Dachshunds are a devoted and affectionate family dog, and have a reputation for being sweet and docile, but also stubborn and arrogant. Patient, consistent training is a must, as is early and extensive socialization to prevent aggression toward other animals and unwarranted aggression toward strangers. Loyal, self-assured, and territorial, he's a superb guard dog who's also capable of competing in many sports and activities, including carting, obedience, therapy work, tracking, and search and rescue.
Common Health Conditions
- With their long bodies and short legs, Dachshunds are genetically prone to several musculoskeletal conditions. The most serious of these is intervertebral disc disease, which causes the vertebrae to weaken and possibly protrude into the spinal canal.
- One of the most unique to dachshunds is acanthosis nigricans, an overabundance of melanin, or dark pigment. It is rare in other breeds, but not so in the dachshund. It begins in the axillary areas, and spreads to the groin. It looks like the affected area is balding. It can harbor secondary yeast or bacteria infections.
- Hypothyroidism, a decreased production of the thyroid hormones, is seen in dachshunds during middle age, between 4 and 10 years. It is rarely seen at birth. As the thyroid ages, it begins to atrophy, causing the underproduction of the hormone. If left untreated, it can cause heart disease or diabetes.