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Dachshund Fun Facts You Never Knew

By Mawoo Pets · 12 Mar · 7 mins read
Dachshund Fun Facts You Never Knew

Who can resist the charm of a Dachshund? Their distinctive look and spirited personality have captivated the hearts of many dog lovers. In fact, they're today one of the most popular small dog breeds worldwide. 

But, do you know what makes this breed genuinely exceptional and unique? Let's uncover fascinating facts about dachshunds, their history, unique physical attributes, and enchanting personality traits. 

Here are some fun - and lesser known - facts about the beloved Doxie!

Fun Facts About Dachshunds

1. They're Born to Dig 

The name Dachshund literally means "badger dog" in German, and their unique body shape reflects a deep-rooted history in badger hunting. Armed with powerfully short, strong limbs, these dogs are natural burrowers. Don't be surprised if your dachshund displays a knack for digging. They were bred to go into underground dens and burrows to flush out badgers. 

2. One Breed, 10+ Names

It might surprise you to discover that these charming canines go by more names than just their official breed name. In their homeland of Germany, they're affectionately called "Dackel" or "Teckel." Quite aptly, "Dachshund" in German simply translates to "badger dog," capturing their historical role as fearless badger hunters!

Here in the United States, they're more familiarly known as "wiener dogs" or "sausage dogs", reflecting their unique, elongated physique, reminiscent of a frankfurter sausage. On top of this, Dachshunds have also collected a host of loving pet names from their owners - from "doxies" and "doxens" to "weenies" and "wieners". So, what's in a name? With Dachshunds, it seems quite a lot.

3. The Doxie's Long Tail ... Is Used to Pull It Out of Burrows

Did you know the Dachshund's distinctive tail serves more than just aesthetic purposes? This breed's tail is particularly strong and elongated, evolutionarily designed to assist owners in pulling them out of burrows during their hunting expeditions. It's more than just a charming feature - it's a survival tool that testifies to their bold heritage! 

black dachshund entering a burrow hole in a forestDachshund making its way into a burrow!

4. Hunting Dogs Turned Show Dogs 

So we've covered that these little warriors were initially bred for a serious purpose - hunting! But guess what? Their work-life balance was superb, as they also made a remarkable transition to the show ring in the late 19th century. They went from being celebrated hunting dogs in Germany to winning hearts and awards at dog shows in both Britain and the United States. So yes, Doxies evolved from fierce hunters to star showstoppers - now that's an impressive CV!  

5. Small Dogs with Big Barks! 

You might think a Dachshund, with its petite size, would have a tiny, yappy bark to match. Surprisingly, this isn't the case! Dachshund dogs have a deep, loud bark that's more akin to what you'd expect from a much larger breed. Where does this big sound come from? It's thought that their powerful bark helped their owners locate them underground while digging! 

6. Three Varieties - One Breed 

Dachshunds don't come in one mold, but did you know there's more difference than just their fur? This breed actually comes in three distinctive varieties that are characterized primarily by their coat types: the Smooth, the Wirehaired, and the Longhaired. Each type entails unique grooming needs and may exhibit slight character variations.  

7. The First Olympic Mascot 

In the 1972 Munich Olympics, a Dachshund named "Waldi" was chosen as the first official Olympic mascot. This selection was in tribute to the breed's popularity in Germany, the host country that year. Waldi's colors symbolized the spirit and joy of the event, making this Dachshund an adorable and iconic piece of Olympic history. 

mascot of 1972 olympicsWaldi the 1972 Olympics Mascot

8. Extraordinary lung capacity 

Don't be fooled by their small size. These dogs have a lung capacity that's larger than expected. Think about it: The long, elongated body of a Dachshund equates to more space for lungs compared to other dogs of similar weight and size. This not only gives them their famously loud bark, but it also served a practical purpose in their badger-hunting days. 

9. From Royalty's Lap to Picasso's Sketchbook 

Dachshunds have been so intriguing and beloved that they were even the companions of royalties and the inspiration for artists! Queen Victoria of England was known to adore these dogs, helping to popularize the breed in England ... And Pablo Picasso had a Dachshund named "Lump" who was featured in some of his artworks!

10. The Inspiration for Hot Dog Buns 

Did you ever stop to think where the term "hot dog" comes from? Well then, here's a tasty tidbit for you. The iconic hot dog sausage in a bun was actually named after the Dachshund! Back in the 1800s, sausages reminiscent of the Dachshund’s shape were often sold by German immigrants at baseball games. Eventually, the notion caught on, transforming the humble sausage in a bun into a beloved fast food icon, the "hot dog". 

dachshund dog in a hot dog costume

11. The Durable Dachshund 

Did you know that Dachshunds are connoisseurs of longevity in the canine world? It's true! These little companions are renowned for their durability, commonly living into their mid to late teens. In fact, some Dachshunds have been documented to live into their early 20s! Certainly, a reason to consider the breed if you're seeking a long-term furry friendship. Who wouldn't want more years of the snuggly companionship that a Dachshund provides? 

12. The Longest Canines in Existence! 

This one may be a less-surprising fun fact, but Dachshunds hold the world record as the dogs with the longest bodies in relation to their height! 

13. Nicknamed 'Half-a-Dog Tall, Dog-and-a-Half Long' 

Despite their small size, Dachshunds are packed with courage and bravery. Classic tales and anecdotes about these courageous canines abound. They're famous for exhibiting fierce determination and strong will, a testimony to their hunting ancestry. Intriguingly, their unique silhouette has also inspired a quirky nickname, 'half-a-dog tall, dog-and-a-half long'. This nickname speaks volumes about their audacious spirit that belies their diminutive stature.

14. Guard Dogs in Tiny Packages 

Paradoxical as it might seem given their size, Dachshunds make excellent guard dogs. Their keen sense of hearing, matched with their bold character, means that they are quick to alert their owners about any potential threats. Their bark, most times louder and more intimidating than those of larger breeds, serves as a warning to would-be intruders. Who needs a towering guard dog when a watchful Dachshund can do the job just as effectively, and with much more charm?

15. Movie Stars in Disguise 

Did you know that Dachshunds have long enjoyed the limelight in Hollywood? Indeed, many of our favorite movies and TV shows feature these sleek little stars. From Bruiser in 'The Ugly Dachshund', to Slinky in 'Toy Story', these show-stealers have delighted audiences with their animated appearances and heartwarming performance. 

two brown dachshunds lying side by side and touching each others faces

Conclusion 

Undeniably, the dachshund breed holds a certain charm with their unique physical attributes and endearing personalities. Whether you love them for their courageous spirit, their iconic shape, or their lively intelligence, they indeed make an enticing choice for a four-legged friend.

Endowed with an intriguing history and a magnetic aura of charm, it's no surprise that these little canines continue to capture hearts worldwide. If you're contemplating welcoming a dachshund into your family, you're hopefully now better equipped with some exciting knowledge and tidbits about this captivating breed. 

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