Other names: Dackel, Teckel, Weenie, Sausage Dog
The Dachshund is a small hunting dog with atypical morphology. With short legs and an elongated body, he resembles a sausage. He is determined, intelligent, courageous, lively and very jovial. He adapts to many ways of life and needs to be treated to the height of his expectations, especially if he does not hunt with his master. He is a well-tempered dog who, if well-educated and socialised, is a delight to have around. They come in two sizes: Standard and Miniature, and in three different coat types: Smooth, Long, and Wire-haired.
Key facts about the Dachshund
Life expectancy :
Temperament :Playful Intelligent Hunter
Origins and history
At the origin of this breed and other similar breeds, selection was made according to hunting ability. It is likely that the usefulness of the Dachshund in the hunt was discovered at the same time in different parts of the world. The Dachshund is considered to be a recent breed dating from the 18th-19th century: His ancestor is the German Basset, his close cousin, in addition to the Pinscher, who also made it possible to specify the size of the dog that we know today. His more recent history begins in Germany and more precisely in Bavaria, where the first Dachshund farms were created. In England too, the Dachshund is bred with a lot of passion, either as a hunting dog or as a pet dog, (but with a different ‘standard’). In addition, the two varieties (Standard and Miniature) are distinguished by their size differences. The Miniature version is newer. Concerning the sub-varieties of coat: the Smooth-haired is the oldest, followed by the Long-haired created in the 16th century when it was crossed with Cocker Spaniels. Finally, the Wire-haired version, created at the end of the 19th century, was the fruit of crosses between the Smooth-haired and the Schnauzer, the Dandie Dinmont Terrier and probably the Scottish Terrier.
FCI breed nomenclature
Group 4 - Dachshunds
Physical characteristics of the Dachshund
Female : Between 7 and 10 in
Male : Between 7 and 10 in
Miniature: 5-6 inches
Standard: 8-9 inches
Female : Between 7 and 20 lb
Male : Between 7 and 20 lb
Miniature: 10-11 lbs
Standard: 16-32 lbs
Smooth-haired Dachshunds can be unicolour (red, yellow-red, yellow, with or without black spots), two-coloured (dark black or brown with red marks), or Harlequin (stripes or brindle).
Wire-haired Dachshunds mostly have a wild boar-coloured coat, a more or less "dead leaf" colour depending on brightness.
Long-haired Dachshunds are very often unicolour (from red to yellow) but they can also be two-coloured (shades of black, brown, and flame-orange) or Harlequin (dark coat with grey or beige marks).
Type of coat
There are several varieties of hair: Smooth, long and wire.
- Long-haired Dachshund: The hair is smooth, shiny and lying all over the body. The hair is longer at the chest level.
- Short or smooth-haired Dachshund: The hair is short, bushy, shiny and smooth. The undercoat is hard and tight.
- Wirehaired Dachshund: The outer coat’s hair mixes with the undercoat and it is seen on the whole body of the dog. It is bushy and wiry to touch.
Depending on the colour of the coat, the eyes can range from dark-brown to black-brown. In Harlequin subjects, odd-eyes are tolerated without being sought after.
A dog with an elongated body, short legs, compact, vigorous and of good musculature. The head is graceful, with a rather flat skull and a buoyant posture. There are two sizes: Standard and Miniature, which are in turn divided into sub-varieties of coat (long, smooth and wire).
Good to know
Did you know the Dachshund was the first mascot of the Olympics? Indeed, during the Games in Munich in 1972, the organisers chose this athletic and courageous dog to be the face of the games.
Another unusual fact: The term "hot dog" may have been inspired by this sausage-shaped dog. Nothing is proven but many historians agree that in earlier times the hot dog was known as the Dachshund sausage.
Finally, this dog was the first pet cloned in England. Winnie, a 12-year-old dog, has been cloned by experts from South Korea and has shared her last few years alongside Mini-Winnie.
This short-legged dog is very friendly towards members of his social group.
The Long-haired Dachshund will be softer, constantly demanding cuddles (especially if crossed with a Cocker Spaniel).
The Wirehaired variety is more independent since it is the result of interbreeding with various terriers.
Depending on the type of Dachshund you get, and the individual dog's temperament, you will need to judge for yourself how loyal he is.
Whatever his variety, this sausage dog is very dynamic, energetic and passionate in his activities. Playing a game will be a great way for him to spend energy. Games related to tracking will be particularly appreciated by this breed due to its very fine nose.
The Dachshund has a rather confident personality with a need for activities. However, if he spends sufficient energy, this dog knows how to rest and enjoy the peace and comfort of the home.
Long-haired Dachshunds will be calmer than the others.
This small, elongated dog is particularly intelligent due to his ability to adapt to many lifestyles. Whether he lives in the city or in the countryside, whether he is used for hunting or as a simple life companion, this dog will be delighted by almost any home.
Moreover, his intellect also facilitates tremendous cunning. Indeed, this little dog with a well-tempered personality does not let anything slide and can take advantage of the slightest weakness in his companion to serve his own interests.
Although today the Dackel (to give it its German name) is regarded by many as a companion dog, it is important to remember that he was originally used for hunting, and only 1/3 of puppies were intended for family lives. He is an excellent hunter - especially the Wire-haired variety, since it is the most eager and courageous.
Fearful / wary of strangers
This little dog is quite distant when around people he doesn’t know. He tends to reserve his affection for his own social group. When it comes to the Smooth-haired variety, it is rather exclusive and tends to pay attention to one and only one person: His master.
He is not very independent nor particularly clingy. The Dachshund turns out to be a rather balanced dog.
Behaviour of the Dachshund
If he spends enough energy and he engages in plenty of activity in the absence of his masters, this small dog can withstand loneliness. But be careful, your absence should not be too long.
Easy to train / obedience
This small hunting dog has a thick head, and is not easy to educate - especially if he fails to perceive any sense or logic in the exercises requested of him.
Education must be started early. It needs to integrate firmness and coherence. Despite his small size, you must not show any weakness to this dog since he will exploit the slightest hesitance.
However, his intelligence, enthusiasm and playful side will make it possible to work together effectively, especially if the educational methods are adapted to his type and they favour the positive reinforcement of good behaviour.
He is suspicious of strangers, so he tends to bark to warn them away when he senses their approach.
Tendency to run away
A lack of education, a poor master-dog relationship and too little care of his energy spending needs are elements that can push this dog to run away to a life of adventure and energy-release.
If he lives in the countryside, you might need to reinforce the fence and make s