If you have lived with Dachshunds before you already know what a great breed this is. Dachshunds, when properly bred and raised are outgoing, friendly, confident and intelligent dogs.
Dachshunds are bred in three varieties smooth (short
coated), longhair (with hair not unlike a golden retriever) and wire haired (have stiff wiry hair like a terrier) and two sizes - standard (over 11 pounds) and miniature (11 pounds and under).
Properly socialized Dachshunds with sound temperaments typically will get along fine with children who are kind and appropriate with dogs. The key is supervising the interaction to make sure that both the child and the dog are interacting appropriately and to ensure that everyone is being safe. Keep in mind that the miniature Dachshunds are much smaller and can be fragile around toddlers and small children.
Despite the smaller size of the miniature Dachshunds they are NOT toy dogs (which are bred for companionship). Both the miniature and standard Dachshunds are working dogs. They have a desire to work and use their natural abilities and instincts.
Dachshunds were originally produced to "go to ground" which means to follow the badgers into the earth. They were also used to track and do scent work. When you consider the original purpose of the breed it makes total sense how and why the Dachshund is the way it is. Think about how they love to burrow under your covers and push their way into small spaces. It's because they were earthdogs. Think about how they love to use their noses and sniff things on the ground. It's because they are scenthounds. This is all natural to Dachshunds. It is
hardwired into their makeup to have these traits.
A Dachshund's working ability can be tested today through Dachshund Field Trials and Den or Earthdog Trials.
In field trials, Dachshunds are tested on their ability to track rabbits (jack or cottontail). The dogs are released in braces of two dogs (who are drawn randomly) on rabbit scent lines. The Dachshunds are judged on their ability to follow the scent line, how committed they are to following it and working it and how accurate they are on following where the rabbit went.
In earthdog or den trials, Dachshunds are released into man-made dens that contain caged rats at the end. The dogs must get to the rats in a certain amount of time, and "work" the rats (bark, claw, scrape, scratch) for a certain amount of time. The dogs are separated from the rats by the cage AND wooden bars and are not permitted to get to and hurt the rats.
Dachshunds with a correct temperament are clever, lively and courageous to the point of rashness. Dachshunds are sometimes labeled "stubborn" and "difficult to train", both labels that are not really fair if you think about it.
Dachshunds are not stubborn, they are simply bred to do a specific task (go to ground or do scentwork) and when we attempt to interfere with their work by asking for something else, it is sometimes difficult to convince them that we are right. I call this commitment and dedication. Dachshunds tend to have a pretty strong work ethic and asking them to stop when they are working can be challenging. So, I will admit that they can be challenging at times, but all that means is that we need to be better trainers and more creative in convincing them that we are worth listening to.
Blaming the animal for our shortcomings as trainers is unfair and unreasonable.
If we are going to choose a breed to spend our lives with, we have to learn to embrace all the traits that come along with that breed. People tend to love the fact that Dachshunds are courageous and confident and that they have a great sense of humor, but then call them "difficult" when the dog wants to chase a squirrel instead of coming when called. Not fair, you must accept and respect all the things that make a Dachshund a Dachshund.
When trained with positive training techniques that make sense to the dog they are not that difficult to train. The key is making it worth the Dachshunds while. Teach him you are worth listening to and you will have a good relationship with your dog.
Pros and Cons of living with Dachshunds
1. Dachshunds are hunting dogs, if they are to live with small animals (cats, rabbits, birds), it's best if they are raised with them.
2. Dachshunds are scent hounds and can easily get
sidetracked by interesting smells. They must be taught a reliable recall if they are to be permitted off leash.
3. Dachshunds tend to enjoy food very much, owners must be sure to properly ration food to keep dogs at a healthy weight.
4. Dachshunds can be prone to having back problems. Keeping your dog at a healthy weight and well conditioned can help keep him healthy.
1. The Dachshund is a dog with a great sense of humor. They are fun to live with and are sure to make you smile every day.
2. Dachshunds tend to be very adaptable. When well
cared for and trained, they are great companions to the whole family.
3. With the two sizes and three coat types, there are many varieties to choose from.
4. There is a wide variety of activities that you can do with your Dachshund (conformation, obedience, field trials, earthdog, rally, agility....)
5. Because they tend to enjoy food, they are easily
motivated for training with food.