Dachshund's Stinky Breath

Is Your Dachshund’s Stinky Breath A Sign of Illness?

Updated 05/17/2024 by Ava Jaine

Has your Dachshund’s breath been extra stinky lately?

Most of the time, nasty dog breath indicates a dental problem, but if your Dachshund’s bad breath is persistent or has a particular smell to it, it could be a warning sign for GI issues, respiratory infection, or a disease.

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Is Your Dachshund’s Stinky Breath A Sign of Illness?  Lets get to the bottom of things and find out the underlying cause of smelly dog breath. 

Table Of Contents

Dachshund's Stinky Breath

Why Does My Dog’s Breath Smell Like Fish?

Dental Problems:

Bad dog breath is commonly caused by plaque and tartar build up on your Dachshund’s teeth.  The Dachshund dog breed is unfortunately prone to dental diseases.  A dental disease called Gingivitis can sometimes give off a fishy smell.

When your dog’s food sits on the gums, plaque will build up.  Then, tartar starts to form and harden.  This can cause your dog’s gums to become irritated and inflamed.  If Gingivitis goes untreated, your dog could loose their teeth or it could lead to other internal medical issues like kidney failure or heart disease.

It is important to clean your doxie’s teeth a couple times per week and maintain regular checkups with your vet to prevent any dental diseases. 

Post You May Like: Easy Ways to Brush Your Dachshund’s Teeth


Your doxie’s breath may smell like fish if they have been forging through your trash or have swallowed some poo or a dead animal. Yuck!


Dogs with liver failure may have a fishy or musty smelling breath.  Read more details on liver failure below.

Why Does My Dog’s Breath Smell Sweet?

If your Dachshund’s breath has a fruity or sweet smell, it could be an early sign of Diabetes.  Your dog may also be drinking and urinating more frequently as well. If you notice any of these symptoms, visit your vet.

Find out more: Symptoms of Diabetes In Dogs 

dachshund stinky breath

Bad Dog Breath & Illness

Stomach Problems:

If your dog’s tummy or intestinal tract is full of bad bacteria, this could cause digestive problems, stink gas, and bad breath (aka halitosis).  


Probiotics are not only good for your own stomach but are also very beneficial to your Dachshund’s tummy. 

Check out: VertiScience Probiotics from Amazon.  It’s a great supplement to add to your doxie’s diet to help combat digestive issues.

Quality Dog Food:

Giving your dachshund a limited ingredient dog food can help alleviate their GI issues and bad breath.

Switching up your dog’s regular food once in a while will ensure they are getting the proper amount of nutrition that different dog food recipes provide.

Post You May Like: Dog Food Recommendations For Dachshunds

If you just can’t find the dog food that works for your pup, consult your vet for their recommendations.

wire-haired Dachshund lifting his front leg

Mouth and Throat Tumors

Foul smelling dog breath can be a sign of canine cancer.  Mouth infections and cancerous tumors can form in a dog’s mouth or throat and need to be checked out ASAP by a vet.  These types of tumors tend to grow and spread fast and can be harder to treat.

Kidney Disease

If your dog’s breath smells like urine or ammonia, it could be a sign of kidney disease.

“After approximately 2/3 of the kidney tissue is destroyed, there is a rapid rise in waste products in the bloodstream and an apparent sudden onset of severe disease. The clinical signs of more advanced kidney failure include loss of appetite, depression, vomiting, diarrhea, and very bad breath.” – By Ernest Ward, DVM; Updated by Malcolm Weir, DVM, MSc, MPH

Learn more about Canine Kidney Disease from vca hospitals

Liver Failure

If your pup’s breath has a musty or fishy odor and presents with other symptoms like appetite loss, yellowish color in eyes or gums, or vomiting, they may be having issues with their liver.  Your dachshund will need to visit the vet pronto.

Dachshund's Stinky Breath

Respiratory Problems

If your dog is experiencing any sinus or respiratory inflammation, this can cause smelly dog breath.  Your dog will breath primarily through their mouth instead of their nose, mainly because their nose is stuffed up. 

Your doxie will be at risk of infection if they don’t receive medical treatment as soon as possible.

Was Your Dachshund’s Stinky Breath A Sign Of Illness?  Let us know in the Comments.

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