1) Hound Dogs
Dachshunds or Weiner dogs are members of the hound family having a long history dating back to the ancient Egyptian times. However, the modern dachshunds being natives of Germany were originally bred to hunt badgers. Later small sizes of these dogs were bred to hunt smaller animals such as rabbits, foxes, and weasels. The word Dachshund comes from the German word Dachs which means badger, and the word hund which means dog. Therefore, the word Dachshund means ‘a badger-hunting dog‘.
2) Sizes /Colours
In the beginning, almost all Dachshunds were either tan or black. However today they come in twelve standard colors displaying three different kinds of markings. They come in an array of colors such as tan, cream, red, black, chocolate and greyish blue and a mixture of golden brown. There are two sizes: standard and miniature. Both these varieties come in three types of coats namely smooth, longhaired or wire-haired. To learn more about the types of Dachshunds with pictures see here.
Dachshunds can detect movements at a farther distance than most of us. However, they may not be able to see movements at shorter distances. They are not very good at distinguishing colors and have this wonderful ability to see things even in very dim light.
Dachshunds have very sharp ears and can hear four times better than humans can. Nevertheless, they are very sensitive to loud high-pitched sounds and music.
Dachshunds have a wonderful sense of smell, with over 125,000,000 smelling cells, which proves to be their best quality. They have the ability to track scents that are as old as several weeks. Hence, these dogs have a deep tendency to track scents and stray out of homes.
6) Best Friend
A Dachshund makes one of the best friends, as they can be courageous, curious and playful. He is fun to be with as he has a friendly nature and is curious.
Occasionally, Dachshunds, particularly the smooth kind of Dachshunds can be a little stubborn. This is because they are hound dogs bred to hunt independently and kill their prey.
Dachshunds have a long life span and outlive many other dogs. A Dachshund can on an average easily live to be 15 years and even as old as 17 years or more. For more information see Lifes expectancy of Dachshunds.
9) Name change
During World War I, Dachshunds were propagated as portraying the spirit of Germany in USA, France, and England. In order to avoid any kind of association with Germany, during the post-war period, The American Kennel Club officially renamed Dachshunds as badger dogs while others referred to them as liberty pups.
10) Olympic Mascot
Dachshunds make great athletes due to their agility, tenacity and great power of resistance. Hence, the first mascot of any Olympic games held at Munich in the year 1972 was Waldi the Dachshund modelled after a real Dachshund named Cherie von Birkenhof.
Some historians claim that in the mid-19th century, German immigrant butchers in the United States began selling variant sausages, some of which were thin and long, like the dog breed Dachshund. They called these Dachshund sausages. Some are of the opinion that the name underwent a change as a cartoonist had trouble, spelling Dachshund and therefore it achieved a shorter version.
The first dog in the United Kingdom to be cloned was a Dachshund when dog owner Rebecca Smith from Battersea had her twelve-year-old Dachshund Winnie cloned. The new pup was named Mini Winnie.