Have you ever wondered how to play with a Dachshund?
While playing with a dog isn’t rocket science, you might be worried that you are missing something.
Fortunately, we’ve got 9 mind-blowing Dachshund tips to help you make the most of your time with your dog.
9 Tips on How to Play with a Dachshund
Dachshunds might have a comical appearance thanks to their long bodies and short legs, but they’ve got a hunter spirit.
Their bodies are perfect for chasing badgers down holes or digging tunnels.
While Dachshunds aren’t a high-energy breed, they are playful, mischievous, and determined.
But they are stubborn, tend to bond with a single person, and are too fierce for their own good.
Dachshunds are prone to weight gain, and without proper exercise and playtime, they will quickly put on weight.
So, learning how to play with your Dachshund is important to satisfy their physical and mental needs.
#1 Understand Why Play Is So Important
Owners often don’t realize how vital it is to play with their Dachshund and have fun together.
For starters, playing burns off your Dachshund excessive energy and keep boredom away.
It ensures that your Dachshund won’t tear the house/yard apart when you’re away.
Moreover, playing provides mental stimulation for your Dachshund and allows them to use their senses.
That’s important for hunting breeds who can’t indulge instincts to chase and kill.
Lastly, playing allows you to teach your Dachshund commands in a fun way.
It’s also a great way to bond with your pet and reward them for being obedient.
#2 Stick to the Basic Play Rules
As I already said, playing with a dog isn’t complicated. You just do things that both of you like.
However, there are some “unwritten” basic rules of play that can come in handy when you want to know how to play with a Dachshund:
- Have frequent short playing sessions throughout the day at home and outdoors.
- Don’t force your Dachshund to play if they don’t seem interested.
- Have several good toys and rotate them to keep things interesting.
- Tidy the toys after you’ve finished playing.
- Don’t encourage your Dachshund to chase you, other pets, or children. That could turn into a bad habit due to their hunting instincts.
- When you’re playing with toys, keep the toy below the waistline to avoid encouraging your Dachshund to jump.
While Dachshunds are playful by nature, some might need your encouragement.
Leave some toys around the house and reward your Dachshund when they show interest in the toy.
#3 Find Out What Your Dachshund Likes
There are so many toys on the market these days that you’re bound to be confused about what to choose for your Dachshund.
Buying interactive toys that you like will only get you a pile of toys that your Dachshund might never look at.
Instead, observe your Dachshund while they’re playing by themselves or when they’re having fun with other dogs.
It will give you some valuable insight into what types of games and toys your Dachshund might enjoy.
I can tell you that almost all Dachshunds like to dig and chase because it’s part of their hunting nature.
They would love to pursue a toy around your house or dig treats in the garden.
#4 Consider Your Dachshund’s Temperament
How to play with your Dachshund depends a lot on your dog’s personality.
You want to encourage your dog’s good traits and discourage bad ones.
Some Dachshunds are fearless and will engage in a rough play.
These dogs might growl, bite, or chase because they’re getting overly excited and are showing dominance.
Your Dachshund might look cute doing this as a puppy, but it’s not a behavior you want them to carry into adulthood. Otherwise, you’ll be dealing with an aggressive Dachshund.
In these cases, you have to avoid any “aggressive” types of games, such as tug-of-war, and stick to more gentle ones.
Show your dog that you like playing with them but that rough play isn’t acceptable.
Some Dachshunds can be quite the opposite – they are shy and reluctant to play with you.
You’ll have to start interacting slowly with such dogs and offer plenty of rewards and praises to eliminate insecurities and fears.
#5 Be Careful of Your Dachshund’s Back
Due to their long backs and short legs, Dachshunds are prone to back injuries.
That’s something you have to keep in mind when you’re playing with your dog.
In general, Dachshunds shouldn’t jump from high places because they can injure their backs. That’s why you should avoid any games that might strain your dog’s back.
For example, obstacle courses and jumping over hurdles are favorite activities of many breeds.
But they aren’t suitable for a Dachshund because they might get hurt.
Moreover, Dachshunds aren’t made for running up and down the stairs, at least not for long.
Remember that when you’re playing fetch to tire your dog.
Moreover, Dachshund puppies shouldn’t jump at all until their growth plates close or their bones might deform.
#6 Learn How to Discipline Your Dachshund
How to play with a Dachshund also involves learning how to discipline your Dachshunds when they misbehave during the game.
Sooner or later, your Dachshund will get so engaged in the game/toys that they might bite or growl at you.
It’s normal puppy behavior that helps dog sharpen their instincts.
You can’t correct it with yelling, shouting, or physical force. That’s one of the big don’ts in dog training.
Instead, when your Dachshund bites, you should ignore them for a couple of minutes.
Walk out of the room or put your Dachshund in their crate and don’t pay them any attention.
You want your pet to realize that you’re “punishing” them for biting so that they don’t do it again.
While it takes time, it’s an effective method for stopping biting and other unwanted behaviors.
Moreover, stop the game if you Dachshund is getting too excited.
You can resume when the dog calms down to teach your Dachshund that they will get fun only if they’re behaving well.
You can also use positive reinforcement to reward and encourage good behavior.
#7 Say “No” When You Don’t Want to Play
Dachshunds love games and can be quite demanding and noisy to let you know that you’re neglecting your duties.
While you might be tempted to indulge your Dachshund when they misbehave or bark to attract your attention, it’s a mistake.
You’re teaching your Dachshund that you’re at your dog’s beck and call.
Instead, you should ignore your Dachshund when they’re bothering you for a game.
Don’t look at your pet, don’t speak to them, and don’t react to barking. It might take time, but your Dachshund will leave you alone.
Think about when you have time to play and work it into your Dachshund’s daily routine.
In this way, your dog will know that they will get quality time with you and be less likely to bother you.
#8 Teach Your Children How to Play with Your Dachshund
If you have children and a Dachshund, you have to show your children how to play with the dog.
Remember that Dachshunds have fragile backs and explain to your kids why they should be careful and what the consequence might be if they aren’t.
If you’re playing with your Dachshund the right way, your children will follow suit.
So, make sure that you send the right message.
#9 Avoid Over Exhausting Your Dachshund
Dachshunds are pretty sturdy dogs, but you still should be careful not to overdo it, especially if you’re playing with a Dachshund puppy.
Standard Dachshunds need around 60 minutes of exercise a day, while miniature ones – only half of that time.
That’s the minimum, and many Dachshund will happily play with you for longer.
But stop if you notice that your Dachshund is getting too tired or pants heavily.
Puppies, on the other hand, require five minutes of exercise per month of age.
So, a three-month-old Dachshund should have around 15 minutes of exercise. You should also avoid any strenuous exercise until your puppy matures, or you can damage their growth plates.
It’s fun to have a Dachshund around the house. But don’t let their size or appearance mislead you that they’re easy to train.
Dachshunds need early obedience training to mature into mellow dogs.
During play, you might encourage bad behavior without realizing or accidentally hurt your dogs.
That’s another reason why it’s so important to learn about how to play with a Dachshund.