The Ultimate Guide: Dachshunds
The hound-type canine breed, popularly called the Dachshund, is a long-body, short-legged dog that is native to Germany. Dachshunds have life expectancy rates of 12 years and birth around 4–8 litters.The standard aspects of this dog breed, were initially made to develop a strong sense of smell, to chase and dig out any type of animals that dwell in burrows. This can be attributed to their high prey drive. The smaller sizes were bred to serve as predators for little prey like rabbits. Sometimes, they are used to find wounded animals like deer and hunt rodents like prairie dogs.
It is not uncommon to hear this breed called names like the sausage dog, wiener dog or badger dog by Dachshund owners.
Nutrition For A Healthy Dachshunds Diet
Dachshunds are food lovers. If you are the proud owner of one, it is mandatory to ensure that they are well fed and adequately cared for. Dachshunds tolerate homemade meals relatively well, whereas some others eat lots of commercial dog diets. Commercial dog food comes with packaging that shows how much you should feed your dog. One cup of commercial food should be given to a 20-pound pooch. As one of a growing number of Dachshund owners, if your dog is becoming overweight, give it less food. However, if your dog is underweight, give it more food. The golden rule is to establish a feeding routine, you can decide to spread out the feeding schedule; give half a cup in the morning, give half of cup in the evening.
A Dachshund that is not impressed with its diet will show some physical signs, whereas a satisfied Dachshund will have so much pent-up energy and have a clean bill of health. A diet that does not suit a Dachshund will cause diarrhea and weight loss.
Dachshunds come in different types, hence, their grooming needs differ. Smooth Dachshunds require no form of grooming. They are free form any form of odor and they don’t need frequent baths. Owners can clean their bodies with a damp washcloth to make their skin look sleek and polished, in between scheduled bath times. The main form of maintenance needed for a Dachshund is brushing because they shed very little hair.
One wiener dog that requires constant brushing to ensure their coats are kept clean and neat is the Wire-haired Dachshund. The coat on the Wire-haired Dachshund breed should be regularly stripped, which can only be done by a professional groomer. Long haired dachshunds should be bathed regularly, a blow drier should be used after bathing to make them look squeaky clean. Frequent brushing is needed to keep debris and mats free from the hair. When grooming this pooch, pay attention to the ears, their ears can easily get infected. The Miniature Dachshund with its short legs also needs plenty of attention in the grooming department.
Exercising Your Dachshund
When a sausage dog engages in exercises, their bodies and minds are stimulated. This breed of dog is very lively and intelligent. The importance of keeping the mind of a Dachshund stimulated cannot be over stressed. Bored Dachshunds make very destructive pets and no one wants that. The key is to mentally stimulate the canine to a state of pure bliss.
For Dachshund puppies, moderate exercise routines should be practiced. Start with very short walks that last for 5 minutes, every other day. This is also helpful for socialization. When the puppy is 4 months old, increase the walk time to 20 minutes daily, a 1-year-old dachshund needs about an hour walk every day. Also, adult badger dogs can walk for as long as you want them to—they might even wear you out. Do not get worried about over exercising the adult breeds, as physiology is best suited for intense work. The golden rule is to avoid overwhelming young Dachshunds with too much exercise because they are natural hound dogs. If you miss some exercise days, do not try to make up for them by making your paw embark on a marathon; take it slowly and steadily.
Badger dogs are tiny dogs with mighty personalities and they are very playful, energetic, and willful. They are usually trained to take care of themselves and be very independent. Be patient with your pooch during the training period—you’ll thank yourself later.
The Dachshund puppy needs to be housebroken when they come to your home for the first time. It will pay off, in the long run, to commence training on your Dachshund when it is about 8 weeks old. Teach the pup obedience lessons, which they will pick up very quickly. After they have learned to be obedient, teach your pooch simple commands like sit, leave, come, and stay. Dachshund puppies, like other canines, like to chew on things around their environment. If you notice this behavior, tell him to stop in a firm manner. Don’t punish or become verbally abusive toward puppies if they chew on items. Doing this it will make them very scared of you. A fearful puppy cannot be trained. Get chew toys ready and reward your pup when it chews on the toys instead. This helps a lot.
Due to their very long spinal column and a relatively short rib cage, Dachshunds usually suffer from spinal health conditions like inter vertebral disk disease (IVDD). Badger dogs who are obese are at a heightened risk of developing this condition. Activities like rough handling, strenuous exercises, and jumping which put a strain on the vertebral column can also cause spinal problems. About a quarter of the population of this dog breed will develop IVDD in their lifetime.
Dachshunds also suffer from ailments like;
- Back problems
- patellar luxation
- Osteogenesis imperfecta popularly called “brittle bone disease”
- Cushing’s syndrome
- Thyroid issues
- Autoimmune problems
- Granulomatous mening
- Patent ductus arteriosus
Can Dachshunds Become Emotional Support Dogs?
Of course! The Dachshund will do well as an emotional support animal. They may be stubborn at times, but they are extremely smart. Ultimately all dogs and animals can be used for emotional support, and the Dachshund is no exception to that rule.