Dachshunds have one of the most iconic silhouettes in the animal kingdom. Their long, lean and low bodies have earned the breed a variety of nicknames, such as “weiner dog” and “sausage hound”. If you’ve never owned a dog before, you may be wondering whether a dachshund is a good option for you. Yes, the dachshund can be a great first dog if you’re willing to give them what they need to live a long and happy life. First-time dog owners thinking of adopting dachshund puppies should understand the breed’s temperament and living needs so that they can be prepared. 

Dachshund Temperament

The breed was developed in the 15th century to be a tenacious game dog, hunting badgers, rats, and other small mammals in tunnels and burrows. To this day, they still maintain some of that tenacity and intensity. As a result, dachshunds have the heart of a warrior in the body of a lap dog. 

But that warrior’s heart only gets fired up when they sense intruders or threats, and sometimes when they see small mammals to hunt. When they’re safe with their family, dachshunds are very sweet, and will generally want nothing more than to cuddle on the couch with you. 

Dachshunds are also clever and adaptable, making them well-suited to training. Some dachshunds can be strong-willed, but their innate intelligence means that they’re likely to learn anything you try to teach them. Like most other hounds, patient and consistent training will result in a very obedient dog who will respond to commands almost instantly. They do very well with positive and reward-based training styles. 

Dachshund Living Needs

Due to the dachshund’s small size, this breed can fit nearly anywhere – from small apartments to larger houses. Their moderate energy level means that they don’t need a huge yard to run around in, and will generally be fine with a couple of 10-minute walks a day. They do love to dig in any outdoor space you may have, since they’re naturally inclined to hunt for badgers and other similar animals. 

Some dachshunds may develop back and leg injuries due to too much running and jumping. It’s important to minimise the chances of these types of injuries, so dachshunds should not be allowed to jump onto furniture or use stairs excessively. There are plenty of available dog ramps so your dachshund can still get around on their own. 

Dachshunds are generally easy to care for, requiring brushing only a couple of times a week. Their weight should be managed carefully, as an overweight dachshund may be at increased risk of developing back and leg problems. As with any other medical concern, it’s best to speak with your vet to ensure that your dachshund is healthy and happy. 

Dachshunds Are Great for Most Dog Owners

All in all, dachshunds are a wonderful addition to almost any household. They have some special needs to be addressed regarding their health, but there are many success stories from happy dachshund owners. Dachshunds are game for anything their humans want to do, whether indoors or outdoors. Their playful nature and love of people make them great companions, equally adept at making you laugh or warning you of danger. 

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