What Factors Determine The Lifespan of a Dachshund?

People select the dachshund as their breed of choice for several reasons. Suppose you look past the spirited demeanor, the cuddly size, the sharp intelligence, and the overall beauty. In that case, a primary advantage is the life expectancy is much greater than most other breeds.

What determines the exact longevity of the dachshund lifespan, of course, will include the genetic health plus the quantity but particularly the quality of the care received from their pet parents as their life stages progress. While a parent aims to have their furry friend for as long as possible, the goal should always be for the pup to have the most outstanding quality of life first and foremost. Longevity is an added bonus.

How Long Do Dachshunds Live?

Lifespan Of A Dachshund

Everyone would love a definitive answer as to how long do weiner dogs live, with research and reports specifically confirming how long a breed of dogs will survive to the letter. Still, in fact, that isn’t anything science can result to any degree of certainty for any breed, any animal, any mammal for that fact; the idea is purely speculative.

There are far too many variables to make the determination, including the genetics of an individual pup, how that dog will be cared for, or if she will run off from the yard getting hit by a car. Making those types of guesses is asking too much research since people then hold science to those estimations.

In a “Health Survey” in 2004, the Kennel Club suggested on average, the median lifespan of a dachshund should be at least 12.7 years – reported based on 245 deaths falling within that range that particular year. On average, the reporting in most of the research found between 12.5 to 12.7 was the average. However, the fact remains, pet parents indicate having Doxies as long as 15 to 17 years in growing numbers, with many still thriving even beyond that.

Claims indicate these numbers apply to standard varieties regardless of the texture of the coat (wired, long-haired, or smooth). Miniatures, on the other hand, have the potential for a bit longer than their standard counterparts. Smaller dogs of most breeds will live a longer life than larger breeds.

Where Are Our Record Holders?

18 year old dachshund
18-year-old dachshund

The oldest dachshund boasting a place in the world record book was “Chanel.” She was a Doxie who reached age 21 while living in the state of New York. The claim is that she was a wire-haired pup who enjoyed a fondness for peanut butter cups. She was only in the “oldest” lead for three months but died from old age.

Rocky” is a Doxie who was only known by the public at large since he did not get into the record books. The pup lived in California. He was 25 years plus one month when his pet parent put him to peace. His joints got to a point where he was pretty much immobile, which was heartbreaking for his parents since Rocky had been an exceptionally active dog. The only option was to put him to sleep.

“Otto” lives and thrives in Shrewsbury with his pet parent, who he follows throughout the house each day. He is a Doxie mixed with a terrier. The pup is currently 20 years plus six months and going strong, attempting to beat all records.

What Determines The Dachshunds Life Expectancy

16 year old dachshunds
16-year-old dachshunds

Aside from genetic health, many factors play into the average dachshund life expectancy of a dachshund, including the amount of exercise she receives, diet, and the environment to which she’s exposed. The primary cause of death with many pups from this breed is often age unless there are genetic predispositions. Statistics show death occurring in research terms as follows:

  • Old Age – 21%
  • Cancer – 16.7%
  • Cardiac (Heart Disease) 14.3%
  • Neurologic (i.e. IVDD, seizures, etc.) – 11%
  • Multiple Issue Combinations – 5.7%

The causes are often hereditary, but in some instances, the issues arise from lifestyle or the way the animal comes up. Younger pups whose lives are lost from congenital ailments or traumatic events could and should be prevented.

A Doxie Is The Only Thing On Earth That Loves You More Than He Loves Himself

A Doxie’s Nutrition Relating To Lifespan

A critical component determining lifespan for a Doxie is their nutrition. These dogs are destined to be obese. That puts excessive strain on very short legs and strains an already challenged spine, creating discomfort and pain.

The suggestion is if you don’t monitor and maintain a healthy, wholesome restricted diet plan for your pup, she will experience a reduced expectancy of as much as three years. Surprisingly, this is a common problem with the breed, with nearly 20% of the pets overweight, making it among the leading cause of common health issues.

Recommendations for a meal plan include foods higher in proteins and lower in fats to avoid long-term illness, including diabetes, diarrhea, pancreatitis, and cardiac issues aside from obesity. The animal requires a well-balanced with carbs/proteins/fats, a nutrient-sound regimen with minimal preservatives and additives appropriate to each life stage.

These animals have a propensity for bacterial infections, including salmonella, so you want to ensure to follow all proper food hygiene guidelines. It’s not all about food, though; the dog needs to exercise regularly, every day, for at least 30 minutes, contributing to the average lifespan of dachshunds.

A Journey With A Dachshund Is Full Of Learning, Loving, Growing and Ultimately Healing

The Dachshunds Happy Home

A happy dachshund enjoys a clean, healthy atmosphere with pure air quality. Pollutants are not Doxie’s best friend. These pups have aversions to any toxins or chemicals in the air, and exposure can harm them with their physical health and mental capacity, helping to determine how long do dachshunds live.

The animal should have a nice warm but not overly hot area for her bed with blankets to dig under so she can get comfortable away from potential drafts.

Do Dachshunds Live Longer Than Other Dog Breeds

Numerous variables play into how long your dog will survive. Numerous reported studies claim that the average dog will live to approximately 11 years of age. That’s a year and a half less than the median lifespan for a dachshund, meaning Doxies are among the longest living dog breeds. Most of the dachshund pups survive a lot longer than expected; however, again, these are all speculations.

Average Life Expectancy by Breed

Breeds Lifespan Breeds Lifespan
Afghan Hound 12 Golden Retriever 12
Airedale Terrier 11 Great Dane 7
Akita 10 Great Pyrenees 9
American Cocker Spaniel 11 Greyhound 9
Australian Shepherd 12 Irish Setter 12
Basset Hound 11 Irish Wolfhound 7
Beagle 12 Jack and Parson Russell Terriers 14
Bearded Collie 13 Keeshond 12
Bernese Mountain Dog 8 Labrador Retriever 12
Bichon Frise 12 Lhasa Apso 14
Border Collie 13 Maltese 12
Boston Terrier 11 Mastiff 7
Boxer 9 Miniature Dachshund 14
Brittany Spaniel 13 Miniature Poodle 14
Bull Terrier 11 Miniature Schnauzer 12
Bulldog 6 Newfoundland 9
Bullmastiff 8 Old English Sheepdog 11
Cairn Terrier 14 Pekingese 12
Cardigan Welsh Corgi 13 Pembroke Welsh Corgi 12
Cavalier King Charles Spaniel 11 Pomeranian 10
Chesapeake Bay Retriever 9 Pug 11
Chow chow 9 Rottweiler 9
Collie 11 Saint Bernard 8
Dachshund 13 Samoyed 12
Dalmatian 11 Shetland Sheepdog 13
English Cocker Spaniel 12 Shih Tzu 13
English Setter 12 Staffordshire Bull Terrier 12
English Spring Spaniel 13 Standard Poodle 12
French Bulldog 9 Toy Poodle 13
German Shepherd 10 Weimaraner 10
German Short-haired Pointer 11 West Highland White Terrier 13
Giant Schnauzer 10 Whippet 13

Reference: Dog Longevity, Dr. Kelly M. Cassidy

How long do miniature dachshunds live?

16 year old miniature long-haired dachshund
16-year-old miniature long-haired dachshund

The miniature Doxies have the privilege of being perhaps among the longest living breed recognized. Where the standard can range from 12-15, the miniature can achieve 16+.

Smaller animals tend to survive at a much grander capacity than their standard counterparts. The tiny pups also, however, face the same health challenges a standard-size dog will. These will play a role in how long do miniature dachshunds live.

Do Male Dachshunds Live Longer Than Female Doxie?

18 year old Smooth Coat Dachshund
18-year-old Male Dachshund

No specific studies are indicating a male or female as the longer-lasting gender. As a basic guideline, you can determine that females in every breed will typically outlive male dogs by approximately six months, with those females that have been spayed living a greater length of time compared to both males and females entire.

Studies did look at neutered male dogs against those entire and found that intact males enjoyed a longer Weiner dog lifespan than the neutered pups. Females, on the other hand, survived much longer being spayed. Part of that is because a female dog not spayed faces Pyometra risk, which is an infection that can lead to an early death.

How Long Do Crossbreed Dachshunds Live For?

The guideline concerning a dachshund that crosses with another breed of dog is the lifespan will follow the breed with which the Doxie mixes. If the animal has a shorter lifespan, the expectation is that your pup will live fewer years than if the dog were purebred.

Purebred dachshunds boast a much longer (speculation) number of years as mentioned than any other breed. That means, if you have a Doxie that hasn’t mixed with different types of dog breeds, you’ll enjoy the longevity that other pet parents are seeing with theirs. It seems to be as much as 17 years in some cases or as we see with “Otto,” currently, he’s at 20 working towards 21.

How Long Do Dachshund Patterns Live For?

Do Patterns Affect Dachshund Health?

You can have different colors and varied textures of dachshunds; you can also have combined patterns by breeding Doxies with specific genetic combinations. That isn’t genuinely a “life or death” determining factor, but it can create congenital deformities for specific combinations that decrease life quality. The patterns:

The dapple gene touts a problem is a potential for auditory and visual impairments, for which ultimately the result is a lesser quality of life for the animal. When a breeder chooses to mix two dapples (double dapple), the issue becomes increasingly detrimental, making the practice highly discouraged.

Piebald patterns have a likelihood of developing deafness relating to pigment issues (increased white in the coat)—the more white, the greater the chances for impairment. Brindles are not commonly associated with genetic deformity, with only standard Doxie health issues to be considered.

How Can You Increase The Lifespan Of Your Dachshund?

No one looks forward to the day we have to separate from our dachshunds. These are such an essential part of our families, and we hold such love for these tiny creatures. But there are things you can do to help improve the quality of life while gaining a little time along the way. Some tips:

1. Selecting The Ideal Breeder

The best Dachshund breeders will have the knowledge and spend adequate time and take special care in breeding the dachshunds. That should include testing the parents before allowing the breeding process to prevent the possibility of passing on genetic health conditions. There are three essential exams that the “Dachshund Club of America” strongly advises to assure breed-ability.

  • Exam Of The Patella: “Patella Luxation” is hereditary and is a condition of kneecap dislocation.
  • Ophthalmology Exam: The Veterinary Ophthalmologist should perform a yearly eye exam to prevent vision problems from being passed to the next generations. Eye disease can result in irreversible and painful health issues for a pup, affecting lifespan.
  • Cardiac Exam: A common condition for Doxies is “congenital heart defects” resulting in congestive heart failure. The issues are not preventable, so the exams need completing to avoid passing the conditions to the next generation.

As the prospective pet parent, make sure to request the parents’ medical history to educate on the generation line.

2. See The Vet Regularly

From the moment of adoption, your Doxie should begin vet visits and continue regularly through each life stage. The medical provider will guide you and the puppy through the varied life stages. That will include the proper food for maintaining a healthy weight, an exercise program appropriate for age, adequate vaccines and examining for conditions for which the animal has a propensity, and providing care when the pup gets herself into mischief.

  • Nutrition: Dachshunds are prone to becoming overweight with their body structure, plus succumbing to ailments relating to poor nutrition. It’s essential to develop a wholesome, healthy meal plan specific to your Doxie, preferably low in fat and high in protein with a good balance of protein-fat-carbohydrates.

Ensure to find out from the vet what a proper portion is for your pup, and don’t allow the dog to enjoy more treats than the vet recommends on a given day.

  • Exercise: The Doxie is an energetic, active dog based on its history as a hunting dog. She will need playtime and walk time, which should equal at least half an hour each day. Keep your pet active like you, if you’ve planned a daylong hike then take your dog with a good quality backpack for dachshund and enjoy the company.

One thing you want to avoid with the pup since her legs are so stumpy is allowing jumping up and down on furniture or other surfaces. Either invest in pet stairs or help her to get where she needs to go. Otherwise, the animal will receive spinal or hip injuries or both.

  • Socialize/Train: Early socialization is essential, so the dog gets used to other people and animals. Some Doxie pups are not happy around strangers or other pets. It’s good to expose them while on walks or in the dog park. The more the animal gets used to the scene, the less she’ll be aloof when visitors stop by the home.

Love and cuddles should be on the schedule in unlimited supply. The dachshund pups love attention and thoroughly enjoy snuggles. It brings them joy and happiness when they’re the center of attention, plus it keeps them calm and relaxes their mind, making them feel protected and safe.

As a rule, stress plays havoc on a dog’s health as it does for a human. Rubbing the pup’s belly or cuddling soothes her and you at the same time.

When Is It Time To Cross The Rainbow Bridge?

We don’t ever want to say goodbye, but we also don’t want to be selfish when our pup is not doing well. If you notice your Doxie is having chronic pain, becoming immobile, is overall frail or disoriented, is isolating, her quality of life has gone, and you need to help her.

While the vet can help to a certain extent for as long as they’re able, there comes a time when the puppy is merely holding on because they don’t want to leave us sad, but you’ll know. What we must do comes from a place of love, an act of purity towards the one we love and who has loved us so unconditionally. Helping your companion to find peace in your final gift to them – until you meet again.

Final Thoughts

I have two Chiweenies, Oscar And Sydney, male and female. They are about to turn eight. I can’t imagine life without them. Fortunately, these are small dogs, so they should live for a long time, according to these statistics. I’m going to hold science to it. I’m looking to break records. Otto better watches out.

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