There is a LOT to know about dachshunds, especially if you are considering adding a dachshund to your home… YES, even if you already have one!
Below are a few “Nuggets of Information” that most if not every dachshund owner can agree on and should be aware of for their favorite stubborn, long and low breed.
House Training: Dachshunds are notoriously difficult to housetrain. Many never learn it completely. You need to be prepared for a little “compromise” as to what housetraining really means.
Teeth: Dachshunds are notorious for having bad teeth, and needing regular (sometimes annual) dental cleaning. Ignoring this doesn’t just mean putting up with bad breath. It means heart disease, general inflammation, and full-body infections.
IVDD: Intervertebral Disc Disease is a degenerative condition experienced to some degree by about 20% of all dachshunds. It leads to severe pain, loss of coordination, and, in some cases, paralysis. If you have a dachshund, you need to be prepared for IVDD. But you should also know that IVDD, even if it results in total paralysis, does not need to be a death sentence. Plenty of paralyzed dachshunds lead happy, full lives. Helpful links: DodgersList.com
Marking: Dachshunds have strong personalities, and they will express these personalities sometimes through their urination habits (see Submissive Urination). Marking sends a message, and when it’s done in the home, it is usually a message of insecurity. We often see it when there is a change in the house. A sharp “No” along with a trip outside is a good place to start, but if that doesn’t work, get a “belly band” for your male marker. The belly band at least keeps the mess from happening, and it teaches some dogs not to mark.
Submissive Urination: This, along with its cousin, Excitement Urination, is a separate issue from housetraining. When you are feeling very generous, you can view submissive urination as a compliment, recognizing you as the one in charge. But it can also be a sign of fear. Never scold a doxie for submissive urination or excitement urination; that will only make it worse.
Cushing’s Disease: This is another common dachshund malady. With Cushing’s the adrenal glands produce too much corticosteroids and/or cortisol. Dogs with Cushing’s will look potbellied, and they will have increased thirst and urination. Helpful links: http://www.vetinfo.com/dcushing.html
Other Training: Dachshunds respond well to positive fun training. You will be most rewarded with a happy, well-behaved dachshund if you approach training as something you do to have fun together, rather than something you to do “fix” your dachshund. Look into obedience, agility, nosework, and treiball for ways to have fun with your little one.