- Quick Comparison Table
- Pitbull Dachshund Mix
- Pros and Cons of Getting a Doxie Pit
- Fun Facts about the Doxie Pit
- History and Original Purpose of a Doxie Pit
- Doxie Pit Temperament
- Doxie Pit Size and Appearance
- Exercise and Living Conditions for Doxie Pit
- How to Train a Doxie Pit
- Doxie Pit Mix Health and Care
- Feeding Doxie Pit Mixes
- Grooming and Shedding
- Rescue & Shelters
- Doxie Pit Breeders
- Final Thoughts
Pitbull Dachshund mixes, also known as Doxie Pits or Dox Bulls, are uncommon designer dogs that are the offspring of two different pure breeds. In fact, it’s not known whether any currently breeder is intentionally producing this hybrid breed. Thus, Doxie Pits are rare, and you may only occasionally come across them in shelters or rescue organizations. Since they’re a rare hybrid breed, there is much that isn’t known or standardized about the Doxie Pit. However, here’s what we know about this unusual-looking dog and what you might expect when adopting a Doxie Pit.
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Quick Comparison Table
|Items||American Pitbull Terrier||Dachshund||Pitbull Dachshund Mix|
|Type||Terrier dog||Hound dog||Designer dog|
|Origins||19th century||15th century||21st century|
|Country of Origin||United States||Germany||United States|
|Size||Medium to large||Small||Medium|
|Height||17” to 19”||8” to 9”||8” to 13”|
|Weight||30 to 85 lbs.||16 to 32 lbs. (standard) or 11 lbs. max (miniature)||20 to 30 lbs.|
|Life Span||12 to 16 years||12 to 15 years||12 to 15 years|
|Coat||Smooth||Smooth, wirehaired, or long||Smooth to medium|
|Coloring||Red, black, brown, grey, blue, white, brindle||Any solid color except white, bi-color, dappled, brindle, piebald||Any combination possible|
|Shedding||High||Moderate||Moderate to high|
|Brushing||Once a week||1-3 times a week (dependent on coat length)||Once a week|
|Grooming||Minimal||Minimal to moderate||Minimal|
|Temperament||Confident, playful, friendly, alert||Clever, stubborn, mischievous, playful||Intelligent, playful, sensitive, courageous|
|Kid friendly?||Yes (with training)||Yes||Yes (with training)|
|Family friendly?||Yes (with training)||Yes||Yes (with training)|
|Good with other pets?||Moderate||No||No|
|Good for new owners?||No||Yes||No|
|Tolerance to solitude||Very low||Moderate||Low|
|Tolerance to heat||Moderate||Moderate||Moderate|
|Tolerance to cold||Low||Low||Low|
|Barking||Moderate||High||Moderate to high|
|Exercise needs||60-90 minutes per day||30-60 minutes per day||30-90 minutes per day|
|Tendency to gain weight||Moderate||High||Moderate to high|
Pitbull Dachshund Mix
Dog breeders create hybrid or designer dog breeds for any number of reasons, but two of the most popular are to reduce the health problems of purebreds and to create a dog with a specific appearance. In the case of the Doxie Pit, this often means attempting to create a dog that has the long, low body of a Dachshund without the accompanying back and joint problems.
Please note, however, that not all – or even a majority – of Doxie Pits are the result of intentional, responsible breeding practices. Unfortunately, Pitbulls are perhaps the most abused breed in the United States, if not the world, given their association with the illegal practice of dogfighting. This means that many Pitbulls may not be properly spayed or neutered, resulting in unexpected or unwanted litters of hybrid puppies.
If you want a Doxie Pit, you will probably need to adopt one, and please be aware that it might not have originally come from a loving home. That’s not to say that Doxie Pits aren’t wonderful, affectionate, or loyal dogs, just that they often come from rough beginnings and may need some extra care when it comes to adoption, socialization, and training. That’s the reason we don’t recommend this breed for first-time dog owners.
Pros and Cons of Getting a Doxie Pit
- Family- and kid-friendly dog
- very unusual and distinctive appearance
- Requires minimal grooming and brushing
- Affectionate and loyal companion
- Breed-specific legislation may apply to Pitbull mixes
- May demonstrate separation anxiety
- Best as the only pet in a household
- Low tolerance to cold weather
Fun Facts about the Doxie Pit
- The most famous Doxie Pit is a bicolor brown and white shelter dog named Rami at the Moultrie Colquitt County Humane Society in Georgia. The internet was so taken with Rami’s unique appearance that pictures of videos of him went viral. Instead of adopting him out, the shelter ultimately kept Rami to serve as a therapy dog and an ambassador for other rescue animals.
- The term “Pitbull” can actually refer to several similar breeds, including the American Pitbull Terrier, the Staffordshire Bull Terrier, the American Bulldog, and others. However, for the purposes of this article, we’ll use “Pitbull” specifically to refer to the American Pitbull Terrier, which is a United Kennel Club and American Dog Breeders Association-registered breed.
- While the American Pitbull Terrier came from a line of English bull-baiting dogs, they were mostly used as farm dogs here in the United States. Thus, American Pitbull Terriers are a bit larger and have differently-shaped ears than their English cousins, the Staffordshire Bull Terrier.
History and Original Purpose of a Doxie Pit
As already mentioned, not much is known about the history of the Doxie Pit, since this hybrid breed isn’t often purposefully bred. If there is an intentional purpose to creating this designer dog, it’s likely either to offset the back problems of the Dachshund or create a unique-looking designer dog.
Much more is known about the history and purpose of the parent breeds. The Dachshund is a German dog that likely dates back to the 15th century. The short legs and long body of the Dachshund do have a purpose: they were bred to hunt animals that live in holes or dens, including badgers, foxes, and rabbits. They are hounds with keen noses and strong prey instincts, small enough to creep into a badger’s hole and courageous enough to kill the badger if necessary. Nowadays, though, they’re primary kept as pets, as they’re particularly good apartment dogs.
The American Pitbull Terrier is descended from English bull-and-terriers, a breed that is now extinct. Although bull- and bear-baiting were outlawed as sports in the mid-1800s, these dogs’ owners then pitted them against each other in dogfights, a practice that came over to the United States along with the breed. Some American farmers used Pitbulls to drive livestock, but sadly, the breed’s main purpose continued to be dogfighting until that was banned across the country in 1976. Since then, some Pitbulls continue to be bred for illegal dogfights, but most are bred as companion dogs.
Doxie Pit Temperament
Like many characteristics of hybrid breeds, the temperament of the Doxie Pit is extremely hard to predict. There are simply no breed standards, and nearly all of them will be first-generation hybrids with one Dachshund parent and one Pitbull parent. For this reason, temperaments can vary greatly from one Doxie Pit to another. Additionally, there are relatively few known Doxie Pits out there. However, we can make some reasonable guesses by looking at the temperaments of the parent breeds. The more alike the breeds are, the more consistent the offspring will be.
First, a word of caution: while Pitbulls are no more inherently aggressive toward people than any other breed, they may display some natural aggression against other dogs. Simply put, Pitbulls were historically bred to fight each other, but also to obey their human handlers. This doesn’t mean Pitbulls can’t get along with other dogs, just that early socialization, patience, and vigilance are necessary. Your Doxie Pit may or may not inherit this characteristic. Dachshunds are moderately dog-friendly but are highly suspicious of human strangers, so these two temperaments might balance each other out to create a Doxie Pit that does well with both humans and other dogs. Alternatively, a Doxie Pit may display problems with both.
Other than that, though, a Doxie Pit is likely to be a sensitive, playful dog that doesn’t like to be left alone. Funnily enough, the Pitbull often acts like a lap dog, whereas the much smaller Dachshund doesn’t, so how much your Doxie Pit likes to cuddle will be hard to predict. Both breeds are noticeably courageous in the face of danger. While the Doxie Pit is unlikely to be a good guard dog, they will defend you if they believe you to be in danger. A Doxie Pit might not start a fight, but they won’t back down, either, so it’s vital that you always keep this dog on a leash while out in public.
Doxie Pit Size and Appearance
Both Pitbulls and Dachshunds are distinctive-looking dogs, so their offspring have a truly unique look. Specifically, a Doxie Pit may have the long body and short legs of a Dachshund with the boxy head and wide chest of a Pitbull. It will almost certainly be a strong, muscular dog. Pitbulls are medium to large dogs, but Dachshunds are small and very short, so a Doxie Pit is likely to be medium in size. Regardless, this will probably be a very strong dog who can pull you around when they’re on a leash.
As for coat coloring, many colors and combinations are possible. The most common coloring of Pitbulls is a solid color or bi-color with a lighter color on the chest and muzzle. Dachshunds may be any solid color except white, though they’re perhaps best known for having markings of a second color around the eyebrows, jaw, chest, and legs. Brindle, dapple, or piebald colorations are also possible. Doxie Pits can have any color or combination of colors depending on the parent dogs.
Exercise and Living Conditions for Doxie Pit
Dachshunds are excellent apartment dogs. While they’re quite lively, their legs are short enough that a little bit of exercise goes a long way. On the other hand, Pitbulls need quite a bit of exercise, and although they can learn to live in an apartment, they’ll need time and space to run every day. The Doxie Pit is likely to be somewhere in between. A walk or two per day plus extra playtime should suffice. On longer walks, be sure to keep a careful eye on your Doxie Pit, particularly if their legs are very short. They may tire out before you do.
A Doxie Pit will probably do best as the only pet in a family, but they can learn to live with other dogs with careful socialization and training. However, they aren’t good for homes with cats, birds, hamsters, or other small pets. Due to their Dachshund and Pitbull instincts, they are likely to see these smaller animals as prey. Since they’re smaller dogs, they’re also likely to be able to get into tight spaces that these other animals may use to hide. This can be a recipe for disaster, so if you already share your home with other pets, consider a different breed of dog.
Pitbulls actually make poor guard dogs because they accept human strangers easily, but Dachshunds are far most suspicious. Because of this, a Doxie Pit might fall anywhere in between these extremes. Both breeds are very good with children – Pitbulls are even sometimes called “nanny dogs” because they’re so gentle with kids – but remember that a Doxie Pit is a strong, powerful dog. They may knock down small children without meaning to. Additionally, always teach children how to play properly with dogs, without pulling on ears or tails or interrupting them during meal times. With this in mind, there’s no reason a Doxie Pit can’t be an excellent family dog.
How to Train a Doxie Pit
Pitbulls tend to be highly eager to please their owners and are thus relatively easy to train. On the other hand, while Dachshunds are intelligent dogs, they are notoriously stubborn. Thus, your Doxie Pit may have a temperament anywhere in between, though they will almost certainly be smart. You may need quite a bit of patience for training if your Doxie Pit leans more toward its Dachshund heritage, so don’t give up. Always use positive reinforcement and keep training sessions short. Don’t keep pushing your Doxie Pit if you or the dog become frustrated. These are very sensitive dogs, and they won’t learn much if they’re responding to your anxiety or irritation.
Dachshunds tend to be food-motivated, and Pitbulls tend to be praise-motivated, so try to identify which reward your Doxie Pit responds to and use it. Dachshunds sometimes make housebreaking difficult, so consider crate training your Doxie Pit. When used properly, a crate provides a safe, restful place for your dog to stay when you’re not around. However, never leave your dog crated for long stretches of time. This goes double for Doxie Pits, who don’t take well to solitude and may develop anxiety and bad habits if left in a crate for most of the day.
Keep in mind that Pitbulls are power chewers with strong teeth and jaws, so your Doxie Pit may inherit this tendency. If so, make sure your Doxie Pit has plenty of appropriate chew toys to focus their mouthiness. They’ll destroy and tear the stuffing out of cheaply-made toys, so opt for tough, durable toys made for power chewers. Keep in mind that if you give your Doxie Pit an old sneaker to chew on, they may learn that all shoes are theirs to destroy, so stick with designated chew toys!
Doxie Pit Mix Health and Care
In general, hybrid breeds tend to have fewer health problems than purebreds because of their greater genetic variation. However, Doxie Pits may still be susceptible to certain conditions that plague their parent breeds. Dachshunds in particular have joint and back problems resulting from their unusual body type, including patellar luxation and intervertebral disc disease. On the other side, Pitbulls are prone to hip dysplasia and skin allergies. It’s hard to say whether any individual Doxie Pit will inherit these susceptibilities, so you’ll have to keep a careful eye on their health.
Responsible breeders know how to pair dogs to avoid making the likelihood of health problems worse. However, Doxie Pits are rarely the product of responsible, intentional breeding. That doesn’t mean that every Doxie Pit is likely to develop, say, joint problems, but you probably won’t have a great deal of information on the health of your Doxie Pit’s parents. You’ll want to keep up with regular vet checkups to ensure that your Doxie Pit remains healthy.
Feeding Doxie Pit Mixes
The exact amount you feed your Doxie Pit will depend on factors like size, metabolism, age, and energy level, but given that they tend to range from 20-30 pounds, about 1.5-2 cups of food a day spread over 2 meals should be about right. Choose a food blend based on the age of your dog – puppy, adult, or senior – and be consistent with the mealtimes you choose. Usually once in the morning and once in the evening is appropriate.
Pitbulls only have a moderate tendency to gain weight, but Dachshunds have a high tendency, so you’ll want to keep an eye on your Doxie Pit’s food intake. Unfortunately, gaining weight can make any joint or back problems worse, and this goes especially for a short-legged, wide-chested dog like a Doxie Pit. If you use treats for training, make sure they’re small and low-calorie. No more than 10% of a dog’s daily caloric intake should come from treats.
Grooming and Shedding
Unless the Dachshund parent of your Doxie Pit is a long-haired or wire-haired variety, your Doxie Pit will have a short, smooth coat that’s easy to care for. This kind of coat only requires occasionally brushing and bathing. In fact, bathing that’s too frequently can dry out your dog’s skin and irritate any existing skin problems. Even if your Doxie Pit has a slightly longer coat, they probably won’t need brushing more than once or twice a week. You shouldn’t need to take them to a professional groomer very often unless you simply don’t like giving them a bath.
Both Dachshunds and Pitbulls are moderate shedders, so prepare to find some fur around the house. Luckily, this fur will probably be short, and neither breed has a double coat that leads to excessive shedding.
Rescue & Shelters
We always recommend adopting instead of shopping, particularly for breeds that are likely to come from irresponsible backyard breeders that care more about profit than the health of their dogs. Since Doxie Pits are a rare hybrid breed, there aren’t any shelters we could find that rescue only this designer dog. Despite this, shelters all over the country are full of Pitbulls and Pitbull mixes, which are often hard to find homes for, so checking with your local shelter is probably your best bet to find a Doxie Pit in need of a good home.
Additionally, you can always look into shelters that focus on rescuing either Dachshunds or Pitbulls. They usually also work with hybrids of those breeds. You can also use online services such as Puppyfinder or Petfinder to search shelters all over the country if this is the hybrid breed for you.
Doxie Pit Breeders
Once again, there are few if any responsible breeders purposefully breeding Doxie Pits. Unfortunately, Pitbulls are one of the most common breeds that end up being used by amateur, irresponsible breeders. We never recommend supporting such breeders, since they usually contribute to the population of unwanted, unhomed, and unhealthy dogs that fill up shelters. Of course, that won’t stop everyone from seeking out a particular designer dog they might want, no matter where it comes from. When looking at amateur breeders, we ask you to think carefully about who you’re giving money to and what kind of life the breeding dogs are living.
A Doxie Pit is a difficult hybrid breed to set your heart on. They’re rare and often the product of neglect, if not outright animal abuse, so to seek one out might either lead you to disappointment or to disreputable breeders with unhealthy breeding practices. Always keep an eye on your local shelters, though, since Pitbull mixes are very common. Hopefully, if you’re patient, a Doxie Pit will come along. If not, read up on some other hybrid breeds to see if another might be right for your home.
If you do happen to adopt a Doxie Pit, congratulations! You’ve found a unique pup who is sure to provide lots of playtime and amusement. Be sure to keep up with good socialization and training, and always keep your Doxie Pit on a leash during walks. Be patient with your dog and considerate of their instincts, and your Doxie Pit can be a wonderful family dog.