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Dachshund Health Problems – 10 Most Common Health Issues in Sausage Dogs

Before delving into specific health issues, it’s essential to understand the general health considerations for dachshunds. These dogs have a lifespan of around 12 to 16 years, and during this time, they are susceptible to various health problems that may require medical attention. Regular veterinary check-ups, a balanced diet, proper exercise, and a loving environment are crucial for maintaining the overall well-being of dachshunds.

Most Common Health Problems & Issues in Dachshunds

1. Intervertebral Disc Disease (IVDD)
  • Overview: IVDD is a common and potentially serious health problem in dachshunds. The breed’s long back and short legs put them at a higher risk of spinal issues.
  • Symptoms: The symptoms of IVDD can range from mild back pain to complete paralysis, depending on the severity of the condition.
  • Causes: IVDD can be caused by age-related degeneration of intervertebral discs or by sudden trauma, such as jumping from heights.
  • Treatment: Treatment options include strict rest, pain medication, anti-inflammatory drugs, physical therapy, and, in severe cases, surgery to alleviate pressure on the spinal cord.
2. Obesity
  • Overview: Dachshunds can be prone to obesity, which can lead to various health problems, including joint issues, heart disease, and diabetes.
  • Symptoms: Obesity in dachshunds may be evident through lethargy, difficulty breathing, and increased difficulty moving.
  • Causes: Overfeeding, lack of exercise, and a sedentary lifestyle can contribute to obesity in these dogs.
  • Preventative Measures: Owners should maintain a balanced diet, avoid excessive treats, and ensure regular exercise to keep their dachshunds at a healthy weight.
3. Dental Problems
  • Overview: Dental issues, such as gum disease and tooth decay, are common in dachshunds, which can lead to discomfort and pain.
  • Symptoms: Bad breath, difficulty eating, and swollen gums are signs of dental problems in dachshunds.
  • Causes: Poor dental hygiene and lack of regular dental care can contribute to dental issues in this breed.
  • Treatment: Regular tooth brushing, dental check-ups, and a dental-friendly diet are essential for preventing and treating dental problems in dachshunds.
4. Skin Allergies
  • Overview: Dachshunds are prone to skin allergies, which can cause itching, redness, and hair loss.
  • Symptoms: Constant scratching, chewing, or licking of the skin are indicative of skin allergies in dachshunds.
  • Causes: Allergies can be triggered by various factors, such as environmental allergens or certain foods.
  • Treatment: Identifying and avoiding allergens, along with topical treatments and medications prescribed by a veterinarian, can help manage skin allergies in dachshunds.
5. Hip Dysplasia
  • Overview: Hip dysplasia is a hereditary condition that affects the hip joints, leading to joint instability and eventually arthritis.
  • Symptoms: Limping, difficulty rising, and reluctance to exercise are signs of hip dysplasia in dachshunds.
  • Causes: Genetics and excessive weight can contribute to the development of hip dysplasia in this breed.
  • Management: Weight management, low-impact exercise, and joint supplements can help alleviate symptoms and slow the progression of hip dysplasia.
6. Eye Problems
  • Overview: Dachshunds can suffer from various eye issues, including cataracts, glaucoma, and progressive retinal atrophy.
  • Symptoms: Cloudiness in the eyes, excessive tearing, and changes in vision are signs of eye problems in dachshunds.
  • Causes: Genetics, injury, and aging are common factors contributing to eye issues in this breed.
  • Preventative Measures: Regular eye examinations by a veterinarian and proper eye care can help detect and manage eye problems in dachshunds.
7. Ear Infections
  • Overview: Dachshunds, especially those with long ears, are prone to ear infections due to moisture buildup.
  • Symptoms: Scratching the ears, head shaking, and a foul odor from the ears are indicators of ear infections in dachshunds.
  • Causes: Ear anatomy and inadequate ear cleaning can lead to ear infections in this breed.
  • Prevention: Regular ear cleaning and drying after baths or swimming can help prevent ear infections in dachshunds.
8. Patellar Luxation
  • Overview: Patellar luxation, or dislocated kneecap, is a common orthopedic problem in dachshunds.
  • Symptoms: Skipping or hopping on one leg is a sign of patellar luxation in dachshunds.
  • Causes: Genetics and trauma can contribute to the development of this condition.
  • Treatment: Mild cases may be managed with pain medication and weight control, while severe cases may require surgical correction.
9. Cardiac Issues
  • Overview: Dachshunds may be prone to heart problems, such as mitral valve disease and dilated cardiomyopathy.
  • Symptoms: Lethargy, coughing, and difficulty breathing can be indications of cardiac issues in dachshunds.
  • Causes: Genetics and age-related factors can contribute to the development of cardiac problems.
  • Management: Medications and lifestyle modifications, such as a heart-healthy diet, can help manage cardiac issues in dachshunds.
10. Gastrointestinal Problems
  • Overview: Dachshunds can experience gastrointestinal issues, such as vomiting, diarrhea, and food sensitivities.
  • Symptoms: Loss of appetite, vomiting, and loose stools are common signs of gastrointestinal problems.
  • Causes: Dietary indiscretion, food allergies, and infections can lead to gastrointestinal issues.
  • Management: A balanced diet, avoidance of potential food allergens, and prompt veterinary care can help address gastrointestinal problems.

Precautions & Preventative Measures

Taking proactive measures to maintain your dachshund’s health is vital to ensuring a happy and active life. By implementing the following precautions and preventative measures, you can significantly reduce the risk of health issues and provide your furry friend with the best possible care:

  • Regular veterinary check-ups: Schedule routine check-ups with a veterinarian to monitor your dachshund’s health and catch any potential issues early.
  • Weight management: Keep your dachshund at a healthy weight to reduce the risk of obesity-related health problems.
  • Proper diet: Provide a well-balanced diet that meets the nutritional needs of your dachshund based on its age, size, and activity level.
  • Regular exercise: Engage your dachshund in regular exercise to keep them physically active and mentally stimulated.
  • Dental care: Brush your dachshund’s teeth regularly and schedule dental cleanings as needed to maintain good oral health.
  • Ear cleaning: Regularly clean your dachshund’s ears to prevent moisture buildup and reduce the risk of ear infections.

What do Dachshunds Usually Die From?

Dachshunds typically succumb to age-related health issues, including heart disease, cancer, and kidney failure. Proper healthcare, a balanced diet, regular exercise, and preventative measures can help extend their lifespan and provide them with a healthy and happy life.

Dachshund Health Problems – 10 Most Common Health Issues in Sausage Dogs