive of a dachshund is strong, thus it is best for this dog breed to not be off-lead especially during walks as it will likely chase any small animals. Its loud, deep barks will come in handy since it doesn't hesitate to let owners know if anyone is about. The dachshund is great around children especially if they grew up together. Like in any breed, interactions between children and the dog must be supervised. The dachshund also gets on well with other dogs, but small animals are a different matter.
A typical serving for an adult dachshund is 1/2–1 1/2 cups of excellent-quality dry dog food per day. Do make sure to check with a veterinarian with regard to its nutritional and calorie needs. Like humans, dogs don't eat the same amount of food or need the same amount of calories. This will depend on several contributing factors such as its age, size, build, metabolism, and activity level. However, to give you an idea of how many calories a typical adult dachshund will need, see below:
The dachshund should be fed high-protein meat such as beef, chicken, lamb, or fish for muscle growth. Remember not to feed your dachshund any food that contains sweeteners and other artificial additives. The dachshund is also quick to put on weight, so be careful not to free-feed.
The dachshund is generally healthy, but can still suffer from certain medical conditions. These include back problems (intervertebral disc disease), eye disorders (progressive retinal atrophy), bloating (gastric dilatation volvulus), Cushing's disease, diabetes, and deafness.
Provide the dachshund with at least thirty to forty minutes of exercise daily, so it can let off steam and spend its energy. You can walk it around the neighbourhood or play games in the park, and you'll come home with a happy and contented dog that stays away from trouble.
Getting a well-bred Dachshund pedigree puppy from a reputable breeder can cost anything between £500 and £1,000. When it comes to feeding your dog, you may have to spend about £30-£40 a month on high-quality dog food and treats.
As to healthcare you need to be prepared in case your dog suddenly falls ill or gets into an accident. You can offset some bills if you get a pet insurance, which can range from £20 for a time-limited cover up to £40 for a lifetime one. These prices vary depending on your dog’s health and age, the type of cover you choose, and whether it has pre-existing conditions.
Other outgoings to consider are dog accessories and equipment such as leads, collars, bowls, bed, and toys. The initial cost for these things is about £200. There are also veterinary expenses that may not be included in a pet insurance coverage such as vaccinations, routine checks, neutering or spaying, and annual boosters, which can have a combined cost of £800-£1000 annually. In a rough estimation, you will be budgeting around £80–£100 a month for recurring expenses, depending on the type of insurance cover you choose for your dog.
Are you sure the Dachshund is the best breed for you? Take the Pet Breed Selector Quiz to find your perfect breed match.Dog Breed Selector Quiz
Still not convinced in getting a dachshund? Check out our Pet Finder to choose amongst the suggested breeds that may be right for you.
21st Apr 2019
Reading Time: 4 minutes
Miniature Dachshunds are often called “mini doxies” as a term of endearment. With their pleading eyes and heart-melting stares, big floppy ears, and short stubby legs, these mini-doxies are certainly adorable. They are affectionate, loyal, and smart as well.
22nd Feb 2019
Reading Time: 2 minutes
“What could be better than sharing a coffee and pupuccino or a cocktail and a pawtini, with your furry best friend and meeting lots of new friends?” says Anushka Fernando, Pug Café owner and Dachshund Café organiser.