keep your dachshund healthy

Ways to Keep Your Dachshund Healthy

Updated 09/07/2021 by Ava Jaine

All Dachshunds Love to Eat, Sleep and Repeat! Unfortunately, our adorable long dogs are one of many small breeds that are Prone to Obesity because of their love for the “comfortable life.”

Here are some really Simple Ways To Keep Your Dachshund Healthy: provide quality dog food, follow a feeding schedule, and maintain healthy habits.

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Dachshunds need to eat a healthy diet and maintain a regular exercise routine to have a strong and healthy body.

 

How To Keep Your Dachshund Healthy

1. Quality Dog Food

What Dog Food Should I Feed My Dachshund? 

It is important to feed your Dachshund a vet recommended healthy dog food.  Always take a detailed look at the ingredients list.  The meat of choice should be listed as the first ingredient (fish, chicken, beef).  My vet recommends Science Diet or Royal Canine dog food for Dachshunds.

Dog Food Warnings:  Dog foods that mainly contain grain or corn-based fillers aren’t healthy for your dog.  Avoid Grain-Free Dog Foods. There is a high risk of heart disease with this type of dog food. Read more about the risks of Grain-Free Dog Food.

Dog Food Rotation:  Your dog’s regular food may not be meeting all of your dog’s nutritional needs.  It’s a good idea to change your dog’s diet up occasionally. Here’s How to Do A Dog Food Rotation Properly.

 

Table Scraps

Do not feed your dog any table scraps.  It’s not good for your dachshund’s health and can make your pup a very finicky eater. 

Feeding your doxie table scraps can cause a bad barking and begging habit that will never quit every time you sit down to eat.

When I was younger, my family dachshund, Heidi, would constantly bark and beg at the table for every meal.  My parents gave her many table scraps during our meals to keep her quiet…when in fact it did the exact opposite.

Heidi was very overweight most of her life because of all the table scraps.

Training Tip: Dachshunds don’t naturally crave people food.  They develop the taste once they are exposed to the food.  Table Scraps are like fast food for dogs (fatty and addicting).  Stick with healthy dog food and treats.

Best Digestive Supplements

My Dachshund, Reno, had a very sensitive stomach.  He couldn’t tolerate most foods and very few dog treats without getting sick to his stomach. 

I took him to Petco for his Birthday to pick out a toy and the lady at the checkout gave him a special dog cookie for free.  I thought it was so nice, but Reno threw up the rest of the night.

My vet recommended that I add some probiotics to his diet to help him with his digestive issues.

Alpha Paw has some yummy Multi Chews that I like to recommend for Doxies with unique digestive needs…like my Reno.

Multi Chews are a daily peanut butter flavored treat that my dogs beg for! They contain essential Vitamins, Glucosamine, and Probiotics to help dachshunds that have issues with gas, bloating, constipation, and stomach issues. They are made in the USA, your doxie will love them.

Use code DACHSHUNDSTATION20 for 20% off on Alpha Paw!

 

DIY Dog Food

Some dachshund owners prefer to make their dog’s food at home.  By using your own natural ingredients at home you know exactly what ingredients your dog is consuming. This is especially helpful with a dog that has any food allergies.

Consult your vet for a well-balanced meal plan and amount per serving for your dog if you are interested in creating your dog’s food at home.  Here are some interesting DIY Dog Food Recipes by Lifestyle Pet Guru.

 
keep your dachshund healthy

2. Feeding Schedules By Age

Dachshunds have a pretty big appetite compared to other dogs their size.  Your dachshund needs to maintain a healthy feeding schedule to reduce obesity and prevent spinal issues, like IVDD.

It is important to have a feeding schedule for your dachshund instead of allowing them to graze throughout the day.

If you allow your doxie to eat all day long (graze), it is guaranteed that they will gain too much weight.

 

Puppy Feeding Schedule

For Puppies, look for a dry dog food that includes more protein and fatty acids to help build strong muscles and support healthy energy levels.  Many dog food brands have a food that is formulated just for puppies.

Puppies under 6 months of age should have 3 smaller meals per day.

Feed your pup once in the morning, one time in the afternoon, and in the evening for dinner…pretty much the same schedule you have.  The proper amount of food is usually determined by your dog’s weight. 

Check the back of your dog’s food bag for the right amount per day.

Set the puppy’s dog food bowl down for about 20 minutes at a time, then take the bowl up until the next feeding. That way you can tell if they are getting too much or need a little more depending on their unique metabolism. 

Let your puppy outside to go potty directly after each meal during their House Training.

Training Tip: Feed your puppy their evening meal before 6 pm. This will help reduce the number of overnight accidents.

keep your dachshund healthy
 

Adult Feeding Schedule

Around 12-14 months of age, your doxie can eat 2 times per day.  Once in the morning and once at night is ideal.  Consult the back of your dog food bag for the proper weight-based amount for your pup.  My doxies usually eat 1/2 – 3/4 cup twice a day.

Spreading out your dog’s daily meals can help them digest smaller amounts and reduce Anal Gland Issues.

We had to go from 1 meal per day to 2 times per day with our adult dachshunds because of stinky gland issues.  We didn’t have to have their glands expressed at the vet quite as often when we split up their meals. Yay!

Adult Dog Food: Adult dachshunds require less fat, protein, and calories in their diet than they did as puppies.  Too much fat and calories can lead to weight gain and lower energy levels.  Stick to adult dog food when your doxie turns 1.

Slow Feeder Bowls: My Miniature Dachshund, Reno, tended to inhale his food way too fast and at times choked on his dog chow.  So, we switched him to a slow feeder dog bowl.  His new bowl helped him eat at a much slower pace, which promoted better digestion.

Post You May Like: Best Slow Feeder Dog Bowls For Dachshunds

 

Senior Dog Feeding Schedule

Dachshunds are considered senior dogs at 7 years old.  Older dogs can continue the adult feeding schedule (2x daily) as long as they are in good health.

Most senior dogs will do a lot more napping around the house compared to their younger adult counterparts, so they may eat smaller amounts of food than they used to.

There are plenty of senior dog food options out there that can help your older dog with digestion and joint health.  Most Senior dog foods include more fiber to aid in digestion at this age.

For Doxies over the age of 12, it is recommended to split their daily meals into 2.  One small meal in the morning and one in the evening.  Splitting up their meals help with their digestion and reduce anal gland issues.

 

How Much Should A Dachshund Eat?

Check the side of your dog food label to find out how much your dog should get per day.  This is usually determined by their weight.   

I give my 1 year old mini dachshund 3/4 cup of dog food 2 times per day.  He is currently 14 lbs.  I give my senior dachshund, Bastian, 1/2 cup of food 2 times daily.  He is currently 15 years old and weights 18 pounds.  He doesn’t eat as much as he used to.

Healthy Drinking Water

Dachshunds need to stay hydrated.  Make sure to give your dachshund clean drinking water daily.  Filtered water bowls are even better at keeping your dog’s water clean and healthy.  Clean your dog’s water bowl 1-2 times per week.

keep your dachshund healthy

3. Healthy Habits

A well-rounded exercise routine for your dachshund is very important to your dog’s health.  Doxie’s love to eat and nap, and it is very easy for this dog breed to become overweight when they are not properly walked or played with.

Note: Wait at least 45 minutes to an hour after their meals for any vigorous exercise to prevent bloating.

 

Walking

Regular exercise should consist of walking daily or at least a couple of times per week. A 20-minute walk tends to be a sufficient length for a good dachshund walk.

Hiking

Dachshunds love to explore Hiking Trails.  So many wonderful sights and smells for them to discover, they will thank you for the adventure.  Make sure to bring plenty of water for them to drink after the hike.

Post You May Like: How To Keep Your Dachshund Safe On A Hike

 
keep your dachshund healthy

Playing

Playing fetch with your dog’s favorite ball or toy is a fun activity your pup will love. Dogs enjoy that special one-on-one time with YOU.

Whether on a walk or playing fetch, make sure to take regular breaks so your dog doesn’t overdo it.

My dachshund could play fetch until he dropped, he loved it!  Sometimes we would play too long and he would act a little sore the next day.  So, I set a 20 minute timer to remind myself to stop and rest because it wasn’t safe for his delicate back (Risk of IVDD).

 

Here are some fun examples of how to play with your dog:

Bonus Tip: Give Your Doxie Some Pumpkin

It is crucial to help your doxie maintain a lower body weight in order to keep them healthy. Occasionally adding in some plain pumpkin puree (Not pumpkin pie filling) to your doxie’s food will help them feel full and give them extra fiber.

The amount of fiber, vitamins, and nutrients found in pumpkin puree can help your Dachshund stay regular and keep those extra fatty pounds off their delicate backs.

Related: The Benefits Of Adding Pumpkin To Your Dachshund’s Diet

Giving your Dachshund a healthy dog food diet, following a feeding schedule, and maintaining a regular exercise routine will help keep your dachshund happy and healthy.

How Do You Keep Your Dachshund Healthy?   Please Share in the Comments Below.

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References:

  • Schweitzer, Karen. 2010. Our Best Friends the Dachshund. Pittsburg, PA: Eldorado Ink.
  • Pinney, Chris. 2010, 2000.  Dachshunds: A Complete Pet Owner’s Manual. Hauppauge, NY: Barron’s Educational Series, Inc.