Dachshunds are breed in the US in two sizes: standard and miniature. An increasingly common size for family pets falls between the miniature and the standard size, frequently referred to as "tweenies." A full-grown standard dachshund averages 16 lb (7.3 kg) to 32 lb while the miniature variety normally weighs less than 12 lb.
The Dachshund originated in Germany in the early 1600s. Bred to hunt small game such as badger and rabbit, the Dachshund has shortened legs to hunt and follow these animals to ground inside the burrows where they could fight the prey to the death. "Dachs" is the word for badger. Smaller Dachshunds where bred to hunt hare and stoat. Dachshunds have many "terrier" characteristics. They are versatile and courageous dogs and have been known to take on foxes and otters too. The breed’s population dwindled during World War l, but dogs were imported from Germany to the USA and the gene pool once again increased. The Dachshund was recognized by the AKC in 1885.
Dachshunds are playful, but as hunting dogs can be stubborn, and are known for their propensity for chasing small animals, birds, and tennis balls with great determination and ferocity.
The Dachshund is curious, clever, lively, affectionate, proud, brave and amusing. Devoted to its family, it can be slightly difficult to train and housebreak, but not impossible. Dachshunds travel well. This little dog needs an owner who understands how to be his pack leader or he will take over the house, and begin to try and tell the owner what to do. If the dog is allowed to take over, many behavior problems will arise, such as, but not limited to, guarding furniture, separation anxiety, guarding food, toys or other objects, snapping, biting and obsessive barking. It will become unpredictable with children and adults they do not know. If it gets really bad, it may become unpredictable with its owner. They are usually recommended for older, considerate children, simply because most owners do not display proper pack leadership to small dogs, causing moderate to severe protectiveness, a behavior that can change if the humans start being their pack leader. If they do get the proper leadership, they can get along well with children. This breed has an instinct to dig. They are generally okay with other pets; however, once again, without proper leadership from their humans, they can be jealous, irritable, obstinate and very quick to bite, sometimes refusing to be handled. If you allow your little dog to take over your house, the dog will try his hardest to keep all of his humans in line—a weight which should not be placed on any dog's shoulders, especially one as sweet as a little dog like the Dachshund. These negative traits are not Dachshund traits, they are small dog syndrome traits. Meaning, most owners treat their small dogs like babies, rather than giving them leadership, As well as rules they need to follow along with limits they are, and are not allowed to do, which all dogs instinctually crave. Dachshunds that have human leadership along with a daily pack walk are wonderful family companions with excellent temperaments.
Dachshund's are expected to live anywhere from 12-15 years.
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