Your Dachshund is a friendly, loving pup that has an unbelievable sense of smell. Caring for him requires patience, since he is a stubborn fellow. However, give him quality food, exercise and lots of love, and you will have a friend for life.
Care to Minimize Back Issues
Feed your doxie a quality dog food and limit treats. Quality dog foods list meat as the first three ingredients. Avoid dog foods that contain meat byproducts; you don't want him eating feathers, beaks and ground bone. Because your doxie is susceptible to herniated disks, quality dog foods help keep him slim, since there are no fillers in the food. You do not want your little wiener dog to become overweight and risk a herniated disk because of the extra strain placed on his back.
Avoid letting your doxie jump on the furniture. It could put stress on his back. Place a ramp for him near the furniture you don't mind him lounging on with you.
Carry him up and down stairs. Your dachshund is capable of climbing up and down stairs, but you want to limit any chance of causing or aggravating any disk problems.
Teach your pup to heel. If he understands his place is beside you, not in front of you, he is less likely to try and be the alpha dog. Keep him on a short leash and hold a treat on your left side above his head. Take a few steps and say, Heel. Reward him with the treat, if he stays beside you. Continue this method until he can walk without dragging you down the street.
Teach your pup to sit. Hold the treat over his head. Guide his behind gently into the sitting position as you say, "Sit." Praise him and give him the treat. Because you don't want your doxie to have too many treats, break them into small pieces.
Teach your pup to stay and come. Once he knows the Sit command, have him sit and then hold your hand up like a stop sign. Say the command "Stay, and then back up. Say "Come" with enthusiasm. When he comes, give him a treat. Repeat the commands often in short training sessions.
Grooming and Health
Bathe your doxie when needed. Once a month should be enough.Too many baths can dry out his skin. Bathe him indoors with a mild shampoo, rinse thoroughly and keep him away from drafts. Use a blow dryer on long-haired and wire-haired doxies. Towel off short-haired doxies.
Brush your doxie regularly. Short-haired doxies can be brushed with a soft-bristled brush once or twice a week. Wire-haired and long-haired doxies should be brushed every day or every other day. Use a hard-bristle brush for your wire-haired dog, and a slicker brush and comb for your long-haired pup. Comb after brushing.
Brush your doxie's teeth. Some people brush their pup's teeth every day. Talk to your vet about how often to brush. Use a dog toothpaste and either a finger brush or regular toothbrush. Introduce brushing slowly by doing a few teeth at a time.
Schedule your pup for regular checkups and vaccinations. Talk with your vet about a flea prevention program, as well.
Exercise your pup daily. Two short walks each day that are around 1/2 mile for each walk should be enough for your doxie.
- Housebreak your new pup by using a crate. Take your pup out of his crate first thing in the morning, after every meal, after play and before bedtime. Always take him to the same spot and use the same phrase, such as "Time to Potty." Always praise your pup when he has success. Be consistent, as doxie's take time to housebreak.
- Supervise your doxie with young children. Even though your doxie generally is fine with children, they may hurt his back if they try to carry him like a sack of potatoes.
Pauline Gill is a retired teacher with more than 25 years of experience teaching English to high school students. She holds a bachelor's degree in language arts and a Master of Education degree. Gill is also an award-winning fiction author.