dachshundThe Dachshund comes from Germany and its name literally means ‘Badger Dog’. These dogs were bred for scenting and chasing burrow-dwelling animals, like badgers and rabbits. The Dachshund’s long sturdy muscular body and its strong, cat-like feet helped it to do this important job.

In the 1960s these dogs became an icon of style, loved and owned by the rich and famous, including John Wayne, Marilyn Monroe, Picasso, Andy Warhol and Elizabeth Taylor.

Dachshunds are little dogs with big personalities!


Dachshunds seem to have quite a knack for using their good looks to charm and manipulate. They are full of personality and can be quite strong willed-dogs who need an assertive owner. They love company and can be very playful pets.

Dachshunds have a strong chasing instinct that goes back to their original working days and they pursue this pastime with determination and ferocity! They are intelligent dogs and training helps to curb their stubborn streak. They enjoy this type of mental stimulation too, which stops from them becoming bored and destructive.

They can be good watchdogs, alert and happy to bark at intruders. Some have been known to be excessive barkers and diggers, though, and obedience training can help with this.


The Dachshund breed comes in two sizes – standard and miniature – and three coat types – smooth, long and wire – so you can get six varieties, such as standard smooth and miniature long.

On the whole the Dachshund is very easy to maintain. They all require regular bathing. But while the smooth haired Dachshund is a ‘wash and wear’ sort of dog, the long haired ones require regular brushing and trimming of the feet. The wire Dachshunds need regular professional grooming as the coat grows continuously and needs to be plucked.

Because of their size, Dachshunds are easily portable and because they like to be busy, they enjoy outings. It is important that Dachshunds have daily exercise and a healthy diet, as being overweight can cause big problems for this little dog, putting excess pressure on the spine.

Like all dogs, Dachshunds require regular tick, flea, intestinal worms and heartworm treatments. Consult your veterinarian on treatment options. Desexing and vaccination against diseases, such as the deadly parvo virus and highly infectious canine cough, are also important to discuss with your vet.


The Dachshund is suitable for most types of owners, and is great with children and other animals.

Most dogs like a back yard and the Dachshund is no exception, but they also do well apartments as long as they get daily exercise.

Fact file

Breed classification Hound
Size Small (miniature & standard)
Origin Germany. Lifespan 12+ years
Colors Red (from pale cream to dark mahogany), black and tan, dapple or brindle
Cost Standard $800+ and Miniature $1500+
Common hereditary problems Inter-vertebral Degenerative Disc Disease (IVDD) and Progressive Retinal Atrophy (PRA).