Breed spotlight on: Dachshund

by Bronwyn Hall

The Dachshund breed, with its short legs and long body, originated in Germany.

There it was bred to hunt badgers, rabbits and other tunnelling animals; sometimes even being trained to trail wild boar. In fact, his very name gives away his purpose with ‘Dachs’ meaning badger and ‘hund’ meaning dog. The badger dog!

The Dachshund comes in three varieties: shorthaired, longhaired or wirehaired and can be miniature or standard in size. The miniature shorthaired is by far the most common and easily recognisable as a Dachshund:


Nowadays, the Dachshund can make a great working dog, pet or show dog. Their lively, funny and feisty personality can make living alongside one very entertaining, however, stubbornness is also a key trait of the Daxie. This is not to say that they are not smart, in fact it is quite the opposite. The Dachshund is a clever dog who was bred to be independent; it is their free thinking combined with their stubborn nature that can make for interesting obedience training.

Of course, due to their long back and short legs the Dachshund is susceptible to back problems such as Intervertebral Disc Disease.  This can be brought on by the dogs genetics or by injury such as jumping or falling off furniture and can cause loss of bladder and bowel control and even paralysis.

Dachshunds are also prone to epilepsy which can be hereditary or caused by a blow to the head.


Overall, the Dachshund – with his soulful face and deep set chest – is a beautiful companion. His free thinking may not make him suitable for a first time owner but his comical actions and affectionate nature can compliment almost any home.

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